Michael Hamar

65 Years After Auschwitz & Christianists Have Learned Nothing

Filed By Michael Hamar | January 30, 2011 1:00 PM | comments

Filed in: Fundie Watch, Marriage Equality, Politics
Tags: anti-gay bigotry, anti-gay propaganda, anti-Semitism, Auschwitz, Christian fundamentalists, Nazi, protecting marriage

As noted by Bob Felton at >Civil Commotion, January 27, 2011, was the 65th anniversary of the day that Allied forces liberated Auschwitz and discovered the full extent of the horrors of the "Final Solution." The hatred and malicious denigration of others can lead to shocking horrors, yet conservative Christians in the USA and their minions and hangers overseas (such as in Uganda) have apparently learned nothing from the nightmare of the Nazi regime and its deadly propaganda campaign against Jews. We hear much about supposedly "protecting marriage" from the Christian right, but their true agenda is denigrating LGBT citizens and keeping us a hated class of individuals.

Indeed, as the now defunct HateCrimes.org website once set out in detail (some of the details are still available here), the Christian right continues to use an anti-gay propaganda campaign eerily similar to those used by the Nazis against the Jews more than seven decades ago.

Warning: the photo after the jump is disturbing and graphic in its horror.

Here are a few comparisons from an American Family Association "ACTION ALERT" email, sent 10/16/98:

THEY CONTROL EVERYTHING:

NAZIS AND JEWS: Jews 1% of population: control politics, world opinion, NYC, & have lots of money "At the beginning of the twentieth century, the Jews sit at the junction of the world financial markets. They are an international power. Although only one per cent of the world's population, with the help of their capital, they terrorize the world stock exchanges, world opinion, and world politics. New York is today the center of Jewish power."

Nazi propaganda film, The Eternal Jew

CHRISTIAN RIGHT AND GAYS: Gays 1% of population: control politics, have lots of money "Homosexuals display political control far beyond their numbers. A tiny fraction of the population (about 1 percent), homosexuals have one of the largest and fastest growing Political Action Committees in the country (The Human Rights Campaign) and give millions of dollars to candidates".

Robert Knight, Family Research Council, testifying before the US Senate Labor Committee hearings on S.2238, July 29, 1994.

THEY THREATEN CHRISTIANS:

NAZIS AND JEWS: Jews consider Christians 'heathens', want destroy them "What does the ancient Talmud law teach? Let us hear some quotes....[now supposedly quoting the Talmud] Praise to the Lord who has set apart the holy Israelites from other people. The heathen, who do not keep the law, will be destroyed."

Nazi propaganda film, The Eternal Jew

CHRISTIAN RIGHT AND GAYS: Gays don't love God, hate religion. "[Homosexuality] is the opposite of love for God. It is a rebellion against God and God's natural order, and embodies a deep-seated hatred against true religion."

Gays want to silence Christians, blame them "the real motivation behind such hate crime laws is to silence Christians. Gays will now feel free to blame any crime against a homosexual on Christians."

The Assault on Christians by the Militant Homosexual Movement, Steven A. Schwalm, Family Research Council

It is shocking that the same tactics used by the Nazi regime continue to this day. Worse yet, they are used by those who claim to be followers of Christ. Adding to the deadly mix is the willingness of far too many Republicans scapegoat the gays for a political advantage. These members of the GOP are little better than opportunistic Germans who happily joined the Nazis anti-Jew campaign for their own self-advancement.

There seems to be no end in sight. As John Aravosis lays out at AmericaBlog, the GOP - much like the Nazis of decades ago - are going to ride the anti-gay hatred train as far as they can, up through the 2012 presidential campaign. Here are a few highlights from John's post:

Opponents of same-sex marriage have created a three-pronged effort that insures the issue will be a key topic in the Presidential election. There are efforts underway by Republicans legislators in Iowa, the first caucus state, and New Hampshire, the first primary state, to end their existing marriage laws. In Iowa, the GOP-controlled House has begun the process of passing a bill to put a ban on the ballot. In New Hampshire, both the House and Senate are now GOP-led and they could try to repeal the law later this year or in 2012. In Congress, Rep. Jim Jordan (R-OH) indicated that he's going to push legislation to block DC's marriage law.

It's like an anti-marriage perfect storm. These efforts guarantee that the GOP presidential candidates who are traipsing through Iowa and New Hampshire will try to burnish their right-wing cred by engaging in the usual gay-bashing. And, the effort by GOPers in Congress adds fuel to the fire. We've already seen potential Republican candidates, Tim Pawlenty and Rick Santorum, groveling before the haters. We can expect a lot more of that. And, just wait til the debates start. The GOP candidates will be doing contortions to show their base just how much they hate the gays.

It is a sad and frightening state of affairs, especially for those of us living in red states. How much misery must be inflicted on LGBT individuals before the haters are satisfied?


Recent Entries Filed under Politics:

Leave a comment

We want to know your opinion on this issue! While arguing about an opinion or idea is encouraged, personal attacks will not be tolerated. Please be respectful of others.

The editorial team will delete a comment that is off-topic, abusive, exceptionally incoherent, includes a slur or is soliciting and/or advertising. Repeated violations of the policy will result in revocation of your user account. Please keep in mind that this is our online home; ill-mannered house guests will be shown the door.


This is chilling.
I don't like it, and yet I can't deny that it's happening.
Hopefully, decent Christians will recognize this propaganda for exactly what it is- hateful, ignorant and extreme- whether it gets to the point of actually publicly advocating "genocide" remains to be seen...

Do the people who hear this message really know what's going on? Do they recognize the similarities? Does Aunt Rita in Scranton know that these tactics are the same used by the Third Reich?

Thanks for the effort- I hope it starts some eye-opening. I'll be passing this around....

Worse still in my not so humble opinion is that, while it's been mentioned on Bilerico and elsewhere in years past, I've noticed an important fact missing from recent stories across the Net about the probable relationship between the antigay teaching in Uganda by Scott Lively and the recent murder of a Ugandan gay activist: Lively is also the coauthor of "The Pink Swastika" which asserts that "homosexuals [are] the true inventors of Nazism and the guiding force behind many Nazi atrocities."

It's bad enough that they imitate the mass demonization of Jews tactics of the Nazi, here, today, against LGBTs but BLAME gays for Nazism itself.

On a parallel note, while the scale of abuse of gays in Nazi Germany, bad as it was, is still grossly exaggerated by some, and its origins largely misunderstood, I've always found the story of 21-yr. old Robert Fleischer, one of the US Army liberators of Dachau moving, as told in Allen Berube's classic, "Coming Out Under Fire."

"The roads were clogged with walking skeletons in those striped uniforms. They could hardly drag themselves along. I tried to talk to them, and they didn't know any English. All of a sudden, it dawned on me to ask, 'Du bist Juden'?—'Are you Jewish'? A man nodded 'Ja', and I said, 'Me too'. [Another prisoner] came up to me... and he started kissing my hand. I was so upset, I said to myself, 'How dare the world do this to two human beings? Who am I that he should kiss my hand because he's free'?"

It wasn't until much later that Fleischer learned there were others like him in another way in Dachau and other concentration camps: gays. Only 110 were left in Dachau on April 26, 1945, the day of the last roll call. By this time, most of its prisoners were nonGermans, and only 2,500 of the 32,000 remaining were Jews. I visited it in 1984. While the oldest of the concentration camps, technically, it wasn't a "death camp" except for most Russian soldier POWs sent and killed there.

http://leonardmatlovich.com/images/552_Robert_Fleischer.jpg

Yes, it is chilling - especially because the examples I gave in the post are just the tip of the iceberg. Sadly, the Hatecrimes.org site is no longer available. It had many propaganda lies listed out and documented who/which organizations were/are promoting them. And yes, some of the propaganda called for the execution of gays.

I suspect that many churchgoers have no idea that the template for the Christian Right's anti-gay propaganda campaign came from Hitler and the Third Reich. Unfortunately, Americans are so ignorant when it comes to history that the path for the Christianists has been made far easier.

If I can find more of the old Hatecrimes.org details, I will post them.

I think it's important to point out though that the picture isn't just horrifying and terrible, but also quite possibly offensive to some of our Jewish readers and contributors. As one person pointed out, "What if those were the corpses of my family members who died in the Holocaust being used to make Michael's point?"

I think it's quite appropriate to point out that while you're castigating the religious right for echoing Nazi propaganda, you're using the memories of that horrific time to write a political post complete with a derogatory name for Christians.

I don't know whatl Bil Browning is talking about?? If we are afraid to look squarely at the horror of a very dark period in history, we are doomed to repeat it. Not sure what Browning means by "derogatory name for Christians." I think "Christianists" doesn't demean all Christians - just the ones who spread hate. Browning's post was way of base, unless I missed something here.

I'm just saying that our "history" is someone's family. WW2 hasn't been over that long. Those people in the photo could very easily be related to a reader or contributor and shouldn't just be used as an illustration. It's about respect for the dead and those still living.

I see the point you are making, Bil -- but historians and documentationists do not usually subscribe to that standard. Photos of mass graves showing countless and presumably unidentifiable dead bodies are published from time to time, whether from US Civil War, WW-II, Rwanda, the Baltics, or other modern atrosities.

"Christianist" is a term most used in deliberate, blatant contrast to the word Christian- generally used to describe a fundamentalist/activist attitude rather than the Christian system of faith or belief.

An excellent treatment of the term is here:

http://althouse.blogspot.com/2006/11/christianist.html

I usually see and use "Christianist" as being parallel to "Islamist" -- in both cases, meaning not only a member of that religion, but one who works to bring forth a pervasive government based on the tenets of that religion, implicitly or explicitly. Both "Christianist" and "Islamist" is a sub-set of "theocrat".

In other words, in my book a Christianist is one who believes that a law should exist simply because "Christians believe such-and-such". And the popular assertion, "American has always been and always must remain a Christian nation" is itself a Christianist assertion.

I believe Andrew Sullivan was the first to coin the word "Christianist" and I believe this is the meaning he originally intended.

Lousy editing, I should have said, "Both C~ and I~ are sub-sets of "theocrat".

How do civilized, intelligent, and truly religious people learn and grow if not from history? The fact is, at least in my mind, that those who protest same sex marriage, are in fact not truly religious at all but are rather fearful, insecure, and ignorant. We all have brains which are to be used to learn, to think, to reason certainly not to blindly follow the will and wishes of others, to accept pure dogma. But then I'm not "normal", I am a woman with significant experience as a man, and very proud of it.
One final point - the leading cause of divorce, the rate of which is very high, 40 to 70% of first to third marriages, is in fact .......... shock MARRIAGE. http://marriage101.org/divorce-rates-in-america/

Scary connections. A few years back, a Priest friend of mine said soemthing that stuck with me. "Don't call them Christians, call them by what they truly are: bible literlists!" Big difference.

I used the term "Christianist" because the principal opponents of LGBT civil equality are those who want the law to reflect only their religious beliefs, e.g., Family Research Council, Maggie Gallagher, Concerned Women for America, Benedict XVI, the Mormon Church leadership, etc. Their attitude is to Hell with everyone else's rights, including the right to religious freedom. And yes, I first saw the term used by Andrew Sullivan.

As for use of the photo, being a history major in my undergrad days, I was focused on the historic nature of it and I had no desire to upset or harm anyone's feelings. In fact, we debated whether to use the photo or not. To me, the photo illustrates what hate dressed up in either religious or nationalistic garb can lead to. True Christians ought to be opposing the Christianists in my view because the Christianists have turned the Gospel message into something foul.

Check out the Althouse link supplied by Gregory above, Michael, it's worth the read. You'll learn that Milton used the word "Christianist" in 1649. You'll also learn that because we oppose the Christianists, we risk being labeled "Christophobes" (... well, the article suggests "Christophobia" and the variant forms are obvious).

Actually, my relationship with Jesus of Nazareth is not that bad, indeed I wish here were here. But my fear of the Christianists might qualify me as a "Christian-ist-ophobe".

This could get complicated.