The imagined war on America's Christians is the brainchild of the aging members of the Moral Majority, in an effort to garner sympathy for their shrinking portion of the U.S. population. Pastor Robert Jeffress claims, in Tuesday's interview with Alan Colmes on Fox News Radio, that the marginalization of America's Christians is unnervingly similar to the way Jews were viewed in Pre-Holocaust Germany. This marginalization will lead to ridicule which leads to humiliation and subsequent persecution of a particular religious group. Alan affords the pastor many opportunities to revise his hyperbolic statement, but Jeffress was steadfast in his extreme comparisons.
In a 2013 radio interview with Alan Colmes, Jeffress displayed a level of insane paranoia that isn't much different from this week's proclamations. From Right Wing Watch:
He does not believe that Obama is the Antichrist per se, as some have reported, but merely believes that Obama is paving the way for the Antichrist, as we first reported.
The first subject of this week's discussion was the SCOTUS decision on marriage equality and its potential impact on non-compliant churches. Jeffress reminded us of the SCOTUS decision where Bob Jones University lost its tax-exempt status in 1983 due to its ban on interracial marriage.
Because of its interpretation of Biblical principles regarding interracial dating, Bob Jones University completely excluded black applicants until 1971, and from 1971 until 1975, admitted black students only if they were married. After 1975, the University began to admit unmarried black applicants, but continued to deny "admission to applicants engaged in an interracial marriage or known to advocate interracial marriage or dating." The University also imposed a disciplinary rule that prohibited interracial dating.
Much to the dismay of these fundamentalist Conservatives, the marriage equality issue is no longer a religious choice, but a matter of civil discrimination, so they fear sanctions and other repercussions if they refuse to perform a same-sex wedding. Apparently, these churches have to abandon their narrow-minded, Old Testament-doctrine to comply with the law, and they don't care for that one bit. It seems Jeffress was even nostalgic for the days where interracial marriage could still be banned.
The new battle has to do with individual religious liberty and what happens when that comes in conflict with the new laws.
'Why should they give tax-exempt status to churches at all?' (BRAVO!)
Jeffress claims that hospitals and universities are also given similar, tax-exempt status. Thankfully, Colmes puts him in check by explaining that churches are NOT all inclusive and do not provide vital services. Churches can't compete with the life-saving services provided by a hospital or the educational services of a university.
Jeffress would disagree with the fact that the church's involvement in matters of politics should automatically revoke their tax-exempt status. Colmes knew exactly how to reveal the Baptist Pastor's paranoia.
COLMES: Do you believe that Christians are being marginalized in America?
JEFFRESS: Well, I certainly do. Again, we’re not having our heads chopped off like Christians in the Middle East by ISIS, but you’ve heard me say before, I think when you look at what happened in Germany, look the Nazis didn’t take the Jews to the crematorium immediately. They wouldn’t have been allowed to do that by the German citizens. What the Nazis did was a program of making the Jews the object of ridicule and contempt in the eyes of the German people, and only once they had marginalized them, were they able to take away their rights.
COLMES: Are you in any way shape or form, comparing the trajectory in this country to Nazi Germany, or pre-Nazi Germany?
JEFFRESS: Yes, pre-Holocaust Germany, I absolutely am.
COLMES: So we are possibly headed towards the same tenor that existed in Nazi Germany?
Jeffers brings up, in response to Alan's last question, a church in upstate New York which was painted (defaced) with a Swastika. Alan tried to inform him that it is not the government who painted the church and most assuredly it did not encourage such actions, so it's nothing like pre-Holocaust Germany.
Steadfast in his opinions, the pastor continued with a few more hyperbolic proclamations.
'Conservative Christians are being treated with contempt, labeled hatemongers... To make this group of people an object of contempt...we're beginning down that road.'
Jeffress recalls the Klein couple in Oregon who were fined for the damages they caused not just by refusing to bake a cake for a same-sex wedding, but for doxxing the couple and the subsequent emotional distress caused by their hateful rhetoric on social media.
Jeffress, in a desire to finish strong, revived his suspicions that President Obama isn't a real Christian, and Alan put him in check and he backed down. Hypothetically, if President Obama wasn't really a practicing Christian, but a man without formal religious beliefs, I'd say he's a far better follower of Christ's teachings than people like Pastor Jeffress and other 'men of the cloth.' These folks, who align themselves with Republicans, seldom show the same kindness and compassion that Jesus Christ famously practiced and preached.