Monday, June 11, 2007

PBS to run fundamentalist attack on separation of church and state

I have long been an opponent of PBS even though I have been a viewer and often enjoy the shows they broadcast. I am an opponent because I don’t think government has any business being in the TV business, because I think it wrong to take tax money from individuals and use it to finance views they may disagree with, and because the reality is that the views who watcher are wealthier than the average taxpayer.

In other words is it is redistribution of wealth from poorer people to wealth people. I think redistribution of wealth is inherently immoral but I find it particularly perverse to rob the poor in order to subsidize the wealthy.

Now I have another reason to want to see PBS cancelled. They are promoting a “New PBS Documentary” which “Probes the Origins and History of Separation of Church and State in America.” Now, why would this upset me? I am known to support the separation of church and state. I take the Jeffersonian perspective.

But this pseudo-documentary is a hit piece on separation of church and state funded and written by far Right religious nuts. The whole purpose of this documentary is to give credibility to fundamentalist revisionism arguing that separation of church and state is a lie.

The producers of this documentary, which has all the credibility of something by Michael Moore, are Boulevard Pictures run by fundamentalist Jack Hafer. And the writer/director is Brian Godawa, who has worked with extreme fundamentalist groups like the Chalcedon Foundation.

These people are what is called Reconstructionist Christians. That is they advocate a theocratic rule in the United States which mergers church and state and abolishes religion freedom. They call for the execution of numerous groups of sinners included gays, disobedient children, adulterers, and worships of false gods.

Godawa wrote film reviews for the fringe Right and in one he attacked the film Brokeback Mountain. Personally the film bored me and I thought it dragged on needlessly. But that wasn’t what upset Godawa. He said the film was “subversive homosexual propaganda”that normalized a “freakish minority”. And his Reconstructionist views came pouring out: “Society SHOULD suppress immoral behavior and it does so on many fronts. So if homosexualism is immoral, then yes, it should be suppressed, just like child molesting, its ugly step-brother hidden in the closet, just like adultery, just like promiscuity.” It should be noted that when a Reconstructionist says homosexuality should be suppressed that this is usually meant as executing people who have gay sex.

You can see a contribution by Godawa at the Chaledon Foundation website. It is right next to a big promotion saying “Theocracy Now!”

I stumbled across this theocratic web site where the author speaks of attending a conference organized by “my friend Andrew Sandlin”. Sandlin is an extreme Reconstructionist Calvinist and was another associate of Chalcedon. He founded something called the Issachar Project which targets using the film industry to promote a theocratic/fundamentalist world view. They call it the “Christianization of the movie industry”. His cosponsor of the project was Brian Godawa of this revisionist film. Another presenter at this invitation only conference was Jack Hafer, also of this film. By the way it should be toed that when they use the term Christian they are not being inclusive but very exclusive. Many Christian churches, in their view, are worshippers of false idols and heretics unworthy of having religious freedom.

Another co-sponsor of this conference was David Bahnsen who stated he committed “to the complete annihilation of the sacred and secular distinction.” And Hafer is described as “converted to faith in Christ in fundamentalism”. They say that this is a “culture changing project.” It should be noted that David Bahnsen is the son of hardcore Reconstructionist Greg Bahnsen (deceased). The son is just as strong a Reconstructionist as was the father.

You can see here how Andrew Sandlin is calling for imposing all Biblical laws on modern culture. And he calls for abolishing the “rights” theory of ethics. He says that enforcing the Bible may be offensive but it must prevail even when difficult.

Now the real question here is why did PBS allow these fanatics to produce this psuedo-documentary.? Here is the reality. PBS gets subsidies from the federal government. This means every single taxpayer is forced to contribute some money to these extremists and to give them free air time to attack the separation of church and state.

These theocratic Reconstructionists feel they have to undermine this view, first laid out by Jefferson, because it is an impediment to their taking control of the United States and imposing Biblical law on everyone. And PBS is helping them in this task.

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