Last month, we posted a clip of David Barton asserting that God will never allow scientists to find a vaccine for HIV/AIDS because such a vaccine would eliminate the divine "penalty" for homosexuality, which would contradict the teaching found in Romans 1.
As "evidence" of this position, the Religious Right psuedo-historian and GOP activist claimed that the virus that causes AIDS is constantly mutating, making it impossible to inoculate against. He pointed to news stories about various failures by researchers to successfully test an experimental vaccine as "proof" of his assertion.
As Warren Throckmorton reported at the time, the stories that Barton cited were utterly unrelated and did not prove his point at all:
In the video, Barton first showed the Popular Science headline and then said:
The headlines came out and said, for the first time ever an HIV vaccine shows success in trial. Oh my gosh, I guess there is, I guess I must have misinterpreted the Bible, cause the Bible’s true, and then six weeks later, they came out with this that says, NIH halts trial of HIV vaccine after it fails to work. The newspaper said it worked but none of the medical evidence said that it worked. So they still don’t have a cure.
The problem with Barton’s presentation is that the second headline didn’t come out “six weeks later.” Rather it came out four years later in 2013 and was about an entirely different attempt to create a vaccine.
The Yahoo News article Barton referred to (the second headline) is only available via Internet Archives and is dated April 26, 2013. The Yahoo article linked to the NIH announcement that the HVTN 505 clinical trial had been halted. The HVTN 505 trial results had nothing to do with the earlier success of RV 144. The RV 144 trial was reported in 2009, the same year that the HVTN 505 started. The NIH has more on the HVTN 505 trial on the NIH website.
Barton got the time frame wrong and made it appear that the two headlines were related to each other.
In an interview at a Cleveland Right to Life Event last year, self-proclaimed historian David Barton declared that “no nation” has ever survived more than 80 years past a collapse of “premarital purity and postmarital fidelity.”
“In regards to the moral standing of other democracies, including ancient Rome, how is the United States measuring up today?” an interviewer asked Barton in an edited clip posted on YouTube by the anti-choice group.
“Well, we got real trouble,” Barton responded.
“…Pre-marital purity and post-marital fidelity…no nation, any nation in 5,000 years has ever survived two generations past that, so it’s gone within 80 years,” he said. “So Rome’s the same way.”
The comments start about 20 seconds into the clip:
A few months ago, we posted a video of David Barton claiming that he had been part of Oral Roberts University's record-setting men's college basketball team back in the early 1970s, a claim for which we and others have been unable to find any proof. At the same time, we have also been unable to definitively disprove it, so we really have no way of knowing whether or not any of it is true.
Today, Barton made another extraordinary claim on his "WallBuilders Live" radio program, which we once again can neither verify nor disprove, but that we find genuinely astonishing. Barton told listeners that he was fluent in Russian when he was younger and even served as an interpreter when the Russian national gymnastics team visited the United States in 1976. On top of that, Barton also claimed that he was actively involved in smuggling Bibles into the former Soviet Union.
Following an interview with a missionary who discussed efforts to introduce the Bible to eastern European countries, Barton chimed in that he too used to be involved in smuggling Bibles into the former Soviet Union.
"That's really where I got started with the Soviet bloc back when the Iron Curtain was up," Barton said. "I was fluent in Russian and when the Russian gymnastic team came to America in 1976, I got to be translator for them and do translating, and just the accounts of what happened when we went to the store was a blast."
This revelation obviously came as an utter surprise to Barton's co-host, Rick Green, who was shocked to discover that Barton speaks Russian ... or rather did speak Russian, as Barton said that "I don't now but I was, at one time, fluent in Russian and again translated for the Russian gymnastic team when they came to America."
"At the same time, we were working our tails off to smuggle Bibles into the Soviet Union and had several trips that went there smuggling Bibles in," he continued.
Green was completely flabbergasted by the revelations, as Barton recounted "all that smuggling time and how dangerous it was, you know, the Soviet bloc and the guards at the borders and all the stuff that went on there. It was pretty amazing":
Former House GOP leader Tom DeLay was the guest on the "WallBuilders Live" radio program today, where he warned that the Muslim Brotherhood has infiltrated the both the White House and Congress and then declared that every Muslim who runs for political office must be grilled on whether they are willing to pledge allegiance to the flag and support the Constitution.
After insisting that President Obama has filled his administration with Muslim Brotherhood operatives and fretting that "we have two Muslims in the House of Representatives right now," including one who is sitting on the Intelligence Committee, DeLay warned that "this is getting very dangerous."
Later in the program, he said that every candidate running for office at any level must be asked "tough questions" because "we've got people running for office right now that I question their motives."
"If you are a Muslim, for instance, and you are running for office," DeLay said, "will you pledge allegiance to the flag? When you take that oath of office to support the Constitution, which constitution are you supporting? The United States Constitution or the constitution outlined in the Koran? Those are very important things to be asking right now":
In the second in a series of presentations that he recently made at Charis Bible College in Colorado, right-wing pseudo-historian David Barton reiterated his belief that God will never allow a cure or vaccine for AIDS to be discovered because the disease is divine punishment for homosexuality.
Citing Romans 1, which declares that "men did shameful things with other men, and as a result of this sin, they suffered within themselves the penalty they deserved," Barton said that God will never allow a cure to be found for AIDS because that would eliminate the "penalty" that is due for engaging in such behavior.
"Anything the Bible says is right, there is scientific basis for it now," Barton said. "The federal government, in the last several years, has spent tens of billions of dollars looking for a vaccine for AIDS and I don't think they will ever find a vaccine for HIV/AIDS. And I say that based on a particular Bible verse ... Notice this, homosexuals receive in their bodies the penalty due them. The Bible says if you engage in homosexuality, your body will do things that will penalize you. So if you can have a vaccine for AIDS, then you're keeping your body from penalizing you. I don't think they'll ever find a vaccine for AIDS":
UPDATE: Warren Throckmorton took a look at the scientific evidence that Barton subsequently cited as "proof" of this point and discovered that Barton completely misrepresented the facts.
Earlier this month, David Barton delivered a series of presentations at Charis Bible College in Colorado on "The Principles of Success." In the very first presentation, Barton made a claim that we had never heard from him before, despite having listened to literally hundreds of his radio programs and presentations, when he told the audience that he played college basketball for a team that "set the NCAA record for two years in a row of most points scored" per game.
Barton was teaching on a passage from 1 Corinthians about the need to "strike a blow to my body and make it my slave" and whip one's self into shape in order to be a success and cited his college basketball days as an example.
"I remember when I was playing basketball, the college stuff that we did," he said, "we started every day with a five mile run, then we lifted weights, then we had an hour of racquetball, then we had two hours of full-court basketball, then we came back for another run. It wasn't particularly enjoyable, but in those years, our college team set the NCAA record for two years in a row of most points scored. We averaged 105, 104, 103 points a game, I forget what it was":
According to Wikipedia, the ORU men's basketball team led the nation in scoring in the 1972 and 1973 seasons. A search of the rosters posted on ORU's own website from the years Barton presumably attended finds no mention of him having been on the men's basketball team, including during the two record-setting seasons he specifically cited:
UPDATE: Warren Throckmorton contacted ORU directly to inquire about Barton's claim and a school official declared that "after checking with the Athletic Office, there is no record of a David Barton ever playing basketball for ORU."
Recently, David Barton sat down for a conversation with Pastor Jack Hibbs of Calvary Chapel in Chino Hills, California, during which he asserted that even Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer knows that the due process clauses in the Bill of Rights came directly out of the Bible and even mentioned this fact in one of his Supreme Court decisions.
"I was reading a Supreme Court case," Barton said, "and in it, Justice Breyer — and no one is going to accuse Justice Breyer of being a religious individual, he'll not be found guilty of that — and he makes the comment that 'of course we all know that all of our due processes clauses in our Bill of Rights came out of the Bible.'"
Barton said that Breyer even footnoted this assertion in his ruling, citing Volume 30 of "Federal Practice and Procedure," which Barton claims contains a sixty page explanation of how our system of due process came directly out of the Bible.
"There's Breyer saying 'of course we all know that the due process clauses came out of the Bible,'" Barton said. "We don't know that today":
As is typical when Barton makes these sorts of claims, he doesn't actually provide any information about the ruling in which Breyer supposedly made this assertion, making it all but impossible verify the claim that he has just made.
Our best guess is that Barton is referring to Breyer's 1999 concurrence in Lilly v. Virginia (emphasis added):
The Court’s effort to tie the Clause so directly to the hearsay rule is of fairly recent vintage, compare Roberts, supra, with California v. Green, 399 U.S. 149, 155—156 (1970), while the Confrontation Clause itself has ancient origins that predate the hearsay rule, see Salinger v. United States, 272 U.S. 542, 548 (1926) (“The right of confrontation did not originate with the provision in the Sixth Amendment, but was a common-law right having recognized exceptions”). The right of an accused to meet his accusers face-to-face is mentioned in, among other things, the Bible, Shakespeare, and 16th and 17th century British statutes, cases, and treatises. See The Bible, Acts 25:16; W. Shakespeare, Richard II, act i, sc. 1; W. Shakespeare, Henry VIII, act ii, sc. 1; 30 C. Wright & K. Graham, Federal Practice and Procedure §6342, p. 227 (1997) (quoting statutes enacted under King Edward VI in 1552 and Queen Elizabeth I in 1558); cf. Case of Thomas Tong, Kelyng J. 17, 18, 84 Eng. Rep. 1061, 1062 (1662) (out-of-court confession may be used against the confessor, but not against his co-conspirators); M. Hale, History of the Common Law of England 163—164 (C. Gray ed. 1971); 3 W. Blackstone, Commentaries *373. As traditionally understood, the right was designed to prevent, for example, the kind of abuse that permitted the Crown to convict Sir Walter Raleigh of treason on the basis of the out-of-court confession of Lord Cobham, a co-conspirator. See 30 Wright & Graham, supra, §6342, at 258—269.
You'll note that, contrary to Barton's claim, Breyer is not saying that "all of our due processes clauses in our Bill of Rights came out of the Bible," but merely that the right to face one's accuser is mentioned in the Bible, among other places. On top of that, the Bible verse that Breyer cites, Acts 25:16, consists of the Apostle Paul citing his right to confront his accuser according to Roman law:
I told them that it is not the Roman custom to hand over anyone before they have faced their accusers and have had an opportunity to defend themselves against the charges.
A few weeks ago, we noted that David Barton had reportedly won a million-dollar defamation lawsuit against two Democratic candidates who ran for the Texas Education Board in 2010 after they produced a campaign video that asserted that Barton was "known for speaking at white supremacist rallies." At the same time, Barton also filed suit against an online writer who had called him an "admitted liar," though that writer disappeared after being sued and never responded to any of Barton's legal filings.
In the wake of this court decision, Barton immediately went to work trying to portray his very narrow legal victory as a complete validation of his widely-criticized scholarship, asserting that his work had now been vindicated in a court of law when, in reality, the case revolved only around allegations that he had ties to white supremacists.
Now it seems that Barton is pressing ahead with his effort to portray his legal win as a wholesale vindication of his body of work, as his WallBuilders organization sent out an email to activists today calling up them to take to Facebook, Twitter, Amazon, or anywhere else that they might see Barton and his work being criticized and post links to an article about his legal victory in order to defend Barton and prove that "the critics’ claims are false":
A few weeks ago, news broke about David Barton winning a major defamation lawsuit. (Thank you for all of your emails and calls of support and encouragement!)
The more publicized of the two defamation lawsuits we won was the one where David was labeled an anti-Semite, racist, and white supremacist. But the second lawsuit we won addressed the false claims that David's works are widely discredited, that he is an admitted liar, that he makes up his history, etc. (Makes up history? How ridiculous is this claim when WallBuilders owns one of America's largest private collections of original Founding Era documents -- more than 100,000 originals or copies of original documents from before 1812. In fact, we even footnote our historical email blasts!)
David's best-selling works have been viewed by literally millions of Americans, and such numbers represent a sizeable segment of the American population. Detractors don't want these readers -- and especially any additional ones -- to know the important role that religion and morality historically played in America. The reason is simple. For Americans to tolerate and support our current secularist progressive policies, they must be divorced from our religious, moral, and constitutional history.
The critics are very aggressive, very well-organized, and very well-funded. (In fact, many of the groups attacking David receive funding from atheist billionaire George Soros.) They often select seemingly religious mouthpieces (often secular progressives from the Religious Left) to deliver their attacks over the internet, in articles, and on blogs.
This is where we need your help!
When you see attacks against WallBuilders and David on Facebook, Twitter, in articles, comments, and so forth, please take a few minutes to enter your own rebuttal comments, even linking to the national articles reporting that the critics’ claims are false (e.g., David Barton Wins Million-Dollar Defamation Suit).
The Bible tells us in Proverbs 18:17 that one side sounds good until facts from the other side are presented. So far, the critics have often been the only voice – or at least the loudest. We need your help to present the other side. As Song of Solomon 8:13 reminds us, your friends listen to your voice -- so speak! Your voice on Facebook, Twitter, in articles, on Amazon book reviews, and in web comment sections will help beat back the false claims and thus help millions of Americans be open, and even eager to learn the truth about America's Godly constitutional heritage!
Last month, David Barton spoke at the First Baptist Church in Eastland, Texas, where he added a new wrinkle to his claim that the Bible dictates how the government is to operate by declaring that the Bible explicitly prohibits governments from taking on debt.
For the Lord your God will bless you, as he promised you, and you shall lend to many nations, but you shall not borrow, and you shall rule over many nations, but they shall not rule over you.
"The Bible tells us, Proverbs 22:7, that the borrower is servant to the lender," Barton said. "See, the Bible is real clear: stay out of debt. You lose your freedom when you get into debt. Well, that applies for individuals, it applies for families, it applies for churches, it applies for states, it applies for the nation. God doesn't want you in debt, which is why Deuteronomy 15:6 says your nation is not to go into debt. Here we are. That's not a political issue, that's a biblical issue. God spoke about that a long time before America ever existed":
Barton then went on to repeat his absurd claims that "the Bible absolutely condemns the estate tax," that Jesus hates the capital gains tax, and that the Bible prohibits the use of progressive taxation.
David Barton was a guest this morning on the American Family Association's "Today's Issues" radio program where he explained to the right-wing audience that in order to understand President Obama's foreign policy, one simply has to ask the question: What does the Muslim Brotherhood want?
As Barton explained it, 95 percent of Obama's foreign policy decisions regarding the Middle East can be summed up by the phrase, "If the Muslim Brotherhood would be for it, [Obama] is for it; if they're against it he's against it."
As "proof" of this, Barton went on to claim that on seven separate occasions, Obama "has publicly leaked to the media secret intelligence from Israel about what they were doing to stop terrorism," especially regarding Iran.
"On seven occasions, he has leaked secret intelligence about what Israel is about to do in Iran or elsewhere and released that to the Muslim world," he claimed. "I scratch my head and say, 'How can you do that to your closest ally, release their top secret intelligence on what they're about to do?' And the answer is: Muslim Brotherhood would do it and so he does."
As usual, Barton did not actually provide any evidence to support this claim other than his own "research," so it is impossible to know what he is even referencing or how he would explain the millions of dollars in U.S. aid to the al-Sisi government in Egypt, which has vowed to destroy the Muslim Brotherhood.
UPDATE: On the February 23 edition of his "WallBuilders Live" radio program, Barton finally provided some "evidence" to back up his claims, though he only managed to cite four specific instances, most of which do not prove his point at all:
The first instance Barton cited was a report from 2010 that revealed that Saudi Arabia had agreed to allow Israeli bombers to pass over the country in the event that Israel was going to carry out an attack on Iran's nuclear facilities. According to the article, a "U.S. defense source in the Persian Gulf" revealed that the plan "has all been done with the agreement of the State Department." Why the Obama administration would seek to undermine Israel by leaking details on an agreement that it had reportedly approved is not something that Barton ever explained.
The second instance Barton cited was a 2012 instance in which the Obama administration supposedly leaked to the New York Times information "on war exercises that Israel was doing, practicing a strike on Iran's nuclear facilities." Of course, if you read the article in question, it focused on a simulation run by the U.S. military on the ramifications of an Israeli strike on Iran, which concluded that such an attack would draw the U.S. into a large regional conflict.
The article did not, as Barton claimed, reveal Israeli war plans, but rather the results of a U.S. simulation of what could happen in the wake of an Israeli attack.
The third instance that Barton cited — a 2012 ABC News piece that reported that analysts in Israel were "accusing the Obama administration leaking information to pressure Israel not to bomb Iran and for Iran to reach a compromise in upcoming nuclear talks" — is the only one that says what Barton claims it says.
The final example that Barton cited was an April 2012 article in the New Yorker which he claimed contained leaked information from the U.S. that revealed that "the Israeli intelligence agency was helping fund and train the Iranian opposition ... the more moderates to help take out that administration."
The article in question was a Seymour Hersh piece reporting that the U.S. Joint Special Operations Command had been training "members of the Mujahideen-e-Khalq, a dissident Iranian opposition group known in the West as the M.E.K," despite the fact that the M.E.K is designated as a terrorist organization by the U.S. State Department. Among the material contained in the Hersh article was information from an earlier NBC report that that several Iranian nuclear scientists have been assassinated since 2007, presumably by members of the M.E.K who were trained and financed by the Israeli Mossad.
As far as we can tell, outside of possibly the 2012 ABC News piece, not one of these articles cited by Barton actually contains evidence that the Obama administration has "publicly leaked to the media secret intelligence from Israel" as he originally claimed.
On his "WallBuilders Live" radio broadcast today, David Barton revealed that he will be heading to Congress to lead a training session for lawmakers on how to prevent the court system from ruling in favor of marriage equality.
Responding to a question from a listener on what steps Congress can take to rein in the judiciary on this issue, Barton declared that Congress has several options: it can pass a law declaring that federal courts cannot hear gay marriage cases, it can pass a law that says that no federal money can ever be used to enforce a ruling from the Supreme Court in favor of gay marriage, or it can simply abolish any court, outside of the Supreme Court, that issues any ruling for gay marriage.
"All Congress has to do," he said, "is pass a law saying, 'you know, we saw the Northern District of Georgia struck down the marriage law; we're abolishing the Northern District of Georgia court. It doesn't exist any more.'"
The reason that Congress hasn't already taken such steps, Barton explained, is because members of Congress are products of "our government education system" and therefore never learned this ... which is why he is being brought to Washington, D.C., to teach it to them.
"I was at a conference recently where I was speaking on judicial myths," he said, "and I just quoted from the Founding Fathers and the Constitution and quoted from the Founders' own writings and congressmen said 'we never heard that' and so they've asked me to come to D.C. and do a training for them on ways to limit judicial activism":
Iowa Religious Right group The Family Leader, a key player in the GOP’s first-in-the-nation caucus, has a new plan to encourage legislators in Iowa to “do what God has asked them to do.”
The group is soliciting funds to purchase $100 leather-bound copies of “The Founders Bible" — which is annotated by hack historian David Barton with his thoughts on “our Judeo-Christian history as a nation"—for each member of the Iowa state legislature.
In “The Founders Bible,” legislators will find such educational passages as a retelling of Exodus that portrays Moses as the inventor of republican government; a made-up story about the early American government printing Bibles; an endorsement of the “Christian nation” concept from a notorious defender of slavery; information on the “many areas in which the Constitution specifically incorporated Biblical principles”; and an argument for the biblical origin of DNA evidence. All of this is intended to advance Barton’s view that the U.S. government exists to carry out his interpretation of the Bible’s commands.
In its fundraising appeal, The Family Leader asks churches to sponsor copies of Barton’s Bible to give to legislators in their own districts at the group’s “Life, Marriage and Family Rally” next week. While they’re at the state capitol, the group is asking pastors to meet with legislators in order to engage “in this war with Satan, who has taken many captive in Des Moines” through such means as “working to divide Christian organizations, back room deals, or organizations like Planned Parenthood pushing wicked policies”:
Our goal has been to encourage pastors to team up with The FAMiLY LEADER in accomplishing our two main goals at TFL:
1.Fulfill the Great Commission by sharing the Gospel in the civic arena. We do this by building relationships and showing the love of Christ to not only elected officials, but also staff, lobbyists, campaign workers, and many others who engage in the civic arena with the purpose of pointing them to Christ.
2. Pass righteous legislation that will help our brothers and sisters in the church, as well as current believers. Government is one of God’s three institutions, and when it fulfills its purpose, (which is to punish evil and reward good, Romans 13:1-4), it displays God’s perfect design. Our goal is to help our elected officials do what God has asked them to do.
One of the ways we accomplish these goals is by our work at the Iowa State Capitol in Des Moines. The FAMiLY LEADER has four lobbyists who work at the capitol during the legislative session. The lobbyists are there to serve as missionaries. I am blessed to be one of them.
When pastors come to the Capitol, the first thing they do is meet with The FAMiLY LEADER team in the morning. We bring them up to date on what different legislation is being worked on, who is spiritually soft, who their ministers are, and who is in need of prayer. By meeting with us, we are able to bring pastors up to date as if they were there every day. Following the meeting, pastors then go upstairs to the House and Senate chambers and work with them to help them contact their different legislators.
What happens next is just amazing! We usually see dozens of pastors out in the Capitol rotunda praying, encouraging, building relationships, and sharing God’s Word with legislators and many others. The environment at the Capitol completely changes when these pastors are present. There is less cursing, less back-stabbing, and the place even seems brighter! There is so much spiritual warfare in that building. Whether it is Satan working to divide Christian organizations, back room deals, or organizations like Planned Parenthood pushing wicked policies, these pastors are engaging in this war with Satan, who has taken many captive in Des Moines.
Legislator Bibles – We want to bring the Gospel to the Iowa Legislature. The goal is to get 150 Founders’ Bibles in the hands of Iowa’s 150 legislators.
But we need your help to accomplish this goal. We are working with churches in each legislators’ district to see if they will sponsor a Bible for their legislator. The cost for the Bible is $100.
When churches participate in the Iowa Capitol Project, they accomplish 3 big things:
1. Get a Bible in the hands of Iowa’s lawmakers.
2. Connect a legislator with a local church (which we believe is most important).
3. Have that local church faithfully praying for their legislator. (Imagine each legislator having a congregation faithfully praying for them. Wow! God could really use that!)
The Bible itself is a Founders’ Bible, which is a NASB Study Bible that focuses on our Judeo-Christian history as a nation. The Study Bible’s devotions are written by Dr. David Barton. The Bible will be leather bound with gold trim on the pages, and it will be embossed with Seal of Iowa and the legislator’s name. It will be something nice they will keep and hopefully read on a regular basis because of the compelling content pertaining to their job at the Capitol.
In order to initiate personal relationships between churches and legislators, we want a pastor and/or church members from the legislators’ own district to personally present the Bibles on February 3rd at our annual Life, Marriage, and Family Rally.
A few months ago, David Barton appeared on Glenn Beck's radio program, where he falsely asserted that the "average welfare family" receives $61,000 a year in government benefits.
As we pointed out at the time, this was an entirely misleading claim first put forth by the Republicans on the Senate Budget Committee back in 2012 that was, as the Center on Budget and Policy Priorities explained, derived by relying on "a series of serious manipulations of the data that violate basic analytic standards and are used to produce a potentially inflammatory result."
But just because the claim is false, that certainly is not going to stop Barton from repeating it, as he did when he appeared on Daystar's "Marcus and Joni" program yesterday:
For more than 20 years, David Barton had been dogged by allegations that he had, early in his career, spoken at events hosted by racist and anti-Semitic groups. His appearances before such groups had first been reported back in early 1990s by organizations like the Institute for First Amendment Studies, Americans United for Separation of Church and State, and the Anti-Defamation League but Barton always insisted that while he may have spoken before such groups, he was not aware of their views when he did so.
In 2010, at a time when Barton had been brought in by the Texas State Board of Education to help shape the state's social studies standards, two Democratic candidates running for the Education Board produced a campaign video that asserted that Barton was "known for speaking at white supremacist rallies." In response, Barton sued these two candidates for libel and defamation, contending that the video falsely portrayed him as a supporter of white supremacists.
Last month, Barton prevailed in his lawsuit and reportedly received a million-dollar settlement and an apology. Predictably, he is now spinning this as a complete and total victory, declaring on his radio program today that his work has now been vindicated in court.
A lot of folks who try to use Barton's materials, he said, have often found themselves dismissed because "oh, you're quoting Barton, he's a discredited historian, he makes up his history. Well, guess what? For those people who have used those quotes and been beat up for it, this now vindicates them as well."
"We don't want people to be drug down because we get beat up," he said. "We want them to be able to use historical quotes and not get their brains beat in and so this really is a vindication for everybody who is concerned about original intent and everybody who wants to quote things about the faith of the Founding Fathers or things like that. Now you've got a way when they said 'oh, that's all made up,' no, no, no, here's a judgment, here's a defamation suit, here's the court judgment that says that stuff was defamatory, that was false and defamatory."
Barton's lawsuit focused solely on the claim that he was "known for" speaking at white supremacist rallies and had nothing to do with the shoddy nature of the pseudo-history that he regularly produces and which hasbeenwell-documented.
But in typical Barton fashion, he was unable to even tell the truth about the results of his own defamation lawsuit.
You could not ask for a more perfect demonstration of Barton's common practice of spreading deliberate misrepresentation to further his own agenda than this.
As we have noted before, David Barton's telling of the history of the fight for racial equality in America always mysteriously seems to stop right around the mid-1960s, right before the rise of the GOP's "Southern Strategy." Barton has written books and produced DVDs that claim to "set the record straight" on the role that both major political parties played in ending slavery, passing civil rights laws, and pushing for equality but his materials always portray Democrats are the enemies of black equality and conveniently never seem to make it beyond 1964.
On his radio program today, Barton sought to answer a question for a listener who wondered why, today, the Democrats are believed to be the party that fought to end slavery and for civil rights while the Republicans are believed to be the party that opposed such things.
The simple answer is "the Southern Strategy" and the fundamental shift that took place politically in the wake of civil rights gains when Democrats lost the support of white Southern voters as the party began to support civil rights in the 1960s and the GOP sought to win the support of those disaffected voters by appealing to them on contentious racial issues:
In 1968, George Wallace ran as a third-party candidate against Nixon and Humphrey, on an explicitly segregationist platform. Humphrey had been the main champion of the Civil Rights Act of 1964 in the Senate; Nixon, while no civil rights activist, rejected an overtly racist platform. Feeling abandoned by both parties, Southern white racists flocked to Wallace's cause, winning him the Deep South states of Ark., La., Miss., Ala. and Ga.
Political analyst and Nixon campaigner Kevin Phillips, analyzing 1948-1968 voting trends, viewed these rebellious Southern voters as ripe for Republican picking. In The Emerging Republican Majority (Arlington House, 1969), he correctly predicted that the Republican party would shift its national base to the South by appealing to whites' disaffection with liberal democratic racial and welfare policies. President Nixon shrewdly played this "Southern strategy" by promoting affirmative action in employment, a "wedge" issue that later Republicans would exploit to split the Democratic coalition of white working class and black voters.
Barton, of course, completely ignores this basic history and instead blames it all on miseducation; specifically the idea that Democrats refuse to allow schools to teach the real history that it was Democrats who started the Ku Klux Klan, opposed civil rights laws, supported slavery, and defended segregation.
"In the Sixties, it was called the Solid Democrat South," Barton said. "Every southern state was solidly Democrat and that is what the Democrats counted on for every presidential election. Not the New England areas, they counted on the Solid Democrat South and there is no way that Democrat legislators and Democrat boards of education and everything else are going to let textbooks come out with they're the ones who started the Klan, they're the ones who violated all the civil rights, they're the ones who did the Black Codes ... They're not going to have that, so that's what happens when you let history become something political instead of simply telling the good, the bad, and the ugly":
This is rather ironic given that Barton's preferred version of history is entirely political, in that he only wants to tell the part of history that portrays Democrats as the party of slavery, segregation, and discrimination while routinely omitting and ignoring anything that does not further his agenda.
2014 was another banner year for David Barton, who once again managed to continue to spread his particular brand of Christian America pseudo-history and patently absurd statements around the world while somehow maintaining his reputation as a well-respected Religious Right activist and speaker.
Seemingly no amount of nonsense from Barton can diminish his standing among conservative Christian activists, so it was not particularly surprising to see him spend 2014 spreading misinformation and shoddy history without consequence.
Failure to do so, he warned, causes the entire nation to suffer.
Ungodly leaders like President Obama and Secretary of State John Kerry, Barton said, are incapable of fighting terrorism because they have no moral compass. Even worse, their failure to adequately support Israel will result in God striking America with natural disasters.
After rejecting an effort to draft him to run for the U.S. Senate, Barton amazingly had no qualms about lecturing everyone else that refusing to run for office when asked is "pure selfishness." We can only guess what sort of legislation Sen. Barton would have proposed, given that he has repeatedly argued that the Bible should be the foundation of public education (which could go a long way toward explaining why Barton himself is apparently so bad at math.)
In addition to asserting that the Founding Fathers did not allow women to vote in order to "keep the family together," Barton also argued that Christians in America "have an inalienable right to marriage to be a man and a woman and no other combination."
Barton also praised Phil Robertson of "Duck Dynasty" for being "quite graphic" when making controversial anti-gay statements because, in doing so, he made homosexuality seem "very repugnant, which is what it should be."
Predictably, Barton was once again a reliable source of a variety of laughably absurd assertions this year, such as the claim that families on welfare receive $61,000 a year in government benefits and his declaration that America must have "a biblical view on computer programming." But those pale in comparison to Barton's ridiculous claim that the Founding Fathers were well-versed in the theory of evolution and openly rejected it because it had really been established in 500 B.C.
Perhaps the most amazing feat Barton managed to pull of in 2014 was the invention of time travel, because that seems to be the only possible way in which he could manage to speak to more than 600 groups every year while also working fourteen hours a day on his ranch.
Back in October, David Barton spoke at First Christian Church in Kernersville, North Carolina, during which he doubled down on his infamous claim that the Founding Fathers opposed the teaching of evolution, despite the fact that Charles Darwin didn't even come up with the theory until several decades after America was founded.
How is this possible, you ask?
Well, according to Barton, the theory of evolution was established way back in 500 B.C. and so the Founding Fathers knew all about it nearly a century before Darwin wrote his book.
As Barton explained, the Founding Fathers took positions on everything from the legality of abortion to gays in the military long before those topics became contentious culture war issues in the Twentieth Century. And since the Bible says that "there is nothing new under the sun," it stands to reason that the Founding Fathers also opposed evolution.
"Did you know the Founding Fathers had extensive writings on the problems with evolution and why creationism was right?" Barton asked. "You think evolution came in with Darwin? No, no, no. Everything Darwin argued had been established 500 years B.C. All Darwin did was take all the evolutionary thought that was out there and put it in one book to make it really easy to read. That wasn't original thinking by Darwin. It was there by 500 B.C. That's why the Founding Fathers had huge writings on evolution and creation":
Pastor Rob McCoy of Calvary Chapel Thousand Oaks in California was the guest on today's "WallBuilders Live" radio broadcast, discussing his recent unsuccessful effort to win a seat in the state assembly. Despite losing his race, McCoy spun his campaign as a victory by claiming that Democrats were so terrified that he might win that the party had to spend millions of dollars to defeat him, thereby draining money from other races in the state and costing the party several seats.
McCoy was very encouraged by his showing in the race, but was even more energized by his participation in a recent tour of Europe led by Mike Huckabee and bankrolled by David Lane which he said made him realize that if more pastors do not get involved in politics by running for office, America could turn into Nazi Germany.
"We were at Auschwitz and Birkenau at the death camps and we came to realize thirty two SS guards killed nine hundred thousand Jews," McCoy said. "You're either committed or you're compromised and we stood there, a hundred and ten pastors, realizing that if we don't speak up, we're going to watch those rail cars just annihilate our culture and we're going to be held captive by a minority and we have a responsibility to speak up":
Back in September, David Barton spoke at a "Truth For A New Generation" Christian apologetics conference in South Carolina. While at the conference, he participated in an interview which was recently uploaded to YouTube in which he made the case that America must implement a "biblical view" on literally every issue, even down to computer programming.
On marriage, Barton called for the elimination of no-fault divorce, and afterr repeating his claim that the Sixth Amendment's guarantee of our right to confront our accusers came directly out of the Bible, Barton said that conservative Christians need to make sure that everything from economics to contracts to employer-employee relations operates according to strictly biblical principles.
Once again citing the importance of Christians wielding total control over the Seven Mountains of culture, Barton demanded that society uphold "a biblical view on computer programing" and fondly recalled how, until the 1960s, Hollywood could not release any film "unless the church approved it."
"Until we get back into saying, you know, I've got to have a biblical view on computer programming, I've got to have a biblical view as a business, as a Chamber of Commerce, whatever it is," Barton said, "if we don't get that back to where everyone has a common worldview and, based on our documents, that is there is a God, he gives you a certain set of rights, government protects those rights, he gives a fixed moral law that I'm not allowed to alter and then, below that, I can make decisions, until we get back to the common understanding of the nation, we won't have a stable nation":
After viewing it, Frazer wrote an utterly scathing review of Barton's work for Richards, which Richards then reportedly used in making the case to others in the Religious Right movement that Barton's historical scholarship cannot and should not be trusted.
Today, with Frazer's permission, Throckmorton posted a copy of his review of Barton's DVD on his website and it is absolutely devastating.
Frazer's review is thirteen pages long and exposes the myriad ways in which Barton routinely and intentionally misrepresents American history in order to bolster his own radical right-wing political agenda. Many of the problems that Frazer highlights will be familiar to readers of this blog, as we have covered several of them in the past as well, but the report is well worth reading as it systematically debunks a wide array of Barton's favorite talking points, such as his tendency to credit everything with which he agrees as having come from the "Founding Fathers":
This leads to one last area of concern in America’s Godly Heritage which can best be expressed as a question: Who counts as a “Founding Father?” This issue reappears frequently in Barton’s works. He seems to count anyone of whom he approves who was living at the time of the Revolution, the founding of the political system under the Constitution, or within fifty or sixty years of those times as a “Founding Father.” For example, he says that “the American Tract Society was started by the Founding Fathers.” First, not one of those listed as a Tract Society founder signed the Constitution or the Declaration of Independence. By what standard are they “Founding Fathers?” Furthermore, the Society was started in 1825 – 36 years after the Constitution was ratified. Madison was the last living framer an d he died in 1836. How many Founding Fathers were even alive in 1825? Similarly, in his discussion of Vidal v. Girard, he said it was decided in “the time of the Founders.” It was decided in 1844 –55 years after the Constitution went into effect and, a s was just mentioned, the last framer died in 1836! Barton refers to John Quincy Adams as a “Founding Father.” At the time of the Constitutional Convention, he was a 20 year-old just out of law school (he was 8 when the Declaration was signed) – by what standard is he a “Founding Father?” Barton also claims that the “Founding Fathers” established the New England Primer as a text, but the Founding Fathers did not establish any texts for schools – that was left to local communities to decide. Apparently, by Barton’s standards (whatever they are), local school boards were “Founding Fathers.” Finally, Barton says that the state constitutions indicate that the “Founding Fathers” wanted to be sure that Christians held public office. But the Founding Fathers, in Article VI of the Constitution, specifically disallowed any religious test for office. That would seem to be a strange and counterproductive prohibition to be put in place by those who want to ensure that Christians hold the various offices.
It is worth noting that, according to Throckmorton, this review has been in circulation among Religious Right leaders since 2012 and it does not appear to have diminished Barton's reputation among them in the least, nor has it stopped Barton from routinelypeddlingmisinformation.