It wasn’t that long ago that I was an avid follower of figures like James Dobson, Jerry Fallwell, and Pat Robertson. The church I joined heartily endorsed them and my radio was always set on Christian talk radio.
I was a young Christian. A middle-aged man, but I had recently ‘renewed’ my faith after many years of apathy. I had recently graduated from college as a ‘non-traditional’ student and had taken in a job in another state. We didn’t know anyone and finding a church home was a priority not only for my rediscovered faith but as a place to make friends and belong to a local community.
I believed our preacher when he spoke about the evils of abortion, a woman’s place in the home, and the ‘dangerous liberals’ who would give our country and world to Satan.
Those same views echoed over and over again on talk radio and the personalities I listened to there.
I was indoctrinating myself and was not even aware.
Not much later I was laid off from my new job due to a corporate take-over and I, along with thousands of others, were forced to find new jobs. I eventually landed as a manager of a Christian retail store. I was encouraged by the upper management to immerse myself in the books we sold. The same personalities I listened to on the radio had scores of books available, but I also had access to other writers with a very different point of view.
I won’t bore you with details of my ‘deconstruction’ as it’s often called. But needless to say my eyes were opened. Not just opened, SLAMMED open and made to truly examine what it was I believed and why.
I share all this not to give you my life story, but to show that I understand both ‘sides’, the Christian Right and the Christian Left. I know how easy it is to be immersed in a certain worldview and believe that one is doing God’s will when in fact one is doing quite the opposite. I’m not an expert but experienced.
And my experience tells me the Right, is wrong.
Wrong about almost everything.
Falwell, Robertson, Dobson, and those that have taken up their mission in recent years (Franklin Graham, Robert Jeffress, et al.) have led and continue to lead sincere believers down the wrong political path. And they are doing it in the name of Jesus.
Jesus very clearly stated what commandments we are to follow. Matthew 22:27-40:
You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the great and first commandment. And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself. On these two commandments depend all the Law and the Prophets.English Standard Version
But instead, the Christian Right wants you to put government authority first. And through that authority, they want to legislate their own twisted morality into our governments and make their version of the Bible the law of the land.
And what exactly is that morality they want to enforce on others? I don’t exactly know but generally their agenda puts gun rights before human rights, makes LGBTQ+ rights illegal (trying to legislate them out of existence, forcing their own heteronormative view the only legal position), eliminating abortion by making it illegal (rather than eliminating it by making it unnecessary through better birth control, better health care, etc.), and making the ‘traditional family’ (Mom stays home and raises kids, dad works and is the head of the household) the only family recognized by law.
But it’s so much more than that. Way too much to go into in a blog post. Their views are also racist, wanting to eliminate all immigration, legal or otherwise, making “America for Americans”, they seek to undo legal protections for African Americans and other minorities, allowing employers and schools to discriminate based on skin color, they want to not only allow but to FORCE public schools to teach a conservative theological curriculum based on the Bible (the Bible as they read it…) and on and on and on.
But the absolute worst part of the Christian Right is their use of fear to manipulate people and make them vote the way they want them to. To give you an idea of their tactics, take a look at this letter from James Dobson of focus on the family. Written in 2008, Dobson tried to give a frightening view of what 2012 would look like if Obama were elected (Dobson was encouraging people to vote for McCain and Sarah Palin).
Read the Letter Here
Yet here we are, in 2019. None of what Dobson feared came to pass. Yet through Dobson and others using the same fear factors we elected Donald Trump. Who is no more than a puppet to them, doing their bidding in getting their agenda into law.
I’m running out of steam here in this post, so let me pass the discussion off to you. How is the Christian Right wrong? I look forward to your comments.