Monday, December 27, 2010

Merry Christmas Bruce!

Many of you who read here also read Bruce G. at Restless Wanderings and N.W. Ohio Skeptics. He hung up his blogging and Facebook cap to spend more time focusing on his health and family. I was sad with his decision to quit writing; his history makes him uniquely qualified to speak to many issues on life, politics, and religion - which he did masterfully. Still, I support his decision and have wished him the best.

So, I was extremely pleased to hear that someone spotted a letter to the editor that he wrote to his local paper. It was good to "hear" his voice!

It seems local theocrats are determined to convince us that America was founded as a Christian nation and continues to a Christian nation to this day. No amount of history and reason will convince them that their viewpoint cannot be sustained historically, theologically or politically.

Never mind that the founding fathers spoke of a generic God and rarely, if ever, mentioned the Christian God, Jesus Christ. Never mind that the Constitution commands a strict separation of church and state. Never mind that the deism of the founding fathers is not the same as evangelical Christianity.

Let's grant the theocrats their position for a moment. Every president in my lifetime has professed to be a Christian. Virtually every member of Congress professes faith in Jesus Christ. Even at the state and local level Christianity is the de facto religious faith.

We are a nation dominated by the Christian religion. That's why it is so amusing to listen to evangelicals complain about the "war on Christmas." There is no war on Christmas, any cursory reading of a newspaper will show. Jesus is everywhere this time of year. Evangelicals continue to wage the culture war, out to stop every action they deem sinful. Fear the gay. Fear the atheist. Fear the liberal. Fear the socialist. You get the picture -- fear, fear, fear.

Christianity is the God of American culture. Every community has multiple Christian churches. Ohio state government and local government in northwest Ohio is dominated by the Republican Party, and we all know that GOP stands for "God's Only Party." The truth is that Christians own this country, lock, stock and barrel.

Since it is quite evident that Christianity is the dominant religion in America, and since most of our governmental leaders are card-carrying Christians, it is right for us to ask exactly what has Christianity given us as a nation?

War, torture, homophobia, amoral capitalism, economic collapse, the destruction of the working class and punitive political policies that punish and hurt the poor.

I could go on but space is limited. It is quite clear that the Christianity of this Christian nation of ours is quite antithetical to the teachings of Jesus. The Jesus of the Bible was much more like a socialist than a capitalist. Jesus loved the poor and disenfranchised. If Jesus were alive today I suspect he would have a lot to say about this modern, bastardized Christianity that permeates America.

Bruce G


curmudgeon said...

I really enjoy Bruce's perspective. I feel abandoned every time he shuts down a blog. I hope his health and family benefits from his absence in the blog-o-sphere. Thanks Andrew for bringing that slice of Bruce.

Bruce said...

Thanks to Don and you for publishing my recent letter. The paper did not print the last paragraph of my letter.

Here it is:

Even though I am not a Christian I do find a certain affinity with the Jesus (real or not) of the Bible. I wonder if the United States had a Christianity that took seriously the teachings of Jesus the Christ how different would it be? There seems to be a lot of Christian faith these days but not much in the way of Christian works. As James aptly said such a faith like this is dead.

Give us unbelievers a reason to join your religion. Quit telling and start showing. So far the NFL wins.

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