The more time that passes and the more books I read, the more I realize how dangerous the religious right is, and how pointless it is to try to reason with them. You might as well be trying to argue with a brick wall.
The Christian Nationalist movement (also known as Dominionism - which both Bachmann and Perry appear to have some ties to) is a subset of the evangelical community that is highly mobilized, extremely efficient, well financed, and extremely dangerous.
For many who do not know much about them, they are often dismissed as quacks that have no influence, and those who raise the alarm about them are accused (even in the liberal community) of being "alarmist over-reactors."
However... this is one of the most dangerous things about the Christian Nationalist movement.... their chameleon ability to appear harmless and even beneficial. Make no mistake! Those of us who watch them like hawks are NOT alarmists! They are more powerful than most people know, and they often lack any sense of moral decency. They are willing to lie, cheat, threaten, bribe, and even occasionally murder to get their way. They will hide their true motives from the American public with deceptive language, that often they have one message for the public, and another for their own kind.
Knowing how dangerous they are, I wish I knew what to do about them. They are determined to take over the country and forcibly subdue it to biblical law. They are raping and rending the Constitution on their way there.
I have tried using logic, reasoning, and modern scholarship to make them see that what they are doing is wrong in more ways than one. But as I have learned, this is pointless.
Atheists can debate all they want. We can write books or throw books at them. We can point out logical fallacies or laugh at them. We can make youtube videos or send letters. We can flash our degrees at them and demand they recognize that we know what we're talking about.
There is no point to this at all.
Christian Nationalists live in their own parallel universe. And certain aspects of this "universe" make it quite obvious that there is nothing we can say that will convince them that they are wrong.
Michelle Goldberg lays out the immunity that the Christian Nationalist delusion has devastatingly clear in the book "Kingdom Coming."
1. Most of the "warriors for Christ" have been brainwashed from infancy to believe only what their cult tells them to believe. They are denied public education and herded into either homeschooling or special fundamentalist christian schools... where like any cult, they are cut off from the outside world, until their brainwashing is so thorough that there is no escaping it.
2. They are trained to believe that mainstream science and academics are part of a liberal agenda, corrupted by professors and scientists who push an anti-christian religion. They will therefore, refuse to believe any of modern scholarship no matter how stacked the evidence is against them. In fact, the more the evidence is against them, the more they believe that they are the only pious people, the holders of the real truth that is being suppressed by evil anti-christians. There is no way to get through to them... so don't even try.
3. You can't use liberal christians to convince them because they believe mainstream christians are deluded agents of satan.
Basically, nothing we can say will ever get through to them.
However it is absolutely essential that we stop their drive to push christianity on the country by force. My question is... what are we supposed to do? They cannot be reasoned with. They are relentless and enraged. They are well financed and have many "friends in high places" within our government.
What can we do to stop them before it is too late?
I have asked this same exact question of myself over and over...and have come up with nothing.
I fear them.
I am not a violent person. I, like many here, are secular humanists, and believe that everyone has a right to religious freedom (or lack thereof), so we cannot possibly resort to violence or attack their rights.
It would be replacing one sort of tyranny for another.
I have endlessly spoken out against them, as you have expressed, with logic and from a point of authority; throwing mountains of evidence their way...with nothing from them but a shrug and a pointing at the gaps.
Their god of the gaps is illogical, and a pathetic argument....but they will stick by it.
Because most of them have been indoctrinated.
THAT is exactly why the fight for keeping our first amendment intact is so vital. They cannot be allowed to infect children the way they have by our government thus far-teaching creationism in public schools etc etc.
Brainwashing people from an early age is so destructive to the human mind, it's unbearable.
...sigh...I just don't know what else we can do, other than continue to protest willful ignorance and hope that humanity will eventually become more rational in their thinking.
I don't wish everyone to become an atheist, I just wish they'd all become a little less superstitious. This is an age of technology and a wealth of knowledge; how come they push it away, like it was inherently evil???
I don't see them pushing away the doctors when they're dying of a disease, but damn will they hiss and bite any 'evolutionist' that comes their way!
Damned hypocrites, to the very core. They use science only where it benefits them, and seeks to destroy the parts they don't like.
Just like they use their religious laws only when it is convenient.
There is only one sure-fire way of dealing with feral animals...
I do so hope you are not suggesting something deadly. Because sadly thats what folks in some areas do to feral cats.
I am suggesting the same treatment like one gives feral animals if they attack. If they choose to roam freely and do no harm there is no point in taking any action. If the religious fundies arm themselves and attack the secular society we enjoy there will only be three options: surrender, flee or defend.
Take your pick.
If the religious fundies arm themselves? Please explain. Are you speaking of any fundamantalist religious group? Of course if any rigid religious group were to demand that we follow their religious beliefs etc, we should fight back to make sure secular rights are allowed as the founding fathers demanded. They didn't suggest NO religious litmus test they demanded it, in writing.
An organized and violent organization based on a totalitarian ideology taking up arms to impose their will. It's quite common throughout history, and it's often linked to movements closer to the established political scene.
The Tea Party has been described as 'the Hezbollah wing of the Republican party', and it enjoys support or ambivalence from around 40% of the US population.
The 'Tea Party' isnt one group anymore. When the Tea Party first began it was ALL about less taxes and get the government out of our bodies and homes. Then a former TX congressman was hired to lead a big Republican outfit and they stole the tea party lable. Now one sees tea party types who are sadly racist to me, or want their religious beliefs to be the rule of the land.
And sadly have no respect for math, science.........Thus we need to stand up and make our voices heard. At least my letters to the editor get printed.
I don't think your letters to the editor matter too much in this day and age. The Republican party has a vested interest to screw America royally over until the next election, thwarting every attempt at any type of reform, as a poor economy at election time is bad news for the sitting president (Bush 1 lesson).
What do you think will happen if the election is a a close run between Perry and Obama? Will Fox News accept a Rep defeat in a close 2012 election? Will the next "Rally to Restore America" end peacefully?
My letters as well as other have worked locally as far as making sure we got sane folks on the school board who value math, science and not fantasy.
As for a close race with Obama. It's his to lose, because the first time around I think those who gave him the win,those who wanted to see a black finally get elected, and those who simply didn't think an old man like McCain with old ideas should be elected.
Perry is a flash in the pan in my view. He like Palin will burn out with the majority. And even some conservatives I know say that its to soon for another Texan.
Your letters are exactly what the OP were talking about. You cannot reason with some of the fundies. They perceive themselves as warriors for God - ready and willing to sacrifice their lives for their Lord and Master - and see you as human trash without any value. Just listen to the propaganda at your nearest Christian radio station and how they dehumanize non-Christians in general and atheists in particular. We are a threat to their dogma, brainwashing their children, taking over their lives through the ever increasingly unpopular "government".
Feral humans are real, and they act much like other feral animals do. You can't cuddle with a rabid dog and expect not to get bitten, and you can't tango with religious fundamentalists and expect not to have your throat slashed open.
As for Dubya 2.0 being unelectable.. I present Dubya 1.0 as evidence to the contrary.
Somewhere I read, "If the Bible is the perfect word of God, then why don't any two people agree with what it means."
Most Christians believe in The "Rapture". But the Rapture is not just a single event, it is composed of a series of events. There are several interpretations of the sequence. (http://www.absoluteastronomy.com/topics/Post_Tribulation_Rapture) Supposedly, there is going to be a seven year period called "The Tribulatuion" when God will "remove his spirit" from the earth and wickedness will run rampant.
Some Christians believe that they will go to heaven before the tribulation, some believe during the tribulation and some believe after the tribulation. It's the people in the last group who arm arming themselves and preparing for war with the unbelievers.
"Most Christians believe in the rapture"? That's nonsense. For one thing, almost no Catholics believe in the rapture. It's a belief held by the fundamentalists primarily, not the mainstream Christians so much (Lutherans, Methodists, Episcopalians, etc.).