"War Against Christmas" taken to Congress
Lorie Johnson printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Fri Dec 16, 2005 at 09:44:38 AM EST
It's clear that some people are taking this fake 'war against Christmas' seriously. What else would explain this resolution passed by the House of Representatives yesterday?

It was "H.RES.579
Title: Expressing the sense of the House of Representatives that the symbols and traditions of Christmas should be protected"

Which 'symbols and traditions' are they protecting? I think you can guess.

Of course, not all 'symbols' were thought worthy of protection:

Rep. Gary Ackerman (D-NY): "There are people around who need an enemy at all times to try to separate us one from the other as Americans in order to advance their own agenda. I do not think we should be playing into their hands. Nobody is attacking Christmas or its symbols.... I am really very saddened by the fact that when given the opportunity to expand this resolution that the sponsor demurred. I am not sure why. If you do not know and you are saying that you want this to be what this is because yours is the religion that has its symbols under attack, when was the last time you walked into Wal-Mart and saw it saying 'Happy Chanukah?' When did you walk into Toys 'R Us and see it saying 'Happy Kwanzaa?' Does that give me the right to say that my religion is under attack, the symbols of my faith or the holiday I wish to celebrate are under attack? It is not, and I am not going to be a crybaby and say that it is. To tell the truth, it is slightly offensive to see people trying to create a war and claiming they are attacked just so that they go on the offense instead of the defense. This is a prefabricated issue that has no merit. Nobody is attacking the symbols of Christmas. Are you objecting to our wanting to be included because the symbols of your religion are more important than the symbols of anybody else's religion in America? Or is it because you think that the symbols of your religion are more official? That is the danger in what we are doing."

Virginians, you should be proud of your Representative... Here's what he had to say:

Rep. Bobby Scott (D-VA): "Madam Speaker, this resolution purports to protect the symbols of Christmas, but what really needs to be protected are not the symbols of Christmas, but rather the spirit of Christmas. The spirit of Christmas demands generosity and goodwill towards others. Instead of legislation that respects the spirit of Christmas, Congress in just these past few weeks has passed a budget that includes mean-spirited attacks on the least of us. For those who are hungry, we are cutting food stamps. For those who are sick, we are cutting Medicaid. For those who are in prison, we are imposing senseless mandatory minimums. For others we are ignoring increases in heating costs and cutting student loans. At the same time we are cutting those programs to help the least of us, we are cutting taxes for the wealthiest in society. Madam Speaker, we ought to express our passion for Christmas through deeds, not words; and we should not be distracted from our responsibility to uphold the spirit of Christmas as we consider the effects our actions on the Federal budget will have on the least of us during this holiday season. For these reasons I oppose this resolution."

[Source]

Both of these House members, and several others, have, in their objections to this resolution, hit upon some of the very things we find objectionable to the Dominionist assault on our country: the hypocracy of a fake 'war' and mean-spiritedness in taking away from the poor and needy the very things that Christ told us to give.  Basic things like food, clothing, shelter, medical care...

If you are in one of the states who had a brave soul objecting to this patently hateful resolution, I encourage you to write to them and let them know that you support them. I'll let Congressman Dingell have the last word:

Washington, DC - Congressman John D. Dingell (MI-15) recited the following poem on the floor of the US House of Representatives concerning House Resolution 579, which expressed the sense of the House of Representatives that the symbols and traditions of Christmas should be protected. “Preserving Christmas” has been a frequent topic for conservative talk show hosts, including Fox News’s Bill O’Reilly: ‘Twas the week before Christmas and all through the House, No bills were passed ‘bout which Fox News could grouse; Tax cuts for the wealthy were passed with great cheer, So vacations in St. Barts soon would be near; Katrina kids were nestled all snug in motel beds, While visions of school and home danced in their heads; In Iraq our soldiers needed supplies and a plan, Plus nuclear weapons were being built in Iran; Gas prices shot up, consumer confidence fell; Americans feared we were on a fast track to…well… Wait--- we need a distraction--- something divisive and wily; A fabrication straight from the mouth of O’Reilly! We can pretend that Christmas is under attack Hold a vote to save it--- then pat ourselves on the back; Silent Night, First Noel, Away in the Manger Wake up Congress, they’re in no danger! This time of year we see Christmas every where we go, From churches, to homes, to schools, and yes…even Costco; What we have is an attempt to divide and destroy, When this is the season to unite us with joy. At Christmas time we’re taught to unite, We don’t need a made-up reason to fight. So on O’Reilly, on Hannity, on Coulter, and those right wing blogs; You should just sit back, relax…have a few egg nogs! ‘Tis the holiday season: enjoy it a pinch- With all our real problems, do we honestly need another Grinch? So to my friends and my colleagues I say with delight, A merry Christmas to all, and to Bill O’Reilly…Happy Holidays.



Display:
Ackerman, Scott & Dingell each deserve a kudo for their remarks on this issue.

by Mainstream Baptist on Fri Dec 16, 2005 at 09:57:43 AM EST

As I'd posted in the other thread on this issue, I'm familiar with two of the reps who were co-sponsors of this because they have a history of support of dominionist causes:

Ron Lewis (R) of Kentucky is pretty much the state's hardline dominionist representative--among other things, Frank Simon's groups largely lobbied for his election and he actually has done electioneering in the very church I walked away from.  He's pretty much bought and paid for by dominionist groups.

Among other things, Ron Lewis has been a cosponsor of a proposal to amend the Constitution that would not only ban same-sex marriages but any other status equivalent in benefits to marriage--in an almost identically-worded version to American Family Association and Focus on the Family-sponsored amendments that passed in 10 states over the past two years.

Lewis, in the War on the Judiciary, has also proposed (along with some of the other suspects already listed) a constitutional amendment requiring judges to be reconfirmed by both executive and legislative branches every ten years (this in a bid to remove non-dominionist-friendly judges).

Lewis is even the author of a specific proposal for a law aimed at destroying the Balance of Powers of the branches of the government--in that it would allow Congress, via a two-thirds vote, to overrule decisions by the Supreme Court that an act of Congress was unconstitutional.

At least one of the three Indiana reps also co-sponsoring, Hostettler, is also a hardline dominionist.  Hostettler was also detained once at Louisville International Airport at Standiford Field for having an undeclared Glock pistol in his luggage and had a bench warrant for his arrest declared in Kentucky; Hostettler has also actively tried to derail investigations into dominionist activities at the US Air Force Academy including forcible prosyletisation.  

Hostetter's ignoble record includes re cosponsorship:

a House resolution supporting sectarian prayers at school board meetings

a dominionist-backed bill to reverse a decision of the 9th District Court which ruled that the dominionist addition to the Pledge made it unconstitutional

A law permitting Ten Commandments displays "in the event the Supreme Court rules it unconstitutional"

Hostetter is actually among the more extreme branches of the dominionist movement (such as Christian Reconstructionists and much of the pentecostal-affiliated "dominion theology" movement) in that he also is very much opposed to divorce--he literally demonised it in dominionist terms by stating it was as "bad as gay marriage".  (Several dominionist groups are actively working to make it legally very difficult to divorce, even in cases of domestic abuse; generally they are promoting "Covenant marriage" as a legal alternative to no-fault marriage.  Generally "covenant marriage" prohibits divorce for any reason within the first two years.  Some of the AoG-affiliated dominionists and Christian Reconstructionists have stated they would like to legally outlaw divorce altogether save for the grounds of a partner acting in an "un-Christian" (aka non-dominionist) manner.)

Hostetter also is the author of at least one other "Constitution Restoration Act Clone" bill (there are at least three other bills besides the "Constitution Restoration Act" itself that have identical intent and nearly identical wording, but with narrower focus)--specifically  a bill that would strip almost all courts of legal jurisdiction over dominionist anti-gay-marriage laws like the "Defense of Marriage Act".

Other bills Hostetter has authored include:

a bill that would ban courts from charging losers attorney's fees in successful lawsuits in regards to civil rights cases involving religion (including "Ten Commandments" cases and the like)

a bill allowing people to "opt out" of having Social Security numbers based on religious convictions (this is based on an old chestnut in especially pentecostal communities that the Social Security number is secretly the Number of the Beast--there are even Jack Chick tracks about this, which include conspiracy theories about the Catholic Church being in league with the Freemasons to boot)

An amendment to a funding bill cutting off all federal funds to a court because it gave a ruling against dominionists in a "Ten Commandments" case in Indiana

A bill that would require parental notification and consent for birth control (yes, stores would not only have to legally contact parents but have a teen bring a permissions slip or get a judge's consent to buy a pack of Trojans under this law)

A rather bizarre bill that includes unborn fetuses--including specifically stillborn fetuses or fetuses dead in utero--as eligible for child credits under federal income tax laws

Both he and Lewis were also co-sponsors of another bill--the "Constitution Restoration Act" (which is in fact authored by Roy Moore, and is introduced in Congress on a yearly basis by Sen. Shelby from Alabama who is a close friend of Moore's)--which would strip practically all court jurisdiction from US courts in regards to practically any court case regarding dominionism and which would also set penalties--including impeachment from office and disbarrment--for any judge or lawyer that took a case involving "the acknowledgement of God as Creator" or any civil-rights cases involving dominionism.

Both Lewis and Hostettler have been co-sponsors of numerous other bills friendly towards dominionist causes, including:

a Constitutional amendment that in part repeats the First Amendment but also in part makes forced prosyletisation constitutional

a Constitutional amendment that would define legally the start of life as being the point of fertilisation (thus, via dominionist arguments, outlawing not only abortion but cloning, stem cell treatments, IUDs, all "morning after" pills, potentially the birth control pill itself, possibly outlawing in vitro fertilisation and embryo transfer technology, etc.; it would also, notably, allow people to sue their own parents under civil rights laws for not providing "proper" conditions in the womb; by extension, both thalidomide and Accutane (and all drugs related to Accutane, of which there are approximately ten on the market) could become illegal because their marketing restrictions require two highly effective forms of birth control even if the woman has had her tubes tied or the husband has had a vasectomy and even if they are using abstinence (this is because Accutane and other retinoid drugs, as well as thalidomide, are known to cause severe and often fatal birth defects; legally, a doctor cannot prescribe Accutane or thalidomide without the woman being on two separate forms of birth control or with medical proof she's had a hysterectomy))

a similar bill to the "Constitution Restoration Act" stripping all courts of jurisdiction over any case involving the constitutionality of the Pledge of Allegiance

a proposed Constitutional amendment that would essentially nullify any living will or power of attorney agreement that provided for "pulling the plug" and even establishes specific legal procedures under which dominionist groups could file to prevent one's living will or end-of-life directives from being enacted

A bill (that came very close to becoming law) that would make transporting an underage person across state lines to obtain abortion or  family planning services a felony--both for the persons taking the teen to another state (which may have had a less strict judicial bypass, for instance) and for the doctors concerned

a bill that would force all pregnancy counseling centers to provide info on adoption services

a bill that would revoke the legal approval for mifeprestone (aka RU-486) in the US even though the FDA already restricts its use to within a doctor's office and its use is one of the most highly restricted of any pharmaceutical in the US (Accutane and thalidomide--both legally approved drugs and both known to cause severe, often fatal, birth defects--literally have less legal restrictions than Mifeprex does)

Rep. Jo Anne Davis also has a history of being the actual introducer of multiple pieces of dominionist-friendly legislation, including:

A House resolution to keep the US motto as "In God We Trust" (which was changed originally in 1954 in a round of dominionist-backed legislation (backed primarily by the Full Gospel Businessmen's Fellowship International, at that) which also added "One Nation, Under God" to the Pledge of Allegiance, added (by virtue of change of the national motto) "In God We Trust" to the coinage, and included an unsuccessful attempt to amend the Constitution to declare the US "a nation under the authority and law of Jesus Christ")

a version of the FotF "marriage is one man and one woman" amendment

She's also a co-sponsor of nearly all of the other legislation noted above.


by dogemperor on Fri Dec 16, 2005 at 10:36:10 AM EST



WWW Talk To Action


Thus It Was Prophesied in 2012: Ted Cruz Will Be VP, Or a Supreme Court Justice
This is a transcript, of pastor Larry Huch and Rafael Cruz, father of U.S. Senator Ted Cruz, from an appearance Rafael Cruz made at......
By Bruce Wilson (1 comment)
Crusin with Cruz
Ted Cruz threw his hat into the ring, announcing his bid for President in the worship center at Jerry Falwell's University last night.  Mother......
By wilkyjr (1 comment)
Ted Cruz: Born From The Heart of the Dominionist Christian Right
[welcome, Thom Hartmann Show fans, here is a short introduction to my past coverage on Ted Cruz and the dominionist Christian right] Did you......
By Bruce Wilson (0 comments)
Coming Soon to Utah: An International Festival of Bigotry
An international network of some of the world's most vitriolic Religious Right activists and self-proclaimed orthodox religious leaders is holding its ninth global conference......
By Frederick Clarkson (0 comments)
Bumpy Lane: Religious Right Operative Seeks To Build (Another) Church-Based Political Machine
Here's what the country doesn't need right now: another zealot aiming to mobilize right-wing pastors to become a force in electoral politics.Yet that's what......
By Rob Boston (1 comment)
American ISIS: Christian Reconstructionists And `Biblical Law' In America
Every now and then, while scanning the day's news, I come across a headline that's hard to believe.Like this one: "California lawyer proposes ballot......
By Rob Boston (3 comments)
Will our Prisons Overflow with Christians this Summer?
Many leaders of the Christian Right, from megachurch pastors like Rick Warren to the top prelates in the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops, have......
By Frederick Clarkson (3 comments)
Say You Want A Christian Nation?: Let's Try This One
Last week an article began circulating on social media claiming that 57 percent of Republicans in a recent poll said they believe Christianity should......
By Rob Boston (3 comments)
Are The Fundamentalists Winning?
We missed Evolution Weekend, which was held February 13-15 this year.   This worthwhile effort, which began the same year as Talk to Action,......
By Frederick Clarkson (0 comments)
Mario Cuomo's Memorable Lesson on Challenging the Political Authority of the Church
It is never too late to remember. Here is a reposting of a column I did following the death of former New York Gov.......
By Frederick Clarkson (0 comments)
The Legacy of Francis Bellamy
"We assemble here that we, too, may exalt the free school that embodies the American principles of universal enlightenment and equality; the most characteristic......
By wilkyjr (1 comment)
The Inquisitional Urge Gets the Better of Bill Donohue (Again)
Bill Donohue is at it again. The Catholic League president went apoplectic over President Obama’s seemingly innocuous comments at the February 5th National Prayer......
By Frank Cocozzelli (2 comments)
John Dorhauer Recommended to Lead United Church of Christ
I am very pleased to report that John Dorhauer, who joined us early on at Talk to Action has been recommended by a national......
By Frederick Clarkson (3 comments)
Terms, Definitions & Glossaries for Writing about the Religious Right
One of the challenges in writing about the Religious Right and what to do about it is the matter of terms and definitions. That's......
By Frederick Clarkson (0 comments)
The Day We Won One for Jefferson
Thomas Jefferson wanted to be remembered for three things, which he had carved on his gravestone: Here was buried Thomas Jefferson Author of the......
By Frederick Clarkson (0 comments)

Evangelicals Seduced By Ayn Rand Worship Crypto-Satanism, Suggest Scholars
[update: also see my closely related stories, "Crypto-Cultists" and "Cranks": The Video Paul Ryan Hoped Would Go Away, and The Paul Ryan/Ayn Rand/Satanism Connection Made Simple] "I give people Ayn Rand with trappings" -......
Bruce Wilson (8 comments)
Ted Cruz Anointed By Pastor Who Says Jesus Opposed Minimum Wage, and Constitution Based on the Bible
In the video below, from a July 19-20th, 2013 pastor's rally at a Marriott Hotel in Des Moines, Iowa, Tea Party potentate Ted Cruz is blessed by religious right leader David Barton, who claims......
Bruce Wilson (0 comments)
Galt and God: Ayn Randians and Christian Rightists Expand Ties
Ayn Rand's followers find themselves sharing a lot of common ground with the Christian Right these days. The Tea Party, with its stress on righteous liberty and a robust form of capitalism, has been......
JSanford (2 comments)
Witchhunts in Africa and the U.S.A.
Nigerian human rights activist Leo Igwe has recently written at least two blog posts about how some African Pentecostal churches are sending missionaries to Europe and the U.S.A. in an attempt to "re-evangelize the......
Diane Vera (1 comment)
Charles Taze Russell and John Hagee
No doubt exists that Texas mega-church Pastor John Hagee would be loathe to be associated with the theology of Pastor C.T. Russell (wrongly credited with founding the Jehovah's Witnesses) but their theological orbits, while......
COinMS (0 comments)
A death among the common people ... imagination.
Or maybe my title would better fit as “Laws, Books, where to find, and the people who trust them.”What a society we've become!The wise ones tell us over and over how the more things......
Arthur Ruger (0 comments)
Deconstructing the Dominionists, Part VI
This is part 6 of a series by guest front pager Mahanoy, originally dated November 15, 2007 which I had to delete and repost for technical reasons. It is referred to in this post,......
Frederick Clarkson (1 comment)
Republican infighting in Mississippi
After a bruising GOP runoff election for U.S. Senator, current MS Senator Thad Cochran has retained his position and will face Travis Childers (Democrat) in the next senate election. The MS GOP is fractured......
COinMS (3 comments)
America's Most Convenient Bank® refuses to serve Christians
Representatives of a well known faith-based charitable organization were refused a New Jersey bank’s notarization service by an atheist employee. After inquiring about the nature of the non-profit organization and the documents requiring......
Jody Lane (5 comments)
John Benefiel takes credit for GOP takeover of Oklahoma
Many of you know that Oklahoma has turned an unrecognizable shade of red in recent years.  Yesterday, one of the leading members of the New Apostolic Reformation all but declared that he was responsible......
Christian Dem in NC (2 comments)
John Benefiel thinks America is under curse because Egyptians dedicated North America to Baal
You may remember that Rick Perry put together his "Response" prayer rallies with the help of a slew of NAR figures.  One of them was John Benefiel, an Oklahoma City-based "apostle."  He heads up......
Christian Dem in NC (5 comments)
Mississippi Religious Freedom Restoration Act.
Yes, that's right. We have totally lost our religious freedom in Mississippi and it must be restored by our legislators. ......
COinMS (2 comments)
Bill Gothard accused of harassing women and failing to report child abuse
Surprised no one's mentioned this, but one of the longest-standing leaders of the religious right is in a world of trouble.  Bill Gothard has been active in the fundie movement for over half......
Christian Dem in NC (2 comments)
Eugene Delgaudio may lose his day job as Virginia county supervisor
Surprised no one's noticed this, but one of the nation's most virulent homophobes is in a fight to keep his day job.  Eugene Delgaudio is best known as the head of Public Advocate......
Christian Dem in NC (1 comment)
Starkville Becomes First City in Mississippi to Pass Resolution Recognizing LGBT Residents
This caught me by surprise. I guess times are a changin in Dixieland. ------------------------------------- Cross posted from the HRC blog. Starkville Becomes First City in Mississippi to Pass Resolution Recognizing LGBT Residents January 21,......
COinMS (1 comment)

More Diaries...




All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective companies. Comments, posts, stories, and all other content are owned by the authors. Everything else © 2005 Talk to Action, LLC.