Southern Religion

The Southern Baptist Richard Land/Wiley Drake anti-mosque axis?

Southern Baptist Convention Ethics & Religious Liberty Commission (ERLC) chief Richard Land predicted Park51 will never be built while former SBC Second Vice President Wiley Drake was speaking in futile opposition to the Islamic Center of Temecula Valley (Calif.) mosque.

In an interview with the American Family Association’s oddly filtered One News Now, Land is quoted as having said:

“I guarantee you that mosque will not be built two blocks from Ground Zero, and I’ll tell you why — the construction unions will refuse to build it,” he suggests. “And if the construction unions don’t build it, it won’t get built. The hard hats will picket it, and the unions will not cross that picket line. They lost too many of their own on 9/11.”

Meanwhile, Jeff Horseman of The Press-Enterprise reports that the Temecula Planning Commission voted unanimously to approve plans to build a mosque after a a 5 ½-hour public hearing in which Drake rose to speak:

Mosque critic Wiley Drake said Sept. 11 stemmed from the activity of mosques. And John Trautman said Muslims “are not only our enemy but pagans. Why would we want them in our backyard?”

Drake and others of similar view provoked Planning Commissioner John Telesion to say:

I’ve got holes in my tongue from biting it from some of the things I heard. Ignorance of the facts breeds fear, fear breeds hatred and I hope that’s an anomaly.

Of course Land is well-known for having pushed PolitiFact Lie of the Year Award winner Sarah Palin’s vice presidential candidacy toward John McCain. And in doing so Land helped crush McCain’s presidential hopes.

While Drake is probably best-known for his campaign of “imprecatory prayer” directed at still-alive-and-well President Obama.

From those two, mosques and community centers are safe.

The SBC’s reputation, maybe not so much.

December 2, 2010 Posted by | SBC | , , , | 2 Comments

What do you think of your brown-eyed girl now, Mr. Land?

Southern Baptist Convention public policy chief Richard Land pushed Sarah Palin for vice president and:

This fundamental failure to grasp basic facts may help explain Nate Silver’s conclusion that Palin has little support among college-educated and wealthy Republican.

[H/T Oliver Willis]

November 25, 2010 Posted by | SBC | , , , | 1 Comment

Oh no, Rubio! From outRichardLandish to uh-oh?

Promoted by SBC ethics czar Richard Land as a credible 2012 Republican presidential nominee, Mario Rubio is under Internal Revenue Service investigation.

The Miami Herald reports that Rubio is one of three former Florida Republican Party credit card holders being scrutinized for their alleged use of party credit cards to pay personal expenses.

Whether a full-fledged criminal investigation is merited has not been decided, and Rubio adviser Todd Harris told the Miami Herland, “There is absolutely nothing to this.”

The principal effect, as Talking Points Memo suggests, is likely to be on the dynamics of Rubio’s fight with Florida Gov. Charlie Crist for the Republican senatorial nomination, without which Rubio becomes another Land loser.

April 22, 2010 Posted by | Politics, SBC | , , , , , | 4 Comments

Is Rubio for president 2012 another outLandish prediction?

After making a scandal of himself in opposition to health reform, Southern Baptist Convention ethics czar Richard Land has in an interview with Politico promoted former Florida House Speaker Marco Rubio as a credible 2012 Republican presidential nominee who has “more experience than Obama had.”

The gimlet-eyed journalists at PolitiFact poured that outLandish claim through their fact-filter and emerged with a “barely true.” Even that conclusion is a stretch. It assumes, for example, Rubio is elected to the U.S. Senate and serves two years — although he has yet to win the Aug. 24 Fla. Republican primary.

Sarah Palin benefitted from Land’s dubious blessings. In 2008 he sang her praises as a potential vice presidential nominee in an interview with Brian Goldsmith of CBS, mentioning Southern Baptist Mike Huckabee only as an afterthought.

Republican presidential nominee John McCain chose Palin as his vice presidential nominee and after a brief popularity bubble, she helped sink his candidacy. Then, Palin the public servant went home to abandon the governorship of Alaska.

Palin’s former prospective son-in-law Levi Johnson said at the time that she left in pursuit of cash. The dollar figures have since born Johnson out. Matthew Mosk of ABC News reported:

Since leaving office at the end of July 2009, the 2008 Republican vice presidential nominee has brought in at least 100 times her old salary – a haul now estimated at more than $12 million — through television and book deals and a heavy schedule of speaking appearances worth five and six figures.

Along the way health reform in which Land and Palin both invested so much vilifying energy and who both contributed to the “death panels” howler which copped a “lie of the year” award, passed.

When Land comes to anoint you, candidate Rubio, if you’re really interested in public service, then for heaven’s sake outrun him.

April 19, 2010 Posted by | Politics | , , , , , | 1 Comment

Palintologists discover the annotated Sarah Palin global warmer

Not-a-liberal Mark Ambinder of The Atlantic gives us a clarifying interpretation of the text of the Washington Post’s Sarah Palin outreach to refugees from the pink-slip besieged Washington Times.

As counterfactual as it is charming, Palin’s text benefits from Ambinder’s concise Palintological efforts.

December 9, 2009 Posted by | Science | , , , | Comments Off on Palintologists discover the annotated Sarah Palin global warmer

The spun ‘blessing’ of Sarah Palin by Billy Graham Jr.

Burned by Richard M. Nixon, whom he advised in various ways and for whom he wrote at least one speech, Southern Baptist evangelist Billy Graham no longer endorses those who would be president. Still, the big spin is that he gave something of a blessing to Sarah Palin after she dined with the family last week.

The elder Graham is 91 and apparently still speaks for himself. After dinner with Palin he issued the following circumspect statement:

It was an honor having Governor Palin and her family in our home this evening. I, like many people, have been impressed with her strong commitment to her faith, to family and love of country. I appreciated hearing her speak of her own spiritual journey and her life in Alaska. I shared with her my own memories of preaching in the Sullivan Arena in Anchorage in 1984. We had an opportunity to pray together. Life in the spotlight is not easy and I pray that whatever lies ahead for this family that their faith in God and His Son, Jesus Christ, would remain strong and that God would put a hedge of protection around her and all those she holds dear. Sarah and her family will always be welcome in the Graham home.

That’s circumspect in contrast with the Raleigh News & Observer’s suggestion Sunday that Palin had received Graham’s blessing.

The N&O spin was drummed up out of son Franklin Graham’s statement to The Charlotte Observer that his father has “followed her career and likes her strong stand on faith. Daddy feels God was using her to wake America up.”

Which seems too circumspect by far to be called a “blessing” from the Billy Graham Jr. we’ve all heard shake the foundations from pulpits around the world.

December 6, 2009 Posted by | Politics, Religion | , , , | 1 Comment

Counterfactual overstatement = ‘the evil one’

Mainstream Baptist dissects Manhattan Declaration’s overstatement and distortion. They are not echoes of righteousness, he explains:

In my mind, there’s something about Jesus’ injunction to “let your yea be yea, and your nay be nay” (Matt. 5:37) that is applicable beyond oath-taking situations and confirms the truth that “anything beyond these is of the evil one.” Christians have no business embellishing the truth and twisting it for political purposes and that is what the Manhattan Declaration does from beginning to end.

All driven by the desperation of a Christian Right which feels power slipping through its fingers like sand.

November 25, 2009 Posted by | Politics, Religion | , , , , , | Comments Off on Counterfactual overstatement = ‘the evil one’

Has Palin written a parable?

Going Rogue may not be quite as much a work of fiction as Left Behind but Dan Gilgoff seems to think they’re aimed at the same general audience.

November 19, 2009 Posted by | Book Review | , , , | Comments Off on Has Palin written a parable?

Sarah Palin, the smeared Dominionist feminist

Sarah Palin the Christian Right Dominionist is rarely directly acknowledged as a feminist who asserts her right to power. Even feminist Echidne of the Snakes comes at that issue obliquely when defending Palin against the misogynist smears (like the current cover of Newsweek). The Goddess writes:

The list of explosive topics for feminist bloggers is slightly different than for, say, progressive bloggers in general. And no, I’m not going to give you the list because that would get the yelling started. But one of those topics certainly is the way Sarah Palin is treated in the political media and on various political blogs. The debate on her is predictable: Some (poor dear) feminist blogger points out that her treatment contains large chunks of sexist smearing. Then others note that Sarah is trading on her sexuality so she deserves the sexualized responses. Or that she’s too stoopid for words and has such horrible politics that we really should dump everything possible on her head. Including misogyny, whenever appropriate.

November 18, 2009 Posted by | Politics, Publications | , , , | Comments Off on Sarah Palin, the smeared Dominionist feminist

Religious Right will draw blood tomorrow


Sarah Palin, queen of oogedy-boogedy, recorded a Va. robocall, mostly about herself. She also endorsed the New York 23rd District Conservative Party candidate, turning that race on it’s head.

In April conservative columnist Kathleen Parker was mulling the obituary of the Religious Right – the oogedy-boogedy branch of the Republican Party. And tomorrow, very much alive, they’re likely to romp here and there.

Progressive Sara Posner writes:

From Virginia to New York to Maine, the religious right is playing a key in tomorrow’s off-year elections. The reports of its death were greatly exaggerated.

. . .

Every other election cycle or so, the religious right makes noises that it might have to form a third party of its own. Although the likelihood of success for Christianist third party is nil, this “values voters” grandstanding is not an empty threat. It moves GOP candidates, particularly in the primaries, to the right. They can’t win without the Christian right money or ground troops.

She then conducts a tour of races in which the Religious Right has imposed its will, most notably in NY-23 where, win or lose, Sarah Palin & Co. ejected a Republican moderate and put a Conservative Party candidate in the lead.

They’re not the same, but the search for a redeeming new name isn’t on the minds of the prevailing Religious Right leaders tonight. That doesn’t mean they’re really back in electoral charge, however. It means they aren’t dead.

Did someone seriously think they would be dead? They have long made their political living by manipulating a target audience they know well and they are, of course, still good at it.

November 3, 2009 Posted by | Politics, Religion | , , , , | 2 Comments