Former Republican congressman Tom Tancredo managed to tie two of the biggest issues of the week together on Tuesday when he railed against efforts to take down Confederate flags, saying that the Koran is an even more dangerous symbol, and then claimed that thanks to the Supreme Court’s recent marriage equality decision, such comments will soon be illegal.
When Newsmax’s Steve Malzberg asked Tancredo to discuss a Facebook post he recently wrote comparing the Confederate flag to the Koran, Tancredo responded that efforts to “erase” the flag are misguided.
“However,” he continued, “there is something else out there, our president really happens to enjoy it, we teach about it in the public schools, we tell people, kids in the public schools to respect it. It’s called the Koran and it’s responsible for far more, far more murders, enslavement, the most horrible things, and it’s still going on. It’s not history, it’s still happening. And that, we don’t ban it, heavens no, we even tell kids we gotta read it in our schools and respect it.”
Malzberg then changed the subject, asking Tancredo about the Supreme Court’s marriage decision, which Tancredo said was connected. Not only will the decision eventually lead to the criminal prosecution of pastors, he claimed, but soon “everything I just said” about the Confederate flag and the Koran will be “outlawed” due to the institution of unconstitutional hate speech prohibitions.
“Mark my words, that’s what’s coming,” he said. “Dark days ahead, Steve.”
Twentieth century, let’s see, we left the secularists in charge…We had Hitler, we had Joseph Stalin and we had Mao. 120 million people [killed]. It gets worse. In the second half of the 20thcentury, we’ve murdered 400 [million] babies through abortion in China and 50 million in the United States. Let’s see, there are 500 million people we have killed in the 20th century. It’s one-tenth of the number of people who are living today, almost one-tenth.
How did we do that? We let the secularists in charge. You can’t let the secularists in charge! You have to get involved.
-Chuck Stetson, CEO of Essentials in Education, speaking at Skyline Church's Future Conference, June 2015
First they came for the adoption ministry, but I did not speak out, because I did not do adoptions.
Then they came for the wedding photographer, but I did not speak out, because I did not do photographic weddings.
Then they came for the baker, and I did not speak out because I was not a baker. Then they came for the florist, but I said nothing, because I was not a florist.
Then they came for me, and there was no one left to speak for me.
-Mat Staver, founder and chairman of Liberty Counsel, paraphrasing Martin Niemöller at the Future Conference
Last week, a few hundred pastors, parishioners and activists gathered at Jim Garlow’s Skyline Wesleyan Church outside of San Diego for what Garlow called the “Future Conference.” The name of the conference appeared to have two meanings. First, in the words of its marketing materials, that “what you thought was coming…is here now” — in other words, that a great spiritual clash in which Christians are called to be martyrs has arrived. And second, that ultimately, the future will belong to conservative Christians as they wrest control from secular authority and take “dominion” over the country and the world.
The themes of imminent martyrdom and eventual dominion dominated the four-day conference, in which 56 speakers gave what added up to more than 24 hours of TED-style speeches.
The event was heavily tinged with “seven mountains” dominionism, the idea that Christians are called by God to be leaders of or to wield dominant influence over the seven main areas, or “mountains,” of culture — not only religion and family, but also government, business, education, media and entertainment.
Garlow himself has been very active in politics, as one of the organizing forces behind the effort to pass the Proposition 8 gay-marriage ban in California and a proponent of Pulpit Freedom Sunday, the movement that encourages pastors to break the rarely-enforced IRS rule that prohibits tax-exempt churches from endorsing or opposing candidates for office. Garlow has especially close ties with former Republican House Speaker Newt Gingrich, to whom he gave partial credit for inspiring the conference. Gingrich submitted a video address to the conference, as did two current Republican members of Congress, Rep. Jody Hice of Georgia and Sen. James Lankford of Oklahoma.
Speaker after speaker lamented the failure of the church to engage in the “culture” — through media, through education, and most importantly through politics. As Garlow wrote in an introductory letter to attendees:
Allow me to be direct: our nation is in trouble. Deep trouble. But you already knew that. That is one of the reasons you are at the FUTURE Conference. But why is our nation in trouble? Because of (how do I say this nicely?) the church. What is lacking? A clear proclamation of biblical answers to the messiness of our culture. Does the Bible actually speak to civic and national issues. Yes, it does!
Secular government and culture, the message was, are creating chaos at home and around the world. And pastors and believers who fail to engage in the wider world are letting it happen.
Just as important was the idea that, as Garlow put it, “you and I were made for this moment.” The going has gotten tough, the message was, not just for Christians facing violent persecution in places like Syria and Iraq, but also for conservative American Christians who claim to feel marginalized by advances in gay rights and who fear a potential Supreme Court decision striking down gay marriage bans. Glenn Beck, promoting the conference with Garlow, said that he knew of 10,000 pastors who were willing to die fighting this supposed anti-Christian persecution in America.
Most speakers were careful to point out that these threats are on very different orders of magnitude, although some hinted that American Christians were on the path to much more difficult times.
This was a spiritual battle that a disengaged church was letting the forces of darkness — radical Islam, the “redefinition of marriage,” abortion rights, pornography — win. Territory would have to be regained.
A ‘Spiritual Battle’ Against Gay Marriage
As is patently obvious, this is a spiritual battle. We need the intercession of every prayer warrior, every angel, and certainly the Holy Spirit. We must bombard the gates of Heaven ceaselessly for God Almighty to reverse our tragic cultural course and restore marriage to the venerable and beautiful institution that He did create.
-Frank Schubert, National Organization for Marriage political director, speaking at the Future Conference
While Garlow gathered speakers to talk about a host of imminent threats to American Christians including terrorism, abortion rights, an economic collapse, pornography, welfare and unbiblical movies, at the top of nearly everybody’s minds was the upcoming Supreme Court decision on marriage equality.
Garlow took hope in a presentation from Troy Newman, head of the anti-choice group Operation Rescue, who boasted of a decline in abortion providers in recent years. “If America can survive long enough,” Garlow said, maybe, like in the anti-abortion struggle, a new generation will rise up and see “the casualties from same-sex marriage are so horrific, this has got to be stopped in our nation.”
He elaborated on the “horrific” consequences of marriage equality in an address to the audience the next day, referring to the thoroughly debunked study by sociologist Mark Regnerus that purported to show all manner of negative outcomes for children raised by same-sex couples.
“I’ve been concerned with how many Christians, how many pastors, cannot make the theological case or the sociological case for marriage,” he said. “The redefinition of marriage, sociologically, will be profoundly destructive, profoundly harming. The Regnerus report out of the University of Texas is going to be only one of many examples of many that will follow that are going to show the catastrophic consequences, the pain, the suffering inflicted on the human race by this redefinition of marriage.”
Schubert, a political strategist who works with the National Organization for Marriage (NOM), similarly cited Regnerus’ questionable conclusions as he urged audience members to give money to NOM and to prod their pastors to speak out against marriage equality because “being silent on the most important issue of our day turns it over to the forces of darkness.” If your pastor refuses to speak out against gay marriage, he advised, “I would look for a different church.”
Schubert said that while anti-gay advocates “could very well win” the marriage case before the Supreme Court, Christians must be prepared to use “any and all efforts to encourage resistance” to a ruling they disagree with, “short of violence.” Christians, he said, should “renounce as illegitimate” any Supreme Court decision that attempts to “redefine” marriage.
NOM’s president, Brian Brown, delivered a similar message, telling attendees that the success of the LGBT equality movement means “the days of comfortable Christianity are over.”
“Things have been good for a long time for us,” he said. “We don’t experience the sort of persecution we’re witnessing in the Middle East. We don’t fear for our lives in coming together and worshipping. We’ve felt for a long time that we’re a part of dominant culture. Now in the course of the last decade or so, maybe a little longer, we’ve realized that’s not the case. Things are starting to change. And that, to put it bluntly, the days of comfortable Christianity are over.”
A Supreme Court ruling in favor of marriage equality, he said, would “put a lie into law” and “that law will be used to marginalize, repress and punish those of us who stand for the truth of marriage.”
Claiming that Obama administration policies opposing the violent repression of gay people overseas are actually persecuting people who oppose marriage equality, Brown said that what’s happening to Americans is nothing in comparison and so U.S. Christians should be “cheerful” about “being persecuted.” “What we see and we go and work with folks from around the world is a whole other level of hatred,” he said. “Be cheerful, be happy, you’re being persecuted! Quit being so weak! Okay? What I’m trying to say is, if that’s happening we must be doing something right!”
Anti-gay activist Michael Brown had a similar message, saying that previously bullied LGBT people have now become the “bullies” and that the LGBT rights movement “will not be satisfied until the church bows down.”
Garlow told the crowd that they were “moving into a time of testing” where evangelicals would have to stand up to the predominant culture. He recalled a “vision” he had all the way back in 1990 in which he spoke with God about a future in which there would be “churches being closed by government” on the basis of “the civil rights of homosexuals.”
But no speaker took the gay-marriage panic as far as Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver, who spoke to the conference via video. Marriage equality, Staver warned, will cause “a cataclysmic social upheaval in every conceivable area.”
Touting a pledge to disobey any marriage equality ruling that he has recruited hundreds of prominent anti-gay activists to sign, Staver said that gay-marriage opponents must be prepared to resist such a ruling just like the leaders of the Civil Rights Movement resisted segregation and Jim Crow: “I think we’re back in the days of Martin Luther King, Jr. If they tell you to get off the bus, you don’t get off the bus. If they tell you to go to the back of the bus, you don’t go to the back of the bus.”
“This could be the best, most magnificent time for the church,” he said. “It is moments like this, where there is an unprecedented clash, where there’s impossible odds, that God will intervene for his people.”
Staver closed his speech with a rewritten version of anti-Nazi dissident Martin Niemöller’s famous “First they came for the socialists” lines, appropriating them to warn that the supposed persecution of bakers, florists and wedding photographers who deny service to gay people will open the door to a much wider persecution of Christians in America.
Beware Muslims! (Unless They Agree With You On Gay Rights)
Christians are being enslaved and beheaded and burned alive across the Middle East and he’s silent. Christians are being threatened and intimidated and sued and sequestered in Middle America and mum’s the word.
-Dr. Everett Piper, president of Oklahoma Wesleyan University, speaking of President Obama at the Future Conference
Although most speakers were careful to say that the supposed persecution of American Christian conservatives at the hands of the LGBT rights movement is on an entirely different order of magnitude than that being faced by Christians at the hands of ISIS and oppressive Islamist governments, there was a sense of joint martyrdom, that both are fighting for spiritual ground against forces allied with Satan.
As Steven Khoury, an Arab Israeli pastor, put it, “persecution is coming to America,” and he was there to help Americans learn how to stand up to it.
Garlow invited a few of the top anti-Islam activists in America to warn that the country, if it lets its guard down, risks facing subjugation at the hands of American Muslims. Frank Gaffney of the Center for Security Policy warned that since 9/11, millions of Muslim immigrants have staged a “colonization” of America. He warned pastors in the crowd against any sort of interfaith dialogue with Muslims or letting Muslim groups use their church facilities, which he said “is really about providing political cover to Muslims who don’t deserve it.” Anti-Muslim activist Stephen Coughlin similarly warned pastors against falling for the “interfaith delusion.”
But nobody had a more dire warning than right-wing activist Avi Lipkin, who told pastors that “all” churches in America have been infiltrated by Muslim spies pretending to be Christian converts. These moles, he warned, are cataloguing Christians and Jews in order to kill them all when Muslim jihadists take over.
All of the talk of "religious liberty" and threats to the First Amendment seemed to be conveniently forgotten when Lipkin endorsed laws such as Switzerland’s ban on minarets, declaring: “Until Islam is banned and suppressed and erased, the Jews will not have any chance to survive in this country.”
However, he had some good news: Muslim immigration to America, he predicted, would drive U.S. Jews to the Middle East, setting up a conflict in which Islam will be “finished.” “I predict Islam will be terminated very soon,” he said to enthusiastic applause.
It was jarring, then, to later in the very same day, hear a speech from Austin Ruse, the head of the conservative Catholic United Nations advocacy group C-FAM, in which he said that some of his greatest allies in the fight to stop “radically secular countries” from inserting LGBT rights and reproductive health language into UN documents were representatives of Muslim countries.
“The pro-life, pro-family coalition in the United Nations is strange bedfellows,” he said. “It includes Muslims. And without a bloc of Muslim countries supporting life and family at the UN, we would have had a right to abortion a long time ago, and redefinition of family.”
Garlow took it upon himself to clarify this, taking the stage after Ruse's remarks to reassure the audience that “co-belligerency” with “people who are hostile to much of our values” is sometimes necessary when “they actually have an interest in some portion of our Kingdom values.” He compared Ruse’s work with Muslim countries at the UN to his alliance with Mormon leaders to pass Proposition 8 in California.
Throughout the conference, Israel was portrayed as a spiritual bulwark of the West against surrounding Satanic Islam — something exemplified by its relatively secular values. No one, however, mentioned, that Israel is one of what Ruse called the “radical secular countries” advocating for LGBT rights at the UN. Also ignored were policies such as Israel's public funding of abortion services or the fact that just days prior to the event, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu sent his "blessings" to LGBT Pride marchers.
Dr. Everett Piper, the president of Oklahoma Wesleyan University, tied together this idea that “secularists” are working in cahoots with radical Islam, aided by President Obama.
“For 67 years, we’ve disparaged dead, white, European males in our college classrooms,” he said. “Are we surprised that we now have a president whose first action was to remove the bust of Winston Churchill from the White House and send it back to the British ambassador’s home? For 67 years, we’ve sent our kids off to sit under faculty who have panned a Judeo-Christian ethic and praised its antithesis. Are we surprised that we now have a White House that is seemingly more aligned with the Muslim Brotherhood and the PLO than it is Benjamin Netanyahu and Franklin Graham?”
Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich — whom Garlow partially credited with inspiring the conference — put it a different way in a video address to the event, saying that Christians are facing simultaneous attacks from “secular totalitarianism” and “Islamic supremacism,” with the two factions allied in a “war on Christianity.” Gingrich, who has spent years warning that the U.S. will soon become a "secular atheist country" that is "dominated by radical Islamists,” has been working to court pastors like Garlow who have ties to the dominionist movement.
Christians are dual citizens. We are citizens of the Kingdom of God by faith in Jesus Christ … We are also citizens of an earthly “kingdom” … In the absence of Christians taking their dual citizenship seriously, obeying the dual commissions faithfully, and attempting to follow the dual commandments devotedly, the devil’s crowd has taken over key places of influence in our culture largely by default, even in a nation where professing Christians are still in the majority.
- Family Research Council manual for establishing a church “culture impact team,” distributed to pastors at the Future Conference
The sense of the inadequacy of secular leadership that pervaded the Future Conference was summarized by Republican Rep. Jody Hice of Georgia, who told the Future Conference via video that secular government leads to rampant divorce, teen pregnancy, crime and gang violence, all of which invite a greater presence from Big Government:
Garlow painted a similarly bleak message, saying that the struggles of the city of Detroit are the result of a lack of “bold, biblical preaching and the application of scriptural truth to all components of contemporary life.”
“The absence of biblical truth being applied to a metropolitan area literally destroyed it,” he said.
Garlow didn’t specify which exact “biblical truths” Detroit is in violation of, but conservative activist Star Parker, who declared her intention to “destroy the welfare state,” might have provided some hints.
Parker told the gathering that the U.S. is “in a similar place right now in our country to where we were in the 1850s” when we were “half free and half slave.”
“And we’re at a crossroads again,” she said, “because we’re at the place where we’re half free and half slave. We’re in the battle of our lifetime, we’re in the battle for the very heart and soul of our great country, to go into a future, if we can, even as the Scriptures told us that God actually planned for us a future and a hope, and yet that future and hope is under attack.”
“We’re either going to come up out of this biblical and free,” she said, “or we gotta come up here secular and statist.”
Chuck Stetson, who runs a program that develops “biblical literacy” courses that clear the First-Amendment bar for being taught in public schools, had a similar message, claiming that the great genocides of the 20th century (in which he included abortion) were the result of leaving the “secularists in charge.”
Lamenting that “three percent of the population” (LGBT people) are defeating "70 percent of the population” (Christians), Stetson urged conservative Christians to develop a “broader concept of missions” and to get involved in politics as well as “literature, art [and] music.”
He used the metaphor of a cruise ship: Christians, he said, were gathering around the lifeboats in an effort to save souls, even while throughout the boat, “they’re breaking out the booze, bringing out the gaming tables. They need the Christians down there.”
In fact, the Future Conference, Garlow reported, started out as a sort of founding conference for the United States Coalition of Apostolic Leaders, a new group led by Joe Mattera, a New York minister who is a leader in the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR). NAR is a controversial movement within evangelical Christianity which is led by self-declared prophets and apostles. Many of NAR’s leaders promote “seven mountains” dominionism, the idea that conservative Christians must take “dominion” over all seven “mountains” of culture in order to pave the way for Christ’s return.
(NAR and dominionism began to attract press attention back in 2011 when then-Texas Gov. Rick Perry hosted a rally featuring many NAR leaders. Its adherents then began to downplay its core themes, saying they were seeking more “influence” than “dominion.”)
Wallnau gave a Glenn Beck-style whiteboard presentation outlining the "seven mountains" theology for the audience, explaining that if the church doesn’t occupy each of the seven spheres of culture, “the Enemy will.”
“The reason why we’re having a problem in the United States is because, honestly, we have not been pursuing the discipling of the nation, we’ve been pursuing the evangelizing of the people and the building of ministries,” he said. “And so we’ve neglected entire territory that the Enemy was all too quick to go in and take possession of.”
Peacocke — the founder of a group that works with business and community leaders to bring “God’s kingdom to earth” — put the message succinctly when the told the enthusiastic crowd that Christians have been called to be leaders in every area: “We should be leading. Virtually every place there’s a Christian, they should be a manager, they should be management. We should have the relational skillset to manage wherever we go, because that is what Christians are called to be, responsible empowerers of other people.”
In his talk, Mattera clarified that he and his allies were calling on Christians to become “leaders of culture” not through force but through simply being the best in all fields. “We’re not called to take cities, we’re called to love them and serve them,” he said, “and once we produce the greatest problem-solvers the world has ever seen, the leaders of culture will come and beg us to lead, because they’re going to see that we’re the only ones who have the answer.”
He added that a key component of this would be to follow the scriptural commandment to “multiply” and “replenish” the Earth, which he specified means having more than two children per couple.
“In general, God has called His children to have more children than any other people,” he said, “so this way we will have the people to fill every aspect of culture, not just bodies, but trained in the covenant, because the word ‘replenish’ implies that they go and they fill the earth with God’s law, with the result being subdue the earth and have dominion.”
A practical guide to the political portion of this mission was provided by Kenyn Cureton, the head of ministerial outreach at the Family Research Council, who presented pastors and churchgoers with guides for establishing “culture impact teams” — basically political committees — within churches. Politically involved churches, he said, are “fighting a spiritual battle,” not against gay rights advocates or pro-choice groups, but against Satan, who has caught cultural liberals in his “snare.”
“Who’s behind the effort to snuff out human life through embryo-destructive research and abortion?” he asked. “Who’s behind the effort to indoctrinate our children with these alternative lifestyles, redefine marriage, and even ruin our military? Who’s behind the effort to drive God out government, Christ out of culture and faith out of public life? Who’s behind that? I mean, it’s pretty easy for us to understand as believers, it’s the Devil.”
Where Politics and Religion Collide
Although the focus of Garlow’s conference was largely on the twin evils of secularism and Islam, he also invited Black and Latino pastors with whom he had worked on resisting Prop 8 to discuss criminal justice reform, on which conservatives are increasingly engaging in bipartisan coalition work, and immigration, on which some evangelical leaders have been trying to get Republicans to adopt positions, or at least rhetoric, that is less offensive to Latino voters.
One of the most revealing moments of the conference came after a speech by Mark Gonzales, a Texas pastor who through his Hispanic Prayer Network seems to be attempting to connect the NAR movement with Latino evangelicals. Gonzales told the mostly white audience that God is using Latino immigration to bring “revival to America,” but that Satan is trying to stop that revival from happening by dividing the church on the issue of immigration.
And it’s not just religious revival that Latino immigrants will bring, he said. They will also help conservatives win elections.
“When God allows this many people to come into a nation, he’s up to something,” Gonzales said. He then made a well-rehearsed pitch to the conservative audience for immigration reform that includes a path to citizenship for undocumented immigrants who have long lived in the country if they first overcome a number of hurdles.
Immediately following Gonzales’s speech, Garlow came on stage to “clarify” for the crowd what Gonzales was saying. “What he’s talking about, so we’re all on the same page, is not amnesty,” he said.
Gonzales responded that anti-immigrant pundits do indeed call proposals like his “amnesty,” but using that word is the “biggest disservice we can do as the body of Christ.”
Parts of the audience clapped. Others did not seem sold.
Questions of biblical guidance and political expediency had, for a moment, become the same thing.
In her new book “Adios, America! The Left’s Plan to Turn Our Country into a Third World Hellhole,” Ann Coulter works tirelessly to hand-pick the perfect “immigrant gone wrong” stories to convince us to deport them all. Coulter, an immigration reform opponent who hopes the government will “round up and deport 11 million illegals,” argues that “the only thing that stands between America and oblivion is a total immigration moratorium.”
Claiming that Democrats only support immigrant rights to get more votes, Coulter tells Republicans that “there is simply no reason for [them] to legalize 30 million people who will vote 8-2 against them.” This book, endorsed by the likes of Rush Limbaugh, Phyllis Schlafly, and Roy Beck of the anti-immigrant group Numbers USA, proves to be one of Coulter’s most outlandish works yet.
Coulter starts us off with sound advice regarding the type of immigrants we should and should not be letting in to America. According to Coulter, America needs to draft immigrants like the New England Patriots draft players. “No one guilts them into taking a blind kid with one leg over an All American – much less the blind kid’s cousin,” she quips. Because we are in a “sellers’ market,” Coulter urges the Land of the Free to turn away “immigrants’ elderly relatives arriving in wheelchairs,” as well as “cripples, illiterates, and the desperately poor.”
“Earlier immigrants proved their heartiness by vomiting all the way across the Atlantic Ocean to get here,” she asserts, implying that those who risk life and limb to enter into the U.S. today simply don’t cut it. And in case you were confused, “America is not a ‘nation of immigrants,’ it is not an ‘idea,' it was never ‘diverse,’ and ‘diversity’ is a catastrophe.” And, she says, America is white: “Without the white settlers, what is known as 'America' would still be an unnamed continent full of migratory tribes chasing the rear end of a buffalo every time their stomachs growled.”
Moreover, America was virtually perfect before the arrival of “brown people,” Coulter informs us. And no, she is not referring to African Americans who, just in case you were murky on your history, were “freed by Republicans, then discriminated against for another century— mostly by Democrats— until Republicans finally got the Democrats to stop.” Instead, Coulter is referring to Latin American and Asian immigrants, who “don’t get to piggyback on the black experience in America.”
“What’s going to happen when a mostly white senior population is being supported by a mostly brown younger population,” Coulter wonders, before asserting that “despite a hegemonic propaganda campaign about all cultures being equal, they aren’t.” She continues that “there’s nothing good about diversity, other than the food, and we don’t need 128 million Mexicans for the restaurants.”
And when it comes to Somalis, “even Somalia doesn’t want Somalis,” so why should we?
Coulter presents cold, hard facts to back up her claims, especially her argument that immigrants are inherently violent. “Ninety percent of the names on the U.S. Marshals’ list of most wanted criminals would not have been recognizable as names fifty years ago,” she claims. And, moreover, “the dream of many 'Dreamers' is to rob, assault, and murder Americans.”
“When it comes to multiculturalism,” Coulter warns, “you can’t say, We love the empanadas— but we don’t want forty-year-old men raping their nieces. You don’t get to choose. This is not a buffet.” And just so everyone is clear, “gang rape, child rape, elder rape, and murder rape are highly correlated with specific ethnic groups— ethnic groups we are bringing to America by the busload.”
What about white rapists? They simply do not exist, writes Coulter. This is because “white, Protestant, Anglo-Saxon America” is alone in the world as a haven for minorities, women, children, plants, and animals. None have fared so well in any other culture.” America, a nation that has apparently been “taking rape seriously since the first settlers arrived,” is chock-full of “neurotic” women and journalists who cook up “false accusations of rape against American white men.” In fact, “under the diversity regime, everyone gets special rights and privileges, except white men.”
“You can’t make a governing Democratic coalition without breaking a few girls,” Coulter remarks.
Because of all this, Coulter advises Republicans to quit trying to appeal to black and Latino voters and just stick to recruiting white voters by stirring up anti-immigrant sentiment. Or, as she puts it, Republicans “should be unapologetically opposing the transformation of America into a Third World country.”
Coulter’s “advice” for Republicans seems to be resonating in a party that recently quashed an immigration reform bill making its way through Congress. Years after the GOP released an “autopsy” report urging Republicans to “embrace and champion comprehensive immigration reform” in a way that “takes into consideration the unique perspective if the Hispanic community,” Republican leaders now seem to be coming around to Coulter’s perspective that immigration reform is bad for the country and that Republicans should campaign on their anti-immigrant stances rather than trying to broaden the party’s appeal beyond its traditional base.
“When Republicans ignore white voters, they lose. When they ignore minorities and drive up the white vote, they win,” Coulter asserts.
Coulter isn’t screaming into a void: it appears that many right-wing presidential hopefuls are following suit.
Coulter, who credits white nationalist Peter Brimelow for her anti-immigrant politics, praises the hardline “self-deportation” platform that Mitt Romney embraced in his 2012 presidential bid. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker recently told Glenn Beck that he seeks to reducelegal immigration levels, while Rick Santorum has boasted that he has tried to lower legal immigration rates for years and chastises the Democratic Party for “selling their souls” by backing immigration reform. These candidates have cynically touted their anti-immigrant streaks as a way to attract white working class voters, just as Coulter recommends.
The Republican Party seems determined to confront the shifting demographics of the American electorate not by changing their policies, but by attempting to change the demographics. It says a lot that it’s Ann Coulter who is leading the charge.
Anti-Muslim activist Frank Gaffney invited Mark Krikorian of the Center for Immigration Studies, a group that advocates for increased restrictions on immigration, on to his “Secure Freedom Radio” program yesterday, where predictably the two got to talking about efforts to settle some refugees from Muslim countries such as Iraq and Syria, which have both experienced refugee crises, in the United States.
Gaffney told Krikorian that conservative writer James Simpson has written a new e-book for Gaffney’s Center for Security Policy about “what he calls the ‘red-green’ axis and the impact that it is having, sort of the hard-left and the Islamists, in erasing America.”
“Does this sound right to you that there is this kind of dynamic at work between the hard-left and the Islamists?” he asked.
Krikorian agreed, bringing up a column written by a speechwriter for former British Prime Minister Tony Blair who said that Labour leaders hoped expanded immigration would “rub the Right's nose in diversity and render their arguments out of date.” (The writer, in response to right-wing glee, later clarified that this wasn’t a “plot” to impose multiculturalism on an unwilling Britain.)
“I think the dynamic here is the kind of thing we heard about in the Blair government in England,” Krikorian said, “when one of his people, one of his advisors, basically said, look, we pushed immigration as a way to unwillingly force diversity on the British people, to change the nation. And I think a lot of these refugee activists types and immigration activists see immigration in the same way and see Islamic immigration as the most different and non-American way of promoting immigration and therefore serving their purposes the most, even more than, say, the immigration of people from, say, Latin America or Christians from the Middle East, that sort of thing.”
Last month, we noted that Sen. Ted Cruz had picked Lee Bright, a state senator with a record of stoking fears of a new civil war, to co-chair his presidential campaign in South Carolina. Cruz has now made a similarly revealing choice in Tennessee, according to the AP, picking Tea Party activist and former Williamson Country GOP chairman Kevin Kookogey to lead his campaign in that state.
Back in 2012, Tennessee Republican Gov. Bill Haslam faced a backlash within his own party. His offense? Picking a Muslim American woman who had previously built expertise in Sharia-compliant finance — helping Muslim business owners arrange for loans in ways that don’t run afoul of religious restrictions on paying or collecting interest — to a top economic position in the state.
Egged on by anti-Muslim activist Frank Gaffney, who warned that “ the financial jihadists will soon be targeting the Volunteer state for infiltration and influence operations,” a number of county GOP committees passed resolutions condemning Haslam for his hire. One of those resolutions was spearheaded by Kookogey, who told Talking Points Memo that Haslam had neglected to “consider that, perhaps, those bent on destroying Western Civilization might just be infiltrating our institutions.”
“It is not like this has never happened before,” he continued. “The Muslim Brotherhood is following the blueprint of the Communists, who infiltrated the highest levels of government and society in the 1950's. Shariah, however, is an even greater threat, because it has cloaked itself under the auspices of a religion, thus confusing the uninformed."
Kookogey also used his position as county GOP chairman to warn that Agenda 21 — a nonbinding UN sustainable development resolution signed by President George H.W. Bush — “ is, in fact, an insidious strategy of environmental totalitarianism”:
Of course, the choice of Kookogey as a top state official isn’t a huge surprise coming from Cruz, who himself has claimed that “Sharia law is an enormous problem” in American life and warned that Agenda 21 is a scheme to abolish golf courses.
RWW’s Paranoia-Rama takes a look at five of the week’s most absurd conspiracy theories from the Right.
This week, we learn that President Obama and Hillary Clinton are in cahoots with radical Islam, Caitlyn Jenner’s gender transition is a hoax, Ferguson has unleashed a wave of criminals, and gays continue to destroy the nation.
Obama’s Muslim Plot
Conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly explained in an interview with WorldNetDaily this week that President Obama is planning for the U.S. to take in Muslim refugees from war-torn nations such a Syria as part of his plan to wage “war on America,” knowing full well that Syrian refugees seek to “take over the world and establish their caliphate.”
“I don’t think he should let any Muslims in this country,” Schlafly said. “There is no reason why they should come in.” By permitting Muslim refugees to enter the U.S., Schlafly argued, “Obama is trying to absolutely change America by bringing in people who have no sympathy with what Americans believe.”
On her Eagle Forum blog, Schlafly also praised Ann Coulter’s new anti-immigrant screed “Adios America,” thanking Coulter for “alerting Americas to how Obama and the Democrats are destroying the land we love” by “diluting our population” with individuals “who commit all sorts of unspeakable crimes, in particular crimes against very young women and girls.”
Michael Savage joined in on the conspiracy theory, calling Obama a “con man shyster” who is attempting to destroy America by “injecting, like a virus, Muslims from Syria into all-white communities in America.” Obama, according to Savage, has also taken “infected children from Honduras and put them in every school district he could.”
Plenty of right-wing activists are upset about Caitlyn Jenner’s transition. But some have looked beyond the headlines to reveal the true conspiracy that’s afoot.
Alex Jones, host of “InfoWars”, hypothesized that Jenner’s announcement was actually just a plot to distract Americans from Obama’s mischievous, scheming ways. Jones declared that he does not “like being force-fed constantly this weird, one agenda. The obsession, it’s got to be from like five, six years, because I cover media, with the trannies and transvestites.”
“What’s behind the agenda?” Jones asked, revealing that the true agenda of the media is to not only distract us from Obama’s civil war but to “make the coolest thing to be” a “tranny or a transvestite” and glorify a “creepy old guy.”
Jones is not alone in his suspicions, as Cliff Kincaid of the conservative group Accuracy In Media wondered in Barbwire if Jenner’s transition was just “a hoax” to promote her upcoming TV show. Kincaid argued that the greatest threat is to children, criticizing Jenner’s supporters for sending an “extremely damaging” message. Kincaid made sure to warn us that “the nation may not survive, as it becomes a laughingstock before self-destructing or becoming easy pickings for a determined foreign adversary.”
While it may seem like Jenner is simply showing the world her authentic self, Kincaid urged us to question, “Where is the evidence that this is anything but a hoax?”
Hillary Clinton And Her Radical Muslim Cronies
The right loves to hate Hillary Clinton, and the latest conspiracy theories paint Clinton as a supporter and friend of “murderous Islamic thugs.” Rick Wiles, host of “Trunews,” spoke to Christopher Farrell of Judicial Watch Tuesday about his group’s claim that the U.S. compound in Benghazi was “arming Al Qaeda” and coordinating arms shipments to Islamic terrorists in Syria. While this connection may force some to then question why Islamic terrorists attacked the Benghazi compound in 2012, this question did not concern Wiles and Farrell.
Wiles compared the end of Gary Hart’s presidential campaign due to a photograph surfacing “of him with a pretty blonde sitting on his lap” to the apparent “murderous Islamic thugs sitting on the lap of Hillary Clinton.”
While a Republican-led investigation by the House Select Committee on Intelligence found Judicial Watch’s allegations about arm ships to Syria to be as credible as Hillary playing Santa with Islamic terrorists, Farrell and Wiles are not the only ones to remain unconvinced. David Horowitz, a far-right conservative activist, alleged in an interview with Newsmax TV on Tuesday that Hillary Clinton’s aide, Huma Abedin, leaked information to the militants who killed four American diplomats in Benghazi. Clinton “got four people killed in Benghazi,” Horowitz argued. “She, you know, disclosed her private emails to Huma Abedin, a Muslim Brotherhood operative that showed where Ambassador Stephens was all the time, making him a perfect target.”
‘The Ferguson Effect”
Manhattan Institute fellow Heather Mac Donald penned an op-ed for The Wall Street Journal last Friday titled “The New Nationwide Crime Wave” and the effect has been a week of media outlets sounding the alarm. Apparently, the civil unrest that began after the killing of Michael Brown has flooded the country, inspiring widespread crime.
What this theory lacks in nuance it makes up for in cherry-picked statistics that create a misleading image of increased violence and death. Switching between comparing shootings, violent felonies, and gun-related homicides, Mac Donald argued that the U.S. is “in the grips of a hysteria against cops” and that “cops have gotten the message that they should back off policing,” causing the flood gates to open and crime to wash over the nation.
This tsunami of crime, claimed Mac Donald, is the fault of the “mainstream media, the university presidents talking about assaults on blacks and of course the president and former attorney general.”
Anti-Gay Conspiracy Of The Week
This week in anti-gay conspiracies, gay men are exporting sodomy “to the entire universe” and the prospect of gay marriage will destroy America and cause millions to flee and/or demand secession.
Mike Heath, former head of the Maine Family Policy Council and current blogger on BarbWire, warned that the “[gay] virus is spreading rapidly. It won’t be enough to pervert the whole world with this evil anti-family worldview. Since the developed governments of the world aspire to colonizing planets we have to prepare for the export of sodomy to other worlds—to the entire universe!” Referencing the Apostle Paul, Heath pointed out that “you can tell when a nation has become a walking corpse when it has endorsed perverted sex.”
Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore, in an interview with CNS News, had a similarly dire warning, claiming that a Supreme Court ruling in favor of marriage equality would “literally cause the destruction of our country.” The court is “toying with something that’s like dynamite and will destroy our country,” he said.
If, however, by some stroke of luck America does not blow up following a ruling in favor of marriage equality, WorldNetDaily founder and editor Joseph Farah promises that it would be met by secession and mass emigration. Farah wrote that “we need a Promised Land. We need and Exodus strategy.” He asked if there are “any governors or legislatures out there among the 50 states willing to secede to offer a refuge for the God-fearing?” If governors cannot promise Farah this, he promised us there would be a “pilgrimage by millions of Americans” fleeing marriage equality.
CNS News posted an audio clip of part of the interview:
CNS News posted an audio clip of part of the interview: - See more at: http://www.rightwingwatch.org/content/roy-moore-gay-marriage-will-literally-cause-destruction-our-country#sthash.SG52o5UE.dpuf
In an interview with WorldNetDaily this weekend, conservative activist Phyllis Schlafly declared that the U.S.’s plans to take in refugees from Muslim countries, such as some who are fleeing Syria’s civil war, is in fact part of President Obama’s “war on America” and an attempt to help Muslims “take over the world and establish their caliphate.”
“I don’t think he should let any Muslims in this country,” Schlafly said. “There’s no reason why they should come in.”
President Obama is instigating a war on the United States, according to longtime conservative icon Phyllis Schlafly. But the president hasn’t dropped a bomb or fired a shot; rather, he has opened the country to tens of millions of immigrants and refugees from all over the world, including from Muslim countries that hate America.
“It is waging war on America,” Schlafly told WND. “Muslims would like to take over the world and establish their caliphate, and Obama has let so many Muslims in. I don’t think he should let any Muslims in this country. There’s no reason why they should come in.”
“Obama is trying to absolutely change America by bringing in people who have no sympathy with what Americans believe,” she declared. “They have no concept of limited government, of constitutional government, of rule of law, et cetera. There’s no reason we should let in people who don’t even like America.”
Schlafly, as always, is chiefly concerned with how immigrants will fit into the American social fabric.
“Anybody who comes in should have to renounce allegiance to his former country and accept the American way of life,” she declared. “And if he doesn’t want to do that, goodbye! Adios!”
Conservative radio host Gina Loudon published a column in WorldNetDaily today about how various life experiences have changed her previously doctrinaire views on a series of issues. For example, Loudon explains that her views on homosexuality changed after her encounters with openly gay friends and family members.
However, Loudon said that having Muslim neighbors “who seemed friendly and were good neighbors” did not change her suspicion that they were really faux-families working for ISIS.
“A ‘nice’ Muslim family was part of a ring of Muslims here to recruit little American girls to be taken to ISIS to be sold off or bargained away to live a life of rape, abuse and torture,” she wrote. "Many ‘families’ employed to do this are front people, posing as nice families preying on our tolerance and using it against us. Those who may actually be nice are not vocally opposed enough to the terror that the rest of them are creating for the world, in my opinion.”
She said that even “nice” Muslim high school student may actually be “a professional lure for ISIS” who tries to “target” young girls and sell them into sex slavery to the so-called Islamic State.
Until I had Islamic neighbors, I had never known a Muslim. There were three darling little children and two parents who seemed friendly and were good neighbors. It was at a stage in my life where I was struggling to find trendy clothing for my tween girls and was appalled at the way parents were dressing their daughters. I appreciated the modesty of the Muslim girls in our neighborhood.
But in the case of Islam, I feel differently. A “nice” Muslim family was part of a ring of Muslims here to recruit little American girls to be taken to ISIS to be sold off or bargained away to live a life of rape, abuse and torture. Many “families” employed to do this are front people, posing as nice families preying on our tolerance and using it against us. Those who may actually be nice are not vocally opposed enough to the terror that the rest of them are creating for the world, in my opinion. If it were my “faith” that was inspiring such heinousness, I would question that faith, not continue to defend it blindly. That isn’t tolerance; that is radical militancy.
There is an invisible cyber war raging by ISIS 24/7 in which cyber detectives across the nation work valiantly posing online as children hoping to catch cyber predators before those predators catch our children.
The predators are crafty. How would you lure a naive 14-year-old girl? A predator (whether sexual or today, too often, Islamic) on the prowl will create an online persona using a fake identity of an attractive teen boy. First, they find their target, a young girl or boy who appears lonely or otherwise isolatable. Before ever making contact, the predator will learn about that child’s deepest desires and cultural interests. Then he drops the lure.
He will flatter the child. He will mention passion for things the child likes before the child mentions them to show common interests. As the child takes the bait, he waits patiently and looks for the perfect opportunity.
“Hey, I will be at the church Tuesday,” he says, knowing the church is the perfect disarming connection and knowing that no one is at the church on Tuesdays. “How about meeting me there and we can walk to the ice cream shop?” The child thinks they are meeting a young American teen. They are meeting someone who is a professional lure for ISIS. This has happened hundreds of times in the last year.
The scenario can also be live. Young girl meets young Muslim boy at school. He seems nice. He says all the right things. She has no clue that the meeting was not random. She is a target.
Tolerance has gone too far. Our children are being actively recruited and kidnapped now. We must hold fast to the liberal ideals of our founders to be gentle as doves, but also wise as serpents. As the admonition goes, “It is not paranoia if they really are out to get you.” We have enemies in pursuit of our kids who seek to destroy the nation as we know it. There can be no tolerance of that.
Former Pennsylvania senator and GOP presidential hopeful Rick Santorum said yesterday at a campaign stop in Iowa that he worries “about anti-government rhetoric,” according to a local paper and to Washington Post reporter James Hohmann, who tweeted about the remark:
Santorum: "I worry abt anti-government rhetoric. I want to make sure we're talking to ppl where they are and not just to make them angry."
Really? The Santorum we know has spent the entire Obama presidency stoking mistrust of the federal government. Here are just fifteen examples, in no particular order, of Santorum’s anti-government rhetoric in the past few years.
1. When he claimed that Obama is a ‘tyrant’ hell-bent on destroying America
"If we have a system where the government is going to be the principal provider of health care for the country, we're done. Because then, you are dependent on the government for your life and your health...When Thatcher ran for prime minister she said - remember this, this is the Iron Lady - she said, 'The British national health care system is safe in my hands.' She wasn't going to take on health care, because she knew once you have people getting free health care from the government, you can't take it away from them. And the reason is because most people don't get sick, and so free health care is just that, free health care, until you get sick. Then, if you get sick and you don't get health care, you die and you don't vote. It's actually a pretty clever system. Take care of the people who can vote and people who can't vote, get rid of them as quickly as possible by not giving them care so they can't vote against you. That's how it works."
7. When he claimed that in Obama’s America, religious people are on “the path” to being beheaded like clergy in the French Revolution
8. When he warned that Christians must fight “persecution” in America to stop us from turning into Nazi Germany
9. When he claimed Obama is faking a war with ISIS and allowing the persecution of Christians
10. Whenhe warned of the hidden Obamacare agenda of using pre-natal testing to “cull the ranks of disabled” who are “less able than the elites who want to govern our society”
11. When he said the U.N. Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities would empower the government to kill his daughter
“In the case of our 4-year-old daughter, Bella, who has Trisomy 18, a condition that the medical literature says is 'incompatible with life,' would her 'best interest' be that she be allowed to die? Some would undoubtedly say so.
So if the state, and not Karen and I, would have the final word on what is in the best interest of a child like Bella, what chance would a parent have to get appropriate care in the days of increasingly government-funded medical care?
Proponents have said that Section 7 would not affect a parent’s right under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act, but the education standards of CRPD do not repeat the parental rights rules of past U.N. human-rights treaties. Omission of these rules combined with Section 7 could lead to the elimination of parental rights for the education of children with disabilities.
These issues become real for parents because, despite what the proponents insist, ratifying the treaty will require changes to U.S. laws to comply with the U.N. provisions. Section 4 requires any country that adopts this treaty 'to adopt all appropriate legislative, administrative and other measures for the implementation of the rights recognized in the present Convention.'”
12. When he claimed the health care reform’s contraception mandateis “a descendent of the French Revolution”
13. When he told Bryan Fischer that business owners who refuse service to gay customers have been sent to “reeducation camps” and pastors will soon be jailed or martyred
14. When he said the Democrats are worried Obama will go to Indonesia and “bow to more Muslims”
“Watching President Obama apologize last week for America's arrogance - before a French audience that owes its freedom to the sacrifices of Americans - helped convince me that he has a deep-seated antipathy toward American values and traditions.”
Speaking at a “prepper” event at Jim Bakker’s megachurch in Missouri last month, televangelist Rick Joyner lamented that people like Russian President Vladimir Putin and Islamist leaders hate America because we have become “a gay nation.” This, Joyner said, was very true and deserved an apology, which he offered on the spot.
“One of the things [the Russians] really hate is what they think we have become, a gay nation,” he said. “It’s the main reason why Islam, by the way, calls us the ‘Great Satan.’ They think we’re, we say we trust God, we put that on our money, but we export the worst kinds of perversion all over the world.”
“And of course they have their own perversion, they have — but they see us as the source of the worst spiritual and moral pollution in the world. And, you know, we can’t disagree with that. That shouldn’t be happening here.”
“You know, when I spoke to a meeting of many of the top mullahs and imams at the World Public Forum, I apologized for that,” he continued. “And I will apologize. I am really sorry for the moral filth and pollution that is coming out of America, and this is happening on our watch too. You know, there are a lot of reasons why the nations hate us, but mainly they see hypocrisy on a level unprecedented. We say one thing and do the other.”
Joyner, who was helping Bakker sell the survivalist goods that he markets through his ministry, went on to warn that the Obama administration is now working with the Council on American-Islamic Relations — falsely claiming that a U.S. court designated it as a terrorist group — to treat Christians in the U.S. as terrorists while completely ignoring Muslims plotting attacks.
“This is either naiveté, incompetence on a level unheard of in history, or it is treason, this is an inside job,” he said. “We’re letting them cross our border, we’re letting them fly into our thing. Now there are many being stopped, there are many great agents doing their job in spite of being handcuffed by regulations, orders coming down, memos, everything else. Our FBI was forbidden from investigating Muslims.”
Now, Joyner warned, the government has “started targeting … Christians, veterans, Second Amendment rights groups,” and saying that “we’re the terrorist threat, not the Muslims.”
“There’s a meltdown going on, America is being melted down, it’s being destroyed from within,” he warned.
Larry Pratt, the far-right conspiracy theorist executive director of Gun Owners of America, who will be hosting a presidential campaign call with Sen. Ted Cruz next week, claimed last month that President Obama has “made it very clear he doesn’t like the United States” and that “he thinks that Christianity is at best on par with jihad.”
Pratt told fringe conservative commentator Stuart Vener that Obama ”doesn’t like people speaking against the dirt bag Muhammad like I just did, he thinks that that is a name to be revered, he thinks that Christianity at best is on par with jihad.”
Agreeing with Vener’s claim that Obama “wants to take everyone’s guns away,” Pratt hailed former New York mayor Rudy Giuliani for “speaking the truth” when he alleged that the president doesn’t love America.
Denouncing Islam as a “extremely murderous, extremely violent” religion, Pratt praises the Europeans who finally “got themselves together” during the Crusades to get “rid of the Muslim dirt bags”.
We’d also like to note that the cohost for Vener’s show, “Stuart Vener Tells It Like It Is!,” is a genie.
Frank Gaffney, founder and president of the Center for Security Policy, addressed Saturday’s National Security Action Summit in Iowa, warning American civilians of the high probability that any seemingly innocent Muslim could in fact be a jihadist on American soil. Gaffney, who organized the summit, which was attended by a number of Republican presidential candidates, argued these hidden jihadists are “imposing [Sharia Law] piecemeal, steadily, stealthily” to advance the jihad agenda.
Gaffney shared a story he heard from an unnamed Texan woman regarding a conversation she had in 1985 with her supposedly “nicely spoken, well dressed, seemingly fully assimilated” Muslim doctor. This Muslim doctor apparently informed his patient during her visit that “in due course the Muslims would wield the sword to force us all to submit to Sharia” because that’s “what [Muslims] do.”
The doctor proceeded to say that Muslims have not enacted Sharia yet because “they are not strong enough” but they “will be in due course.” Gaffney made sure to reiterate that this conversation occurred 30 years prior, and the Muslims have gained strength since then.
This unidentified doctor was also supposedly selected by the Islamic Center of Richardson, Texas, which Gaffney claimed is “owned and operated” by the Muslim Brotherhood “as Islamic societies and centers across the country are.” When the doctor earned his credentials, Gaffney reported, this mosque told the doctor that instead of bringing his family to the U.S. he must “use his ability to bring people into this country according to the people we tell you to bring”.
Gaffney gathered from this story that “doctors…civil engineers and scientists have a capacity to prove very problematic if they embrace the jihadist doctrine of Sharia.”
Gaffney shared this story in response to a questioner who asked if a 2002 hepatitis C outbreak in a Freemont, Nebraska, clinic run by Palestinian Dr. Tahir Javed was an act of jihad. While multiple sources have reported the source of the contamination is still unknown, Gaffney suggested that although he was “unaware of the specific example” it sounded like “violent jihad”.
Speaking at the Iowa National Security Action Summit this weekend, retired Navy Admiral James “Ace” Lyons argued that President Obama’s “Marxist background” leads him to believe many of the world’s problems have been created by America. Lyons concluded that Obama views anything that undercuts America as “objectively progressive.”
Not only is Obama anti-American and anti-Western, Lyons said, but he is actively “pro-Islam, pro-Iranian, and pro-Muslim Brotherhood.” Obama’s supposed support of the Muslim Brotherhood, he said, has allowed the group to “penetrate every American national security and intelligence agency”, bringing our nation to ruin from the inside. These infiltrators will soon attempt to substitute the American Constitution with “draconian Sharia Law” if Americans do not act immediately, Lyon warned.
He added that Obama, in his attempt to take down America, is using sequestration “as a vehicle for unilateral disarmament” to weaken the nation and further permit the penetration of Islam.
Obama is not acting alone, however, as according to Lyons Hillary Clinton is in on the deal too. Lyons prefaced his criticism of Hillary Clinton by claiming that the Russian government blackmailed President Bill Clinton using inside knowledge of his affair with Monica Lewinsky, leading Clinton to give the Russians $4.6 billion in “cold, hard cash.”
Televangelist Pat Robertson said on his “The 700 Club” program this morning that the U.S. is “helpless” against ISIS because the country has given up “the founding principle of America, which is Christianity, a belief in the Bible, a belief in God Almighty.”
“Ladies and gentlemen, this is a great country,” he said. “We’ve got over 300 million people in America, we have the most powerful armed forces in the world, there’s nothing that can even come close to our strength, we have tremendous strength. And why should we be afraid of a few dozen nutty radicals wandering around in pickup trucks? But we are, because somehow or another we’ve lost the ethic, the élan if you will, that has drawn us together as a nation. We give up the founding principle of America, which is Christianity, a belief in the Bible, a belief in God Almighty. And we’ve given that up. We’re helpless.”
“And so it’s reflected in the fact that these crazy fanatics could come loose in small segments of the population and do terror,” he said, referring to the ISIS-inspired Americans who tried to attack an anti-Islam event in Texas. “Well, what could they do? They could put a bomb in and they can go for a radiological bomb, they can go for a dirty bomb, and one day they may even be able to import a real nuke, which could do terrible damage.
“So, it’s like your body. If your body is strong, if your immune system is strong, you don’t get disease. Your body is strong enough to overcome the diseases. It’s only when your immune system is weakened and your body is weakened that these diseases can take you. Our body should be strong, and if it’s strong it should be strong, nurtured, with the knowledge of our founding fundamental freedoms, the knowledge of what the history of our country is and especially the knowledge of God, the knowledge of the Bible. That’s what made this country strong. You give all that up, well, the inner man, the immune system, gets weak, and it’s subject to attack by little viruses like this thing that’s coming along.”
Robertson then declared that President Obama “refuses to acknowledge that ISIS is a problem” and attacked Obama and President Bush for refusing “to acknowledge that Islam is not peaceful.”
Rep. Steve King, R-Iowa, said yesterday that Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson’s promise earlier this year to “give voice to the plight of Muslims living in this country and the discrimination that they face” was “just appalling,” adding that he does not believe Muslim-Americans face any discrimination.
Iowa talk radio host Jan Mickelson played King a clip of Johnson’s remarks at a February summit on violent extremism, asking incredulously, “So the guy that we put in charge of homeland security thinks that it’s his job as chief of the homeland security to give voice to Muslims while calling Islam the religion of peace?”
“This is just appalling to think that the man who’s in charge of protecting Americans domestically would take a position like that, Jan,” King responded.
“The president can dredge up his Crusader history and try to leverage that back against us to guilt us,” he said, referring to President Obama’s remarks at the National Prayer Breakfast, “but what’s this discrimination that’s going on against Muslims in this country? I’m not seeing it. I mean, they’re beheading Christians on the shores of the Mediterranean Sea, and some people are speaking ill of that component. So where are the moderate Muslims speaking up?”
As the United States plans to take in about 2,000 Syrian refugees this year — out of the nearly 4 million who have fled the country’s civil war — Ann Corcoran of Refugee Resettlement Watch is warning that resettlement efforts are merely attempts to create Democratic voters out of Muslim refugees who are using migration as “a form of jihad.”
Corcoran told Iowa talk radio host Jan Mickelson on Friday about her resistance to refugees from Muslim countries being resettled in her western Maryland community and throughout the country, saying that resettlement programs are a Democratic effort to gin up votes while pushing “the whole multicultural meme” on communities like hers.
“I think that it is partly driven by progressives looking for reliable left-wing Democrat voters, that’s a driving force,” she said, “I think there’s a certain amount of just wanting to rub diversity in the noses of conservative communities and places where there isn’t a lot of diversity and just bringing them in and push the whole multicultural meme on us.”
She warned that the refugees themselves have even more sinister motivations: “I can say from the standpoint of the Islamic reason for doing this, is that Mohammed told his followers to migrate to create an Islamic state throughout the world, and that’s exactly what they’re doing. Migration is a form of jihad.”
Mickelson was so sold on Corcoran’s cause that he promised to ask every single Republican presidential candidate he interviews about refugees coming to the U.S. not to “take refuge here” but “to advance Islam while they increase their lifestyle” at taxpayer expense.
“This is an existential threat to the United States,” he said. “This is absurd. You have radical Islam considers immigration to the United States an act of religious conformity, religious fidelity. It’s an act of jihad they’re commanded to do, and they’re doing so not because they have a legitimate reason to be, to take refuge here, although some may, but mostly it is to advance Islam while they increase their lifestyle, usually at the expense of the taxpayers.”
“It is an existential threat,” Corocoran agreed, adding that refugee resettlement is more dangerous that terrorist attacks. “Frankly, we could survive terrorist attacks in my mind, it might even make us stronger, but we’re not going to survive this migration,” she said. “We only need to look to Europe to see how far advanced Europe is in a very bad way.”
Mickelson added that while he was outraged by the attempted attack on an anti-Islam event in Texas by U.S.-born Islamic extremists, “the true outrages” like migration “are happening beneath the radar.”
Dorrie O’Brien, a leader of the Texas chapter of the anti-Muslim group ACT! for America, warned at a rally in Austin last month that Islamist extremists are implementing “stealth jihad” in America by putting Muslim holidays on calendars and teaching foreign languages in schools.
She said that it was “fantastic” that the school eventually apologized, but that it “happened for the wrong reason.”
“The school was celebrating ‘world languages’ or some such thing, ‘multiculturalism’ — socialism, in other words,” she lamented. “There is a whole lot wrong with pledging to the flag in Arabic, the language of the people trying to kill us, but the schools should be celebrating English! I don’t think we should have to have a ‘celebrate world languages.’”
This led O’Brien to criticize New York Mayor Bill DeBlasio for adding two Muslim holidays to the city schools calendar, which she asserted was proof that DeBlasio is a “dhimmi” who is “paying his jizya,” a tax levied on non-Muslims.
On Saturday, roughly 2,000 activists gathered at Faith Assembly, a megachurch in Orlando, for the Awakening, an annual “Prayer and Patriotism event” organized by the Christian Right legal group Liberty Counsel. The Awakening, which Liberty Counsel organizes under the auspices of an amalgam of Religious Right groups called the Freedom Federation, brings together activists from the evangelical Right with the GOP politicians who want their votes.
At this year's event, GOP politicians including Rick Santorum, Mike Huckabee, Bobby Jindal (via video) and RNC faith director Chad Connelly shared a stage with far-right activists including "ex-gays," a phony ex-terrorist and at least two Religious Right leaders who insist that AIDS is God's punishment for homosexuality.
Here are five takeaways from a day with the core of the Religious Right.
1. Gay Marriage Will Send Christians To Jail
While some on the Right may be trying to shy away from the issue of marriage equality now that it could be on its way to a Supreme Court victory, the activists at the Awakening were not among them. Throughout the conference, marriage between gay and lesbian couples was portrayed as a demonic and existential threat to liberty, one that if allowed to proceed would end in Christianity being outlawed and Christians thrown in jail.
The Republican National Committee’s faith outreach director, Chad Connelly, who was moderating a panel on abortion rights, echoed the Religious Right’s rhetoric when he warned that LGBT rights activists are “coming for the church.”
Far-right pastor Rick Scarborough, who was sitting beside him, agreed that if the Supreme Court rules in favor of marriage equality, pastors will be forced to “participate in same-sex marriage ” or be thrown in jail. Liberty Counsel’s Harry Mihet, moderating a separate panel, issued a similar warning.
Scarborough repeated his warning when he told activists that a pro-equality Supreme Court ruling would outlaw anti-gay speech, thus undermining “the whole nature of America.”
Multiple speakers compared a potential Supreme Court decision on marriage equality to Dred Scott, the infamous pre-Civil War decision that barred African Americans from citizenship, declaring that it should be met with similar resistance.
2. Losing The Church on Gay Rights Issues
Although the Awakening took place in what appeared to be a generationally diverse, multiethnic church, the crowd at the conference was overwhelmingly older and white. Throughout the conference, speakers bemoaned the fact that the Religious Right was losing support among younger Christians for its political agenda, especially its opposition to LGBT rights.
Liberty University’s Rena Lindevaldsen told the audience at a breakout panel on “sexual rebellion” that when fellow conservative Christians ask her what the “big deal” is about LGBT rights, she responds “it’s a big deal because it’s a big deal to God.” Marriage equality, she told the enthusiastic audience, matters to God because it is “the heart of where Satan’s attacking”:
Evangelist Franklin Graham also lamented that “a lot of pastors have quit preaching against homosexuality” out of fear of offending people in their churches who might have gay relatives. He told the audience that “God will bless you and he’ll honor you” if you “don’t shut up” about gay rights and abortion:
This was a crowd that had not given up on discredited “ex-gay” therapy. An “ex-lesbian” activist, Janet Boynes, was given a main stage speaking slot and “ex-gay” activist Greg Quinlan earned a roaring round of applause from the audience at the “sexual rebellion” panel when he announced that he had been “out of homosexuality for 27 years.”
3. A Spiritual Battle Against Islam And Progressivism
Just as the crowd at the Awakening was upset that the conservative movement and the church have supposedly become less invested in fighting LGBT rights, they were also wary of any overtures between Christians and Muslims.
Graham declared that “Islam is a wicked system” and blasted Christians who say that Muslims and Christians worship the same God.
Kamal Saleem, the self-proclaimed “ex-terrorist” whose personal story has never quite held up to scrutiny , also warned that churches are being “invaded by ‘Chrislam,’” lamenting that Americans are oblivious to the dangers of radical Islam: “We’re watching American Idol and they are doing jihad.” He also warned of what he called “jihad of the womb,” or Muslim immigrants giving birth in order to outnumber Christians.
What activists at the Awakening saw as a war against Islam was merely part of a larger “spiritual battle” between good and evil, God and Satan. In the panel discussion he led on LGBT rights, Matt Barber declared that there is an “Islamo-progressive axis of evil” with a “common enemy”: Christians.
Maine pastor Ken Graves repeated that theme when he declared that American Christians are fighting “militant Islam” and “militant homofascism” and secularists who want to establish a “secular humanist caliphate”:
4. Time Is Running Out On America, And It’s Up To The Church To Save It
Throughout the day, speakers warned that America is running out of time before it is lost forever, and that it is up to conservative Christians to get involved in politics to save the country.
Graham told the crowd that he is more politically outspoken than his father, Billy Graham, because America is in a more dire state of secularism. “When my father was born, the Ten Commandments were on the wall of every school in America. When my father was born, the teachers still led the class in the Lord’s Prayer. Our country is not that anymore,” he said, declaring that the 2016 election is the last chance for the Religious Right to save the country.
Rick Santorum, the former Pennsylvania senator and likely 2016 GOP presidential candidate, delivered a similar message, warning that “we are heading down in a direction that, let’s be honest, no civilization has ever been able to recover from.” Conservative Christians, he declared, must reinvest themselves in politics in order, to among other things, put the Bible in public schools:
Former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, another likely GOP presidential hopeful, told the crowd that prayer was needed to bring about “spiritual revival” and change the political direction of the country: “If God’s people truly pray down a spiritual awakening, then the political landscape will change.”
“This country did not start because some people had some brilliant ideas, although they did. This country happened because God’s providence was the foundation of their brilliant ideas,” Huckabee said. “Because of his inspiration, this country has been sustained throughout all of its history because of God’s specific intervention in helping us to win battles we should never have one and in keeping us from losing battles we should have lost.”
5. The Religious Right And The GOP Still Need Each Other
One of the strangest moments of the day came when a George W. Bush impersonator walked onto the stage with Liberty Counsel’s Mat Staver as he introduced Huckabee. Staver jokingly reassured the audience that it was not the former president’s brother, former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush, who has clashed with the Religious Right over gay rights issues. It seemed to be a spontaneous addition to the program, it was hard not to see it also as a reminder to the audience of the potential power of the evangelical vote.
Unlike the Family Research Council’s Values Voter Summit, which has become the flagship gathering of the GOP and the Religious Right, the Awakening tends to attract only true believers in the cause. This year, Santorum and Huckabee spoke, while Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal submitted a video message. Connelly, who heads the GOP’s outreach to evangelical voters, moderated a panel on abortion rights, but largely deflected difficult questions from the far-right crowd.
Connelly did not, however, shy away from right-wing conspiracy theories, responding to a question about the “culture of death” in end-of-life care by claiming that the Affordable Care Act’s mythical “death panels” are “a reality":
It was clear throughout the day that however wary the Religious Right and the GOP establishment may be of each other, they still need each other. Speakers like Graham urged conservative Christians to revive the powerful Religious Right pressure machine to win GOP politicians to their side, whether or not they agreed with their issues. Meanwhile, the presence of the GOP candidates and Connelly indicated that this is a voting bloc that is still important to the party, however extreme its priorities may be.
On his “Secure Freedom Radio” program on Monday, Gaffney discussed this theory with Christian Broadcasting Network reporter Erick Stakelbeck, who explained that Norquist, Abedin and Carson are part of the Muslim Brotherhood’s “fox in the henhouse strategy” to perpetrate “stealth jihad” hidden behind “suits and ties,” “fluent English,” and “eloquent tones, at least in public.”
“You have Huma Abedin, a woman closely associated with the Brotherhood back in the news because she’s purging Hillary Clintons emails; you have André Carson, a man closely associated with the Muslim Brotherhood, representative from Indiana, put by Nancy Pelosi on the House Intelligence Committee; you have the president lauding the Islamic Society of Boston as a model for countering violent jihadism; and you have Grover Norquist, now under an ethics investigation by the NRA, who’s been closely tied to the Brotherhood as well,” Gaffney told Stakelbeck.
“How seriously is this civilization jihad component of all of this effort that jihadists are making here at home?” he asked.
“Frank, crucial, crucial, crucial component of the jihadist movement and the global strategy of Islamist groups like the Muslim Brotherhood,” Stakelbeck responded. “Look, ISIS represents one leg of the global jihad, Frank, the violent jihad. We know they want to behead you, we know what ISIS wants. But the Muslim Brotherhood, to me, in many ways is more effective because they lead this stealth jihad of this global jihad, where it’s suits and ties, it’s fluent English, it’s speaking in moderate, eloquent tones at least in public, it’s having entrée to the White House, to the halls of power. That is the fox in the henhouse strategy.”
“And the four cases you outlined, Frank, I don’t know which is more disturbing,” he said.
Stakelbeck added that he was happy the NRA is investigating Norquist: “Thank God that that’s going on, but the stealth jihad continues unabated.”
In the talk, Hibbs warned evangelical Christians against seeking interfaith understanding with Muslims, saying, “Islam is today is being embraced by so-called evangelical churches announcing that we worship the same god and they’re our brothers. Listen: That is not only false, it is a demonic doctrine being propagated by heretics.”
He went on to explain that Satan is using Islam as a "vehicle" in the Last Days before the return of Christ, and that Allah is simply the ancient “moon god” Baal, which is why Islam is represented by a crescent moon.
“Now look, you may hold that view today simply because maybe you’re not a heretic, but you might be ignorant that this is a war against an ancient doctrine, an ancient god with a little ‘g,’ and ancient system that used to go around by the name of Baal,” he said. “It is the moon god of the ancient Babylonian empire. Babylon had 360 gods. The chief god was the moon god. Don’t you think it’s interesting that all around the world, mosques have a moon symbol, a crescent on top of their buildings?”