Frank Schaeffer is a writer and author of fiction and nonfiction.
Great interview, Frank! Spot on! The religious right are exactly as you say in your book, CRAZY FOR GOD: "anti-American religious revolutionaries... gleefully betting on American failure" (p.298). You continue, "Once fundamentalists start to sniff out 'impurities,' they don't stop" (p.311). I might add that the ridiculous socio-political-cultural litmus tests that the religious right want to impose and legislate essentially eliminate everyone (including themselves, and even Jesus himself!) from being allowed to join their own clubs (and religion!) as they purge conservatives for not being conservative enough. JESUS IS TOO LIBERAL TO BE ACCEPTED BY THE RELIGIOUS RIGHT!As you go on to say, in reference to the fundamentalist home-schooling movement, "They wanted no public spaces (physical or intellectural) to be shared by people of all beliefs. They wanted only private spaces, where they could indoctrinate their children free from 'interference'" (p. 331). And these people demonstrate on public property, no less! Their goal to eliminate the public square entirely will only destroy any sense of justice, community, freedom or family! You hit the nail on the head when you say that the religious right is simply a fund-raising movement. All they want to do is purge everything and anything that is "OTHER" than their own particular exclusive brand of holier-than-thou right-wing social-political-cultural agenda masquerading as the definitive "exhaustive truth" (to use your father's phrase who correctly pointed out that "exhaustive truth" was beyond our grasp).
I saw Mr Schaefer on Rachael Maddow and it was so refreshing to hear him speak the truth to the power of the right wing evangelical Christians who are taking over the republican party. Thank you, Frank. I hope you have the oppourtunity to be on more main stream talk shows so other people can be aware of what has just happened. I watched the republican party embrace the tea parties crazy idea's through silence. By doing that, the republican party was making sure it did not have to compete with a seperate conservative party for the congressional seats. However, for some reason these right wing Christian zelots seized the opportunity with the support of Palin, the tea party mama, and moved right into the Republican primary spots, with the blessing of the tea party itself.The teaparty, who hasn't a CLUE as to what is really going on... that they have just been duped and used, thinks they were voting for a "constitutional" freedom fighter... and not a religious zelot. Now, their leader, Beck, is saying, hey you guys "back off" with the funny get ups.We have used you and now just melt into the background, as we got what we wanted...but hey don't forget to vote republican. I hope the democrats are not going to sit this one out as the stakes are just too high.The one thing I disagree with Frank, is that you say they don't really want the power of the pen, they just want to raise money for focus on the family and what not, but NOT true. You and I both know they want to change major supreme court decissions and control the very fabric of the freedom to choose to be something other than what THEY want you to be. These people are dangerous and will be more than dangerous if wielding power in the USA congress.I am urging even moderate Republicans to vote democratic in Nov and save us from such extreme views.
Thank you for your work. I began to write off Christians in the 80's. It was people like you who made me realize that reason is still possible. Have you looked into speaking at The Daily Show's "Rally to Restore Sanity"? Your message would fit.
great interview - i enjoyed it.
Frank, you are one of the most important voices on these issues and I feel it is SO important for your perspective to be more widely heard/read. Why (I ask myself) do I not see you on the Opinion page of the NY Times? I was never part of the Religious Right, I don't need to be convinced, I'm right there with you. I truly hope your words are reaching those who might be enlightened by them.
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