Newt Gingrich, the former United States congressman and Speaker of the House, is a shining example of why Rebublicans have such a hard time finding freedom loving independants, libertarians, fiscally conservative democrats, and middle of the road Americans to vote for them in presidential elections.
"I have two grandchildren," Gingrich told the congregation at Cornerstone Church, a megachurch in San Antonio, Texas, headed by the Rev. John Hagee, a high placed leader among American Christian evangelicals, who endorsed John McCain and Sarah Palin’s doomed 2008 presidential campaign. "I am convinced that if we do not decisively win the struggle over the nature of America, by the time they're my age they will be in a secular atheist country, potentially one dominated by radical Islamists and with no understanding of what it once meant to be an American."
Gingrich, like several other high ranking Republican presidential candidates, does what most reasonable Americans abhor – he equates Christianity with patriotism. The “nature of America” is Christian, according to Newt Gingrich, and he’s convinced that it is the patriotic duty of all Christians go out and do battle in a grand social and cultural struggle to “win it” back for America, because only Christians have an “understanding of what it once meant to be an American."
He doesn’t want his grandchildren (or you and me) to live in a “secular country.” He’s afraid our nation will become “atheist” and “dominated by radical Islamists.”
Think about that one for a second.
How could a secular atheist country become dominated by radical Islamists? How many radical Islamists out there are secular atheists? How many secular atheists do you know who are radical Islamists? How can Mr. Gingrich hold on to any political credibility among reasonable logical voters making stupid statements like that?
Then Gingrich warned the congregation ominously that American college professors and media types are seeking to wipe out the Founding Fathers' Christian values, and worse, that American judges want to re-write the U.S. Constitution.
I have a short wake-up call for Mr. Gingrich, and all the other pandering social conservative Republicans on the religious right who yearn for a Christian theocracy in America: I appreciate the values of our founding fathers. I like the Constitution they wrote just the way it is. Get your historical facts straight.
The United States of America – my country and yours -- was founded as, and always has been, a secular atheist country – secular in that religion and government are deliberately separate entities here; one private, the other public; and atheist in that the republic was conceived and ordained by the people rather than a deity.
We are not a theist nation, like Iran, or even Britian, but individuals enjoy religious freedom here, and the majority now happen to be Christians. President Lincoln called it a government conceived in liberty; of, by, and for the people. So religion had nothing to do with it. Islamists are welcome here just like everyone else.
The Declaration of Independence makes no refrence to Christianity. The United States Constitution makes no reference to Christianity. Those are the founding documents of this nation and neither makes any reference whatsoever to Christianity. That, of course, we all know was quite deliberate. The founders even made sure that the Constitution prohibited any religious test for public office, and any other law respecting an establishment of religion.
If these undeniable historical facts are not enough for Mr. Gingrich, he might also be reminded that, in 1797; 214 years ago, the same founding fathers, including all the Christians, explicitly and officially declared, once and for all, that:
“The government of the
is not in any sense founded on the Christian religion.” United States
Ironically, this simple straightforward official declaration by the U.S. Congress, unanimously ratified by the Senate, and signed by President John Adams on
June 10, 1797, was made to assure the Islamic North African states of Algiers, Tripoli and Tunis, after American conflicts with Barbary pirates, that harmonious relationships with the United States in the future would not be adversely affected by differences in religious opinions. [Art 11; Treaty of ] Tripoli
If the Republicans nominate the likes of Newt Gingrich, Barack Obama will be the next President of the United States.