I was on my way to lunch today, when I saw an ad on a local ‘mega-church’ billboard. It was promoting a “Restoring America Conference”.
This is a church. It pays no taxes. It should have no say, as an entity, in our political process.
Based on the speakers, this will not be about Restoring America in any social sense – something that a church should indeed participate and lead. This ‘conference’ will undoubtedly be a rabidly right-wing diatribe from start to finish.
In addition to Dr Lee, the Pastor of this megachurch, the keynote speakers are advertised as
- Herman Cain, talk-show host,
- Fred Barnes, Fox News Contributor, Editor Weekly Standard Magazine,
- Walid Shoebat, Expert on Radical Islam. and
- Ann Coulter, a NY Times Best Selling Author.
Cain calls himself the “Hermanator”, and undoubtedly sees himself as a local evangelical Tea Party leader. Recent posts on his site include “A Presidency in Free Fall”, “Liberal SIN tactics gone wild”, and “Dems scramble for a new message since the nation still hates ObamaCare”.
Barnes is the executive editor of The Weekly Standard (The ‘Neo-con bible’) and a regular Fox News ‘contributor’. One of his recent commentaries on Fox (h/t MediaMatters) denied that America was suffering in any way from “Islamophobia”. His magazine recently labelled President Obama as a “Hyper Partisan”. I suppose it takes one to know one.
Shoebat is, according to his own site, a ex-PLO terrorist, converted to Christianity. His claim to having participated in PLO activities are disputed in Palestine by his family and by the bank he says he bombed! His family also dispute that Shoebat is an assumed name. Some state that he is merely a dupe for Zionists, who enjoy having a pet ex-terrorist to spread the word.
As for Coulter. She is well known on the right-wing circuit, although she had a recent falling out with Joseph Farah of World News Daily for accepting a speaking engagement at the recent Homocon, reported across the web. This does not make her less right wing. It merely demonstrated that she’ll talk to anyone for a fee.
I have absolutely no problem with free speech, not do I have a problem with Partisan speech. I do have a problem when political speech is not only associated with religion, but sponsored and promoted by a religious organization.