The Wonderful World of Magical Thinking XXIV

16 07 2007

The week in fundie:

  1. God orders fundie to kill gay man. (via Pharyngula)
  2. Fundies disrupt Hindu man praying in the Senate. (via Pharyngula)
  3. Fundie mother tries to ban books from school library. (Friendly Atheist)
  4. Trailer park bans HIV-positive 2-year old from swimming pool. (via Morons.org)
  5. Former US Surgeon-General gagged by Bush administration. (via Morons.org)

(More of my thoughts about Jesus Camp over the fold . . .)

Watching the opening scenes of Jesus Camp, in which Pastor Becky Fisher whips up her pre-pubescent flock into a frenzy of flailing limbs and glossolalia, I had a passing thought. Imagine if these kids were encouraged to get passionate about the things that matter–politics, ethics, science, literature, philosophy–instead of rolling around the floor like mindless ululating idiots. Imagine if they could be encouraged to actually use their brains rather than surrendering them to fundamentalist dogma. That’s the real travesty of this glimpse into the parallel universe that is Bible Belt USA: a generation of kids–smart kids–whose potential is being squandered in the cause of that politico-religious hybrid known as the Christian Right. A generation of kids whose intellectual development is being corrupted by the pseudoscientific and pseudohistorical claptrap that constitutes the Christian homeschooling curriculum. A generation of kids who are being raised to consider themselves, by virtue of their religious affiliation, as their nation’s ruling class–who are urged by the likes of Fisher to Christianise the US, not by the use of reasoned debate and discussion, but by gradually seizing control of its institutions. I stand by my comment in the previous post. This is child abuse, pure and simple.

It would be easy to write this documentary off as a stereotypical representation of fundie America: creation science homeschooling, speaking in tongues, worshipping the image of President Bush, the family pledging allegiance to the Christian flag. It can’t be real, can it?

But then you have only to consider the Dover ID case, the Creation Museum, the Left Behind videogame, “Paul Hill Days,” the War on Harry Potter, “erototoxins,” Paul Cameron, abstinence education, “fundagenics,” the War on Science, Conservapedia, David Paskiewicz, Purity Balls, Idiot Pete, the War On Contraception, Christian Exodus, anti-Semitism, Pensacola Christian College . . . .

Jesus Camp, however disturbing, was not without its funny moments. In one scene, Fisher’s young charges visit New Life Church, Colorado, to hear Pastor Ted Haggard preach against homosexuality.

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