Yes… I know… I said I wasn’t going to blog about Terry Hurlbut’s little right-wing hate blog any more. However, in my defense, I should just admit firstly that the man has managed to do an Andy Schlafly and surround himself with contributors who are, to a person, more stupid, more bigoted, and more batshit insane than Hurlbut could ever hope to be. When you realise that Hurlbut is coming across as the voice of reason on his site, you kn0w things are pretty fucked up.
Secondly, I was busy wading through the soul-destroying morass of stupidity that is Rapture Ready, in an effort to find something to post about. However, another few minutes of reading that, and the chances are pretty good that I’d be heading out towards a tall tower somewhere… arsenal in tow. There is only so much a sane man can take…
The third reason is that one of Terry’s conspirators-in-crazy has come up with a post so batshit insane – not to mention full of outright lies – that it really does deserve a response.
Pro-life Founding Fathers
You need to remember that to your average right-wing nutter, the men who drew up the US Constitution rank just below Jesus and possibly above the 12 Apostles on their scale of awesome. This is because they have a deep-seated need to pervert history – not to mention the very Constitution they claim to love to much – and justify their existence by warping reality to give themselves a place to exist in.
This most commonly manifests itself in the totally fictitious claim that the USA is a Christian country, founded by Christians for Christians. Of course, this plays neatly into their need to impose their Bronze Age belief system into every aspect of life (just like the Muslims they claim to hate so much), not to mention their rampant xenophobia – if you don’t think and act just like they do, you’re one of them, and they don’t want you around them. thank you very much.
There’s only one small problem with this scenario. Nowhere in the US Constitution do the words “”Jesus Christ,” “Christianity,” “Bible,” “Creator,” “Divine,” and “God” appear. Not only that, but there’s that pesky establishment clause, specifically designed to ensure that no single religion could claim to be the official state religion, as was the case in Britain, and that all citizens – no matter their beliefs – would enjoy the same privileges.
So that takes care of the Constitution, bu what about those other precious documents – the Declaration of Independence and the Pledge of Allegiance? Well, not much luck there either. You see, the Pledge only included the words “one nation under God” from 1954 onwards (not to mention the Pledge itself only dates from 1892.
The4 Declaration contains exactly one reference to God, and it’s a rather strange one too. The opening paragraph includes the phrase
the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them
Now call me picky, but that hardly sounds like a Christian god. Neither, for that matter, does the reference to “Divine Providence.” In fact, given how little your average fundie cares about the environment and nature in general – because God put Man in charge of everything, so they can rape and pillage the planet just in time foe the Rapture – it hardly sounds like they’re referring to a Christian God. In fact, you’d expect there to be some mention of Christ, not just the God of Natural Law. It’s just some vague god-type person they’re referring to. In fact, given that most of the signatories were Free masons, it’s just as likely they were referring to the GAOTU, as to the God of the New Testament.
There’s also the small matter of neither actually being enforceable laws, which brings us back to the totally non-religious Constitution. Oh yes, and just in case you think that maybe I overlooked some mention of Christ (and no, saying “in the year of our Lord” by the date does not make it a Christian document, nor does it make the US Christian), let me refer you to the Treaty of Tripoli, signed in 1796, almost 10 years after the original constitution was signed.
In this treaty, it clearly states that:
As the Government of the United States of America is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion,—as it has in itself no character of enmity against the laws, religion, or tranquility, of Mussulmen,—and as the said States never entered into any war or act of hostility against any Mahometan nation, it is declared by the parties that no pretext arising from religious opinions shall ever produce an interruption of the harmony existing between the two countries.
It doesn’t get much clearer than that, right? We don’t need to run around, trying to shoehorn our religious beliefs onto a document which clearly has no basis in religion at all, right?
Enter RoseAnn Salinitri, Hurlbut’s right-hand woman, self-appointed leader of the New Jersey Tea Party Caucus, target of derision by the mainstream NJ conservative movement (and when the Tea Party thinks you’re insane… well...) and the person who felt that she was fulfilling God’s will by being Bader Qarmout’s campaign manager, and was horrified when they lost the primary.
Anyway, she’s had a read of Constitution and come to the conclusion that the Founding Fathers were pro-life. She had a look at the following:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights, that among these are life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness. (her emphasis)
and decided that these men – second only to Jesus and the Apostles in her mind – were carrying out God’s will on earth. Never mind that the next bit reads:
That to secure these rights (the rights of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness), governments are instituted among men…
Now, it’s important to note. The Founding Fathers were deliberately setting up a government for the people, by the people, etc, in a direct break from a colonial master, ruled by a monarchy, which used to believe that they were ordained by God to rule. Of course, in those days “by the people” meant as long as you were white, male, owned land, etc.
RoseAnn interprets this as:
Today we may view abortion as a choice but our founders viewed government’s fundamental role to be pro-life. Therefore, it only seems logical to me that if candidates do not understand the most basic function of government, they do not deserve our votes. Is it any wonder that since we have settled for pro-choice candidates that the very role of government has been perverted? How could men and women who do not understand that governments are instituted to protect life understand any of the other basic principles of government?
Which is all very well and fine.
Except for a few glaring matters. If the Founding Fathers were so adamantly pro-life, they must have implemented anti-abortion laws, right?
The first ever anti-abortion law in the US came into effect in the 1820s… and then only prevented abortions after 4 months. It was only by 1965 that abortion was outlawed in all 50 states… until overturned in 1972 in Roe vs. Wade.
So, nearly 300 years after the Constitution was signed was abortion – briefly – made illegal. And for that matter, if they were so pro-life, why didn’t they abolish the death penalty. Or is that because the FFs subscribed to the Biblical “eye for and eye” philosophy.
Clearly, they subscribed to the same hypocritical belief that modern day fundies cling to, that the life of a fetus is worth fighting for, up until the moment it is born.
For that matter, if they were so concerned that they were implementing God’s will on earth, and “liberty” was one of these, why were a good bunch of the men who signed the Constitution slave owners?
Or does God’s will only apply to rich, white men?