Speaking of “trawling” (this time for reactions to President Obama) I’d unwittingly conducted a little experiment without meaning to: a basic intelligence test of the right and left.
The cretinism and unhinged nature of the responses from the anti-Obama legion is scary. No, I didn't pick just the worst examples. Trust me: this is all they have! (See below).
On the other hand the thoughtful response from so many is heartening. (Again, examples here are typical).
The question is: can these two groups coexist peacefully within our borders? I’m not so sure they can. What is expressed here isn't two points of view but the raw truth about two countries within one border: Sane America and hater Cretin America.
Here’s a sample from the right:
Gotta tell ya,,I thought you looked dumb on the clip form Lesdow. I mean you seriously believe that those of us who don’ t like Obummer really want him dead? That’s not the way I see it and I am buying a shirt today thanks to you. Maybe before long you will wake up and see the mistake you are making in support of a Communist,,,but then again probably not considering that you aren’t that bright considering that you are in cahoots with MSNBC and their il.
I heard you were going to be on Maddow's show. I never watch that ugly dyke, but I was curious to hear what you had to say. You have truly sold your soul to the Devil. I guess this is the only way you can make a living since you could not hack it as an evangelical.
May God have mercy on your soul.
Here’s an sample from the other America:
Dear Mr. Schaeffer,
...The religious right is playing out a 'death wish'. As a group, they are engaging in a type of 'self-initiation' into a dangerous and eschatological cult-like movement.
Some classic warning signs are evident:
They are cutting off ties with 'family', which can be seen as moderate Republicans. They vilify 'former members' who have left the fold. They advocate extremely harsh treatment of non-members.
Their cult leader is not one person, but rather a 'collective trope' comprising a rigid, dominant complex of ideology, behavior, culture, and language.
They are dependent on the 'collective trope' for direction, instruction, and reasoning. Independent thought or criticism of the 'collective' is punished. Criticism of the 'collective' is deemed persecution.
I realize you are intimately aware and knowledgeable about this perspective. And no doubt you are also aware of the issues involved with 'deprogramming'. Typically, deprogramming occurs only through 'exit counseling' or intervention. For 23% of the nation's population, intervention is unrealistic, and voluntary deprogramming is exceedingly rare and only an option for intelligent, honest, introspective, and educated individuals (such as yourself).
When I hear you speak I typically hear you issue warnings. I hear you inform. I hear you educate. I hear you raise awareness. Thank you.
But, respectfully, we need a plan. We need a realistic viable 'grown up' plan for de-escalation, deprogramming, and re-integration of the religious right. Alternatively, we need a serious assessment of the possibility that such a plan is not viable, and that there may be an insurmountable cultural rift between two different peoples that were formerly of one nation.
To most Americans, the idea of a partitioning of ourselves into two nations is utterly unthinkable. But if 70 million citizens are dedicated to creating a society and government which is in fair measure is mutually repugnant to another 230 million people, such ideas must at least be considered.
When you use language such as "trawling for assassins", you are at your best because you are vividly describing a forward looking, speculative assessment of the state of things. I urge you to do more of that. I urge you use your experience, intelligence, and intuition to look even further into the future and describe what you see.
I counted myself as an evangelical Christian for 3 years. Not a long time by common standards I suspect. But I understand the power of lifestyle, culture, and peer groups in creating a zone of comfort for believers. I understand the ways in which a sense of empowerment is derived from evangelical participation. I understand the tenacity of belief, the sense of righteous correctness, and the divine mandate to not sway or veer from the one truth. I understand the danger this assuredness poses to both individuals and to the greater society at large...
Again, sincerest thanks,
...I am quite passionate in my support for Barrack Obama and his very real desire to help bring a much-needed change to this country and to the world. I have no problem in believing him completely when he said in a recent interview that doing the right thing now is infinitely more important to him than any concerns as to whether he may be re-elected to the presidency in 2012 - this is a man who is clearly exceptional in very many ways.
Unfortunately, the tremendous amount of resistance that is being generated against Obama and his agenda has been truly troubling to me as well - if it were merely the usual partisan divisions that were being argued, that would be one thing. But the intense personal animosity for this man quickly reached rather absurd proportions soon after he won the Democratic nomination last year, and you are right in pointing out that the right-wing extremist media seem to be literally "trolling for assassins" in order to put an end to this administration. It's amazing to me that so many in our country's short history whose only desire was to serve their fellow man were not only strongly opposed for their efforts, but were cruelly cut down in the prime of their lives.
Along with you, and I hope many others, I pray that President Obama will be surrounded by the most holy of all the angels as he pursues God's work here on this earth.
What these email writers were reacting to was that I said that the T-shirt vendors selling the Psalm 109:8 logo as in pray that the President dies, had crossed a line into a place that is nothing more than the organizing of a death squad, or “trolling for assassins” as I put it. Here’s what is in the Psalm they quote:
"May his days be few; may another take his office!"
Here are what the other verses in that Pslam call for (in case you didn't "get" verse 8).
9 May his children be fatherless and his wife a widow!
10 May his children wander about and beg, seeking food far from the ruins they inhabit!
11 May the creditor seize all that he has; may strangers plunder the fruits of his toil!
12 Let there be none to extend kindness to him, nor any to pity his fatherless children!
13 May his posterity be cut off; may his name be blotted out in the second generation!
14 May the iniquity of his fathers be remembered before the Lord, and let not the sin of his mother be blotted out!
15 Let them be before the Lord continually, that he may cut off the memory of them from the earth!
Where is the response from the evangelical leadership to what – from a “Bible believing” point of view is a blasphemous misuse of the Bible in a hate crusade?
The Christian leadership that fails to denounce this fiasco is morally bankrupt. If the president is killed ask the editors of Christianity Today magazine where they were and what they did to stop the hate. Where’s the Catholic League on this one? Where are the editors of far right Obama-hating World magazine? Where’s Franklin Graham, and Chuck Colson and James Dobson and Rick Warren?
The far right "Christian" leadership managed to crank out a new deceleration against abortion and stem cell research just this week called the "Manhattan deceleration." Here's the list that signed it. Where are these people's deceleration of conscience against their own followers and fellow "Christians" when it comes to not murdering the President and/or seeming to encourage violence with Bible verse bumper stickers?
# Dr. Daniel Akin
President, Southeastern Baptist Theological Seminary (Wake Forest, N.C.)
# Most Rev. Peter J. Akinola
Primate, Anglican Church of Nigeria (Abika, Nigeria)
# Randy Alcorn
Founder and Director, Eternal Perspective Ministries (EPM) (Sandy, Ore.)
# Rt. Rev. David Anderson
President and CEO, American Anglican Council (Atlanta)
# Leith Anderson
President of National Association of Evangelicals (Washington, D.C.)
# Charlotte K. Ardizzone
TV Show Host and Speaker, INSP Television (Charlotte, N.C.)
# Kay Arthur
CEO and Co-founder, Precept Ministries International (Chattanooga, Tenn.)
# Dr. Mark L. Bailey
President, Dallas Theological Seminary (Dallas)
# Most Rev. Craig W. Bates
Archbishop, International Communion of the Charismatic Episcopal Church (Malverne, N.Y.)
# Gary Bauer
President, American Values; Chairman, Campaign for Working Families
# His Grace, The Right Reverend Bishop Basil Essey
The Right Reverend Bishop of the Diocese of Wichita and Mid-America (Wichita, Kan.)
# Joel Belz
Founder, World Magazine (Asheville, N.C.)
# Rev. Michael L. Beresford
Managing Director of Church Relations, Billy Graham Evangelistic Association (Charlotte, N.C.)
# Ken Boa
President, Reflections Ministries (Atlanta)
# Joseph Bottum
Editor of First Things (New York)
# Pastor Randy & Sarah Brannon
Senior Pastor, Grace Community Church (Madera, Calif.)
# Steve Brown
National Radio Broadcaster, Key Life (Maitland, Fla.)
# Dr. Robert C. Cannada, Jr.
Chancellor and CEO, Reformed Theological Seminary (Orlando, Fla.)
# Galen Carey
Director of Government Affairs, National Association of Evangelicals (Washington, D.C.)
# Dr. Bryan Chapell
President, Covenant Theological Seminary (St. Louis)
# Most Rev. Charles J. Chaput
Archbishop, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Denver
# Timothy Clinton
President, American Association of Christian Counselors (Forest, Va.)
# Chuck Colson
Founder, The Chuck Colson Center for Christian Worldview (Lansdowne, Va.)
# Most Rev. Salvatore Joseph Cordileone
Bishop, Roman Catholic Diocese of Oakland, Calif.
# Dr. Gary Culpepper
Associate Professor, Providence College (Providence, R.I.)
# Jim Daly
President and CEO, Focus on the Family (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
# Marjorie Dannenfelser
President, Susan B. Anthony List (Arlington, Va.)
# Rev. Daniel Delgado
Board of Directors, National Hispanic Christian Leadership Conference; Pastor, Third Day Missions Church (Staten Island, N.Y.)
# Patrick J. Deneen
Tsakopoulos-Kounalakis Associate Professor and Director, The Tocqueville Forum on the Roots of American Democracy, Georgetown University (Washington, D.C.)
# Dr. James Dobson
Founder, Focus on the Family (Colorado Springs, Colo.)
# Dr. David Dockery
President, Union University (Jackson, Tenn.)
# Most Rev. Timothy Dolan
Archbishop, Roman Catholic Diocese of New York, N.Y.
# Dr. William Donohue
President, Catholic League (New York)
# Dr. James T. Draper, Jr.
President Emeritus, LifeWay (Nashville, Tenn.)
# Dinesh D'Souza
Writer and Speaker (Rancho Santa Fe, Calif.)
# Most Rev. Robert Wm. Duncan
Archbishop and Primate, Anglican Church in North America (Ambridge, Pa. )
# Dr. Michael Easley
President Emeritus, Moody Bible Institute (Chicago)
# Dr. William Edgar
Professor, Westminster Theological Seminary (Philadelphia)
# Brett Elder
Executive Director, Stewardship Council (Grand Rapids, Mich.
# Rev. Joel Elowsky
Drew University (Madison, N.J.)
# Stuart Epperson
Co-Founder and Chariman of the Board, Salem Communications Corporation (Camarillo, Calif.)
# Rev. Jonathan Falwell
Senior Pastor, Thomas Road Baptist Church (Lynchburg, Va.)
# William J. Federer
President, Amerisearch, Inc. (St. Louis)
# Fr. Joseph D. Fessio
Founder and Editor, Ignatius Press (Ft. Collins, Colo.)
# Carmen Fowler
President and Executive Editor, Presbyterian Lay Committee (Lenoir, N.C.)
# Maggie Gallagher
President, National Organization for Marriage (Manassas, Va.)
# Dr. Jim Garlow
Senior Pastor, Skyline Church (La Mesa, Calif.)
# Steven Garofalo
Senior Consultant, Search and Assessment Services (Charlotte, N.C.)
# Dr. Robert P. George
McCormick Professor of Jurisprudence, Princeton University (Princeton, N.J.)
# Dr. Timothy George
Dean and Professor of Divinity, Beeson Divinity School at Samford University (Birmingham, Ala.)
# Thomas Gilson
Director of Strategic Processes, Campus Crusade for Christ International (Norfolk, Va.)
# Dr. Jack Graham
Pastor, Prestonwood Baptist Church (Plano, Texas)
# Dr. Wayne Grudem
Research Professor of Theological and Biblical Studies, Phoenix Seminary (Phoenix)
# Dr. Cornell "Corkie" Haan
National Facilitator of Spiritual Unity, The Mission America Coalition (Palm Desert, Calif.)
# Fr. Chad Hatfield
Chancellor, CEO and Archpriest, St. Vladimir's Orthodox Theological Seminary (Yonkers, N.Y.)
# Dr. Dennis Hollinger
President and Professor of Christian Ethics, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary (South Hamilton, Mass.)
# Dr. Jeanette Hsieh
Executive Vice President and Provost, Trinity International University (Deerfield, Ill.)
# Dr. John A. Huffman, Jr.
Senior Pastor, St. Andrews Presbyterian Church (Newport Beach, Calif.); Chairman of the Board, Christianity Today International (Carol Stream, Ill.)
# Rev. Ken Hutcherson
Pastor, Antioch Bible Church (Kirkland, Wash.)
# Bishop Harry R. Jackson, Jr.
Senior Pastor, Hope Christian Church (Beltsville, Md.)
# Fr. Johannes L. Jacobse
President, American Orthodox Institute; Editor, OrthodoxyToday.org (Naples, Fla.)
# Jerry Jenkins
Chairman of the Board of Trustees, Moody Bible Institute (Black Forest, Colo.)
# Camille Kampouris
Editorial Board, Kairos Journal
# Emmanuel A. Kampouris
Publisher, Kairos Journal
# Rev. Tim Keller
Senior Pastor, Redeemer Presbyterian Church (New York)
# Dr. Peter Kreeft
Professor of Philosophy, Boston College (Mass.) and at the Kings College (N.Y.)
# Most Rev. Joseph E. Kurtz
Archbishop, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Louisville, Ky.
# Jim Kushiner
Editor, Touchstone (Chicago)
# Dr. Richard Land
President, The Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the SBC (Washington, D.C.)
# Jim Law
Senior Associate Pastor, First Baptist Church (Woodstock, Ga.)
# Dr. Matthew Levering
Associate Professor of Theology, Ave Maria University (Naples, Fla.)
# Dr. Peter Lillback
President, The Providence Forum (West Conshohocken, Pa.)
# Dr. Duane Litfin
President, Wheaton College (Wheaton, Ill.)
# Rev. Herb Lusk
Pastor, Greater Exodus Baptist Church (Philadelphia)
# His Eminence Adam Cardinal Maida
Archbishop Emeritus, Roman Catholic Diocese of Detroit
# Most Rev. Richard J. Malone
Bishop, Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland, Maine
# Rev. Francis Martin
Professor of Sacred Scripture, Sacred Heart Major Seminary (Detroit)
# Dr. Joseph Mattera
Bishop and Senior Pastor, Resurrection Church (Brooklyn, N.Y.)
# Phil Maxwell
Pastor, Gateway Church (Bridgewater, N.J.)
# Josh McDowell
Founder, Josh McDowell Ministries (Plano, Texas)
# Alex McFarland
President, Southern Evangelical Seminary (Charlotte, N.C.)
# Most Rev. George Dallas McKinney
Bishop, Founder and Pastor, St. Stephen's Church of God in Christ (San Diego)
# Rt. Rev. Martyn Minns
Missionary Bishop, Convocation of Anglicans of North America (Herndon, Va.)
# Dr. C. Ben Mitchell
Graves Professor of Moral Philosophy, Union University (Jackson, Tenn.)
# Dr. R. Albert Mohler, Jr.
President, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (Louisville, Ky.)
# Dr. Russell D. Moore
Senior Vice President for Academic Administration and Dean of the School of Theology, Southern Baptist Theological Seminary (Louisville, Ky.)
# Most Rev. John J. Myers
Archbishop, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Newark, N.J.
# Most Rev. Joseph F. Naumann
Archbishop, Roman Catholic Diocese of Kansas City, Kan.
# David Neff
Editor-in-Chief, Christianity Today (Carol Stream, Ill.)
# Tom Nelson
Senior Pastor, Christ Community Evangelical Free Church (Leawood, Kan.)
# Niel Nielson
President, Covenant College (Lookout Mt., Ga.)
# Most Rev. John Nienstedt
Archbishop, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Saint Paul and Minneapolis
# Dr. Tom Oden
Theologian, United Methodist Minister; Professor, Drew University (Madison, N.J.)
# Marvin Olasky
Editor-in-Chief, World Magazine; Provost, The Kings College (New York)
# Most Rev. Thomas J. Olmsted
Bishop, Roman Catholic Diocese of Phoenix
# Rev. William Owens
Chairman, Coalition of African-American Pastors (Memphis, Tenn.)
# Dr. J.I. Packer
Board of Governors' Professor of Theology, Regent College (Canada)
# Metr. Jonah Paffhausen
Primate, Orthodox Church in America (Syosset, N.Y.)
# Tony Perkins
President, Family Research Council (Washington, D.C.)
# Eric M. Pillmore
CEO, Pillmore Consulting LLC (Doylestown, Pa.)
# Dr. Everett Piper
President, Oklahoma Wesleyan University (Bartlesville, Okla.)
# Todd Pitner
President, Rev Increase
# Dr. Cornelius Plantinga
President, Calvin Theological Seminary (Grand Rapids, Mich.)
# Dr. David Platt
Pastor, Church at Brook Hills (Birmingham, Ala.)
# Rev. Jim Pocock
Pastor, Trinitarian Congregational Church (Wayland, Mass.)
# Fred Potter
Executive Director and CEO, Christian Legal Society (Springfield, Va.)
# Dennis Rainey
President, CEO, and Co-Founder, FamilyLife (Little Rock, Ark.)
# Fr. Patrick Reardon
Pastor, All Saints' Antiochian Orthodox Church (Chicago)
# Bob Reccord
Founder, Total Life Impact, Inc. (Suwanee, Ga.)
# His Eminence Justin Cardinal Rigali
Archbishop, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Philadelphia
# Frank Schubert
President, Schubert Flint Public Affairs (Sacramento, Calif.)
# David Schuringa
President, Crossroads Bible Institute (Grand Rapids, Mich.)
# Tricia Scribner
Author (Harrisburg, N.C.)
# Dr. Dave Seaford
Senior Pastor, Community Fellowship Church (Matthews, N.C.)
# Alan Sears
President, CEO, and General Counsel, Alliance Defense Fund (Scottsdale, Ariz.)
# Randy Setzer
Senior Pastor, Macedonia Baptist Church (Lincolnton, N.C.)
# Most Rev. Michael J. Sheridan
Bishop, Roman Catholic Diocese of Colorado Springs, Colo.
# Dr. Ron Sider
Director, Evangelicals for Social Action (Wynnewood, Pa.)
# Fr. Robert Sirico
Founder, Acton Institute (Grand Rapids, Mich.)
# Dr. Robert Sloan
President, Houston Baptist University (Houston)
# Charles Stetson
Chairman of the Board, Bible Literacy Project (New York)
# Dr. David Stevens
CEO, Christian Medical and Dental Association (Bristol, Tenn.)
# John Stonestreet
Executive Director, Summit Ministries (Manitou Springs, Colo.)
# Dr. Joseph Stowell
President, Cornerstone University (Grand Rapids, Mich.)
# Dr. Sarah Sumner
Professor of Theology and Ministry, Azusa Pacific University (Azusa, Calif.)
# Dr. Glenn Sunshine
Chairman of the History Department, Central Connecticut State University (New Britain, Conn.)
# Joni Eareckson Tada
Founder and CEO, Joni and Friends International Disability Center (Agoura Hills, Calif.)
# Luiz Tellez
President, The Witherspoon Institute (Princeton, N.J.)
# Dr. Timothy C. Tennent
President, Asbury Theological Seminary (Wilmore, Ky.)
# Michael Timmis
Chairman, Prison Fellowship and Prison Fellowship International (Naples, Fla.)
# Mark Tooley
President, Institute for Religion and Democracy (Washington, D.C.)
# H. James Towey
President, St. Vincent College (Latrobe, Pa.)
# Juan Valdes
Middle and High School Chaplain, Florida Christian School (Miami, Fla.)
# Todd Wagner
Pastor, WaterMark Community Church (Dallas)
# Dr. Graham Walker
President, Patrick Henry College (Purcellville, Va.)
# Fr. Alexander F. C. Webster, Ph.D.
Archpriest, Orthodox Church in America; Professorial Lecturer, The George Washington University (Ashburn, Va.)
# George Weigel
Distinguished Senior Fellow, Ethics and Public Policy Center (Washington, D.C.)
# David Welch
Houston Area Pastor Council Executive Director, US Pastors Council (Houston)
# Dr. James Emery White
Founding and Senior Pastor, Mecklenburg Community Church (Charlotte, N.C.)
# Dr. Hayes Wicker
Senior Pastor, First Baptist Church (Naples, Fla.)
# Mark Williamson
Founder and President, Foundation Restoration Ministries/Federal Intercessors (Katy, Texas)
# Parker T. Williamson
Editor Emeritus and Senior Correspondent, Presbyterian Lay Committee
# Dr. Craig Williford
President, Trinity International University (Deerfield, Ill.)
# Dr. John Woodbridge
Research Professor of Church History and the History of Christian Thought, Trinity Evangelical Divinity School (Deerfield, Ill.)
# Don M. Woodside
Performance Matters Associates (Matthews, N.C.)
# Dr. Frank Wright
President, National Religious Broadcasters (Manassas, Va.)
# Most Rev. Donald W. Wuerl
Archbishop, Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Washington, D.C.
# Paul Young
COO and Executive Vice President, Christian Research Institute (Charlotte, N.C.)
# Dr. Michael Youssef
President, Leading the Way (Atlanta)
# Ravi Zacharias
Founder and Chairman of the Board, Ravi Zacharias International Ministries (Norcross, Ga.)
# Most Rev. David A. Zubik
Bishop, Roman Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh
# James R. Thobaben, Ph.D., M.P.H.
Professor, Bioethics and Social Ethics, Asbury Theological Seminary (Wilmore, Ky.)
By their silence they are in bed with people who write things like this: “those of us who don’ t like Obummer really want him dead…”
If it happens you know who to blame. The moral cowards listed above are expert at judging the "secular culture" and denouncing it but never at coming together to denounce their own blasphemous rabid followers.
They are like the Muslim leaders that right wing people complain about for never denouncing their extremists. Well, now we have an American Taliban threatening domestic violence by misquoting our version of the Koran where are the people on the list above speaking out?