As you’ve probably heard, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops has drafted a statement saying Biden should be denied communion for saying that regardless of his personal beliefs, abortion should stay legal. I find this weirdly ironic. Sixty years ago this was precisely the kind of thing conservatives muttered about JFK, that he would do the bidding of his church. Now the pissed-off old conservatives, many of whom participated in covering up the church’s history of child abuse, are asserting JFK’s opponents were right.
As Fred Clark says, it’s also “clueless arrogance” on their part: they still think their ecclesiastical authority gives them moral authority that the rest of America will respect. “This is what happens when you’re so sure you’re someone who can claim the moral high ground that you never notice you’re up to your ears in moral quicksand.” I see much the same state of mind in the Republican religious right, a conviction that they really are holier than thou so you should listen with respect if they tell you you’re a perverted sinner or an enemy of god. How dare you say their views on women or gays are immoral or point out all the Protestant predators. Or that Jim Bakker owes $156,000 to people he bilked with a fake miracle cure promoted on his show.
Clark also responds to Lauren Boebert’s assertion that Israel and the U.S. were created for the glory of God; apparently nobody else was. As The Friendly Atheist points out, if a Jew or Muslim had given their God credit for creating the U.S., we’d be hearing outrage on the right. But a lot of people love the idea the U.S. is more special than all the other nations (you may remember they freaked out when Obama said all nations are exceptional) — they don’t want us to do anything special, they just want the cheap grace of feeling superior to the rest of the world.
Peter Laarman says this is one reason religious conservatives hate talk of America’s history of racism: saying America has done bad things clashes with their view we’re God’s chosen country. They’d rather not admit that the Constitution sanctioned slavery. And just as they can’t be argued out of conspiracy thinking, they can’t be argued out of it until they choose to let go. That’s a problem.
While I disagree with the Southern Baptist Conference’s Russell Moore, he seems genuinely committed to tackling the misogyny and racism that surge within the SBC. As you’ll see at the link, a lot of people in the SBC would rather ignore that stuff than actually act in a godly manner (or decent manner, depending on your worldview). While the new SBC leader is very conservative, he’s liberal compared to the opponents who muttered about the SBC being too woke and (what else) Critical Race Theory! But one conservative activist is now fulminating about Who Counted The Votes.
And now some random links:
The word “justice” appears quite a lot in the Greek New Testament, but it’s translated into “righteousness” in most English versions. That’s unfortunate because justice implies change to the community and society; righteousness is about personal morality.
Several religious leaders talk to Vox about their faith’s view on creating a just, fairer world.
Right-wing bullshit preacher E.W. Jackson claims hate crime laws are just to protect gays who hit on straights. Which ties in with one of the standard defenses in gay hate crimes, that the homophobe freaked out because someone hit on him. But hey, I’m sure a misogynist like Jackson will be fine if women start beating up guys who hit on them …. I’ll come in again.
Jew-hating hatemonger Rick Wiles refused to get the Trump Virus vaccine and came down with it. His explanation: Chinese spies infected him and soon they’ll do it to everyone!
How American Christians used to have their own form of cancel culture.