Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Fundamentalists Are All Alike: A Question For Christian Fundamentalists

I have an honest question for those here in the US whose belief systems are often called “fundamentalist,” meaning that their religion requires unquestioning belief in the truth and accuracy of the Christian Bible, the Torah and Talmud and Rabbinic law, or the Quran and Hadith exactly as they are written. These individuals often are behind efforts to infringe on the rights and liberties of others, and sometimes will outright admit that their goal is to establish theocracy, based on whichever book/tradition they follow. My question is specifically addressed to Christian fundamentalists, since they are the most numerous and vocal here.

Here in the US, Christian fundamentalists’ fear of Islam and Muslims causes them to speak out against Islam regularly, and to put forth silly legislation forbidding the use of Islamic religious law in local courts. That this is already forbidden by our Constitution seems to have slipped their minds, unless there is a plan for something a bit more sinister. For example, why set up a law forbidding Islamic religious law, specifically, in local courts, unless it is in order to allow some other religious law in local courts, presumably Biblical law, seeing that it is Bible believing fundamentalists who promote the legislation.

If the goal is to establish Bible-based theocracy in the US, one would first have to make sure Sharia law is made illegal before suspending the First Amendment’s establishment clause in order to legalize Christian law. Can’t have the wrong kind of theocracy! In time, before the establishment of Christian theocracy in the US, I assume it would also be necessary to forbid the use of Halacha, Judaic law's path to god.

At any rate, the question for Christian fundamentalists is: based on your promotion of discriminatory laws and infringements of rights for various groups of individuals (women, non-Christians, LGBTs specifically), what exactly will be the difference between your theocracy and one based on Islamic fundamentalism or Jewish fundamentalism and why aren’t you working together in the short term? Each group would deny women rights to vote, to work outside the home, to access family planning information and contraception. Each group would criminalize non-hetero expressions of sexuality and gender. Each group would require adherence to its religion and its laws, which are not very different at all.

The legislation and statements I’ve noticed recently being promoted by fundamentalist Christians shows that these individuals would love nothing better than to have homosexuals stoned to death, to force women into bags to hide their faces and bodies and to control access to their vaginas and uteruses, to force their religion on those of other religions or of no religion at all. In other words, these individuals would force everyone to SUBMIT to them, to their god, their religion, their code of morality. Islam means to SUBMIT to god. Religious Judaism requires one to follow "the path" to god. So, somebody show me the difference. Somebody explain why Islam’s god is different from Christianity’s god and why either of them are different from the Jewish god. Somebody tell me why fundamentalist Christians, fundamentalist Muslims, and fundamentalist Jews are not working together, because I don’t get it. With such similar goals, the Jesus thing just doesn’t explain the animosity between the groups, at least in the short term. Time enough for internecine battles after you’ve taken control.

I challenge Christian fundamentalists to really take a look at fundamentalist Islam and Judaism. Besides the Jesus thing, what exactly is the difference? I don’t see much.