Dark Christianity
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May 2008
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Armies of God

LJ-SEC: (ORIGINALLY POSTED BY [info]catvincent)

X-posted to my LJ.

From Orcinus comes this timely observation:

"And so it came to pass, in the years that followed, that an entire generation came of age on Bibleman and Teen Mania and Battle Cry and Jesus Camp, with these two passages embedded in their very marrow through years of reading and repetition. Starting in the early 80s, the religious right carefully built a perfect, busy, closed world in which to indoctrinate their boys from babyhood. Cut off from the larger culture, isolated in Christian schools and homeschools, socially sheltered in church youth groups and fundamentalist-run Scout troops, these boys feasted on the glory of the martyr and the holiness of the cause. Proud of their conformity and well aware that independent thinking leads to no good, this cohort is now launching into adult life from places like Liberty, Regent, Oral Roberts, Bob Jones, and a hundred other tiny fundamentalist Bible colleges with equally revolutionary agendas.

To put it starkly: fundamentalist America deliberately set out long ago to raise up an army of Mark Uhls. And now, twenty-odd years later, we are all starting to be confronted with the final product. Of course, with typical disingenuousness, they'll tell you that the "battle" they prepared these kids for is metaphorical -- "our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world." But none of us, not even them, can be surprised that a generation of young men who've been drilled in this militaristic mythology since toddlerhood are now arriving at conscription age, jacked up on an incendiary cocktail of testosterone, sexual repression, xenophobia, and a belief that they are Spiritual Warriors who have a special dispensation to use violence to further God's mission.

The success of this program is nothing short of spectacular. We now have literally a million Mark Uhls in America -- young men in their late teens and early twenties raised to sacrifice themselves in the Glorious Cause -- and they've got another few million brothers coming up behind them, equally determined to earn their stripes in the coming Christian jihad.

Not all of them will become freelance security guards packing homemade napalm; but some of the alternatives are even more alarming. According to Mikey Weinstein of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation, these young men are already overrunning the military services. Bred-from-birth Christian soldiers, armored in faith, truth, righteousness, salvation, vengeance, and zeal, they are rapidly re-making the pluralistic service culture over in their own image. Most disturbing of all: they are being joined by the increasing numbers of white supremacists who are also being drawn into the service by the promise of military training they can later use in their battle against minorities and liberals. Partisans of constitutional democracy will immediately recognize this as a potentially fatal combination."

Current Mood: cranky
Current Music: Drone Zone:[SomaFM]
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