Monday, June 18, 2007

Dear Christiangovernment.ca

Update: Seems Dave, JJ and I have been noticed. Apparently we are "blasphemous" or some such nonsense. For those visitors who come here from Christiangovernment.ca, welcome. Please read this post and feel free to peruse the rest of my blog. For the record, I am an atheist, not a secular humanist. I am a left-libertarian and as such don't particularly like my liberty being taken away by anyone. That also means I respect your choice to live and worship as you see fit, so long as you do not try to make me live by your religion or rules. I am willing to live and let live, even if I do not agree with you. Love thy neighbour as thy self, judge not lest ye be judged, as the saying goes. Read this with an open mind and feel free to comment. But remember, I am serious about defending my liberty. How serious? Ask Dave what he was doing 25 years ago. We aren't amateurs.

Thank and enjoy!

___________________________________________________________________

After reading this over at the Galloping Beaver, I thought perhaps I need to send a friendly note to Timothy Bloedow and his supporters - people like REALwomen, Focus on the Family, Institute for Canadian Values, Canada Family Action Coalition, Marriage Canada, NARTH, and various other authoritarian, fundamentalist Christians.

Here it is:

Dear Christiangovernment.ca and supporters,

But it does me no injury for my neighbor to say there are twenty gods or no God. It neither picks my pocket nor breaks my leg.

-Thomas Jefferson, Notes on Virginia, 1782

Words to live by. As are these:

"Do unto others as you would have them do unto you"

and its corollary from libertarian thought

"No one has the right to initiate force against anyone or their property, or to delegate the initiation of force to others. One may only use force in self-defense."

Boiled down, these two sayings are the messages of every religion - the rest, as the old story goes, is commentary.

So it disturbs me greatly to see that you wish to create a Christian-based theocracy in Canada, even to the point of calling public servants "Ministers" in the real sense of the term. We've seen how well that kind of thing has turned out in both fact and fiction. Dare I say, I think you may owe Margaret Atwood some royalties after reading your site.

From what I have read, you intend force your narrow interpretation of Christianity on all Canadians, whether people subscribe to that view or not and whether people want it or not. You preach in nice tones and talk about things like "subsidiarity" and "decentralization" and how strong central government is un-christian (I suggest you let the Vatican know about that one - or the Mormons in Salt Lake or the folks in Westminster Abbey). But you also talk of "secular humanism as a threat that must be suppressed" and that "Christianity is the basis for the rule of law, freedom of conscience, freedom of religion, freedom of speech and equality before the law." In other words, you are stating that one can only have freedom if one agrees with your religious views otherwise they must be suppressed.

Sorry, but that isn't freedom or liberty. It isn't democracy. Neither Christianity, nor any other religion, should be "in the public square" in any way. You don't want freedom, but collectivist, conformist drones that all think like you, and it appears by wishing to form a government, you are prepared to use all of the coercive, violent powers of the state to do so.

Religion is a private, personal matter. It is the guide to the individual, because when it comes right down to it, you can only control yourself and not others. Not without tyranny. This is the kind of religion as practiced by the majority of Christians - learning the lessons taught by their faith, applying them in their personal lives. Living by example, not by force. This is also how the vast majority of Muslim live. And Jews, Sikhs, Buddhists - all religions.

May I suggest the following simple pieces of advice:

If you think abortion is wrong, don't have one. Or help make an environment where the choice to have one is the choice not taken.

If you don't like gay marriage, don't get married to someone of the same sex.

Indeed I suggest you consider looking at it this way: so long as you or your property are not harmed or taken, what other people do or believe makes no difference to you. Live and let live.

This is the creed I try to live by. I am an atheist and, frankly, think any belief in a God or gods is ridiculous. But I have many religious friends that I get along with just fine, because their belief and practice of their religion "neither breaks my legs nor picks my pockets." I have no problems with my Sikh neighbours, my Muslim friends or my Christian wife. We live in peace and harmony, thank you, and have no need of your "Christian" government or desire to live under it.

But I suspect, deep down, this is not really about something personal like religion anyway. Its really about power and authority. Your religion is merely a vehicle to power, so you may take control of the state, in order to force upon us your religious views, to coerce us and enslave us to do your bidding. You aren't religious, you are totalitarian, authoritarian dictators in waiting, dressed in preachers clothing. You want to rule over us for your own selfish reasons, even though you will certain say "its for our own good". You are, for lack of a better term, evil.

You are the Canadian equivalent, in every way, of the Taleban - the "Christaleban". The only difference between you and them is the length of the beards and the colour of the clothes.

So let me put this as simply and straight forward as I can:

You will not win. You will never be "ON THE WINNING SIDE in the culture war that is being waged today for the soul of Canada." You are advocates of slavery, not freedom and you will be fought at every turn.

I personally promise you that you will be fought and defeated by any means necessary. I have every right and every intention of defending my family, my property and my liberty from attack. I will defend these things with every peaceable means available, but through violence if necessary. I will not sit back and let you tell my daughter she does not control her own body, or tell my wife she cannot do any job she wishes. I will never be subjugated by those who would condemn me or my friends because we choose not to believe your religious nonsense. I will not stand by while my neighbours are oppressed and forced to convert, or have their personal religions destroyed.

The only person qualified to know what "is for my own good" is me, not you. Not your church and not the 2000+ year old writings of long-dead Middle Eastern mystics.

First you will be ignored. If that does not work, you will be defied. And if that does not work, you will be fought, to the death if need be.

Is that clear enough? Do you understand?

The choice is now yours. You can choose live in peace and freely practice and believe you religion side by side with the rest of us. We will not bother you if you do not bother us. Or you can choose this route of culture war and attempt to use the power of the state to enforce your narrow views on everyone. The first is open and tolerant, the second is authoritarian and enslaving.

I am willing to live and let live, are you?

Choose wisely, and let me assure you, you will not prevail.

-------

In other unrelated news, I have reversed my stance on gun control...

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52 Comments:

At 1:22 AM, Blogger The JF said...

The growth of Christian fundamentalism (or Dominionism as it seems to be called) scares me, and as an agnostic/weak atheist, as somebody that is beginning to get involved with the Secular Humanist movement, as a social democrat, but more importantly as a moral individual, should they ever come to power and impose Christianity (or any religion) on the citizenry, I would, like you, also resist by any means, preferably peaceful, but if it must be through violent means as well.

Although, to be entirely honest, I would expect a Canadian theocracy to trigger Quebec's independence, which would undoubtedly be a secular republic. I would likely move there and attempt to forge institutions to preserve a distinct Acadian identity within Quebec and attempt to help Canadians from there.

 
At 1:51 AM, Blogger The JF said...

Although, this talk of resistance, especially the "violence if needed" only serves to reinforce their idea that they're righteous and that they're in some kind of holy war against "Secular Humanist demons" like us and probably motivates them more than anything.

 
At 2:21 AM, Blogger MAI said...

I am a Canadian and a Sikh. I totally agree with your stance. I ask no one to accept my religion, my values, my way of life.

I ask only to live in peace, freedom and dignity. I will fight to the death for your right to do the same.

Forcing me to live according the fundamentalist Christian - or anything else - rules is impossible.

FREEDOM - I WON'T!!

 
At 2:26 AM, Blogger Dave said...

Excellent post!

 
At 7:37 AM, Blogger David said...

Hey Mike, I must say that for someone who does not believe in God your words are what every religion should strive for. You seem to be one of the sane people left. Love of family and friends and their right to choose should be the most important thing in every persons life. As we have seen, the Christian right will try and take away all of our freedoms if we don't fall in line. They wave the bible with blood on their hands, the blood of every man woman and child who has died because of religious intolerance. I say the fight has already begun with the Christians striking the first blow. Many have already died. Gay people have proven that a lot can be done without violence and we are making great strides. But we will fight if we are cornered. Unlike Christians we truly love our families and friends no matter who they are. I would surely stand shoulder to shoulder with you to fight for our families and our right to be who we are and love who we choose. My partner and I have fought for 47 yrs to be together and together we will stay.
Peace, love and tolerance.

 
At 8:23 AM, Blogger Mike said...

the jf,

I appreciate the sentiment regarding any means nescesary, but it needs to be said. I am merely pointing out that we will not be the agressor, but will will not simply roll over. If attacked - and this kind of state I would certainly consider a personal attack - we will defend ourselves. The choice is now theirs.

Mai, Thanks.

Dave, needless to say, inspired by your excellent post.

David,

I appreciate your comments. I clearly have not experienced as much intolerance at the hands of christians as you have, but I understand where you are coming from. That being said, there are a great many Christians that do follow the live and let live credo, so I do not want this to be an indictment of an entire religion. That would be as illogical as condemning all of Islam for the Taliban or all of Judaism for the Kahanes.

These people do not wish to love their neighbours as themselves, they wish to conquer and rule over them. They are authoritarians - religions is just their excuse for the behaviour. It is sad that so many religious holy books give people that excuse.

A wsie man once said that he was like a finger pointing to the moon: do not mistake the finger for the moon. These folks have mistake the finger (Jesus) for the moon (the message of love and tolerance Jesus was alleged to have delivered) and that is the root of the problem.

 
At 3:51 PM, Blogger Nastyboy said...

Like it or not Christians, (fundamental or otherwise) have the right to organize and participate in the political process.

 
At 4:24 PM, Blogger Mike said...

nasty,

I am not deny their right to organize and participate in the political process. I am pointing out that their rights to do anything stops at the point it interfers with my person, my property and my freedom. Their stated goal is to make Canada a theocracy based on thier version and interpretation of Christianity (which I will bet is fundementally different that most other Christians, let alone none Christians). They say the must do this by supressing thought and ideas contrary to theirs and wish to do so by using the coercive power of the state to do so. That is pretty much a direct attack on my freedom and will certainly lead to attacks on my property and my person.

Totalitarianism and fascism dressed up like Christianity is still totalitarianism and fascism.

I am merely point out to them the consequences of the route they are taking. A "be careful what you wish for" warning, especially when it comes to starting a "culture war".

They have a right to participate as do I have a right to oppose them. I'm merely giving them a heads up as to what kind of opposition to expect.

Dare I say that many Christians ought to worry about these guys too. If sucessful in getting rid of non-Christians and atheists like me, do you think they will merely let it stop at that? Hell, they have already pretty much lumped the Catholics in with us because they say that "central government is unchristian" and "socialist". I'll bet the United Church, Lutherans and Anglicans will be targeted because of their stances on gay marriage.

Unless you are one of them, you are the enemy. Don't think you are not because you happened to share the name of your religion with them.

 
At 7:13 PM, Blogger Nastyboy said...

Totalitarianism and fascism dressed up like Christianity is still totalitarianism and fascism.

And if that is what it is then people will see it and regect it it accordingly.

 
At 8:32 PM, Blogger Ron said...

I linked to this post on my blog, Mike.

You certainly won't stand alone.

nastyboy: all sorts of people don't reject totalitariansim or fascism when it is attempted in support of things they like.

General proof? Most of the left, and most of the right; which actually reads: most folks.

Specific proof: gun control, seat-belt laws, minimum wage legislation, or anti-smoking by-laws.

And there's lots more examples. It isn't any less totalitarian or fascist just because it's in nice bite-size pieces.

 
At 1:41 AM, Anonymous sassy said...

Mike,

Clear, concise, fair, compassionate, honest, eloquent letter. BRAVO, and if I we were in a lecture hall, theatre right now I would be jumping out of my seat to lead a standing ovation.


I would like to think that Christiangovernment.ca and supporters will read and carefully and thoughtfully consider your words (perhaps I am being a little too optimistic in saying this), but I do so, with the hope that Christiangovernment.ca and supporters will reflect on why they feel the need to strive for control of others. Would they would want others to control/impose upon then them in such a way?

I can only imagine that GOD must be nervous, very nervous about Christiangovernment.ca and supporters.

 
At 8:23 AM, Blogger Nastyboy said...

nastyboy: all sorts of people don't reject totalitariansim or fascism when it is attempted in support of things they like.

Interesting view, but I disagree. I think most people are centrist and fair-minded. If they weren't, there would be no extremes.

 
At 9:46 AM, Blogger Mike said...

nasty,

Please don't misunderstand this post as a diatribe against all Christians because it isn't. It is a diatribe against these particular so-called "Christians" - and I say "so-called" because they don't seem to follow what Jesus said and taught in the New Testament very well.

My concern is that they are using reasonable sounding words and appealing to some common themes in order to get their hands on power. What they will do then will not be so friendly. Think it can't happen? Two of the most brutal, murderous regimes in recent memory gained power via the ballot box, not revolution.

As much as my little diatribe is pointed at the fundies, its also pointed at the centerists. its a wake up call to them, a warning that these folks are not what they seem.

 
At 12:24 PM, Anonymous jj said...

**applause** Awesome.

"By any means necessary", damn right. I'm locked and loaded; if these fascists-in-christians'-clothing ever decide to "bring it on" they'll quickly find out that lefties are anything but "little weenies".

Excellent post.

 
At 12:39 PM, Anonymous sassy said...

"fascists-in-christians'-clothing" that's it

jj - you turn a phrase well.

 
At 2:18 PM, Blogger Nastyboy said...

Please don't misunderstand this post as a diatribe against all Christians because it isn't.

No worries mike.

 
At 7:20 PM, Blogger Dr.Dawg said...

These are fascists, all right. Not all of them are Xians, by the way. A prominent supporter of NARTH (he sits on their "Advisory Committee") is our own Rabbi Reuven Bulka. The man has received a Community Builder award from United Way, and an honorary doctorate from Carleton University.

I know it sounds alarmist, but it's high time that people woke up.

 
At 10:02 PM, Anonymous Timothy said...

Mike,

You wrote this letter to us at Christiangovernment.ca. 3 brief responses.

1. If you are committed to doing whatever is necessary to defend yourself against those invading your private space, then I would expect that there is evidence of your leadership in the battles against gun control, against the medical system monopoly that criminalises the use of one's own money to get needed health care, against restrictions to free trade and economic activity, against unions, as well as demands to have private property rights enshrined in our Constitution. It's easy to pretend to be courageous about a theoretical risk in the future, but it takes courage and leadership to stand against today's oppression. I have spoken out strongly for years against gun control and the medical delivery monopoly.

2. You say, that I am, for want of a better word, evil. With a worldview as developed as your is, it is a great weakness to your beliefs that you haven't come up with a better word, because an atheistic worldview has no logical basis for the concepts of good and evil.

3. As Nastyboy said, we have an electoral process, and if enough people are elected who honestly declare their intention to restrict abortion, for example, then they are obligated to their voters to pursue the promises they made. That's not fascism; that's democratic responsibility. You actually demonstrate the arbitrary, fascistic nature of atheism if you want to change the rules simply because those who were democratically elected want to implement a policy that you strongly oppose. That's another distinction between the Christian concept of "rule of law" and the ethical arbitrariness of atheism and humanism. Christians, behaving Christianly, don't change the rules in the middle of the game.

 
At 10:21 PM, Anonymous stageleft said...

Mike said: Totalitarianism and fascism dressed up like Christianity is still totalitarianism and fascism.

Nastyboy said: And if that is what it is then people will see it and regect it it accordingly.

-------

Maybe, maybe not. Creeping authoritarianism doesn't seem to have been recognized for what it is does it?

I'm with Mike, I don't care if the people around the corner are leading the community donkey through the streets and praying to an orange leafed sacred pineapple for a bountiful harvest and expedited rush hours - as long as they do not interfere with what I believe or demand that I pray to the pineapple or ride their donkey.

 
At 11:09 PM, Blogger Mike said...

Timothy (if this is indeed Timothy Bloedow instead of some anonymous coward. I suppose it could be both)

1. Try reading some of my more recent stuff here. I am an anarchist and libertarian. I'm not sure what "leadership" you would like. Whether I show "leadership" is irrelevant. I find the idea of living in a country controlled by anyone in an involuntary manner abhorrent. I find the idea of living in a country controlled by fundamentalist Christians to be a far greater danger to my liberty than any of the stuff you mentioned. The incompetent thieves we have no are preferable to your ilk. Besides, I do not require a state or a government to say its ok for me to have private property, get proper medical care or defend myself. I just do it. Perhaps you have never heard of "counter economics". Look it up.

And your future risk is not "theoretical." It is 100% guaranteed if you ever get power. You know it and I know it. You will, by your own words, "suppress" my ideas, beliefs and people who believe as I do.

2. I use the word evil to speak your language, to make it clear in terms you and your supporters can understand, what I mean in no uncertain terms. Beyond that, your whole idea that an atheistic world view can't logically have "good" or "evil" shows how narrow and ignorant yours is. Are you aware that morality - the idea of what is good and evil - and altruism have a biological basis? Have your heard of the research indicating that altruism and acting "good" are a better strategy for survival of the genes, from an evolutionary standpoint? Yes, that morality is an evolutionary adaption? Of course not...

Some one who expects people to believe in a supernatural being in the absence of proof and evidence, based solely on "faith" should not be lecturing anyone on "logic."

3. No Timothy, you simply don't get it. I don't believe people should be forced to do anything they do not consent to. I believe that all associations should be voluntary. I do not intend to change the "rules" at all - there should no rules at all except what you consent to. I am for less government and you are for more - far more. So, as I said, if you do not agree with abortion, do not have one. You on the other hand, are clearly want to use force and coercion to prevent people from doing something that you do not agree with, even though it does not harm you or affect you at all. I would happily allow you to do what you wish, so long as it harms no one. You would not afford me, or anyone else who does not follow your narrow interpretation of Christianity, the same. I would have no freedom, I would be a slave (if you permitted me to live - the wages of sin are death, after all).

And you dare tell me that "live and let live" is fascist and your version forced 'freedom' and suppression is not? Sophistry of the highest order.

BTW, the "rule of law" predates Christianity by 2500 years, so its not a particularly "Christian concept".

You and your group, sir, are Canada's Taliban. You would act no different than them once you got power and you know it. You would use the power of the state to enforce your Christian rules on everyone, whether they were Christian or not or whether they accepted your rules or not. That is no different than the Soviet Union, the Third Reich or the Islamic Republic of Iran.

But again, I will reiterate: I am prepared to live in peace, provided you agree to the same. As far as I am concerned, you can worship Jesus, Allah, or the Flying Spaghetti Monster. Whatever floats your boat. It neither breaks my legs or picks my pocket. Of course the minute it does - and you have clearly stated that you will use force against me and anyone else that opposes you - then I will defend myself and by any means necessary. I am prepared to accept you, why are you not prepared to accept me?

Read this thread. I am not alone. You can take the personal responsibility to live your life as you see fit and let others do the same, or you can try to enforce your ideas on others. Your choice. Don't say you have not been warned.

Oh and if my arguments don't move you, perhaps these might:

"Beware of the Scribes, who like to walk about in long robes, and to be greeted in the market place, and to have the front seats in the synagogues and the first places at suppers; who devour the houses of the widows, making pretense of long prayers. These shall receive a heavier sentence".
- Mark, 12 : 38-40

" And even as you wish men to do to you, so also do you to them ".
- Luke, 6 : 31

I won't go into warnings of false prophets, since you've probably heard that one before. I would recommend you contemplate that last one from Luke, and perhaps re-read the Sermon on the Mount. Your authoritarian desire to force your beliefs on others is certainly not something Jesus would have agreed to.

 
At 11:39 PM, Blogger Dana said...

Mike, much as I agree with you I have to tell you that attempting to engage in reasonable dialogue with these creatures is pointless.

They'll just burn you at the stake, for now only a figurative term, if they get the sense you're getting the better of them.

Some of the Dominionist and Re-Constructionist wackjobs want to bring back public stonings so burning at the stake's prolly in their lexicon somewhere.

I admire your attempt but it's fruitless.

There's nothing there to communicate with.

They're possessed of a demon and are not really human anymore.

 
At 12:37 AM, Anonymous Tom said...

Well said well spoken
sorry to hear that you have the same religious idiots up there thate we have down here..

Thanks for using Jefferson, my other fav Jefferson quote
"I have sworn eternal hostility against all forms of tyranny over the mind of man..."

He had a way with words! Anyway, keep up the good fight against the fundies as we call them..

Tom in Seattle

 
At 2:15 AM, Blogger Dave said...

I would expect that there is evidence of your leadership in the battles against gun control, against the medical system monopoly that criminalises the use of one's own money to get needed health care, against restrictions to free trade and economic activity, against unions, as well as demands to have private property rights enshrined in our Constitution. It's easy to pretend to be courageous about a theoretical risk in the future, but it takes courage and leadership to stand against today's oppression. I have spoken out strongly for years against gun control and the medical delivery monopoly.

What does any of that have to do with your Christian religious adherence. Those are political arguments and you are trying to muster them into a religious arena.

You say, that I am, for want of a better word, evil. With a worldview as developed as your is, it is a great weakness to your beliefs that you haven't come up with a better word, because an atheistic worldview has no logical basis for the concepts of good and evil.

What utter horseshit. Nothing suggests that atheists are less moral than a religious adherent. But if you want a better word, you are a potential tyrant and a leader of a dystopia.

if enough people are elected who honestly declare their intention to restrict abortion, for example, then they are obligated to their voters to pursue the promises they made.

Well, you used the word "honestly". Perhaps if you all stood there and made it very clear, while standing for parliament that such was your intention, we'd simply boot you out the door. But, no, you lie your way in. To wit, the current crowd of wingnuts.

You actually demonstrate the arbitrary, fascistic nature of atheism if you want to change the rules simply because those who were democratically elected want to implement a policy that you strongly oppose. That's another distinction between the Christian concept of "rule of law" and the ethical arbitrariness of atheism and humanism. Christians, behaving Christianly, don't change the rules in the middle of the game.

Show me the rule of law proscribed by Jesus Christ.

Clearly you have no idea of what democracy entails. You have the child-like concept of majority rules firmly seated in your mind, but have completely missed the concept of governing for the minority.

You also seem to be willing to marginalize others without compunction.

Give it a try. Get to meet me face to face.

 
At 7:41 AM, Blogger Ti-Guy said...

Don't be dissuaded from using the language of the dominionists when you brand them "evil," Mike. As a fairly devout person (yeah, I know...but I am) the Christian fundamentalist's embrace of hypocrisy, superstition, false witness; the demonisation of one's enemies, the conflation of the world of man with the kingdom of God and the obvious lack of love and charity and a demonstrably callous attitude toward the poor are so at odds with the central teachings of Christ that I can't see it as anything more than the Christian archtype of evil.

 
At 8:52 AM, Blogger Nastyboy said...

I'm with Mike, I don't care if the people around the corner are leading the community donkey through the streets and praying to an orange leafed sacred pineapple for a bountiful harvest and expedited rush hours - as long as they do not interfere with what I believe or demand that I pray to the pineapple or ride their donkey.

I'm intrigued by this new religion. Do the donkey and pineapple have names? Is there any nudity or self-flagilation involved? What day of the week are the donkey parades?

As long as there is no math or heavy lifting involved, count me in!

 
At 12:27 AM, Anonymous The Word of Phred said...

I would *love* for a religiously right government to try and impose their bullshit onto me.

If they think the insurgency in Iraq is bad... they would feel the scorn of hell starting with anti-citizen #1... ME!

 
At 7:58 AM, Blogger Mike said...

Nasty,

Very little math as I understand it, since there is only one donkey and one pineapple. But beware, there are heritics that ride a zebra, not a donkey.

Splinter!

Phred,

I would hope it would never come to that and I think (hope) most people wouldn't be sucked in by the liest if it did, I'm there.

 
At 12:12 PM, Blogger Ron said...

re an atheistic worldview has no logical basis for the concepts of good and evil.


Just because you realize that you'd be totally morally adrift without reference to the unprovable theology you believe in doesn't give you reason to assume others are in the same boat.

 
At 1:33 PM, Blogger Red Jenny said...

Best thing I've read today, including comments. If they want a fight, and bring it on honestly, they will lose. Why? Because Canadians don't want to live in a theocracy. We do need to beware of creeping authoritarianism, though. Frog in the pot, and all that.

 
At 1:47 PM, Blogger Mike said...

We are indeed the frog in the pot and these guys are the onces truning up the flame....

 
At 12:09 AM, Blogger janfromthebruce said...

Which means Mike we need to advocate for an one school publically funded system in both official languages.
If people want their children educated with religion they can pay privately for it. This is an election year in Ontario and we need to fund just an secular public school system.
http://www.cripeweb.org/

 
At 5:42 AM, Anonymous skdadl said...

As Dave says, Timothy doesn't seem to have too firm a grasp on democracy, what it means and what it entails. He seems to equate it with voting, a necessary but nowhere near sufficient condition. I'm trying to decide whether to feel sad or scared after reading him. Very disturbing.

I'm a Christian, btw, Timothy, but I guess I'm one of those other kinds of Christians -- you know, the ones who follow the words of Christ? Jesus taught me that we don't pray by thumping our chests in public and broadcasting our own virtues -- we go over to a quiet corner and speak modestly to God: "Lord, be merciful to me, a sinner."

 
At 6:53 AM, Blogger Mike said...

"I guess I'm one of those other kinds of Christians -- you know, the ones who follow the words of Christ?"

skdadl, you mean words like this?

"6 But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.

7 But when ye pray, use not vain repetitions, as the heathen do: for they think that they shall be heard for their much speaking.

8 Be not ye therefore like unto them: for your Father knoweth what things ye have need of, before ye ask him."

(Matthew 6:5-8), the very next verse from the one I quoted above.

Funny how some of these so-called Christians who take the Bible as literal truth, don't seem to read it very well and don't seem to follow the very words of their own savior.

In fact, I'd say this whole reference, along with "Render unto Ceaser..." are Jesus' own words telling Christians to NOT enter politics. Good enough for Jesus, you would think it would be good enough for Mr. Bloedow.

But then, he is an authoritarian and a fascists, not a a Christian.

 
At 11:40 AM, Anonymous E in MD said...

Interesting discussion, even with the troll. There's a community on LJ you might enjoy dark_christian if you are so inclined. It is related to the observation and dissemination of information about these fundamentalist types and preventing their theocratic takeover. While most of that forum is devoted to theocrats in the USA, these people are a global threat and any and all insight into their methods, motivation, psychology, sociology and so forth will be useful in the fight.

Know thy enemy, as it were.

Keep fighting the good fight my Northern brothers! We all sink or swim together. =)

 
At 12:17 AM, Blogger KevinG said...

Mike-

You're going straight to hell. You know that, right?

I've not commented yet because I couldn't quite get a handle on this. I'm an atheist. I despise authoritarianism in any form. I agree that authoritarians show up in most religions and many of them are there for power. I make no distinction between Muslim authoritarians or Christian authoritarians or sectarian authoritarians. In short, I agreed with most of the points you raised except I couldn't get a handle on the vehemence and the implied physical threats.

So, a couple of questions / comments.

1. You haven't made, and I assume you wouldn't want others to make, generalizations about this particular faith based on the views of a small minority some of whom may approve of an actual theocracy.

2. I assume you agree that people have the right to advocate for any change they want. Certainly you wouldn't argue against their right to take any of the policy statement they seem to be taking ( decentralized gov etc ). Don't they also have the right to advocate for a theocracy, or a communist state, or an anarchistic state or whatever?

3. The likelihood of Canada actually becoming a Christian theocracy seems, to me, about as remote as I can imagine ( see Stockwell Day's reception as a potential leader ). But assuming we started heading in that direction, at what point would you start armed resistance -- which is what I assume you're alluding to.

I assume you wouldn't do the equivalent of shooting doctors who perform legal abortions. That probably goes without saying. I assume you would use every political means at your disposal so the goes without saying as well.

What would you do if laws were passed legitimately and they impinged on your freedoms? Civil disobedience? More? How far would they have to go? How do you assess the odds of success for these folks?

For my part, I'm inclined to let them be. Although I don't agree with the outcome they're seeking I think they're well within their rights to advocate for it. As you say, they'll never win.

 
At 6:56 AM, Blogger Mike said...

Kevin,

Yes, I'm going to Hell. But I'll be there with the likes of Ghandi and Einstein, so the comapny will be good.

;)

To your Questions:

1. Absolutely right. Most Christians I know don't support any of this. As a former Christian myself, I know they don't even follow the basic tenets of the religion the claim to follow. But since they say they are Christians and quote the Bible, they certain can fool a lot of folks. Witness Falwell and Robertson.

2. They have all of those rights. I am stating that when they decide to attack my rights and take them away, I will fight back. As for agreeing with what they advocate, in my opinion its just window dressing to make their wishes more palatable to the public, especially conservatives. In order to enforce their vision of Christian Government, they will require a highly centralized police state.

BTW, anarchistic government, funny stuff. ;)

3. The likelihood is small but real. The Taliban were pretty much and ignored group of fundamentalists until it was too late. I have no intention of letting that happen.

What would I do? As I said above, ignore them as best I can, except for this post of course..simply go one living as I do now. If they become more belligerent, outright defy them - civil disobedience. If they then decide they must use the force of the criminal law to make me, I will resist actively - armed resistance if needed.

I am merely letting them know that it will take a great deal more to get their wish than merely lying to people ans winning a few elections. And I am using my rights to warn people about these people.

I resist them because they are authoritarians, not because they are Christians. I would do the same for any authoritarian, Muslim, Communist, Conservative, Liberal or whomever.

 
At 10:28 AM, Blogger KevinG said...

Mike-

BTW, anarchistic government, funny stuff. ;)

Kinda like left leaning anarchist. ;)

And I am using my rights to warn people about these people.

Absolutely. It's a fine line between fighting an idea and fighting people who advocate an idea. I like the side you on.

 
At 3:11 PM, Blogger Ron said...

keving: You asked about what you termed "implied physical threats"...

Not that I'm a "secular humanist" (I'm merely an atheist) but Timothy over at Christiangovernment.ca states explicitly on his website that "Secular Humanism is a threat that must be suppressed for the good of all Canadians

Well, words mean things, and "suppress" means: "to put down by authority or force" or "to stop or prohibit the publication or revelation of something", both of which describe an instigation of acts of aggression/coercion.

In other words, the implied physical threats came from Timothy.

What Timothy is being promised by some of us is merely that we will defend ourselves. Really, what he's getting is just a very well-mannered and considerate "fair warning".

 
At 5:25 PM, Blogger Nastyboy said...

Guys, don't you think this is much ado about nothing?

3. The likelihood is small but real. The Taliban were pretty much and ignored group of fundamentalists until it was too late. I have no intention of letting that happen.

That type of fanatisism is not and has never been part if the Canadian character. Unless it involves a puck.

All this talk of theocracy and armed rsistance against said theocracy is getting a little over the top no?

 
At 9:03 PM, Blogger Mike said...

Nasty,

You are probably right, but its just prudent to give 'em "fair warning" in case anyone decides to take advantage of that part of "Canadian Character".

Now, shouldn't you be riding a donkey and preparing for the pineapple ceremony?

 
At 10:03 PM, Blogger Nastyboy said...

Now, shouldn't you be riding a donkey and preparing for the pineapple ceremony?

Don't be silly. On the Solstice, we smear ourselves with cottage cheese and pelt the followers of the Zebra with moldy pomegranites and used D-cell batteries.

Duh.

 
At 10:11 PM, Blogger Mike said...

I stand corrected.

I think I may be branded a heretic again this year...I appear to have purchased feta - again - good thing the stores are still open tomorrow.

 
At 2:36 AM, Blogger Ron said...

mike...you'd shop on the solstice?!?!

My understanding of the depth of your cavalier attitude to the sacred was clearly shallow. Gaia weeps.

 
At 9:53 AM, Blogger James Bow said...

Geez, you guys get labelled as blasphemers, and after all my posts on the subject of religion, nobody says anything to me. Maybe it's because I'm a Christian, my views make me an apostate or something, requiring a different page on the manual.

It is amazing how many so-called Christians refuse to follow the teachings of Jesus Christ, isn't it?

 
At 10:26 AM, Blogger Mike said...

"It is amazing how many so-called Christians refuse to follow the teachings of Jesus Christ, isn't it?"

If you'll pardon the pun James, Amen to that...

 
At 2:09 AM, Blogger Psychols said...

Great post Mike.

Real Christian leaders are teaching sermons in small community churches, setting up feed the poor programs and welcoming everyone who comes to their doors and asks for help (and I do mean everyone).

Activist Christians are trying to sway elections, campaigning to impose their values as law and endorsing wars against people who do not subscribe to their faith.

Give me the real Christians over those activists anyday.

 
At 3:29 AM, Blogger The Eternal Gaijin said...

I apologize for extra work in advance but I have tagged you for the latest meme to make the rounds.
I have the rules up in my post on my blog.

 
At 2:29 AM, Anonymous dirk said...

Unrelated but what the hell,heres a pesky meme for you enjoy.I can't believe I am doing this
http://engagedspectator.wordpress.com/2007/07/01/pesky-memes/

 
At 1:07 PM, Blogger pretty shaved ape said...

Funny how those that clutch the cross as they stomp about in jackboots seem to take their cue from the latter rather than the former. For what it is worth, I'm with you Mike. As a proud blasphemer and unrepentant atheist, I will not be ruled by the superstitions of deluded fantasists.

 
At 9:43 PM, Blogger Candace said...

nastyboy: "...That type of fanatisism is not and has never been part if the Canadian character. Unless it involves a puck..."

How true!

James: "It is amazing how many so-called Christians refuse to follow the teachings of Jesus Christ, isn't it? "

What I find really sad is they don't even see that.

 
At 5:04 PM, Anonymous Neil McKenty said...

Well, let me give you a contemporary example of one Christian who followed the teachings of Jesus Christ through thick and thin, consolation and desolation, light and dark. For 50 years Mother Teresa had doubts about her faith and doubts about the existence. Yet for half a century she got up every morning at 4.30 to work with the poor in the gutterts of Calcutta. How do atheists explain that kind of love and dedication?

 
At 6:20 PM, Blogger Mike said...

Well Neil, it may surprise you that I quite respect Mother Teresa for what she did. I also hold Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. as one of my personal heroes. But they are the exception, not the rule, eh?

How do atheists explain that? She obviously got some satisfaction for doing what she did. Or she believed she would be rewarded for it in the future. Or she believed that it was the right thing to do. Buddhist monks, who are all atheists, do this all the time and have for 2600 years. I know a great many atheist that get arrested on a regular basis trying to help the poor.

How do you explain that kind of dedication from an atheist?

People are good because that is their nature. Why does it have to be any harder than that? Why does it need more fantastic explanations than that it simply is?

 

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