FreeThought Fort Wayne

        Be Reasonable

Post-Partisan Invocation

Posted by dystressed on December 29, 2008

Much has been made of Rick Warren being invited by Obama to give the invocation at the innauguration. I didn’t much care until I ran across the news that Rick Warren calls his critics “Christophobes.”

I take exception to that. I am not phobic of Christ, but of his followers. I am in fact, a Rickophobe. I am wary of people who wield tremendous power over the hearts and minds of Americans, regardless of their political leanings, but I am especially wary of the religious ones. Religious tyrranny is something the founders of this nation are known for escaping, but it is also something that we have inadvertantly perpetuated. Though we have enshrined religion with freedom and kept it marginally separate from government, we have given it de facto establishment, giving it freedom to abuse its non-profit-tax-exempt status as a billy club against dissenters and non-believers.

The rise of the Christian Right has raised the visibility of the Evangelical Agenda: Make Everyone Believe in Jesus.

If the Rick Warrens of this country have their way, there would be no religious freedom, and indeed no dissent. There would be one country ruled by those who claim to know the will of God. A quick glance back to high school literature class and Arthur Miller’s The Crucible can give you chills when you think about the end result of a theocracy. When there is no freedom of ideas, there is no freedom.

While it pains me to admit this, I believe that Rick Warren should be heard. But let him be heard for what he is, a religious fascist. There are few evangelicals who do not pray for a totalitarian Christian state that would be devoid of freedom of thought.

What Obama has done for the FreeThought community is actually a backhanded favor. By inadvertantly stirring up the embers of a long smoldering fire, he has ensured that religious moderates and liberals can be reminded how dangerous the Evangelical Agenda truly is.

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6 Responses to “Post-Partisan Invocation”

  1. agnohumanist said

    Interesting thoughts, dystressed, and a good post. I think you are correct in your assessment of evangelicals’ aim: Everyone believing what they believe, and to hell (literally) with everyone else. While not all Christians think that way, most fundies do, since that is what the bible says–and they believe every word, including the absurdities and barbarities. One reason I love freethinkers is that, while they would like for others to share their ideas, most do not bully others to do so, instead presenting their evidence in a rational manner and letting others think for themselves.

  2. dystressed said

    Thanks. I did feel the need to qualify my assertions to the point of them not really having much teeth. But the Evangelical Agenda is to evangelize. This means “sharing” Jesus with everyone. Most evangelicals are assertive go-to-hell-if-you-don’t-think-like-we-do sort, but there are many who are at least willing to let us have our opinions and choose not to listen to them. Rick Warren is not one of them. He uses his bully pulpit of saddleback church to turn him into just a blathering pulpit-bully. No intelligence allowed.

  3. Boomcoach said

    While Jim Dobson and his ilk have made Rick Warren seem reasonable in comparison, there is no question that he would still prefer a theocracy. The only good thing about his speaking at Obama’s inaugural is that it cuts the legs out from under the Conservapedia reading nutters out there, who still harp on the “Obama is a muslim” idiocy.

  4. NoBendedKnee said

    I’m finding a slight disconnect in your post. You say that the appointment of Warren to deliver the invocation was not something you cared that much about until you found out that he calls his critics “Christophobes”. And then go into a rant of how the religious right is a danger to a free America.

    Here’s the problem I’m having..did you just realize the agenda of the religious right? Did it take Warren saying “Christophobes” for you to ‘care’ and respond to this man?

    Warren has been a very out-spoken opponent in regards to womens rights as well as gays and lesbians. He has spewed his discriminatory hate rhetoric for years and has done nothing but gain more and more power.

    So, to suddenly be offended by “christophobes’ seems rather insensitive and ignorant of the long struggle of so many against this hater.

    Many of us didn’t need to be “reminded [of] how dangerous the Evangelical Agenda truly is”..we live it, everyday.

  5. dystressed said

    I agree there was a disconnect, but it was tough for me to write this. I did care about Rick Warren before the Christophobe remark, but I didn’t think there was anything I could do about it.

    I decided that I would write the post for my own catharsis. I think I needed to remind myself how dangerous Evangelicals are. It was a bit selfish of me to co-opt FFW for my own ideas, but I didn’t want to hold back the rant against Rick anymore.

    I wanted to speak out (albeit anonymously) because I think we need to say what’s on our minds.

    I appreciate you calling me out on my cowardice and apathy. I think it illustrates the point that we all need to speak out more.

  6. NoBendedKnee said

    I can totally understand your feelings of powerlessness in the over-whelming onslaught of religious hate and idiocy. And believe me, if you oppose them, that’s exactly how they want you to feel…because, as you pointed out, it keeps people quite and apathetic.

    My indignation was not meant to assail a fellow free-thinker and do ask that you pardon my passion that, at times, can be a tad sharp.

    aside… I wish you and all a safe and Happy New Year! 🙂

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