Another “man of God” has called for the death penalty for gays. Pastor Curtis Knapp of New Hope Baptist Church in Seneca, Kansas declares:
“They should be put to death….Oh, so you’re saying we should go out and start killing them, no?’ — I’m saying the government should. They won’t, but they should.
You say, ‘Oh, I can’t believe you, you’re horrible. You’re a backwards neanderthal of a person.’ Is that what you’re calling scripture? Is God a neanderthal, backwards in his morality? Is it His word or not? If it’s His word, he commanded it. It’s His idea, not mine. And I’m not ashamed of it…
He said put them to death…Shall the church drag them in? No, I’m not say that. The church has not been given the power of the sort; the government has. But the government ought to. You got a better idea? A better idea than God?”
I read “The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich” several years ago because I was curious about how regular people could support the genocide of millions of Jews. This is how. Humans are capable of all manner of violence and hatred, especially when using justification from a higher power. The “enemy” is dehumanized and vilified, making it easier to condone their extermination. People don’t want to be associated with the enemy, because they may endanger themselves. In order to deal with the suffering of others, people harden their hearts and internalize all of the justifications offered to them so that they can live with their inaction and complicity. Check out this MENSA candidate justifying NC pastor Charles Worley’s call for gays to be placed in concentration camps:
Embarrassing! When faced with the logical ridiculousness of gays “dying out” because they can’t reproduce, she rolls her eyes and sneers to mask her discomfort. She makes the argument that Worley is not being literal. I fail to see how you can take these people’s words as anything less than literally. The only encouraging thing is that these haters lack the balls to actually put their ideas into practice. They would like “the government” to do it, so they can be removed from the ugly reality of what they are espousing.
How can Christians condone something like THIS from Apostolic Truth Tabernacle in Greensburg, Indiana:
Aw, how cute…a baby being indoctrinated into hate. This is how it begins. The crowd cheers this precious child’s song of intolerance. God does not live here. This is a garish fun house mirror image of “God is love.” If there is a hell, Pastor Knapp and Charles Worley belong there, as does every Christian who hears hate speech and does not condemn it. People who allow such men to speak for them are just as guilty as they are.
Pastors Worley and Knapp are small men who personify those more powerful and shadowy players in our own government. Their tactics are a reflection of the methods employed by government to keep the flock in check. We are all sheep, whether God’s or The Man’s. Again and again, religious and political leaders who shape what it means to be moral and just are found wanting by their own standards. Yet we continue to allow them to tell us what to do and how to think.
People of reason and sanity may believe that what happened in Nazi Germany could never happen here. It most certainly can and has happened here. Only a couple of generations ago we allowed Japanese American citizens of this country to be stripped of their property and placed them in concentration camps. An entire nation stood by and allowed it to happen. “The Japs” were an enemy easy to identify. Americans of German descent looked like everyone else, so they got a pass. Today, Muslims, brown people and gays are “the enemy.”
We have traded many of our freedoms in the name of protection. The Patriot Act, invasive TSA pat downs, wireless wiretapping, and indefinite imprisonment are all violations of our rights as Americans. Many of us are okay with these things, because we are not terrorists. It could never happen to us. No way could we find ourselves falsely accused and thrown into a gulag without benefit of a lawyer or a judge. If you believe this, you are fooling yourself. We imprison more of our citizens per capita than any other other country in the world, yet call this the land of the free.
Every single time gay rights have been put to a popular vote, Americans have chosen to strip our citizens of basic civil rights. We have no idea the slippery slope we are on when we do this. It is only a matter of time before we become “the enemy.” When we base our laws on Christian dogma, we are no different from the Taliban. Some are so frightened that “creeping Sharia” laws are going to endanger America, but seem blind to the fact that we are doing just what we are afraid of. Intolerance is evident on a daily basis here in the “melting pot.”
American politics is designed to keep us divided and distracted from what is truly important. As long as we have a clearly defined threat to our vision of what it means to be an American, we ignore what truly threatens us. This is why we have always been involved in a conflict of some type somewhere in the world. This is why the most pressing issues in the media are social issues like abortion and gay rights. We will never all agree on these things, so elections become about these things.
To distract us from the oligarchy of corporate greed that has infiltrated every corner of government, we blame the poor and the elderly for our economic woes. Days are getting hotter, the weather more extreme, but we continue to deny it the evidence that we can see with our own eyes. It’s a liberal conspiracy, it’s HAARP, it’s chemtrails! We worry about gay sex and women’s reproductive choices, while the lords in both parties continue to enrich themselves and their supporters by suckling at the teat of taxpayers without notice. These are tried and true tactics that governments have employed since the dawn of civilization. Distract the rabble, let them eat high fructose corn syrup cake! The problem is that it is a unsustainable model of governing. Eventually the house of cards will fall, and society will fall with it.
Our own apathy and ignorance will hasten our demise. Being puppets on strings, we allow our masters to guide us by manipulating our own fears and prejudices. It’s such a simple plan, so insidious in nature, yet so easy to implement. The concept is so frightening, it’s much easier to ignore it than to open our eyes to the truth. Even those of us who see what’s going on often feel that the problem is too large to overcome. Survivalists are preparing for the apocalypse. Perhaps they are right and we are too far gone. Maybe the events already set in motion are impossible to reverse. We are all parties to our own oppression. Can we lift ourselves up from this miasma of self-deceit, or will we allow the puppet-masters to continue their avaricious and despicable reign?