Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Daddy Warbangs and Mars

Prominent Evangelical and figurehead within the Southern Baptist Convention, Richard Land has recently protested against protesting against militant racism. In a sense, it shouldn't have been such a surprise, since several years ago he came out for other acts of violent racism and militantism in supporting the Iraqi War as being "Just".

As head of the SBC's panel on Ethics and Religion, Land gave his sanctioning and blessing to the most obvious case of an unjust war in recent memory:
How do you reflect on the war as a Christian?
I believe in just-war theory, and the first item in just-war criteria is that it has to be a just cause. I believe our cause in Iraq was just; I think it was one of the more noble things we've done. We went to liberate a country that was in the grip of a terrible dictator who had perpetrated horrible atrocities and crimes against humanity, against his own people, as well as his neighbors...
The idea of American exceptionalism is not a doctrine of empire, it's not a doctrine of domination, it's a doctrine of responsibility and obligation. We have a responsibility and an obligation based upon the blessings that have been showered upon us as a nation and as a people to help others when we can.

While highlighting the atrocities of Hussein, he ignores the atrocities his own government committed on the entire populace of Iraq. But it's apparently okay for Americans to murder - we have a moral obligation from god (as we know based upon his financial blessings upon us), so bombing a few (quarter million at the least directly died from military action, mostly civilians) and displacing millions more is worth it to deliver American-style democracy to the grateful and expectant.

Of course, that good ol' American-style democracy is best when bloodily forced upon the people - not when they do it themselves, or speak up or demand their own fates on their own. They can't possibly be smart and civil enough for that. They are, after all, an inferior people, right Richard Land?

You're welcome, Iraq! And for that privilege, we just expect a little payment, a moment of generosity for our hard work on your behalf. We'll just take some of your oil. Thanks!

Brown people, according to the Christian War Patriarchs, can't fend for themselves 'cuz they're like little children. Better let the White Man do it. This is why Land was so upset when all this noise was happening on behalf of Trayvon Martin. Stop making a fuss; Let the White Man take care of this issue on our time. Just trust us.

But the Christian War Patriarchy is nothing if not resourceful. Not only is it abundantly racist, it's also overwhelmingly sexist. Not only is it defending and upholding war, it's glorifying it in church, making it the normative process of worshiping our new god, Mars.

[Unidentified soldier in Union corporal's uniform holding Colt revolver to chest] (LOC)
A Pastor After God's Own Heart!

Equating love of God with having a hard-on for war are apparently also essential elements of Sunday morning worship (via iMonk). Douglas Wilson starts with the presuppositions (like his colleagues in homophobia and patriarchialism, Mark Driscoll and John Piper) that contemporary American churches are effeminate and that being inadequately testosterone-run is bad. Rather than suggest that both female and male voices need to be listened to, appreciated and welcomed within the church (well, it is a gender Apartheid after all), rather than suggesting that women would feel most appreciated if they were actually included in the decisions and leadership and direction of the church, Wilson believes they would be best if they would just let the Man decide.
[I]t includes them, brings them along, and makes them feel safe. If you reach the men, you will reach the women.

'149/365 Damsel In Distress  (+2)' photo (c) 2012, martinak15 - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

Those women-folk will appreciate it if we tell them what they need to hear. They'll be safe if only men, and men alone, were running the show. Little girls can't fend for themselves! Better let the menfolk handle this! Gird yourselves, men, we are preparing for war! And if she disagrees with this aspect of seeking for god and being protected, well she wasn't worth our attention in the first place. Only hot, confused, scared girls for the True Christian Church!
Moreover, you will find yourself reaching the worthiest of women, the true mothers in Israel.
Oh, I'm terribly sorry. Folks, we've been reaching the wrong kind of women. The kind that apparently, aren't worthy of the love of Jesus and our good protection. Being subversive and having an opinion automatically disqualifies the ladyfolks. As if having ladybits wasn't bad enough, when you have a vagina AND you talk out of turn, you're clearly unworthy.

But you know you're going to a sissy-ass church when...
2. Your music minister is more concerned that the choir trills their r's correctly than that they fill the sanctuary with loud sounds of battle.
Yeah. Real men, the type of men who subdue and subjugate women like property or little children or animals or something else they obviously don't respect protect their womens, are the type who love them so much that they're willing to kill unnecessarily for them. They love their women so much, that it's impossible to imagine anything else but killing and maybe even being kilt - I mean, of course, silly me, kilts.
7. The minister wears a robe, but the effect is not that of being robed for battle. If that same minister were to wear a kilt, everybody would think it was a skirt from a nearby all-girls private school. But, contrariwise, if the minister were able to wear a kilt in such a way as to terrify sinners with the imagined sound of skirling bagpipes, and the sounds of a small version of Armageddon across the misty moors, and the sermon text were a claymore whistling over their heads, then that kind of man could think about a robe if he wanted;
Wearing a robe is girly and femminy and queer. If you're going to wear a robe, it should be made out of leather and be in camouflage, or it should be an homage to Braveheart, the most Jesus-y of all the godly movies every made.

Trust us, it is. Don't worry about why. That should be obvious, silly girls...

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