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Sat Jan 21, 2017 at 02:20:31 PM EST
What I'm feeling now is fear.  I swear that it seems my nightmares are coming true with this new "president".  I'm also frustrated because so many people are not connecting all the dots!

I've been following a bit of what Trump is doing and the news about his 'cabinet'.  It is striking how few people are connecting the dots - they aren't seeing the religious connections behind almost everyone he's picked... and they're all people known to dominionist opponents/researchers.

There is a lot of fussing about DeVos, but outside of a few venues (including Talk2Action), few mention her religious (dominionist) connections.  Today I read about defunding the National Endowment for the Arts, the National Endowment for the Humanities, and Public Broadcasting.  We know those have been dominionist goals for years.  The defunding of Planned Parenthood is another.  I've also read that there is a strong possibility that defunding of public education may be on the table too.  That one has been the target of fundamentalists and dominionists for a LONG time - dating to the early years of public education.

What will be next?  The return of Sunday Blue Laws?  Laws requiring people to be in CHURCHES on Sunday?  Tax moneys being turned over to Churches to "support their good works"?  (That's a very real possibility and something that church leaders have been panting over for years!)

I think people know about the 'consequences for actions' that have been applied to us for exercising Freedom of Speech.  Imagine this country where "Freedom of Speech" means the freedom to say only what the churches approve of.  Where you can be punished for saying something negative about them even if it's the truth and backed by evidence (as in our case).  Where violence against non-Christians is OK.  Where the poor are punished "because God is obviously punishing you for your sins and we cannot do anything that goes against God!!!"  Think about this - if they believe that God means for you to be wealthy and wealth is a sign of God's blessing, then obviously the inverse is also true - that poverty is a sign of God's curse/punishment.  Never mind that in most cases, poverty can be traced to factors OUTSIDE of the person and that 'personal failings' are generally not connected to poverty OR wealth.

What strikes me most about Trump is that he shows many of the characteristics I've learned to associate with dominionists - non-payment of employees/contractors/subcontractors (for any excuse imagineable), violent attacks on anyone who doesn't stoke his ego or says something he doesn't like, and so on.  More and more it seems where his sympathies are - and I would suggest that if someone wants to point to his ignorance about Christianity and the Bible - that's rather common among Dominionists.  After all, many of them believe that poverty is God's punishment for sins!

Here's something I learned recently that should make people think.  The whole time I was Christian, I heard lecture after lecture and sermon after sermon about the Roman empire falling because it "rotted from within!".  Problem is, the Roman Empire became Christian before it fell - officially so.  Here's the interesting thing I read - that the Christians in the Roman Empire had a bad habit of not paying people what they owed them.  The Empire hired mercenaries, and when their term of service ended, didn't pay them.  So the mercenaries returned, invaded, and sacked Rome.  In effect, they were taking what was owed them.

When you compare that with a warning I received early in the years I ran my business (and which I didn't heed, and suffered because I didn't), it should make one think.  A good customer once told me "Bob, if anyone starts talking religion to you in their business - avoid them like the plague because you will have a very hard time getting paid and they will do anything to find an excuse to not pay you what you are owed".

He was absolutely right, as I learned over the years - there was a direct correlation between overt religiosity in the workplace and getting screwed.  Reflect on that and what I read about the Roman Empire.

Where did you read "that the Christians in the Roman Empire had a bad habit of not paying people what they owed them" -- and that the ancient Roman government failed to pay its mercenaries, in particular?

Also, are there any good online resources on ancient Roman history that you would recommend?

by Diane Vera on Sun Jan 22, 2017 at 10:11:17 PM EST

I'll have to get back to you on that.  I'm pretty sure it's a journal article, but it might be something more generic.  (I read so many different articles every day that unless it's something I need for my work... I tend to only remember reading it.)

If I run into the info in the next few weeks, I'll post it.  If you don't hear from me by the end of next month, drop me a line and remind me.  I'm rather tied up for the next four weeks and won't have much time to look.

What I remember of the info is that the government and the church were strongly intertwined, and that they had a bad habit of not paying - and that's what caused the mercenaries to invade.  I've read other not-so-nice things like that too - written off as slander, but based on a lifetime of experience - I'm not so sure.

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Who claim they are not Dominionists but support the Dominionist cultural agenda that one possible result of the Dominionist takeover would be that the Supreme Court would be deciding whether various sects were "Christian" enough to be covered by the first amendment right to freedom of religion. (Since the original signers were all "Christian" its provisions only apply to Christians, after all.) Most duck that with some "Well, not THIS Supreme Court." answer. Apparently, they feel comfortable that a Dominionist Supreme Court will smile favorably on them.

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