It’s Time to Start Calling Evangelicals What They Are: The American Taliban

By J.C. Weatherby | 24 February 2017
Medium

(Photo: Ben White / Unsplash)
(Photo: Ben White / Unsplash)

The Council For National Policy” is a Conservative Think Tank, made up of a who’s who of prominent conservatives; Rick Santorum, Mike Huckabee, Reince Priebus, Tim LaHaye, Bobby Jindal, John McCain… the list goes on…

This article, published by the Washington Post, but reported elsewhere, lays out the group’s plan to “restore education in America,” by bringing god into classrooms.

I have said for years and years, the Christian Right is really seeking to establish a theocracy in the United States — at least regionally, throughout the deep south. And this latest effort by the “Council for National Policy” lays further proof to that claim. This is an effort which — in spite of what many Christian leaders say — is NOT supported by the Constitution. The Constitution strictly prohibits the establishment of Religion, as part of the First Amendment, which also guarantees Freedom of Speech and Freedom of the Press. The purpose of this “Separation of Church and State” is intended to do two things:

1. It protects religious freedom for everyone.
2. It prevents the tyranny of any one religion.

But this fact won’t stop many southern christians, who feel it is their duty — as christians — to make the United States “a godly nation” in their eyes. And they will cite the numerous biblical passages in which god exhorts all nations to be faithful to him and condemns those nations who are not, as the basis for this duty — which they feel is their right.

I grew up in this world, so I know what I’m talking about. As a kid, during the 1970’s, I attended churches in Atlanta with my devout grandmother. I heard Jerry Falwell speak numerous times at First Baptist on Peachtree. I was indoctrinated into the evangelical way of thinking by a fiery minister in Smyrna. I studied my “King James” bible. I feverishly read Ernest Angley’s book about the “end times” that depicted christians being boiled alive by the antichrist. I loved “The Omen” movies, wholly believing they portended something real. Trust me. I’ve been there. Fortunately, I had the sense to give it up. By age 15, at the peak of my adolescent sexual curiosity, I realized that any religion that demanded giving up my basic humanity was nuts.

Of course, not all christian evangelicals share this extreme view. Nevertheless, the extremists always give themselves away with their trademark refrain, “I’ll pray for you,” as if you are possessed by demons and in need of an exorcism. They seem completely unaware of how this statement makes them appear; that they alone understand “truth,” that everyone else is “ungodly” and in need of “redemption,” as they see it; by being “born again,” and baptized, and accepting their world view. This self-righteous arrogant presumption is at the root of all religious extremism.

Evangelicals in churches and state houses across the country support laws and political systems that brutalize and imprison MILLIONS of African Americans, that deny equal rights and protections to LGBT people and tacitly support violence toward them, and seek to deny women the right to govern their own bodies, often with threats or outright acts of physical violence. They seem hell-bent on ejecting science from education and replacing it with their own creationist ideas.

In doing these things, evangelicals are advocating a religious extremism that is no different from muslim extremism, which projects religious authority over all people in their domain, which limits the rights of women, controls and limits education, and enforces strict adherence to a moral code, which naturally rejects and punishes all forms of “decadence,” including; “deviant sexuality,” science, reason, and any questioning of authority. Christian fundamentalists, if given the power, will do the same things.

Evangelical christians in the United States condemn muslim extremism as a threat to the country and their way of life, while clearly endorsing their own form of extreme religious authoritarianism. This form of religion establishes a tribally divisive “us” versus “them” mentality, which places “our” rights and prerogatives above the needs of any other group. And it’s used repeatedly as the basis for denying other people’s rights — particularly their freedom to choose and even their right to exist. It’s worth pointing out that in the south religion buttressed this tribal mentality to force a separation between whites and blacks, who were/are seen as inferior. This tribalism is deeply embedded in white suburban christian thinking, and accepted without question. I shouldn’t have to point out that, in the end, this is not Christian at all.

Religious extremism is religious extremism. Using words like “righteousness” or “faith” or “Christ-given mission,” and hiding behind ideas like “tradition” and “heritage” and “family values” won’t cover up this fact. And it is up to every freedom-loving person, who prefers freedom of choice, freedom of worship, who cares about protecting women’s rights and equality for all, and advancing reason and scientific knowledge, to be aware and oppose it.

I do not suggest that evangelicals should give up their faith. But I strongly suggest they should not trample on other people’s religious beliefs, or insist that people should conform themselves with the evangelical worldview.

If evangelicals hate tyranny, they should be very wary of becoming tyrants. But evangelicals will never see themselves as tyrants, because they are commanded by their faith to be “missionaries for Christ.” This mandate engages them in a zero-sum game to convert the country, indeed the whole world, to their faith. And over the decades they have increasingly reached for more and more political power to achieve this goal. This is exactly what ISIS proposes, by trying to establish a global muslim caliphate. The goal of religious extremists, regardless of faith, is always the same: Dominion.

“And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it, and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the foul of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.” ~Genesis 1:28

Evangelicals are The American Taliban. To many, that will seem a garish and inconceivable statement. The entire purpose of this article is to point out that religious extremism also exists in America as it does in other parts of the world, and that it is not just radical muslims who are extreme, it’s also radical christians … and that religious extremism can start with something as simple as, “I’ll pray for you.”

Reprinted with permission from the author.

JC Weatherby (Jan Carson Weatherby — his family and friends call him Carson) is a multi media creator, novelist and filmmaker. He is the creator of “Evocronik,” a cyberpunk animated series. Follow him on Facebook at JCWeatherby

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550 COMMENTS

  1. Evangelicals give Christians a bad name. Let me tell you something Evangelicals – if you love Jesus you CANNOT condone what trump is doing to this country and the world. You all must be insane. SHAME ON YOU ALL – Jesus will not forget what you have done in his name.

  2. The American Taliban. How…original.

    When evangelical Christians do even a tithe (excuse the church talk) of the damage secular “progressives” do on a daily basis, I’ll start to worry.

  3. Do you know the real definition of socialism? Real socialism is when EVERYONE is poor, with the exception of the top .01%…the ruling class.
    How is that good for anyone. I’ve lived in a socialist country, so know what I’m talking about. Look at any socialist country and you’ll see millions trying to get out from under socialism.
    Most people who are in favor have no clue what it’s about.

  4. I’m sorry but I must disagree here. While the theocratic right wing is definitely an issue in our society, I do not believe (or at least hope so) that the author would seriously say to a person who lived under Taliban rule that they can sympathize with them. It’s a level of erasing experiences of non-white people that have suffered true and unspeakable hardships that no one should stand for. It’s definitely not to minimize the problem in the USA but one can’t help when compared to such an extreme example. It’s on par with some middle class university student saying they understand slavery because of their unpaid internship. Yeah it’s wrong you weren’t paid but don’t reduce the pain of others who suffered an unimaginable amount.

  5. Since when have Christians ever hijacked planes and crashed them into buildings? Or kidnapped innocent people and chopped their heads off? Think before you call anyone “taliban”!

    Also, who hurt you? You obviously hate Christians so much that you are letting it get to you. I think you need to take a good long look in the mirror and fix what’s broken, again, before you start calling people the taliban. You have serious pent up anger and issues.
    And were in Christian doctrine does it say that you need to give up your basic humanity? Don’t just say something like that and not explain yourself!

    • Christians have killed millions of people. They continue to do so. In many countries, you can still accuse your neighbor of witchcraft or black magic and they’ll be burned or stoned for your accusations. Doesn’t matter the age. Children are killed as well.

      The paragraph below is from The Boston Globe and sums up pretty accurately the fact that christians continue to kill and destroy cultures that don’t conform to their beliefs.

      “Like centuries of self-aggrandizing missionaries before him, Chau saw himself as a humble servant of God. He sought to use his waterproof Bible to compel those he viewed as savages from their perceived godlessness. Their worth extended only as far as his ability to coerce them into accepting his beliefs. This is piety weaponized into a tool of domination and supremacy, meant to crush nonconforming cultures. It’s what white Europeans did to indigenous people and enslaved people to tame and control them.”

      I’ve linked the article in case you want to open your eyes to the damage done by the very religion you’re attempting to defend.

      https://www2.bostonglobe.com/opinion/2018/11/27/missionary-didn-die-from-tribesmen-arrows-was-killed-his-own-arrogance/QSblpdBocWWSs3HeS94TYP/story.html

    • It’s more that they want to impose THEIR view of the world on everyone else, stripping people of their rights. They want to ignore the constitution although some
      LOVE to call themselves constitutionalists. Religion has no place in school. That should be taught at home.

  6. The author of this art lice fails to comprehend the entire 1st amendment. Many constitutionalists see the amendment as a way to keep the Government out of religion. Unfortunately the opposite interpretation has been promoted by poorly educated law makers and liberal authors.

  7. I don't have any problem with this title but what we can fail to recognize is how in both cases but especially in terms of Christians and that would be all who claim to be Christians, is that the religions when you look at what many "do" are most often hardly at all talking about what Jesus said and taught and did as their example. So we see in society the accumulation of wealth, power, influence, judgements and measurements of others as lessor, not being helpful to those in need, not putting their selfishness aside and sharing their wealth with those that don't have it for whatever reason, not lending to people without interest, pointing out tiny things that Jesus would do differently while they themselves are doing things majorly different from what Jesus demonstrated. They often assume they are "saved" from eternal death just because they "believe" they are the same as those who gave their lives on Jesus behalf. They are often ready to persecute and prosecute and even justify murder in war or death penalty and by other deceit – justifying sanctions of food and medicine on Iraq and Venezuela and other countries. They often say Lord, this and Lord that but don't know "him" which Jesus said would happen after he left. They are often not "watching" for the signs of his return except for in the bible which isn't apparent because it was meant to be earned to see. They are often in bed with governments that give no recognition to the fact that all we have, all we are has been given to us with no effort on our part except in the use of the elements, etc., so they put themselves in the "seat" of the Ones who created it all and did so scientifically to where humans are like primitives even with their greatest technological advancements. So they are quick to condemn someone that doesn't talk in their specific constructed terms. They don't recognize the updates that have come and gone but still exist that my book clearly brings a great deal of evidence to. This is why all the religions are to date killers of souls and atheism can be a good step away from them yet what so many atheists do is throw out the baby with the bathwater and become their own "belief system" – believing in humans as their masters and their limited very flawed sciences and various corruptive practices making their casualties collateral damage for whoever doesn't abide by their so called intelligence and standards. Everything is upside down and inside out and that's why the planet needs to be recycled as it's a garden run by the "weeds" and that's why we have climate change that humans have no ultimate control over and never will.

  8. Yeah! It's terrifying how many people those Evangelists have been beheading and raping in the name of God.
    Why should we be accepting the fact that the only way for God to immediatly open the gates of heaven to them is in case they kill or are killed in trying to establish Evangelism upon earth?
    Enough of those Evangelists!
    This article is evidence enough of how the world has entered a Kafkian black hole.
    However, THANKS GOD, this too shall pass!

  9. All of you Evangelical's claiming that it not Your church's causing the Problem. can I just use the Presidents words here..BULLSHIT.. I remember the German's saying the same thing after the War.. "I didn't know", "I wasn't involved", "I didn't do it", and I was just doing my job fixing the Gas lines on the Gas Chambers.. Remember this, all of you Bible Thumpers; those of you that stand by at let trump run amuck like Hitler did, are just a Guilty as he is.. Evangelicalism started in the South after the Civil War, and was Racist, and still is Racist.. They didn't allow Blacks in their Church's for years, and then only up stairs, they did allow Jews in their Clubs, and they openly Hated Catholics.. Why not Keep your Religion at home, and Give your money to your Retirement, and your Kids College fund, instead of some Con man or women, waving the Bible, and telling you to give your money to them, so you can BUY your way into Heaven11

  10. You call Christians the taliban and the next fascists of America. Forgive me for saying so, but the Christians aren’t the ones buddying up next to the Muslims. And Muslims are the ones who are beheading Christians. The Democratic Party and the liberal left is the problem with America, they have driven America into a hole and have turned the nation against God, now they seek to destroy Christians and would love nothing more than to erase us from history. I, as a Christian, love all people and the Bible teaches that God wishes for none to parish, thus God provided a way, even though they were undeserving. This is the message of love I teach, not a message of hate.

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