C. Peter Wagner on NPR’s ‘Fresh Air’ Today

Jason Pitzl-Waters —  October 3, 2011 — 136 Comments

I’ve written at some length on the Christian movement known as the New Apostolic Reformation (NAR), a group that’s been getting increased media scrutiny lately due to their proximity to presidential candidates like Texas governor Rick Perry. Some may believe I’m over-stating their influence, or that I’m being somewhat paranoid in my coverage,  so it’s always a good thing to have relatively level-headed media outlets to compare your own findings/suspicions with. Back in August the NPR interview program “Fresh Air” interviewed Rachel Tabachnick of Talk To Action, a leading researcher into this movement, and promised to follow-up interview with a NAR member for rebuttal/response. Today that promise is fulfilled as the show interviews C. Peter Wagner, one of key architects and Apostles of this movement. It is Wagner who articulated the movement’s battle against the “Queen of Heaven,” and penned several books on the subject of spiritual warfare.

While the audio and transcript isn’t up yet (though it will be up later today), they have posted some highlights from the interview that touch on some of the most controversial statements and beliefs held by New Apostolic Reformation members.

“The sun goddess [Amaterasu] is not a very nice lady. The sun goddess is a power of darkness, which is headed up by the kingdom of Satan. And so the sun goddess wants natural disasters to come to Japan.”

“An apostle, a friend of mine in Nepal, once told me that every Christian believer in Nepal that he knows of has been delivered from demons. That their former Hindu religion had implanted or the demons had gained access and that in order to become Christian believers, the demons had to be cast out. Of course, we have many examples in the Bible of the same thing.”

“What [Pastor] Thomas [Muthee] was probably doing, and he and I are friends also, what he was probably doing was speculating that there would be some people who practiced witchcraft and other forms of the occult who would try and take Sarah Palin down through certain rituals or curses or other techniques that witches have and try to destroy her through those things. And I think Thomas was praying a shield of protection around Sarah so that she would not be affected by them.”

There’s more, and probably much more in the interview itself, so I urge everyone interested in this subject to check it out. Wagner does try to soft-peddle accusations of theocratic ambitions, and the intentions of  the upcoming “DC40″ prayer event. He also claims that they “respect all religions” (even Pagan religions?). I’ll let you decide whether this is still a movement you find problematic, or if you’ve been convinced that they have no untoward designs towards the rights of non-Christians.

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  • http://sarenth.wordpress.com/ Sarenth

    Hard to respect all religions when you seek to convert their followers away, call their Gods evil, and seek to commit religious warfare not only upon their followers, but the Gods as well. Yeah, I can totally see the respect.

  • http://moma-fauna.blogspot.com/ Moma Fauna

    Ugh. I suppose listening to this is a necessary evil for today.

  • AnonGuest

    The “Queen of Heaven” is also what Catholics, Orthodox, and other churches call the Virgin Mary, just FYI to show how extensive (and ironic) NAR’s bigotry goes.

    • Courerdubois

      Actually, it is not ironic. To the Apostolic right wo0rship/adoration of Mary (Theotokos) is idolatry and paganism. So yeah, Catholics are pagans to many of them.
      The guy who sits not 15 feet away from e at work goes on mission to Mexico to save the souls of the poor misguided Catholics.

      • Anonymous

        There’s nothing new about this, either. It’s really just a recent iteration of classical Protestant anti-Catholicism.

        • AnonGuest

          Because of where Protestantism comes from, I consider that ironic.

          • Anonymous

            Where do you think Protestantism comes from? From the beginning Protestantism was a reaction against the many practices Catholicism had adopted that were not grounded in anything in the bible. Many of these practices were appropriated from the various Pagan religions that Catholicism had supplanted in Europe. Since that is where Protestantism came from, I see nothing particularly ironic about these modern day Protestant extremists continuing to regard Catholic ideas as Satanic.

          • AnonGuest

            However they want to parse that, that’s still claiming their religion derives from Satanism with most of their Bible previously Satanic texts.

          • Anonymous

            Not that I feel much inclination toward defending Protestantism, but I don’t see how that follows at all. They claim their texts were misused and that practices and beliefs that are anathema to the true spirit of their religion were added to their religion, then that they are purging these practices and beliefs from their religion to return to the original, correct religion. I don’t see where that involves having to admit to their texts being Satanic.

      • Mia

        As one who’s been raised in Roman Catholicism, I can tell you that it is indeed very pagan. The actual people, not the Vatican…that’s a whole nother world there.

        Sure makes getting a truly pagan worldview a whole lot easier though, so I guess there’s something to be grateful for.

        • Jack Heron

          G.K. Chesterton, the Christian and Catholic apologist, actually used this as one of his main arguments in favour of Catholicism. He said that paganism was basically the standard world-view for humanity and that therefore Catholicism was the sect that most combined Christian theology with essential humanity.

          (You opinion may vary, as mine does, as to whether it has perhaps lost some important elements of humanity in the process)

          • http://www.facebook.com/kenazfilan Kenaz Filan

            G.K. Chesterton should be required reading for anyone who wants to engage in Interfaith dialogue with Christians. He is one of England’s great thinkers and a consistently amusing and engaging writer as well.

          • Jack Heron

            Absolutely. For one, he has some of the most original approaches to these subjects and for another he’s one of those rare writers who are enormous fun to read even if you utterly disagree with what he’s saying.

          • Madhabmatics

            In one of his books he makes the argument that a living Paganism would heavily benefit Christianity, I found it pretty convincing at the time.

    • Gregmetzger

      Yes, and he really is explicit about Queen of Heaven being related to the title Mother of God which was explicitly taught by ecumenical council and has been the teaching of creedal Christians for centuries. He has cut himself off from historic Christianity with that in particular. I have more discussion of this at http://www.debatingobama.blogspot.com

  • Nicre

    So with his statement about Amaterasu, it looks to me like he is admitting that his god isn’t the only deity.

    • EducatedReasonableSanePerson

      When people are theists, i.e., consider “GOD” to be some spiritual being out there, some countable entity (one, two, three gods; my god, your god, their gods) and when people think “their god” is better than “the other gods” … see where this is going… of course they are admitting that there are multiple god-like entities and that theirs is the best. I’m betting there was no reaction from the Japanese government about this even if someone told them about it — that’s because people in Japan don’t take such things literally, even the religious ones have the sense to keep spiritual things separate from the scientific, physical, or political. Even so, it is really really rude to refer to someone else’s traditional religions and equate them to demons. The way he describes certain Shinto rites, it shows he has inadequate knowledge of Shintoism, or for that matter, any other religion.

      • Sunna B

        I don’t think having a knowledge of other religions really matters to these guys.

        • AnonGuest

          Or even their own. But that’s true, too. And in other religions, not all demons are evil, in fact, some are saints.

      • Charles Cosimano

        There was no reply from the Japanese government because: they don’t take these folks seriously. B: It would not matter.

    • Courerdubois

      If you read the Decalogue, it specifically states that there are other gods.

      2 I am the Lord thy God, which have brought thee out of the land of Egypt, out of the house of bondage.
      3 Thou shalt have no other gods before me.

      In order for a person to have no other gods before him, there must be other gods.

    • http://profiles.google.com/marc.k.mielke Marc Mielke

      The Ten Commandments tacitly admit the existence of other gods; “Thou Shalt Have No Other Gods Before Me”.

    • Venerablereid 2010

      They seem to think that every other god besides YHVH is a “demon” of some sort. Fortunately it’s hard to get much work done when you constantly have to run around casting out demons. Terry Gross, on Fresh Air, didn’t mock Wagner (she’s much to much of a lady for that) but her skepticism was very clear right from the start.

  • Sunna B

    Wagner is not going to go on an NPR program and say “Yep, you guys are right, it’s a fair cop: we’re all about living in a theocratic state governed by our interpretation of Christianity and overthrowing democracy.” Of course he’s going to try to downplay it all (and even outright lie), because he knows that a growing number of Americans have the attention span of a gnat, and they won’t bother to do any research. They’ll believe whatever they hear and then tune in to ET to see what new dress Kim Kardashian is jiggling around in this week.

    The proof is out there in ample amount for anybody to find. The problem is getting people motivated enough to find it, read it, and see for themselves just how insane and anti-democratic this stuff is.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=824256543 Tepintzin Huehueocelotl

    Your coverage of DC40 has inspired me to buy a small replica of the statue from the dome of the Capitol and meditate on it, to strengthen the principles for which it stands. I’m not sold on “Columbia”‘s existence as a deity, but the concepts She embodies are ones we should work to strengthen.

  • Kilmrnock

    These Dominionists , the NAR types scare the shyte out of me . i for one will be keeping a close eye on these damned fools . And just in case they take power keep my options open to a canadian move . The American people don’t pay enuf attention , how else could Dubya get elected twice . Kilm

    • Sunna B

      Right Wing Watch is a good place to get good info, as are Tabachnik’s articles on Talk2Action.

    • Ladyquality

      Speaking of Canada, this whole issue reminds me (and not in a good way) of Margaret Atwood’s A Handmaid’s Tale. If you haven’t read it please do. It’s about a future US in the grip of Christian orthodoxy to its full woman-hating, woman-fearing extent, Iran-style. And Canada is the country where the refugees go.

      As with more of Atwood’s stories this already made extremely uncomfortable reading when I read it the first time almost 20 years ago, and now has a alarmingly prophetic ring to it. I wish people would take all of her futuristic novels more seriously, but this one… uncomfortable just isn’t the word. And I live in Europe!

  • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

    People also believe thatSatan makes them fall asleep at the wheel so they oughtn’t be punished for reckless driving, people also believe that other people are infidels, people also believe that many women should marry one husband and he should have total control over her, people also believe that women should wear long skirts and not vote… none of this is particular affects the majority, so I wanna know is how these beliefs stated by C. Peter have any effect on the rest of us?

    • Sunna B

      Just as an example, two words: Heartbeat Bill. Janet Porter, who is affiliated with the NAR and a big name in Dominionist Circles, is spearheading the push to get the Heartbeat Bill on the books in OH. Once in effect, it would effectively ban abortion once the fetal heart-tones can be detected – as soon as 18-24 days after conception. The link is here for more info:
      http://www.pfaw.org/media-center/publications/the-gop-takes-its-war-women-to-the-states#heartbeat

      Two more words: David Barton. Thanks to Glenn Beck, this guy went from doing lectures at white supremacist rallies to becoming the leading “historian” of the Tea Party movement. David Barton was also in on the Texas textbook revisions pushed by the TX Board of Education which sought to turn textbooks into far-right indoctrination tools.

      These guys are already pushing and have been pushing their views on the majority via the politicians they’ve swiped and encouraged their adherents to vote for (Rick Perry’s prayer rally email list has become a mass-mailing tool for the Christian Right to use in an effort to get as many of them voting for far-right candidates as possible) – they’re doing it bits at a time, and in conjunction with GOP platform issues. Bit by bit they’re wearing things down. Rushdooney – whose Christian Reconstructionism is the tree that the Dominionists branched off from – predicted that the creation of a Christian Theocratic State in the US would be a generations-long effort.

      You can find more info on the efforts – and scary successes – of these kooks at Talk2Action, Right Wing Watch, PFAW, Daily Kos, The Slacktivist, and Dispatches from the Culture Wars (among others). They’re already having an effect. It’s just that many people aren’t realizing how embedded their ideology has become in political far-right rhetoric.

      • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

        First of all, I recall the far-leftist media predicting that under George Bush, we Pagans would all be rounded up and put into concentration camps, or jailed for our practices. Or killed. So when they cry “The Sky is Falling” this time, I’m having trouble accepting the alarmism. And yes, I heard that particular prediction on NPR, and wondered why public money is going to fund the opinions of the far left.

        Second of all, explain to me why the Heartbeat Bill is a BAD thing. Don’t wanna be pregnant? Use birth control or don’t have sex, rather than killing your own offspring. Be responsible. Or take the morning-after pill, when it can be argued that the human baby is not yet implanted, and therefore not really “alive”. If you do feel that killing is okay, don’t expect me and the other 75% of taxpayers who disagree with abortion to pay for others’ irresponsibility. Pagans are supposed to be life affirming, a fertility religion, remember? Killing babies is one thing fundy Xians have accused us of for years. And before you go saying this is an “anti-feminist” viewpoint, Elizabeth Cady Stanton and Susan B. Anthony both called abortion “an abomination”.

        And last, I’ve had issues with the leftist leanings of public school textbooks for years — if ya don’t believe me, read about how the impetus for the Civil War was all about ending slavery, and that the South seceded only for that reason, and the North was entirely, to a man, in favor of enfranchising all the slaves… non of which is true. Don’t like textbooks, then home-school your children. “No Child Left Behind” has dumbed down eduction to the lowest common denominator even more than leftist-leaning textbooks.

        • kenneth

          We weren’t rounded up or killed, but we were targeted for discrimination and second class treatment under Bush. That’s a fact. His opinions about pagans, rooted in conservative Christianity, served as the marching orders for the officials who denied us the right to bury our dead in military cemeteries with proper honors. Perhaps we should have just laid down and accepted that with gratitude, since we weren’t being jailed or killed.

          I won’t touch the abortion issue because it is a thread-killer shedding lots of heat and no light.

          If you think today’s textbooks are dumbed down, wait until the NAR crowd gets hold of them, as they likely will in a couple years. Kids will be learning six-day creationism and the geology of a 6,000 year old planet. Our graduates won’t be qualified to empty waste baskets in any scientific field, much less making any discoveries.

          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            Kenneth, I recall that we Pagans sued for our First Amendment rights and won in a settlement… I helped in a very tiny way by getting the VFW and American Legion on board. (BTW, both of whom are considered conservative organizations — yet they were still very helpful to enforcing Pagans’ constitutional rights!)

            So if (if, IF IF!) the NAR does anything to threaten our constitutional rights, we can do the same thing… hopefully much more swiftly and efficiently, now that Pagans have become more familiar with the law and capable of enacting successful redress.

            Kenneth, our family abandoned the public school system because they’re too busy teaching the Disney version of history, and teaching English to illegal immigrants, and teaching mentally challenged kids in the mainstream classrooms, to teach geology to normally intelligent English-speaking citizens, at all. This is better HOW?

            Please don’t tell me that No Child Left Behind is a good program, or I will sue for the right to take driver’s education under the Americans With Disabilities Act. Too bad if it negatively impacts the other students… it’s the liberal way to make accommodations, right? :-)

            The huge tax breaks I am currently enjoying under our new conservative government in Michigan were certainly worth my vote. Small business now pays 6% rather than the crushing 32% we paid under our past Democrat governor and liberal state reps. I can deal with a little preaching at me, if it comes to that.

          • kenneth

            Yeah, we prevailed in the grave marker case, but it took most of a decade and untold sums of money and volunteer effort to do so. I was the first person to get Obama on record on the issue. For all his lumps, the guy at least did say that we were entitled to a speedy resolution of the matter.

            The point is, why would you support people whose stated goal is to erode your civil rights any way they can? You seem to think their agenda is idle bar boasting. To me, when someone says they are going to do something, writes it into platforms and says they believe they are personally charged by God to do this, and then demonstrate a past record of that action, I take them seriously.

            Could we prevail again when (not IF), they try something? Most probably, if we’re willing to endure a permanent legal battle for our everyday rights. What’s the upside of lying down with these vipers? A few bucks? If you think trading real civil standing for fiscal advantage is a good long-term strategy, you might want to consult a Jewish historian first.

            You don’t seem to grasp that the point of the fiscal policy of people like the NAR is not simply to put some money in your pocket. Their stated goal is to starve and dismantle the institutions of government, including the courts, which for now give us recourse on the “little” indignities like the pentacle case. In their legal theory, we have no inherent rights to religious practice in this country. In time, they will appoint judges accordingly. On an administrative law basis, they will begin enforcing that ideology the day after they move into the White House.

            I am also in no way a defender of No Child Left Behind. It sets arbitrary and meaningless targets and does nothing to address the culture of mediocrity that prevails both within many public schools and within the culture at large. That said, I don’t see any solution coming from the NAR or like groups. These are people who believe willful ignorance is a religious virtue.

          • Anonymous

            “Kenneth, our family abandoned the public school system because they’re too busy teaching the Disney version of history, and teaching English to illegal immigrants, and teaching mentally challenged kids in the mainstream classrooms, to teach geology to normally intelligent English-speaking citizens, at all. This is better HOW?”

            Well really, if they go teaching those Mexican kids English, how will we be able to continue to complain that they won’t learn English and assimilate? If we let those mentally challenged kids in regular classrooms, what’ll keep our “normally intelligent” kids from treating them like “normal” people?

            Your last paragraph really clears it all up though. You can deal with “a little preaching” as long as you get your tax break. You’ll grin and bear it because nobody’s going to tell you you can’t see your partner in the hospital, nobody’s going to tell you to carry a pregnancy to term that could kill you because their god demands it, nobody’s going to tell you that your daughter got cervical cancer from HPV because she committed the sin of premarital sex and that’s the way it should be. So who cares if that stuff happens to someone else? You’ve got your 6%. And as long as you behave yourself and don’t make too much of a fuss when they “preach”, you’ll get to keep it. For now, anyway.

          • AnonGuest

            Nobody likes Bush’s little NCLB program.

          • AnonGuest

            ESOL been around long before NCLB and why do you oppose immigrants learning English?

          • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=548883612 Flame Bridesdottir

            *snip*What’s the upside of lying down with these vipers? A few bucks? If you think trading real civil standing for fiscal advantage is a good long-term strategy, you might want to consult a Jewish historian first.*

            THIS.

          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            The Jews did not own guns, nor have second amendment rights, in any conflict or war or pogrom in which Jews were targeted… ask an Israeli citizen what he or she thinks of Liberals’ notions about limiting gun ownership or second amendment rights here in America.

        • Sunna B

          You asked a question, I answered from my perspective, and you responded from yours. That’s what being an American is *supposed* to be about: the freedom to have and express your own views which may or may not agree with the views of others. If everybody is in 100% agreement all the time, then nobody is thinking.

        • Anonymous

          First of all, I think it’s hilarious that dire predictions about George Bush, a man with a huge fundamentalist christian base to pander to and the power of the US government behind him at the time was “the sky is falling” but any time something about muslims comes up there seemingly is no level of panic that’s too high. No wonder you have trouble accepting the alarmism. It’s not your preferred brand.
          Meanwhile, although sharia law has yet to materialize in the US as anything other than occasional informal civil arbitration, as the christian right has hoped for elective abortion services are becoming more and more difficult to obtain, marriage equality is now illegal in I believe 30 states out of 50. That’s not bad work for a bunch that’s supposedly on the ropes. Excuse me for a moment while I brush these bits of sky off my keyboard.

          Secondly, the Heartbeat Bill is a bald-faced attempt to shame women into carrying pregnancies to term that they otherwise would not. Do you seriously think someone can just trot down to the corner store in this country and get the Morning After pill, just that easy? Not to mention the fact that your conservative buddies do everything they can to quash the availability and even discussion of contraception (you do know they consider the Morning After pill to be an abortifacient, don’t you?) and have made it very clear that if they succeed in making elective abortion impossible, availability of contraception will be on the chopping block next. Funny how you “small government” folks don’t seem to have a problem with government telling people what they can and cannot do with their own bodies; can their be a more basic and clear property a person owns than their own physical self? This is why I can’t take that “we’re for less government and more freedom” talk seriously. You’d allow that same government you distrust so much to have that level of pernicious and invasive control over its own citizens. That you salve your conscience by telling yourself that it’s entirely the consequences of “irresponsibility” does little for the people who would be so invaded. Besides, wouldn’t compelling someone by force of law to give up their physical autonomy, their own body and blood, for the good of another and to their own possible detriment the very essence of State Communism?

          And last, if you’re going to start up with that old saw about “The South seceded to preserve their rights, not to preserve slavery” you might want to read the declarations of secession. They’re pretty clear that the main rights they were looking to preserve was the right to own slaves. I defy you to find a history textbook that actually states that the North was anywhere near 100% abolitionist. It’s common knowledge that even Lincoln himself was horribly conflicted about it. Though I’m sure there are plenty of home-school texts that go on about the “War of Northern Aggression” and claim that most slaves were treated well and even happy to be where they were.

          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            I hope that the Heartbeat bill will “shame” these women into using the birth control that is currently FREE, um, I mean, paid for by ME and other taxpayers, rather than “electing” to have “their bodies invaded” with absolutely NO regard for the human being that they helped to create.

            “can their be a more basic and clear property a person owns than their own physical self?”

            Whose ‘rights’ are you talking about? Not the tiny pre-born American citizens’ rights to survive. WHAT about the child’s property? What about their “self”? Or does that matter less than convenience for irresponsible people who don’t have any self control?

          • http://twitter.com/whitestagforest Aine Llewellyn

            You…do realize that birth control isn’t 100% effective, right?

          • Tara

            Where is this free birth control? Seriously, I think I’ve been missing out on something. Also, where is this “”free” clinic and have an easy, convenient abortion”?

          • Anonymous

            As has all ready been said below, birth control is never 100% reliable. So your response to someone who is being “responsible” as best they can is “Too bad, so sad, should’ve kept your legs closed”? It must be so easy for you to keep in your mind this image of casually promiscuous women practically tossing toddlers in the trash. Maybe you should put your money where your mouth is and volunteer as a clinic escort some time. You know, the people who put themselves between those irresponsible women and the kind, loving souls who scream profanity and slurs at them while waving around huge posters of dismembered fetal cadavers. Then you can tell us how many of them are dancing into the clinic with smiles on their faces. Or you can tell us what you really see. Until then, don’t talk to me about honor and responsibility while you swing your cudgel at women making a choice you should hope you never have to.

        • http://vermillionrush.wordpress.com Vermillion

          “Pagans are supposed to be life affirming, a fertility religion, remember?”

          I really dislike it when people make vast sweeping generalizations about Pagans, in particular this one.

          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            I keep hearing how Pagans are supposed to be liberal and opposed to the Tea Party, or else we are somehow either stupid, trading away all our civil rights, homophobic, fascistic, or dupes of the far right. Look up Pagan in the dictionary, it does not say any of this; look up Pagan on any website and it will say “life affirming” and “positive path” and “fertility religion”.

          • http://vermillionrush.wordpress.com Vermillion

            Well according to other websites most Pagans are white, long-haired, reek of Patchouli, dress like hippies and all believe in love and light and flowers.

            As an African-American,short haired woman who wears designer clothing, smells like french perfume and fully believes in the Ms Piggy Rule (“Beauty is in the eye of the beholder…but sometimes it is necessary to give the beholder a black eye”) and oh yeah, is Pagan and fairly moderate in her ideas I can tell you that those websites definitions do a disservice to all of us.

          • Tara

            I don’t think there is anything “life affirming” about people having children they don’t want and/or can’t take care of. That’s just me though.

          • (>’o’)>

            You remind me of Robin Artisson. Just with less of an education and more a more bonkers personal agenda.

          • http://sarenth.wordpress.com/ Sarenth

            The way you are casting Pagans, we must be pro-life to the exclusion of women’s right to choose what to do with their own body. “Positive path” -what exactly does this mean? It sounds like me as nothing more than a little buzzword meant to generate emotion.

            “Life affirming” too, is a buzzword and says relatively little about the content of how Pagans are “life affirming”. If by “life affirming” you mean that Pagans tend to affirm the mysteries of life, including death and hard decisions, then yes, I could see that.

            As for “fertility religion”, no, not all Pagan religions are fertility-based. They may have fertility rites within them, but a fertility religion does not describe a great many of the Pagan religions.

          • deerwoman

            I don’t know about you, but my religion is death- as well as life-affirming. :) I can only speak for myself though.

      • Wolfsbane

        I don’t think the Tea Party can spell history much less understand it.

    • kenneth

      Well, let’s see. The core of their belief system says that they their life’s purpose is to seize (or in their view, “take back”) our country for the explicit purpose of remodeling it according to those beliefs. It’s obvious that they are quite serious about making good on that promise/threat.

      They don’t need to be a majority or even a very sizable minority to do so. They merely need the rest of us to write them off as harmless loons. These people may be screwy, but they are not as stupid as we like to think. They understand the ebb and flow of political power and opportunism very well. They know how to exploit the advantages they have, and they are not insignificant advantages.

      A lot of things are breaking well right now for fringe movements who know how to exploit them. Our economy is a disaster. We have lots of people who are understandably angry, but who either don’t really know, or care, who that anger should be vented against. We have a people who have virtually no understanding of their own history, and who have in fact almost completely rejected the idea that historical fact exists independently of one’s own narrative of it. We have tens of millions of Christians who perceive their loss of absolute hegemonic privilege as persecution.

      We have virtually no sense of shared national identity left anymore and a near-universal contempt for the institutions we once saw as representative of us. These are ideal growing conditions for extremists movements of almost any stripe, and the NAR and similar movements within the Tea Party are taking full advantage of it. They have a narrative which plays on those fears, offers targets for anger, and offers a way back to a spiritually purer time with lots of masculine, confrontational language. They have made themselves an indispensable faction within one of our country’s major political parties. It’s a formula which has worked 100% of the time its been tried under the right conditions of economic and civic decay.

      That’s why we ought to be deeply concerned about groups like NAR, and at this point, anyone who isn’t is either a fool or is on board with their agenda.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=685041384 Fanny Fae

    As an Amazon reviewer, if this book comes up being offered in my cue as a publisher’s advance, I will make it a point to request it. I would never purchase a copy because I cannot support the author’s personal agenda. I will listen to the interview because I respect NPR. However, as other’s mentioned, I am sure he toned it down as a very soft sell for that particular audience.

  • http://godsrbored.blogspot.com anne johnson

    There’s no soft peddle on that go-cart.

    • Sunna B

      Agreed – it’s full tilt out-of-control with no brakes.

  • Kilmrnock

    How these crazies could effect us ? In these uncertain political times , w/raging unemployment , political polarisation. Just look at the tea party , like i said these people don’t really pay attention . Most tea party folks vote against their own interests.How about prohibition from the 1930′s , do you think most people wanted to abolish alcohol?The Dominionists have a hidden adjenda that is not shared w/ the general public .They will talk about old fashioned conservative values, god and country, w/o telling the extent of the changes they really want to enact. Look at the situation in Wisconsin, do you think the voters really wanted the kind of union busting thats being tried up there ?If we’re not careful these folks can take control of our noble experiment , change the US . Altho most Americans want our govt to be more fiscaly responcible , i’m not sure the radical right wing, conservative adjenda now being forced apon us is what most of us had in mind . And also just remember these folks , the NAR types and their ilk , don’t like us , the Pagans. Kilm

  • Alex Pendragon

    And they call US crazy…..sheesh……

  • http://heathenfaith.blogspot.com Norse Alchemist

    Uh, Jason, I’ll admit this might be a matter of perspective, but since when was NPR a level headed media organization? Listening to it, even for a short period of time, reveals it to be one of the most Leftist sources of news out there. I know, because I listened to it for years.

    Hardly what I’d call a level headed organization.

    I’m not discounting the info that it has given about the NAR. But I would ask you be honest about your sources.

    • Obsidia

      Just because NPR might lean left on some subjects (definitely not all!), that does not mean they are not “level-headed.” That is simply your opinion. As a “Leftist” myself, I consider my views logical and reasonable. And I don’t always agree with the NPR commentators who sometimes seem more influenced by right-wing views.

  • Shawn

    The hardest part for me to swallow is how the NAR just picks and chooses the parts of the Bible to believe in! C. Peter Wagner went on and on about which parts he believes and which parts were not applicable anymore (ie.rapture). Can they even hear how silly they sound to theists and nontheists alike?

    • AnonGuest

      Can they even hear how silly they sound to theists and nontheists alike?
      A number of people thought “The DaVinci Code” wasn’t fictional.
      One of the results of that I hated was using that to discredit true complaints people have about the Opus Dei.

  • Gregmetzger

    Good to see you on this. I am blogging on it as well and plan to do stuff on the Queen of Heaven angle. Check me out at http://www.debatingobama.blogspot.com i have up quotes from the interview and from his writings. You are right to be concerned, IMHO.

  • Obsidia

    From the Link at NPR:

    On demon identification

    “Sometimes they know. Sometimes the demon has identified itself to the person. Sometimes you can tell by manifestations of superhuman, unhuman behavior. Sometimes you can tell by skilled deliverance ministers. My wife has a five-page questionnaire that she has people fill out before she ministers to them. So she asks the kind of questions that a medical doctor would ask to find out, to diagnose an illness. So she actually does diagnostic work on people to discover not only if they have demons, but what those demons might be.”

    I’d like to see that questionnaire!!!

    • AnonGuest

      1. Do you only do what you are told to do and think only what you are told to think by NAR ministers?
      a. Yes
      b. Sataannn

    • Anonymous

      Ask and you shall receive (I crack myself up sometimes):http://www.deliveranceministers.org/PDF%20Articles/Understanding_Basic_Issues_in_Deliverance.pdf

      The questionnaire starts on page 20; before that is the directions for the demon-caster-outer. One of my favorite parts is on page 10, where the minister can use “word of knowledge” (i.e., “the holy spirit told me”), but one of the “symptoms” discussed on page 8 is hearing voices. From what I can tell, Doris Wagner teaches that anyone who has had life happen to them (that would be everyone) is demonized unless they believe exactly as she does.

      • Courerdubois

        WOOHOOO! I get four out of six!!
        Pagan, Eastern Religion, New Age, and Freemason!

        /snark

        • Courerdubois

          Oh, and I have invited a spirit guide too.

          • Anonymous

            No Satanism? Fear not, there are LOTS of other things I’ll bet you’re doing wrong right now!

          • Courerdubois

            I’m probably eating my sammich wrong!
            Could it be SATAN!

      • deerwoman

        I love the part where it lists the type of Christian who can perform a deliverance: those who are “living pure lives with no known sin.”

        Doesn’t their doctrine of original sin then rule out anyone from being truly pure? John 8:7 seems relevant.

        • Anonymous

          Ah, but the blood of Jesus magically removes the stain of original sin. It’s like Oxiclean for the soul.

          • deerwoman

            I didn’t think it was so much “removing” as “forgiving” but that may be a misunderstanding on my part.

          • http://sarenth.wordpress.com/ Sarenth

            Yeah, you’re right there. Part of the Catholics’ Nicene Creed is “We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sin”.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=548883612 Flame Bridesdottir

        I think it says LOADS that one must sign a freaking waiver before being prayed for. I’m not sure I want any kind of prayer that requires me to release the one doing the praying from spiritual and legal responsibility.

        • Merofled Ing

          or the kind that makes you write down the names of anybody you’ve ever had sex with etc. etc. etc. First names only in some cases but still…
          or the countries your parents and grandparents were born in …

  • AnonGuest

    In a similar vein, http://www.usatoday.com/news/religion/story/2011-09-21/southern-baptist-name-change/50491954/1
    Did you get that Southern Baptists don’t like their name image (maybe its history of racism, sexism, and promoting slavery) and are thinking of changing to Converge Worldwide?

    • Madhabmatics

      I hope no one falls for that.

  • Kilmrnock

    Ms Fisher Aldag , i consider myself a liberal leaning libritarian myself . But i do consider the Nar , and thier ilk a credible threat due to the power the ultra conservative religous right now weilds in the Republican Party. I too want our govt to be smaller , fiscaly responcible , and less in our hair . Don’t forget tho,
    ” no child left behind” was a bush policy.As myself and other here have stated , current political conditions are ripe for these folks to come into power. Not watching them and exposing their veiws and plans would be irresponcible.
    The ideal situation would be a balance of power between all parties involved , as the founding father envisioned , but this is not likly w/ current economics and polarised politics we now must endur .

    • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

      Kilm, watching them is valid, obsessing about them is, well, getting rather tedious.

      • http://sarenth.wordpress.com/ Sarenth

        Except we’re not obsessing about them. They’re a very real threat, and have been shown that when they attain power they abuse it. NAR and their sympathizers have no place for Pagans and through efforts great and small would seek to strip us of our rights. If I’m going to obsess about something, I would hope retention of my First Amendment rights would be worth the effort.

  • Samanthascarano

    Satanists should be banned from our society just like any other criminals as they don’t contribute to society, only rape and kill innocent people of all ages including animals for bizarre rituals and to ” get their rocks off”; They’re also heavily involved in Bondage, Domination, Sadism, and Masochism and frequently have sex with both men and women, as well as underaged boys and girls!

    • Harmonyfb

      Satanists should be banned from our society just like any other criminals as they don’t contribute to society, only rape and kill innocent people of all ages including animals for bizarre rituals and to ” get their rocks off”

      And your proof of such ridiculous assertions? The same old Christian scare-dogma that insists Pagans eat babies and that Jews have horns and tails? While I have serious theological issues with Satanism (and the Satanists I’ve met), the majority of them don’t break laws. They hold down jobs, they pay their taxes. (I think you’re confusing ‘Satanists’ with ‘Pedophile Catholic Priests’ or ‘Egocentric Baptist Ministers’). None of them deserves to be ‘banned from our society’ because of their beliefs – here in the USA, our Constitution assures us of freedom of religion.

      They’re also heavily involved in Bondage, Domination, Sadism, and Masochism and frequently have sex with both men and women

      There’s nothing wrong with any of that – so long as all participants are of age and consent. (Also, your remark seems to indicate that you consider bisexuality to be a mere ‘kink’. It is not.)

    • kenneth

      We’ll get right on that, as soon as we ban trolls from this thread…..

    • AnonGuest

      Since the NAR thinks nearly everyone not them is Satanist. I’m sure with such a huge world population to choose from you could find some who do terrible things. You could also find some among the NAR, in case that hadn’t occurred to you.

    • Baruch Dreamstalker

      If you’re going to jail BDSM and bisexuals you’ll take a big bite out of every religous community.

  • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

    This is directed to Anon guest, as we ran out of reply space. I do not oppose immigrants learning English. I oppose taxpayers having to pay for it, at the expense of education for young citizens. My family learned English themselves, while working, so why can’t today’s immigrants do the same? My family also did the work and paid to EARN their citizenship. Yet this is off the subject.

    The only rights I see that are being taken away are those rights eroded by the Liberals. Not NAR. I see second amendment rights being seriously limited and the right to be secure in my property being drained. My right to run my business as I see fit was regulated to death during our state’s liberal regime. I see abortion on demand, which happens to deprive the tiniest citizens of the right to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness”, and taxpayers being forced to support it. What rights, exactly, have the NAR deprived anyone of enjoying?

    • AnonGuest

      Thank you for your response! I like the whole Bill of Rights portion of the Constitution, including the Second Amendment. Since I’ve read it, I would like most of the laws and restrictions made with the 9-11 excuse for security theater and the decisions made to give authority figures power to do any kind of trespass and survellience they like without good cause, a knock, a warrant, a Judge’s signature, or anything revoked as well as most of the budgets for said, and for most of the Drug War, too.
      My ancestors moved or were brought here without much in the way of financial means. It was notoriously rough for their ethnicity when some of them arrived. I don’t feel like ticking them off by being similarly heartless. I live in a mostly immigrant area and like it. The only neighbour who has caused me any harassment isn’t an immigrant.
      I feel like women aren’t given adequate control over their bits right now with birth control and sterilization. There needs to be more and more reliable and less doctors telling people they need to wait until they’re much older. And in the days before abortion was legal, the rich would go to Switzerland, the middle class and the poor would either get an unsafe procedure or be hidden away for several months by their families until they could produce a child for adoption.
      I know people who have done it to save their lives, or because the fetus was not viable to live more than a couple weeks in extreme pain. I really don’t want to hear how there are good reasons or bad, because I’ve never had to have one, but I know I don’t want to make it illegal. It’s their body, not mine.

      The NAR is irrelevant unless it manages to influence politicians and Judges the way the “Religious Right” used to do via organizations like the Arlington Group.
      Also, someone having differences in political view don’t usually mean any personal dislike from me. It doesn’t here. BB!

      • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

        I seem to have missed the amendment to our Constitution that offers “The right to use drugs and commit crimes”. Nor do I see the constitutional amendment that allows us to kill people who aren’t convenient.

        In the days before abortion was illegal, women used herbal birth control. I personally know 25 different substances that either prevent conception or implantation that grow wild here in America. Here’s a short list: Queen Anne’s Lace seed, pennyroyal oil, a decoction of tansy and rue. black cohosh root powder. That’s for people who can’t, for some reason, go to Wal-Mart and buy foam and condoms for ten bucks a package.

        Also, in the days before abortion was illegal, it was shameful to have one, and it was a rare occurrence. NOw that abortion is legal, here was an estimated SEVEN HUNDRED THOUSAND abortions last year, just at the public clinic. Please do not tell me that every single last incident was a birth control failure.

        However, I completely agree with you that the Patriot Act needs to be revised or discarded!

        • AnonGuest

          The same percentage of people are serious drug addicts today as there were before the Drug War and all its billions. Marijuana became illegal because it was claimed by a .. in front of Congress it causes white women to sleep with black men and listen to jazz. That it’s still illegal years after desegregation points to a bunch of worrying about losing drug bust profits, and to the huge expansion of the DEA during the Reagan years and after. It’s not safer now – the most dangerous jobs the DEA pre-Reagan used to handle was going after moon-shiners. Prohibition has made the drug trade stronger, not less.
          If you have reliable, effective, safe herbal birth control – see if you can market it. If it all really works, where is it? (And I thought pennyroyal induced abortions, btw. but I don’t know the details)
          Condoms and the foam aren’t 100% reliable at preventing pregnancy. They do work better than nothing.

          • kenneth

            Libertarians should understand better than anyone that the Drug War is, in fact, a massive entitlement and welfare program. It is a makework program designed to funnel billions of dollars to prison guard unions and to inflate police budget far in excess of true public safety need by creating a problem in order to solve it. It is also a direct government subsidy of criminal cartels and terrorist groups. Prohibition is a government charter and monopoly which protects markets and guarantees profits for the underworld. It is no different, at the end of the day, than if Washington had sent a wire transfer or shipping container full of cash directly to Al Queda.

    • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

      BTW, No Child Left Behind WAS introduced under Mr. Bush’s administration, true, and he signed it, yes. However, it was a bipartisan effort, and Dems as well as Repubs advocated for it. And guess who wrote it? Five points to the first to answer!

      MertvayaRuka, you seem to think that not educating mentally impaired children in the same classrooms as children of normal intelligence is somehow wrong. As a legally blind person, I can tell you that mainstreaming handicapped children is downright cruel. Giving handicapped kids the same access to subjects such as chemistry and driver’s ed would be foolish. Expecting handicapped kids to read at the same level as other kids is ridiculous. It’s equally stunting for normal kids to have to slow down to accommodate the impaired kids. And it’s wrong for taxpayers to have to support that.

      But hey, liberals are all nice and egalitarian, and desire what “should be” rather than accept “what is”.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=636701735 JoHanna M. White

        Mainstreaming students with accessibility issues or needs for accommodation has nothing to do with this article (#1) and (#2) I am sorry that you think mainstreaming is cruel, were you? I doubt it as it wasnt established practice til recently. Also, exposure to students with disabilities is good for kids without them. My six year old’s best friend has issues with her hand and therefore writing, etc and needs extra help. My daughter has come to understand disabilities and the need to defend her buddy from bullies and its made her a better person that I’m proud to say calls me mom. Sequestering kids who need extra help in a room away from their peer group serves noone. Maybe we should increase education funding so there are enough in-classroom aids to make mainstreaming successful.

        *note I am one semester away from an MA in Education and then applying for my Ed.D. so I know a thing or two about this topic.

        • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

          I was one of the first students to be mainstreamed. It was horrible. One of those sixties liberal education experiments that was an utter fail. Worse than “open classrooms”. Worse than letting students choose their own curricula, then wondering why they excel at art yet can’t do basic algebra. If anyone thinks otherwise, try blindfolding yourself, and going into the middle of a dodge-ball game. Go into the chem lab and feel around for a bit there. Yeah. Throwing money at this issue does not solve the problem. Our classroom was funded by Lion’s Club, a private charitable organization… as ALL social programs should be funded by private charities.

          • Anonymous

            I am so sorry that your bad experience has caused you to be bitter and closed off to “mainstreaming.” My son has emotional disorders. He has accomodations in class and is in the top of his class and is as smart as any of the “normal” kids. How dare you say my son should be shuttered away because he has a different way of handling things! Treating kids as though they can’t is the best way of ensuring that the can’t.

          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            No, he oughtn’t be “shuttered away”, but is it fair to the other 25 kids in his class that he get special treatment? Is it fair that he gain several thousands more in taxpayer dollars, rather than learning on his own, where his disorders don’t slow anyone else down? I do not expect special treatment…. nor do I expect to have to keep giving it to others… THAT’s how I dare!

        • AnonGuest

          I don’t know how it works where you live, but in my area there are many with disabilities who are supposed to always have assistants with them because what they really need is individual attention. They can not be handled by the teacher and have the teacher still able to teach the class.
          Their presence in the classroom may or may not actually make a difference for said students individually as far as whether they’ll actually understand anything being taught, but if they’ll be successful at all, they’ll need the one-on-one time all day long with an assistant.
          Most of the assistants are not well trained and many tend to be very lax and inattentive to their jobs and the student they are supposed to help. There’s also a lack of money for paying for all those assistants, so many of the assistants are teenagers trying to work off their mandatory service hours. They usually aren’t qualified to handle the disabled, and even there there are not enough of them.
          For some people, if they’re behaviorally and intellectually able to keep up with the work and understand it, then mainstreaming can be what’s best. But I think it is not always.

          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            The individual attention is hideously expensive… all part of this “me culture” expecting to be catered to. Also, terribly unfair to the other students. In my parents’ time, visually impaired students were taught useful things such as shoe repair… and recently, they’re taught computer science. NCLB is simply mainstreaming for mentally challenged kids. I call it “Teddy’s folly”.

          • AnonGuest

            NCLB’s origins
            http://www.govtrack.us/congress/bill.xpd?bill=h107-1
            It was proposed by George Bush, Jr in the beginning of his office, brought ahead by Boehner (R) and had no Democratic co-sponsors. It did win by overwhelming majority.

          • AnonGuest

            Correction: I looked again, there were 84 Co-sponsors and it appears one from Ohio was a Democrat.

    • kenneth

      “……….What rights, exactly, have the NAR deprived anyone of enjoying?”………..

      I thought the VA headstone case was ample evidence of their intentions. That was not NAR people per se, but was done by people with very similar, even less extreme views than those held by the NAR. They’ve articulated an agenda that promises, at best, minimal tolerance for the existence of non-Christians. I think we’re damn fools if we sit around and find out how they turn ideology into policy.

      I’m also curious to see how Second Amendment rights are being “seriously limited” in this country. We have access to more hardware than anyplace on Earth save for the tribal regions of Pakistan, Yemen or Somalia. Outside of full auto and anti-aircraft capabilities, any private citizen without a felony record can buy anything they’re capable of lifting almost anywhere in the country. In 49 of the 50 states (all but mine), you can carry a concealed weapon, with varying amounts of paperwork and approvals. Unless the Taliban or Stargate aliens are massing on your town’s borders, you have, or can readily get, anything that would meet any realistic self defense needs.

      • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

        The pentacle being denied as a symbol on veterans’ tombstones was the result of ONE Veterans Administration mid-level manager mistaking a comment made by Mr. Bush, when Mr. Bush stated that he believed “is not a real religion”, and the ONE manager making the recommendation to then-administrator of the VA that the request be denied. Nothing whatsoever to do with the NAR. Pagans sued. Pagans won. BTW Mr. Bush later apologized.

        How are my Second Amendment rights being limited? I now have to fill out a form, show ID, undergo a background check, wait ten days, fill out another form, prove that I am a citizen, prove that I am not a criminal (can’t they just look it up?) get a special permit, pay fifty bucks for all those papers, take a gun safety class, and fill out another form, then obtain another special permit, in order to buy a handgun and keep it in my glovebox, while the guy who wishes to carjack me can buy a gun from Mexico and use it without any hassle, whatsoever.

        • kenneth

          If absolutely un-impeded access to firearms was the ticket to personal safety, Mexico, and places like Afghanistan should be the safest and happiest places on Earth. I don’t see a lot of Americans cashing in their 401Ks to relocate to either of those places. Sure, the permit process can be a bit of a pain in the ass, but really no more so than a driver’s license..

          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            Actually, I can do neither, shoot nor drive. My neighbors will tell you that is a GOOD thing. :-)

            Seriously, we had unimpeded access to firearms 50 years ago, and America’s streets were safe.

          • http://www.facebook.com/kenazfilan Kenaz Filan

            Yes, unimpeded access to firearms made the city streets of Chicago SO much safer in the 1920s and 1930s.

          • AnonGuest

            I think everybody is supposed to own guns in Switzerland and DC which has very strict gun laws has more crime than across the river in Virginia which used to be very generous that way.
            Obviously there’s lots more factors involved in whether an area is going to have high levels of violence and murders than just access or lack of to guns

          • Anonymous

            It has a lot to do with culture. US citizens have a very immature relationship with firearms as we are alternately insulated from them and bombarded with sensationalized violence revolving around them. That said, if we’d had it from the beginning, the Swiss model would have been the best. There’s no irrational fear of firearms but there’s no glamorization of them either. Their gun culture is simply much healthier than ours and lacks all of the baggage that’s been dragged into ours. Every year the Swiss hold the largest shooting competition on the planet. It draws hundreds of thousands of people. And I’d be willing to bet my own guns that there are no tables there where people are selling “liberal hunting permits” or copies of the Turner Diaries.

            However, it is a bit more complex than “the Swiss have unrestricted access to firearms”. The ammunition the Swiss government provides for those in the national militia is given to them in specific quantities and in sealed containers with orders that they NOT be opened unless the individual in possession of them is on their way to barracks in the event of an invasion or other appropriate emergency. These containers are inspected regularly to make sure they haven’t been tampered with and the penalties if they have been opened without authorization are quite severe. When a Swiss citizen has finished their term of service in the militia, they may keep their service weapon if they so choose but it will be sent to an armorer to have the select-fire capabilities removed. From that point forward the weapon will be semi-automatic only. But it’s still a Sig 550 and I’d just about sell a kidney for one of those in semi-auto. :)

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=636701735 JoHanna M. White

      So as a person of Native-American descent, I’d like to suggest that all you European-descent folks get the heck out and go back to Europe….oh you are not going? Oh, well I guess we have to deal with you then….hmmm.

      • AnonGuest

        Can’t really do that, this country is the only home I’ve had.

    • Anonymous

      “Illegal aliens do not need to “assimilate”, they need to get the heck OUT.”

      Good luck removing that many people from the country. I’m sure any powers you give the government or law enforcement to accomplish that goal won’t be abused at all or broadened to increase their scope. I’m sure they’ll only use those powers against the people you think they should be used against. Also, this is not a new argument. It was used against every single wave of immigration to this country that came after the bloody Pilgrims. Italians, Poles, Germans, Chinese, et cetera. Every single one of them labeled as dangerous foreigners who were either all inherently criminal, beholden to strange religions and un-American leaders, shiftless, lazy, sneaky, conniving, disease-ridden and none of them would ever be “real” Americans. Immigration is not what it was when either your family or mine arrived here either. The process has become more expensive and more byzantine (oh look, more layers of big government you strangely don’t have a problem with) and some folks have a little problem with sitting on their asses for a few years waiting for INS to get back to them while they’re watching their kids go hungry and wondering if today’s going to be the day when they get splattered in some cartel scumbag’s crossfire.

      “I see second amendment rights being seriously limited and the right to be secure in my property being drained.”

      Yes, by Obama, the most anti-gun president in history. Who without complaint or reservation and in direct opposition to the Brady Campaign’s attempts to block it, signed into law a bill allowing people to carry firearms on national park land. Obama, the most anti-gun president in history, who has not signed or introduced a single new piece of gun control legislation. About the only thing that’s actually limited anybody’s Second Amendment rights since Obama was elected is the panic profiteers doubling and tripling the prices for firearms, parts and ammunition and the idiots with too much money and not enough common sense who keep paying the inflated prices. It’s not enough to say “my Second Amendment rights are being seriously limited”. Such a statement requires proof. All I’ve seen out there is the same tinfoil hat nonsense about the “UN gun control treaty” that’s been circulating for years now. If you’ve got something substantial, please enlighten us. I rather like my firearms and if there’s something in the offing that’s going to change my ability to own them, I’d like to know about it because it’s got to be some pretty sneaky stuff if I haven’t noticed it.

      “In the days before abortion was illegal, women used herbal birth control.”

      If you have a peer-reviewed medical study that shows herbal birth control is 100% effective, let’s see it.

      “Also, in the days before abortion was illegal, it was shameful to have one, and it was a rare occurrence.”

      Or one could say, “In the days before abortion was illegal, it was shameful to have one and far too many women paid with their lives for that shame”.

      “Now that abortion is legal, here was an estimated SEVEN HUNDRED THOUSAND abortions last year, just at the public clinic. Please do not tell me that every single last incident was a birth control failure.”

      I can’t tell you that because it wouldn’t be true. Just as it would be a lie to tell us that they were all done out of a callous need for “convenience”. Like I said, if you really want to know, go down to a clinic yourself and ask the women there. Though you probably shouldn’t start out with “I’m here to find out if you’re all just sluts who hate children or not”, not only would it be rude but the protesters across the street would probably resent you horning in on their act.

      “MertvayaRuka, you seem to think that not educating mentally impaired children in the same classrooms as children of normal intelligence is somehow wrong. As a legally blind person, I can tell you that mainstreaming handicapped children is downright cruel.”

      Mainstreaming didn’t work for you and I am honestly sorry you were put through something that was obviously done with little regard for you and your needs, no amount of good intentions can erase that. But you’re not everyone and not everyone needs the same things as you.

      “But hey, liberals are all nice and egalitarian, and desire what “should be” rather than accept “what is”.

      Oh yes, what a wonderful world this would be if people would just accept “what is”. Women would still be in the kitchen, minorities would know their place and there’d be no talk of mainstreaming disabled people that would never be self-sufficient and therefore only fit for institutionalization. You and I both sit here as the beneficiaries of those who struggled against “what is” in the name of “what should be”. What if they’d decided not to because they favored their own comfort over change? I am simply left wondering why you embrace modern paganism at all, since you hold so much contempt for the kind of people who made it possible for you to do so in the first place and cleave more to those who’d be much happier if we were gone.

      Anyway, I think I’ve said all I care to say for now. I do realize I’m not going to change your mind and that’s never been my intention; only you can do that, or not do that, as you see fit.

  • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

    Tara asked “Where is this free birth control?”

    In any health department.

    Well, it’s a semantic thing. Liberals call it “free”. Conservatives know that our taxes taken from income that we earn by working actually pays for it.

    • http://www.wildhunt.org/blog/ Jason Pitzl-Waters

      “it’s a semantic thing”

      Indeed, shall I start listing the things that “conservatives” expect us liberals to support with our tax dollars?

      • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

        Sure. Like defense. Like police protection.

        This thread started because it was implied that the NAR is immediately going to take over the country, imprison all the Pagans and homosexuals, and destroy all of our rights. That they’re hand in glove with all conservatives in America, and only a liberal agenda will save us!

        This really needs to be clarified. Tea Party candidates and the NAR are not one and the same. And not all conservatives agree with all of the Tea Party agenda.

        Further. Tea Party candidates would not have been voted into office, if so many taxpayers weren’t utterly fed up. Taxpaying citizens no longer wish to pay for all of these social “programs”, including abortion on demand. It’s bad enough we have to pay for “free” birth control. We’re tired of paying to support illegal immigrants. We’re tired of supporting everyone else, period.

        However, this still doesn’t have anything to do with the NAR.

        • kenneth

          Like trillions of dollars for weapons systems to counter threats that don’t exist. Like tax breaks for the petroleum industry, which is already the most profitable human venture ever devised. Like agricultural subsidies, 10-figure bailouts for banks who went broke by their own foolishness and overtly fraudulent acts. The hundreds of billions of dollars forked over with no competition and zero accounting oversight to well-connected private contractors during the Iraq war. Or the many millions of dollars in state subsidies of churches through “faith based” programs.

          Tax breaks and grants to actively assist companies in offshoring our jobs. Like the rule that actually forbid bargaining for better prices on drugs paid for by Medicare, like the system of regulations which guarantee the rights of drug companies to hold us hostage to the highest prices on the planet.

        • Grimmorrigan

          Not much you’ve said has.

          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            Yes, I’ve digressed, in answer to people who’ve made replies on this blog, who state everything from “they’re gonna put creationism back in public schools” to “they’re gonna take away all of our rights” to “they’re gonna not allow Pagans to have religious freedoml” to, for pity’s sake, “they’re gonna burn us at the stake”. This last from a lady who is receiving a degree in education. Wow. Do Pagan people really think our neighbors are gonna burn us alive? Really?

            I am pointing out that none of this will actually happen. It’s alarmism. It’s a chicken-little mentality. It’s, well, ridiculous.

            I am further pointing out that current liberal policies for abortion, public education, defense, taxation, criminal justice and taking away our Constitutional rights are much worse than anything the NAR could possibly devise for the average working-class American citizen. It is causing our country to become weak, vulnerable, impoverished and will ultimately be our ruin.

            It seems to come to a shock to the readers of “Wild Hunt” that most of America is utterly fed up with the policies that liberals hold dear, which have already proven to be disastrous, and that’s why we’re voting for conservative leaders. The readers of this blog seem even more extremist than most… perhaps Pagans and Polytheists might seriously ask why we’re so despised by so many people in mainstream society… is it actually warranted?

          • Grimmorrigan

            Any excuse to rant about your politics and impress people on the internet…huh?

            Considering how you talk about your neighbors some of these concerns might be warranted.

          • kenneth

            Jews in Warsaw and Berlin (and the rest of the Western world) though the notion of real harm coming to them was alarmism too. They truly did. It was ridiculous to think that a nation of solidly middle-class educated, “normal” folk would ever commit such horrors. It was all just some crazy talk that would blow over, and besides, these guys had a promising economic game plan….

            Of course extreme ideologies and fringe groups rarely come to that. It’s very rare, but in the right conditions of fear and desperation, it’s not inconceivable. I oppose groups like the NAR and the prevailing elements in the Tea Party not because I think a holocaust from them is immanent, but because they’re inclined to the kinds of beliefs and actions that lead nations down that kind of road.

            I also oppose them because virtually none of them have the temperament or credentials to govern responsibly. Most of these folks have never even served on a village board or mosquito control commission. They are also not conservatives or libertarians in any real sense of the word. These people have outline a vision for the ultimate nanny state, one ruled by their interpretation of scripture.

            It is not paranoid at all to infer the intent of the NAR crowd to put creationism into education. They have been doing so with some success for decades now. It is an ongoing battle and they have succeeded in some local jurisdictions and in the state of Texas, even though many of their victories have been truncated by courts.

            I don’t think most Americans, even now, see our only choices as being “liberals” or fascist loons like the NAR. For most of the 41 years I have been in this incarnation, the politics of most Americans, and indeed most pagans on this board, would have been considered solidly middle of the road, even conservative, by national and world standards of the day.

            It is laughable to even characterize our country as having been held hostage by “liberals” at any time in our recent history. Republicans and usually conservative ones, have run the country for at least two-thirds of the past 30 years. The two Democrat presidents in that time are certainly not rated as liberal by anyone who self-identifies as such and who is old enough to remember real liberalism.

            If pagans are in fact despised because we refuse to toe the line with a movement of brownshirt evangelical thugs, than I will wear that hate with pride and return it threefold.

    • kenneth

      Conservatives should also have a healthy sense of cost-effectiveness. Shelling out a few bucks for condoms and generic pills on the front end is a damn good investment if it saves you hundreds of thousands of tax dollars in welfare and prison costs which are very likely to accrue from children born to young, poor and unprepared women.

    • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=548883612 Flame Bridesdottir

      ANY health department? Or just where you live? Because I happen to know that the Health Department in my city does NOT provide free birth control.

      • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

        What state are you in? So far I have heard MI, IL, OH, NY, CO, NH, NJ, CN, and CA that provide some type of free birth control (in many states, just to “low income” people) either through the health department or a clinic. Where I live, there is both… and a clinic for migrant farm laborers, too.

        • http://www.facebook.com/kenazfilan Kenaz Filan

          A clinic for migrant farm laborers?! Quelle horreur! What ever happened to the good old days of letting those dirty brown people suffer in silence with their injuries?

          • http://www.magickal-media.com Alice C. “A.C.” Fisher Aldag

            Kenaz, whatever happened to the days where workers paid for their own medical care, and were not obligated to pay for other families’ needs? Oh, yeah, Johnson, Clinton and Obama happened…

          • http://www.facebook.com/kenazfilan Kenaz Filan

            So what do you think would be a preferable way of dealing with those migrant farm laborers (not to mention uninsured people in general) who have medical needs? Do you have some realistic alternative to a social contract which involves the government, or are you just part of the Republican/Tea Party “Let ‘em die!” cheering section?

          • Baruch Dreamstalker

            Alice, what happened was well before Clinton, sometime in the ’40s or ’50s. We had wage and price controls for a while, and employers were looking for a way to give deserving workers a raise without breaking the law, so they wouldn’t walk to employer would could legally give them higher starting salaries. Employer came up with the idea of covering their employees’ health insurance. That was the beginning of this practice of insurance by employer, while most of the rest of the industrial world was going to something like what they called “the public option” in the recent health-care debate.

          • kenneth

            Illegal immigration is a problem with many handprints on it, from both the left and right. The immigrants are doing what anyone in their shoes would do, maximizing their economic opportunities as conditions allow them to. Those on the far left have been undermining the idea that a country is entitled to borders or citizenship requirements at all.

            On the other hand, much of the problem derives from well to do conservatives. They lured all of those folks up here with jobs and reaped the benefit of not having to pay billions in real wages and benefits. They also helped maintain a political “wink and nod” at enforcement until quite recently. They imported these people up here by the millions through irresistable economic incentives (and sometimes direct recruiting in Mexico), paid them essentially nothing and then dumped their problems off on taxpayers. So yes, the illegals themselves have been gaming the system, but they aren’t the only ones….

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=636701735 JoHanna M. White

    These people scare the life out of me. Mostly because they have earnest fervor and would seriously burn us at the stake if they thought they could get away with it. *shudder*