The polarization in this country has led to a deep schism between Americans that, at times, seems too wide to cross. We had a congressman yelling to the president that he is a liar during his State of the Union speech last year, an unprecedented act. A Supreme Court Justice who lost his guise of political neutrality by mouthing, "that's not true," at that same event. We have Sarah Palin who used such emotionally charged rhetoric against our president that at one political rally, a man was heard screaming, "Kill him!" This was before she had the effrontery to put a list of Democratic representatives on her website and mark them with the crosshairs of a gun. One of those representatives was Gabrielle Giffords. During this last election, a candidate for a Senate seat from Nevada suggested that Americans could use "Second Amendment remedies" to deal with political differences. People have charged that our president was not born in this country and, consequently, is not a citizen. Others claim he is a socialist, a Muslim, even a communist. The political rhetoric has become toxic, so much so that rational discussion seems impossible. The politics of hate seem to dominate our political landscape, and it makes ordinary people wonder, "How did we get to this place?"
He called for monetary reforms, the nationalization of major industries and railroads, and protection of the rights of labor. Although this appeared to be a populist agenda, he began to attack Jewish bankers. He used his radio program to spread anti-Semitic hate speech, and later to rationalize some of the policies of Adolf Hitler and Benito Mussolini. He was stirring up violence against Jews, and finally his political tirades were silenced by his superiors. Glenn Beck is the modern-day equivalent of Coughlin in that he is constantly talking about conspiracy theories and blaming various elements of our society in an attempt to work his supporters into a political frenzy against those people or organizations Beck considers "evil."
Meetings of the Christian Coalition would be the leader outlining their plan to use the churches to educate parishioners about how to become effective political advocates for the right-wing issues of the Coalition and to train people on how to effectively run for office.
At the beginning of the meeting, they saluted the flag and said the pledge of allegiance -- but it wasn't the American flag. It was the Christian flag, and the pledge of allegiance was to Jesus. "I pledge allegiance to the Christian Flag and to the Savior for whose Kingdom it stands. One Savior, crucified, risen, and coming again with life and liberty to all who believe." Only after they had established their priorities, did they salute the American flag.
Progressive Christian churches, as well as Islamic Mosques and Jewish Temples or Synagogues, mysteriously did not receive invitations to make application for these funds. Those invitations were sent only to conservative and evangelic churches. Billions more are still being funneled into the "Abstinence-Only Programs," most of which were operated by these same conservative Protestant and Catholic churches. Every scientific study done on the "Abstinence-Only Programs" has shown them to be miserable failures, and they actually may endanger our young people more than they help them. These churches also use government funds to support their so-called "Crisis Pregnancy Centers" that purportedly are established to help pregnant women once they give birth. In reality, these Centers are anti-abortion propaganda mills.