Dozens Of RNC Members In Israel Courtesy Of Group That Promotes The Idea That The First Amendment Doesn't Apply To Jews

At this very moment, some 60 members of the Republican National Committee are in Israel, courtesy of the anti-gay hate group the American Family Association, on a trip organized by Religious Right activist and full-blown Christian nationalist David Lane.

This trip has been a source of controversy for all involved, resulting in the AFA unsuccessfully trying to distance itself from its most notorious bigot, Bryan Fischer, last week. While Fischer no longer works as the group's director of issues analysis and is no longer an official spokesman, he is still a daily radio host on the AFA's radio network.

Fischer has a long history of not only attacking gays and Muslims, but also of declaring that the First Amendment only applies to Christianity, meaning that no other religion is entitled to any sort of constitutional protection ... and that specifically includes Judaism, as he explained back in 2013 when he said that Jews only represented 0.2 percent of the population at the time of this nation's founding and were never intended to be covered by the First Amendment.

"By 'religion,' the Founders were thinking of Christianity," Fischer said, approximately 2:30 into this clip. "So the purpose was to protect the free exercise of the Christian faith. It wasn’t about protecting anything else. They weren’t providing any cover or shelter for the free exercise of Islam or even Judaism or even atheism."

On top of that, Fischer has repeatedly declared that anyone who wishes to immigrate to the United States ought to be required to "leave behind their religion and their god" and convert to Christianity.

Fischer's views were so disturbing that, according to Politico, the Anti-Defamation League privately contacted the RNC and asked them to cancel the scheduled trip to Israel, to no avail:

A week before Republican National Committee members were set to depart Saturday on a trip to Israel sponsored by a pair of evangelical groups active in right-wing politics, officials at the Anti-Defamation League privately reached out to the RNC with a warning.

While they appreciated the interest in the Jewish state, it would be “inappropriate” for committee members to travel there with the American Family Association and the American Renewal Project — groups known for “incendiary and bigoted” language attacking gays, Mormons and Muslims, said Stacy Burdett, the ADL’s government affairs director.

The trip — a nine-day expenses-paid excursion to explore Israeli history and issues of religious liberty, according to one participant — nevertheless proceeded as planned.

Amid all the controversy surrounding this trip, Fischer himself tried to do a bit of damage control, writing a column last week declaring that "The U.S. Should Support Israel Because God Does." Interestingly, the crux of Fischer's argument is that America must support Israel because Christianity and Judaism both worship the same God:

The Jewish people zealously protected, preserved, and passed on the very words of God as recorded by the ancient prophets and historians in Israel. Our faith as a Christian nation is rooted in Jewish soil. No Judaism, no Christianity ... Our Messiah, the one we regard as the Savior of the world, walked this earth as a Jew and practiced the Jewish faith. Simple regard for the person of Jesus commands respect for the faith he himself followed and the people to whom he belonged.

So it is odd that just a few days after saying that Christians and Jews worship the same God, Fischer then wrote a new piece arguing that Christians and Muslims do not worship the same God, which he attempted to prove by arguing that the god that Muslims worship does not have a son:

The God of the Bible has a Son. The god of Islam does not ... The plain declaration of Christianity, then, is that Jesus is the eternally begotten Son of the true and living God. There never was a time, not even in eternity past, when he was not the Son of God.

But Islam, on the other hand, flatly denies that Allah has a son at at all. “He begetteth not, nor is begotten.” In fact, believing that God has a begotten Son will get you stoned to death in many parts of the Muslim world.

On top of all this, and of particular offense to orthodox Muslims, is the fact that Christians worship Jesus himself as God as the second member of the Trinity. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:3). Muslims are horrified at the thought that Jesus could be worshiped as God and consider such a belief as blasphemy worthy of death.

So, do Christians and Muslims worship the same God? Absolutely and unequivocally not.

Obviously, the problem Fischer now encounters is how to explain how Christians and Jews can possibly worship the same God when Jews, like Muslims, do not believe that "the God of the Bible has a Son."

Given that Fischer's group has reportedly spent several hundred thousand dollars to send dozens of members of the RNC on this trip to "stand with Israel because God does," we'd be really interested to hear Fischer's explanation of how Christians and Jews can worship the same God when, by his own standard for Islam, that does not appear to be the case at all.

After all, if Muslims are not entitled to First Amendment protections, according to Fischer, because they do not worship the same God as Christians, than neither do Jews, according to Fischer's own logic.

The AFA has attempted to distance itself from Fischer's views, but that does not answer the question as to why the RNC would agree to send dozens of members on a trip to Israel paid for by an organization that employs someone who argues that Jews in America are not entitled to First Amendment protections? 

Pat Robertson Opposes Vaccination Mandates, Questions Water Fluoridation

Today on “The 700 Club,” televangelist Pat Robertson waxed nostalgic about the days when kids who had the measles and mumps simply lived through the experience and “just got immune” rather than receiving a vaccination. Not only did Robertson come out against vaccination mandates, but he also suggested that water fluoridation could lead to detrimental health effects.

“I’m sure that there’s some serious consequences to measles and perhaps vaccinations is the answer, but I don’t think any parent should be forced by the government to vaccinate,” he said. “There was a vaccination against polio and I know the mother of a friend contracted polio from the vaccine, so all vaccines are not benign. But, so far, this one about whooping cough and diphtheria and measles has been very effective and I think it was a good thing to do, but the problem is, natural immunity is a pretty good thing and if you have some of these diseases when you’re a kid you have immunity the rest of your life.”

Robertson linked his criticisms of vaccine mandates to water fluoridation: “I just think that we’ve got to be careful that we fall for these nostrums, you know, you have to put fluoride in all of the water because it will cut down on cavities. But what does fluoride do to people? We don’t know some of the consequences, we don’t have all of the knowledge we need and we should be very careful not to force people to do stuff that they earnestly feel they shouldn’t do.”

Pat Boone Thinks Obama Will 'Release All Murderers'

Musician and conservative activist Pat Boone took to WorldNetDaily today with an incendiary column titled “Obama’s Willie Horton plan: Release all murderers,” in which he criticizes President Obama’s goal of closing the Guantanamo Bay detention facility.

Likening Obama’s plan to the Massachusetts furlough program that critics said was responsible for Horton’s crime spree, Boone said Obama might begin “emptying and shutting down all our prisons and just let all the offenders be released back into society.”

“He and his administration are already doing that – deporting criminal illegal aliens, and then allowing them to come right back in to commit more crimes,” Boone added, wondering if the Obama administration's policies will lead to “a mass invasion by illegal aliens, including near certain terrorists with plans for future 9/11 style attacks in our own cities?”

All of this, Boone said, is meant to turn America “into a virtual socialist, if not outright communist, society.”

What’s it going to take, America, for us collectively to wake up and see the obvious – that we’re being taken off the rails by a mad conductor?

This is the 50th anniversary of the film “Doctor Strangelove.” Ironic, if not prescient. This frighteningly successful film depicts a U.S. government and military buying into false information and launching a devastating atomic attack on Russia, in what is intended to be a first strike deterrent of a suspected attack, which proved early to be inaccurate. But in the end, all attempts to recall or stop the atomic attack failed, and the film ends with crazed Colonel “King” Kong straddling the bomb as it falls from the bomb bay and hurtles toward the catastrophic explosion and the pollution of the whole earth’s atmosphere.

Fantastic fiction? Sure. Couldn’t happen in today’s world? Not so sure.

There’s a different scenario unfolding in this country we love, right before our eyes, and we’re reading about it in the daily papers and seeing it on the nightly news broadcasts. What if our elected leadership had decided America no longer deserved to be leader of the free world, should have its military and its programs reduced to ineffectual status, our vibrant economy bankrupted, and that our republic should be “fundamentally transformed” into a virtual socialist, if not outright communist, society?

What if the elected president and his attorney general, both sworn to defend the Constitution and the security of the United States, decided – even made public statements – that they would not defend the laws concerning our borders and a mass invasion by illegal aliens, including near certain terrorists with plans for future 9/11 style attacks in our own cities?

I’m not making this up, and it’s not a Stanley Kubrick screenplay. It’s the “man with the phone and pen” using his “executive authority” with abandon and disdain for Congress, the Constitution and his own oath to defend our country.

Will he just sovereignly declare, like a 21st century “Doctor Strangelove,” that while he raises our national debt to over $18 trillion, we can “save money” by emptying and shutting down all our prisons and just let all the offenders be released back into society? He and his administration are already doing that – deporting criminal illegal aliens, and then allowing them to come right back in to commit more crimes. And so far, Congress seems befuddled about what to do.

Right Wing Round-Up - 2/2/15

Right Wing Bonus Tracks - 2/2/15

  • Larry Klayman says that Mike Huckabee is his choice for president "assuming he loses some weight so he can physically withstand the rigors and stress of being president."
  • Charisma's Jennifer LeClaire is hosting prayer calls every morning. If you are on the West Coast and wish to participate, you simply have to get up at 3 a.m.
  • MassResistance has established its first state chapter in Virginia. It is called, appropriately enough, Virginia-MassResistance.
  • Personhood USA announces that "new personhood legislation has already been introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives, South Carolina, New Hampshire, and Mississippi. An additional personhood resolution was filed in Virginia last week."
  • Finally, Steve Deace says that every Republican presidential hopeful must be asked where they stand on the issue of Christians being "bullied into submission by the Rainbow Jihad."

RNC Member: End Of School Prayer Led To 'Assault, Rape, Murder'

Iowa Republican National Committee member Tamara Scott, who also runs the state chapter of Concerned Women for America and works as a lobbyist for The Family Leader, told the “View From a Pew” radio program last week that more prayer rallies like Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal’s “The Response” are needed to prevent God from destroying America .

One of the things for which the country needs to repent in order to get back on God’s good side, Scott said later in the interview, is the end of state-sponsored prayer in schools.

“When the prayer came out in the ‘70s, and that’s one of the things that I prayed for last week in Louisiana with 6,000 people, repentance, because we as a church should never have let that happen, we should never have allowed prayer to be taken out of our schools,” she said.

She cited the claims of Christian-nation activist David Barton, who links the end of state-sponsored school prayer to all manner of social ills. “Since we’ve done that, David Barton has done studies and research that in your schools, the crimes used to be gum, tardiness and talking. Now it is assault, rape, murder. We’re dealing with much more difficult issues,” she said.

(In reality, the rates of violent crime and sexual assault have plummeted in the last two decades.)

Scott suggested that instead of passing a “horrible” anti-bullying bill currently being considered in the state legislature, Iowa should just return Christian prayer to schools:

“The problem is, like prayer, we took out the golden rule in our schools — which is a scripture verse, treat others like you want to be yourself treated — we’ve taken the Bible out and the schools are groping for something to replace it, and in its place with all kinds of bad law on top of bad law that only oppress us and make us all victims to possible crime and punishment for somebody else’s cause.”

Later in the interview, Scott insisted that the separation of church and state is “nowhere” in the Constitution and that if conservative Christians “only had the courage of the pagans or those who disagree with us, if we stood on our convictions as much as they do, we wouldn’t be in this.”

Mike Huckabee Mocks 'Bizarre' Michael Sam Call, Fears Gay 'Economic Terrorism'

Mike Huckabee appeared last week on Dave Garrison’s “Faith & Liberty” radio show, where he spoke about his new book, “God, Guns, Grits and Gravy.” Garrison told Huckabee that he was upset about how Right Wing Watch and others covered remarks that Michele Bachmann made on his show accusing gay people of seeking to “freely prey on little children sexually,” pointing to it as proof of growing “intolerance” among gay rights supporters.

The former Arkansas governor said that if he were elected president, he would use his bully pulpit to promote opposition to marriage equality, just as President Obama became “the leader cheerleader” for gay rights.

“Even though he didn’t call the family of Chris Kyle, the ‘American Sniper,’ when he was killed for all he had done for his country, he picks up the phone and calls an NFL football player and congratulates him for being homosexual,” he said. “How bizarre is that?”

“Since the president ‘came out,’ so to speak, you see court after court suddenly deciding that same-sex marriage is just fine; I’m convinced that it’s the president having given this legitimacy and sense of authority to the issue that has changed the debate,” he added, before once again claiming that governors and legislators can simply refuse to enforce federal court rulings on marriage equality.

Huckabee also rebuked Chick-fil-A CEO Dan Cathy for walking back comments condemning homosexuality, calling it a “huge disappointment” that Cathy caved to pro-gay “economic terrorism.”

“I felt that it was a gut-punch to all those people who had stood by him that in the end he capitulated to those forces promoting same-sex marriage,” Huckabee said.

Huckabee also used the “economic terrorism” line during a similar controversy surrounding a self-proclaimed charity group that directed donations to anti-gay organizations.

Eagle Forum: The GOP's Favorite Anti-Vaccine Group

New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s comments on “balance” in vaccine requirements raised eyebrows today, as critics noted that Christie pushed anti-vaccine claims back in 2009.

But Gov. Christie isn’t the only possible Republican presidential hopeful to have flirted with anti-vaccination conspiracy theories or happily promoted groups that do the same.

The episode is reminiscent of the 2012 GOP presidential nomination contest, when candidates piled on Rick Perry for mandating that female students in Texas receive an HPV vaccine, a stance for which he has since apologized. Rep. Michele Bachmann took the criticism of Perry even farther, baselessly charging that the vaccine causes mental retardation.

In addition, a number of top GOP presidential contenders, including Ted CruzRand Paul, Mike Huckabee and Rick Santorum have promoted Eagle Forum, the conservative organization founded by right-wing icon Phyllis Schlafly, which regularly pushes false claims about vaccines.

Eagle Forum is such a favorite of the Republican establishment that Schlafly received a lifetime achievement award — presented by Bachmann — at the 2011 Conservative Political Action Conference.

An entire section of Eagle Forum’s website is devoted to criticizing vaccines. The group has repeatedly promoted the myth that vaccines are linked to autism, featuring articles on its website about how efforts to vaccinate children are a form of government control that jeopardizes the freedoms of parents and families.

Along with its own misinformation, Eagle Forum refers members to anti-vaccine groups such as the National Vaccine Information Center and the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons, which counted Rand Paul as a member for over two decades. Back in 2000, the group promoted a letter [PDF] to the Department of Health and Human Services from then-Rep. Dan Burton, R-Ind., which suggested that vaccines are responsible for an increase in autism diagnoses.

In 2012, Schlafly praised California parents who refused to vaccine their children, attacking a member of the state assembly who wanted to pass a law requiring parents consult with a pediatrician before they make a decision on whether their child receives a vaccination.

Schlafly’s anti-vaccine activism is unlikely to cost her any support from the Republican ranks, who are even more likely to seek support from her and her organization as the GOP nomination contest moves into high gear.

More Governors Planning 'Response' Rallies To Stop God From Destroying America, Says Tamara Scott

Tamara Scott, an Iowa Religious Right organizer and RNC committeewoman who was involved in organizing Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal’s “The Response” prayer rally, said last week that a number of other Republican governors have committed to or are seriously considering holding similar rallies, which she hoped would save America from God’s destruction.

In an interview with “The View From a Pew” program, an Iowa-based webcast, Scott said that in addition to Jindal and former Texas Gov. Rick Perry, who hosted a “The Response” event in 2011, South Carolina Gov. Nikki Haley “has agreed” to host a rally and organizers are trying to convince Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker to do the same.

On her own program, “Tamara Scott Live,” earlier in the week, Scott said that Gov. Rick Scott of Florida had sent a staff member to the Jindal event to investigate the possibility of holding a “The Response” rally himself and that Jindal had approached Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad to ask him to consider holding one as well. Scott also expressed her hope that Gov. Sam Brownback of Kansas would consider hosting a rally.

Scott told the “View from a Pew” hosts that such events are needed to save American from destruction, paraphrasing the biblical book of Jeremiah: “If I build up your nation and you fall away, I’ll destroy you…If I’m going to destroy you and you repent, I will heal your land and rebuild you.”

“If our federal government is not smart enough to stick to the foundational principles of those who set this country on the great start that it had by calling on the name of Jesus — George Washington to all the men on Mount Rushmore — if they were not smart enough to understand, then our states can do it individually,” she said on the earlier program.

The Jindal rally’s organizers have hinted that other governors may be planning similar events, writing in a recent email, “There is a sense that God may be orchestrating similar days of prayer and fasting called by Governors around the nation over this next year.” Although the event’s main organizer, David Lane, has allied with a number of top Republican figures, he has yet to name names of governors he hopes to convince to host “The Response” replicas.

Jindal was forced multiple times to back away from the extremism of the organizers of his “The Response” rally, David Lane and the American Family Association. A prayer guide posted on the event’s website was removed after we reported that it blamed marriage equality and legal abortion for natural disasters like Hurricane Katrina. Then the organizers tried to scrub the website of evidence of the participation of self-proclaimed prophet Cindy Jacobs after Rachel Maddow ran a segment highlighting her extremism. And a few days after the rally, AFA stripped its main spokesman, Bryan Fischer, of his title under apparent pressure from the Republican National Committee, which was about to send 60 of its members on a trip to Israel funded by the AFA and organized by Lane.

Mark Harris: Conservatives 'Need To Come Out Of The Closet'

After coming in third in his campaign for the GOP U.S. Senate nomination in North Carolina, Pastor Mark Harris has returned to the helm of First Baptist Charlotte, where he opened last weekend’s sermon with remarks objecting to marriage equality and abortion rights.

Harris told his congregation that the majority of Americans oppose the legalization of same-sex marriage and abortion but the media are shutting out such conservative views, while judges, such as the one who struck down North Carolina’s ban on gay marriage, are unilaterally “changing the will of the people.”

“Ladies and gentlemen, we cannot believe the lies that will be fed,” Harris said. “Listen, everybody else is coming out of the closet, maybe we need to come out of the closet.”

Share this page: Facebook Twitter Digg SU Digg Delicious