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Scapegoating Christianity


Contender Ministries


The last election is said to have been affected by a block of voters who believe the moral values held by our founding fathers are worth holding on to.  The so-called “values voters” are now seen by the secular left as the main force preventing them from returning to power.  One logical response to this threat might be to recognize that the majority of Americans don’t feel the Democratic Party platform is compatible with their worldview and try to be a more inclusive party.  This tactic, however, would be completely foreign to a political party that has consistently engaged in scare tactics, race baiting, and demonizing their opponents to win elections. 





The liberal response to the elections is just more of the same.  Only this time instead of being told that grandma will lose everything, the richest one percent is taking over the country, or Republicans are racist, you’ll be told the religious right is creating a theocracy.  The left has declared war on Christianity and a sea of tin foil hats has filled the Colosseum for the show.   


This war has been going on for some time, but new fronts have been opened up and the rhetoric has been ramped up to a sometimes-amusing level.  One such front is the attack on faith based initiatives and abstinence education.  It’s all part of the broader goal of making Christians look stupid, prudish, and backward.  As you’ll see later, a second front makes a 180 degree turn and portrays Christians as cunning, political geniuses who are on the verge of taking over the entire country and creating a theocracy. 


Abstinence Education Will Kill You 

An April 5, 2005 edition of the Online Journal by Mel Seesholtz, Ph.D features an article titled When Religion Becomes a Weapon of Mass Destruction 

The article begins with “Uganda now leads the way in the "final solution" to the homosexual problem”, and then equates opposition to homosexual marriage with Hitler’s “Final Solution” to exterminate the Jewish race.  The author implies that Uganda’s laws against homosexuality somehow translate into a conspiracy in the United States to round up homosexuals and imprison them for life.  How this connection is made is not explained. 

Uganda's war of purification seems to have two basic components. First, imprison as many homosexuals as possible. Then, kill off as many more as possible by barring UN-sponsored education, prevention and treatment programs and refusing humanitarian AIDS funds from Western, Christian churches that try to help Ugandans afflicted with HIV/AIDS 

Seescholtz consistently tries to portray Uganda’s laws and policies as the ultimate goal of all abstinence programs, especially faith based organizations. 

Nevertheless, the Traditional Values Coalition (TVC) advocates the African and specifically the "Uganda model" be adopted here. The figures they use in their arguments contradict those of the U.N. and W.H.O. But then again, TVC considers the sex education programs those organization sponsor to be advocates of the "culture of death." But it is TVC's own religious fanaticism and faith-based political agenda that are sowing the seeds of widespread disease and death, here.

The nondenominational Traditional Values Coalition does not advocate imprisoning homosexuals, nor does it consider sex education a part of the culture of death.  Like most Christians they have a moral objection to homosexuality and feel abstinence is the best answer to the AIDS epidemic.  They believe the U.N.’s promotion of the homosexual agenda will only lead to the further spread of AIDS and sexually transmitted diseases.  Their organization seeks to discourage promiscuous and homosexual sex, thereby eliminating the spread of these diseases through immoral behavior.  How is this “sowing the seeds of widespread disease and death”? 

Lumping all Christians in with Catholics, Seesholtz uses Rome’s ban on condoms and birth control as proof that there is an evil plot to deny condoms to homosexuals and kill off the homosexual population with the AIDS virus.   

Seesholtz is misleading his readers by implying that Evangelical and Bible believing Christians forbid birth control.  Rome has banned their use for Catholics, but this doctrine is based on a twisting of Old Testament scripture and unbiblical tradition, and is not a doctrine of most mainline Christian churches.  It’s not some evil plot to eliminate the undesirables.  If Christians wanted to kill homosexuals by making it easier for them to get AIDS, we would not be fighting to have abstinence taught in schools.  Christians wouldn’t be sending missionaries and foreign aid groups into third-world countries to teach abstinence as the only 100% effective way to prevent AIDS.  If there were really some nefarious plot to kill off segments of the population with AIDS, wouldn’t Christians be encouraging unlimited sex with as many partners as you like?  Christians just can’t win.  They’re demonized as prudes for promoting abstinence before marriage and then accused of trying to murder homosexuals around the world by promoting unprotected sex.  You can’t have it both ways.

The author proves his hypocrisy by criticizing a rally leader in Uganda for saying "We are promoting abstinence because Uganda is under attack from an agenda driven by homosexuals and Western experts."  You can’t spread AIDS through the homosexual community by abstaining from sex.  Perhaps Mr. Seescholtz doesn’t understand how the AIDS virus is transmitted. 

Probably recognizing his error, Seescholtz must redefine what abstinence until marriage is.  Using a World Health Organization report, he explains the disproportionate number of women infected with AIDS this way: 

The report suggests the soaring infection rates among young women are fueled by religious teachings that require women to remain ignorant of sex and sexuality until they marry. 

Well that explains it.  Abstinence no longer means abstaining from sex until you are in a monogamous marital relationship.  It really means you must remain completely ignorant of sex and sexuality until you’re married.  This is intended to make the backward religious folk look ignorant and uneducated.  What it really does is further expose the writer’s twisted logic.  Of course, we know Christians do not teach a complete ignorance of sexuality and what safe sex is, but let’s go with what Seescholtz claims.  If sex and sexuality is so taboo that it lead to complete ignorance, how are these women being infected with AIDS?  Once again, I don’t think he understands how HIV is transmitted and what increases your risks of contracting it.   

He continues his circular logic by saying, “And once they marry, the religious prime directive is procreation, which means unprotected sex”.  Is Seescholtz suggesting that if two Christians remain virgins until marriage, it’s still possible that one of them contracted AIDS from the sex they didn’t have and may give it to the other partner?   I don’t think it’s the Christians who are ignorant of how sexually transmitted diseases are transferred.  It makes no sense, but this doesn’t stop Seescholtz from continuing the theory with a quote from a New York Times article: 

"The stark reality is that what kills young women here is often not promiscuity, but marriage. Indeed, just about the deadliest thing a woman in southern Africa can do is get married."

It isn’t just the abstinence that is killing everyone; it’s the marriage.  I’m getting dizzy here.  What do we have so far?  Abstinence is bad because not having sex leaves you ignorant about sex.  So, the smart people follow the author’s advice and have lots of sex, thereby avoiding being counted among the ignorant.  The woman who has avoided promiscuity marries one of the less ignorant men, and because she is completely ignorant she has children with him.  When she gets AIDS from the promiscuous husband, it’s obvious where the breakdown occurred.  The ignorant woman should have been promiscuous too.  Wait a minute.  Or is it that the husband should have practiced abstinence?  No, abstinence leads to ignorance, which leads to death by marriage.  I’ve got it.  We should ban procreating.   

This is how secularists always set the stage in a debate on abstinence.  They use scare tactics (Christians are out to kill homosexuals), and then pick a third world country as the setting for their verbal gymnastics and circular logic.  Now that the “ignorant nazi” tactic has been successfully implemented, it’s time to move on to the Christian right in the United Sates. 

Seescholtz starts off with this lead-in: 

"Abstinence-only sex education": the designation seems an oxymoron. Nevertheless, these are the faith-based programs receiving federal funding (almost $900 million since George W. Bush took office), despite the accumulating evidence that they don't work and are, in fact, counterproductive and dangerous."

The author has already explained how abstinence is dangerous and counterproductive, but just in case you need more dizzying intellect to be convinced, he cites a report from  He conveniently gives no link to the actual Yale report being discussed. 

"Teens who pledge to remain virgins until marriage are more likely to take chances with other kinds of sex that increase the risk of sexually transmitted diseases, a study of 12,000 adolescents suggests."

My first conclusion would be that these teens didn’t understand what abstinence means, probably because they heard President Clinton and other liberal teachers explain that “other kinds of sex” aren’t really sex.  A little research on this report reveals that there is much you’re not told about the study.  It’s not known whether any of the 12,000 adolescents were exposed to any abstinence education, nor is it clear what exactly their pledge included.  In fact, several of the participants recanted later and admitted they had made no such pledge.  The fact is, the study tells us absolutely nothing about the effectiveness of abstinence education.  Some of the teens could have received no abstinence education whatsoever, and some could have received abstinence plus education, which teaches both abstinence and protected sex.

Of course what us ignorant folks need to understand is that when everyone engages in unlimited protected sex all these risks go away, right?  Even Seescholtz admits this isn’t so when he says, “The federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have consistently obscured the fact that condoms are 86-93 percent effective in preventing sexually transmitted diseases.”   Even if we are to believe “other kinds of sex” never occur among those teenagers who are sexually active, as many as 14% of them risk getting HIV or STD’s.  Suddenly, the women in Uganda who abstained from sex and then got AIDS from their husbands makes a little more sense doesn’t it.  The enlightened husband was a part of that 14%. 

There are several small fronts like this aimed at faith based initiatives, any form of Christian prayer in the public square, Christian symbols in public, and the list goes on.  These attacks on the religious right pale in comparison to the newest front, however.   


The minions have donned their heavy duty, flame resistant, space age technology, tin foil hats for this one.  Left wing blogs, newspapers, and message boards like Democratic Underground are abuzz with talk of impending doom.  The sky is really falling this time.  The “fundies” (fundamentalist Christians) are establishing a theocracy.  A liberal somewhere found the word “Dominionism” and it’s now become the new buzzword of the left.  It’s the new threat.  Post a topic in a liberal message board on Dominionism and it will generate dozens of conspiracy theories, all of which contain words like Nazism, the Taliban, theocracy, and genocide.   

So what is Dominionism?  Most of the articles I’ve read lately direct the reader to for a definition of Dominionism.  Interestingly, the Religious Tolerance website claims Dominionism is widespread through several Christian denominations, and portrays it as being synonymous with fundamentalist Christianity.  I’d be more inclined to believe that most Christians haven’t even heard of Dominionism.  However, it’s more conducive to fear mongering to portray the movement as widespread, which is probably why the Religious Tolerance definition is so popular.  Their definition reads: 

Dominionism, Dominion Theology, Christian Reconstructionism, Theocratic Dominionism, and Theonomy are not denominations or faith groups. Rather, they are interrelated beliefs which are followed by members of a wide range of Christian denominations.

Its most common form, Dominionism, represents one of the most extreme forms of Fundamentalist Christianity thought. Its followers, called Dominionists, are attempting to peacefully convert the laws of United States so that they match those of the Hebrew Scriptures. They intend to achieve this by using the freedom of religion in the US to train a generation of children in private Christian religious schools. Later, their graduates will be charged with the responsibility of creating a new Bible-based political, religious and social order. One of the first tasks of this order will be to eliminate religious choice and freedom. Their eventual goal is to achieve the "Kingdom of God" in which much of the world is converted to Christianity. They feel that the power of God's word will bring about this conversion. No armed force or insurrection will be needed; in fact, they believe that there will be little opposition to their plan. People will willingly accept it. All that needs to be done is to properly explain it to them.

All religious organizations, congregations etc. other than strictly Fundamentalist Christianity would be suppressed. Nonconforming Evangelical, main line and liberal Christian religious institutions would no longer be allowed to hold services, organize, proselytize, etc. Society would revert to the laws and punishments of the Hebrew Scriptures. Any person who advocated or practiced other religious beliefs outside of their home would be tried for idolatry and executed. Blasphemy, adultery and homosexual behavior would be criminalized; those found guilty would also be executed. At that time that this essay was originally written, this was the only religious movement in North America of which we were aware which advocates genocide for followers of minority religions and non-conforming members of their own religion. Since then, we have learned of two conservative Christian pastors in Texas who have advocated the execution of all Wiccans. Ralph Reed, the executive director of the conservative public policy group the Christian Coalition has criticized Reconstructionism as "an authoritarian ideology that threatens the most basic civil liberties of a free and democratic society."

Obviously, Dominionism is a fringe group with beliefs that aren’t compatible with Christianity at all.  Yet several news articles and blogs lately have used the word to describe the “Religious Right” in America.  Their biggest mistake was in not knowing anything about Christianity before they latched on to the Dominionism label.  The vast majority of Christians, regardless of denomination, would never want to return to Old Testament law.  As anyone who’s read the New Testament would know, Jesus came to fulfill the law.  We are no longer saved by following the laws and ordinances of the Old Covenant.  Under the New Covenant we are saved by grace, not by works. 


Galatiains 3:25  “Now that faith has come, we are no longer under the supervision of the law.”


Galatians 5:18  “But if you are led by the Spirit, you are not under law.”


Romans 3:27-28  “Where, then, is boasting? It is excluded. On what principle? On that of observing the law? No, but on that of faith.  For we maintain that a man is justified by faith apart from observing the law.”


This doctrine is preached from the pulpit in most, if not all, Christian churches.  Therein lies the problem.  Most secularists have never set foot in a Christian church or read the Bible.  Being accurate in their portrayal of Christians, however, is not the goal.  The goal is to marginalize Christians by painting them as extremist nuts.  They see how people have responded to Sharia Law and the complete lack of freedom in Islamic countries, and they’re trying to paint Christians with the same brush.  If they can convince people that Christians are no different than Islamic fundamentalists, it opens up all kinds of scary labels – the Taliban, extremist, terrorist, etc.  Are you seeing a pattern here?  Abstinence education will lead to a Uganda-like situation, Christianity in the public square will lead to the establishment of a state religion, and if Christians are allowed to participate in our representative democracy, we’ll soon be living in a theocracy run by the Taliban.


The mainstream media has also picked up on the theocracy conspiracy theory.  The Washington Times covered an event recently where secular humanists and leftists convened in New York to strategize how to counter what they contend is a growing political threat from Christian conservatives.  The conference was called “Examining the Real Agenda of the Religious Far Right”.  Speakers for the event argued that understanding the “religious right” is the key to preventing a “theocracy” from governing the nation.  Ralph White, co-founder of the Open Center in New York City, warned that the religious right now has an unprecedented influence on American politics and policy.  “The key,” he continued, “is to understand its aims, methods, beliefs, theology and psychology”.  Perhaps Mr. White could start by learning his history.  Christian influence today is certainly not unprecedented.  The founding fathers of this great country were Christians, and the “religious right” wrote our constitution and formed our government.   The only thing unprecedented is the level of hatred directed at Christians in this country today.


Also attending the conference was the general secretary of the National Council of Churches, Bob Edgar.  Mr. Edgar views the appointment of Christians to the Judicial bench and the presence of Christians in our representative government as the “darkest time in our history”.  His level of hatred for Christianity and Christians is so great it trumps what most thinking people would consider the darkest days in our history - slavery, the civil war, two world wars, the Great Depression, etc. 


Ms. Bokaer, founder of, presented evidence of this shift toward theocracy in America.  Tax cuts combined with increased funding for faith-based social programs and decreases in welfare spending, Ms. Bokaer said, were examples of “the theological right zealously setting up to establish their beliefs in all aspects of society.”  Letting people keep more of their money and getting them off welfare is not a sign of a theocratic takeover, Ms. Bokaer.  It’s a sign that Republicans have been given a majority by the voters, and the war on Christianity in the public square suffered a setback.  It isn’t just Christians who are opposed to a socialist government and discrimination against people of faith.  Obviously, a majority of voters oppose Ms. Bokaer’s form of democracy.


The number of absurd comments made at this conference are too many to mention.  They ranged from claims that the Federal Communications Commission is the new Taliban arm of the religious right, to equating the ban on gay marriage with the formation of a “Ministry for the Protection of Virtue and Prevention of Vice”.  Equating Christianity with radical Islam is the method of choice.  When this tactic is deployed correctly, Christians naturally begin to fall under the title of “extremists”. 


Several speakers at the event asked the question, “Where’s the religious left?”  There are a few answers to that question.  The religious secularists are busy running our schools and filing lawsuits against any Christian unfortunate enough to come into the sights of the ACLU.  The religious environmentalists are busy launching land grabs, whining about gas prices, and fighting any drilling in the barren tundra of ANWR.  The religious evolutionists are busy filing lawsuits against anyone who isn’t afraid to debate the doctrine of evolution and its many problems.  And, finally, the liberal Christians are beginning to wake up to the fact that the left doesn’t just hate conservative Christians.  They hate any form of Christian values and any public display of Christian beliefs.  Some of these Christians on the left actually voted for Bush in the last election.  Judging by the new Intifada being launched in response to the election, there will likely be more of them next election.  Don’t look for the left to wake up to their mistake, though.  Their hatred is stronger than their political common sense. 


My fear is that this is not just the usual vitriol and temper tantrum from the Left.  It’s as if all of the hate directed at Bush before the election is now being directed at those perceived to have swung the election in his favor.  The war in Iraq no longer serves as the political hammer it once did, Democrats were unable to generate the kind of fear they’d hoped to in the Social Security debate, and the economy continues to improve.  All of the Left’s pet issues have failed them.  Republicans have firmly established their position as the party to be trusted with national defense and the war on terror, so whipping up fears of terrorism would be decidedly bad for Democrats.  Not to mention making the terrorists the victim opens all kinds of doors for America-bashing.  That leaves the morality debate and the religious right.  Harper’s magazine provides a good example of an attempt to shift the focus from the threat of terrorism to the made up threat from Christianity in its recent cover story titled, “The Christian Right’s War on America.”  It’s another in a sea of articles that can be found in op-ed pages across the country.


Harper’s magazine also ran a piece by Chris Hedges called “Feeling the Hate with the National Religious Broadcasters.”  The picture displayed with the article depicts a cross juxtaposed with an attack dog.  The goal is to reduce America’s most popular Christian broadcasters to hate groups on par with Muslim terrorist groups.  Hedges also contributes to the Dominionist conspiracy theory.  After laying out what the Dominionists believe, he applies the label to the majority of Christians by casually stating that not all Dominionists will admit to the label or state their beliefs publicly.  Hedges puts it this way:


“Shocking as it seems, Dominionists have gained extensive control of the Republican party, and the apparatus of government throughout the United States.  Yet Dominionists continue to operate in secrecy.  It is estimated that 35 million Americans who call themselves Christians adhere to Dominionism, although most of them are unaware of the true nature of their own beliefs and goals.”


How convenient.  Even if Christians say they’re not Dominionist and admit to no such belief system, they’re still probably Dominionists.  It’s similar to the Dan Rather tactics.  The claim is fraudulent, but accurate.  Hedges’ warnings of an imminent theocracy where all other religions are banned, homosexuals are imprisoned, and witches are persecuted is so devoid of any facts and contrary to recent legislation and court rulings, it’s hard not to question his ability for rational thought.  When he invites the reader to wake up and battle this new Hitler-like evil, it’s hard to believe people will take him seriously.  Sadly, they ARE taking it seriously.  It’s the last weapon in their arsenal, and they mean to use it. 


In the face of such attacks and character assassination, our best hope is to make sure our lives, our churches, and our leaders make these accusations seem as ludicrous as they are.  We do that by doing what the Christians in Rome did when they were under heavy persecution.  It was the Christian’s love, their humility, bravery, and strength of conviction that changed minds.  It was their unwavering devotion to their Lord and their fellow believers that made many of the accusations against them unbelievable.  That’s not to say we shouldn’t be involved in politics and stand up against legislation that takes away our rights.  We must.  As soon as we let them silence us and withdraw from the democratic process, we’ve lost.  But, you expose hatred and lies by making it obvious that the hatred is not based in fact – by making evident in our lives the hope that we have through Jesus Christ.