It is generally an attribute to be passionate about one’s beliefs, and that quality has driven human beings to make great strides throughout the history of the world. Without passion and commitment, it is doubtful that technological advancements would have progressed past the rudimentary use of the wheel, and medical achievements would be limited to using leeches to cure maladies such as cancer. There is, though, an inherent danger when passion and commitment to a cause drives human beings to become true believers who impose their beliefs on others. Adolf Hitler, Josef Stalin, and Osama Bin Laden were all true believers who wreaked havoc on humanity by killing anyone who they felt did not subscribe to their ideology, or stood in their way. America is under siege today by true believers who have as their motivation religious ideology, and there is no greater danger to humanity than Christian fundamentalists whose goal is forced adherence to their ideology.
There are two Republican presidential hopefuls who are using their religious inclination to garner support for their candidacies, and unlike politicians who pander to the religious right, Michele Bachmann and Rick Perry are true believers who, if elected, will transform America into a theocracy and install the bible as the legal standard to govern the country. Each of the fundamentalist Christians share a belief that this country’s problems are rooted in secularism and have resorted to scare tactics and religious fervor set the nation on a course of oppression and imposition of their religious passion. Any religious fundamentalism is dangerous, and the recent terror attacks at the hands of Islamic extremists are testament that left unchecked, an unchallenged religious dogma is a danger regardless of the religion.
Michele Bachmann has made it quite evident that she is a true believer who is hell-bent on establishing biblical rule as the law of the land that will include religious instruction in the education system, forced birth on every woman in America, and persecution of gays. In 2002 Bachmann and religious fanatic Mike Chapman made an unbelievable connection between public school curriculum and the Nazi Holocaust. Bachmann said that education reforms “undermine our freedom and undermine our national sovereignty” and that school curriculum moved the nation away from “established truths “ like the imagined Christian founding documents that were supplanted by documents like the Universal Declaration of Human Rights; a secular document. It is revealing that Bachmann’s Christian sensibilities lead her to object to human rights and it explains her abhorrence to women’s rights, gay rights, and religious freedom.
Bachmann feels that secularists are waging war against Christianity and has said elitists in Washington have “declared war on marriage, on families, on fertility, and on faith.” There is nothing on Earth as dangerous as “onward Christian soldiers” who feel they are in a war against their own secular government, and myriad heavily-armed Christian militias are primed to make the conflict into more than an ideological struggle. Of course, there is no war on Christianity’s morbid values, but for true believers, a philosophical difference may as well be a fight for survival. Bachmann is no stranger to calling for her supporters to arm themselves to oppose the government and if she needs to use fear-mongering and threats of spiritual war to incite Christians to battle non-believers, she has proven she will.
Rick Perry is as bad as Bachmann and is working to put prayer in schools in Texas as well as changing curriculum to teach creation as science. Perry has also said that th nation’s problems are too big for men to solve and that only god can fix the economy and create jobs. It is interesting that Perry isn’t laughed off the national stage for his belief that only god can solve the nation’s problems when his calls for prayer to make rain came up short time and time again. It is frightening to imagine a leader who will use prayer as a solution to a nation’s difficulties instead of intelligence and common sense.
The most disturbing aspect of Bachmann, Perry, and indeed, all fundamentalist Christians seeking power is their opposition to the Constitution’s guarantee of equal rights and religious freedom. Bachmann’s anti-gay and anti-women’s rights position has as its basis the Christian bible and for her, it is not a political ploy but a true belief that gays are from Satan and that contraception is against god’s law. She supports a Constitutional amendment that defines marriage as between one man and one woman and is fiercely opposed to contraception based on her statement that there is a war against fertility. Perry is no better than Bachmann in denying the Constitution’s freedoms and during Perry’s parade of preachers at his stadium prayer meeting, a speaker said that, “counterfeit religions, alternative religions to Christianity have no 1st Amendment right to the free exercise of religion.”
Both of these true believers pose a serious threat to this country because they are resorting to fear-mongering and tapping into a segment of society that is desperate for a theocratic government. The danger is not just from evangelical Christians either. The personhood amendments in 26 states were written by a California legislator and promoted by the Catholic Church. If push comes to shove and the “onward Christian soldier” mindset takes hold to battle the evils of secular government, even good Christians (an oxymoron) will be caught up in the fervor and will sweep this country the same as Hitler’s Nazis in Germany. Hitler used fear and hatred of Jews to provoke good German Christians into helping exterminate 6 million Jews. Many Christians who are struggling to survive in this economy can easily be manipulated into killing gays, Muslims, and non-believers if people like Bachmann and Perry continue telling their followers that all their problems are caused by a secular government and its supporters.
It is ironic that Bachmann referred to the Holocaust when criticizing public education because she is following the model Hitler used of repeating lies and fear-mongering to gain power. The predominant religion in America is undoubtedly Christianity, and there are enough extremists who will take up arms to stop what they see as anti-Christian policies if they get frightened enough. If anyone doesn’t think Christians are capable of violence against non-believers, they may recall that last week, over 8,000 Christians made very violent threats against atheists for filing a lawsuit. There are millions of true believers in America and the great majority are Christians who are ready to wage war on anyone opposing their agenda.
America is in jeopardy of slipping into a theocracy and all the players are nearly in place to make it a reality. Teabaggers want the government to collapse so they can install a Christian family values theocracy and Republicans have been on a rampage to force birth on women based on the bible’s command to “go forth and fill the Earth.” For years most Americans ignored the Christian fundamentalists as basically good people who are harmless, but as they get more political clout, they have shown what they intend to do. The mythical creation story taught as science, contraception being outlawed, prayer forced on school children, and oppression of gays is not remote any longer. Many Americans think that these true believers will go away if they ignore them, but it is getting more difficult to ignore an ever-present danger. It is becoming a war, and unless Americans wake up and take notice and oppose the candidates who are true believers, they will wake up one day soon and find a preacher as president and the bible as the law of the land. It is not a nightmare any longer and without interdiction at the ballot box, the nightmare will become reality and no American will be spared. After all, during the Inquisition, Christians killed thousands of other Christians for nothing more than an accusation. Sound alarming? Ask the Jews who survived the Holocaust how alarmed we should be if true believers gain Congress and the White House.