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National Prayer Network

POLITICAL CYNICISM BREEDS VIOLENCE, INACTION

By Rev. Ted Pike
5 Apr 10

As I speak on right-wing talk shows, I notice an increasingly disturbing trend. Callers insist that since the entire government, both Democrat and Republican, is united in a conspiracy leading to world government, there is nothing we can do! More and more frustrated patriots refuse to call their representatives or Congressional members. They aren’t apathetic; they are passionately frustrated and becoming fatalistic. For some, that fatalism turns to dreams of imminent violence or government overthrow. For most, it simply becomes inaction. Both responses are deadly for a patriotic renewal that could turn our nation around.

The Founding Fathers intended our representatives to listen and respond to us. Today, many believe our government no longer intends to do this. They are convinced no amount of peaceful protest can stop momentum toward the New World order. In their eyes, we are helpless—at least for the next six months until midterm elections—to hold back hell-bent moral, political, social and economic destruction by the liberals.

But some can’t wait until midterms. They want to make a difference the only way they think possible—through violence. These are bitterly disillusioned Americans like James Von Braun, whose rage at the government erupted in gunfire in June 2009 at the Holocaust Museum in Washington, DC…or Joseph Stack, who tried to get the government’s attention by plunging his aircraft into the IRS headquarters in Austin…or the nine members of the “Christian” militia group, the Hutaree, who allegedly planned to influence the government by the most desperate means: shooting a policeman, then bombing the police at his funeral. Authorities charge that the Hutaree expected the ensuing shootout to ignite insurrection among hundreds of militia groups who would overthrow the government. These angry, unstable Americans were unwilling to endure the discontent and cynicism felt by so many conservatives and Christians.

Most frustrated citizens will never commit violence; they will simply be inactive, abandoning the lobbying and protest options available to us.

Both violence and inaction are equally destructive to any hope of reclaiming our government and our freedoms. Difficult as it may appear, Americans must return to proven tools for changing government policies. If those tools have become dull and ineffective, the solution is not to abandon but to sharpen them.

We must improve lobbying strategies. Example: While it is vital that your members of Congress be phoned, especially during legislative crises, the fact is that most are remote from dangerous bills in committee. In stopping perverse legislation, calls are vastly more effective if directed to the committee members who initially decide whether to move bills forward or let them die. In 2007, I rejected the traditional approach and motivated perhaps thousands to engage in strategic lobbying of members of the House Judiciary Committee, who were considering the federal hate crimes bill. This tactic was sensationally effective, igniting the will to fight in House Republicans and then in the religious right. Responding to an enormous groundswell, Pres. George W. Bush promised a veto. The hate bill died. In this Congress, the same approach faced insurmountable odds because of Obama's promise to sign the hate bill, but it did delay passage for at least three months. This gave lovers of freedom time to pressure the Democrats to adopt the Brownback amendment, helping safeguard free speech in the Matthew Shephard Hate Crimes Prevention Act.

No Time for Frustrated Silence

There are more battles to fight! Although the Democrats lost their majority in the Senate, the precedent of passing the healthcare bill without that majority has enormously encouraged them. They want to pass even more hate crimes legislation while they can. Homosexual House Democrats, Reps. Barney Frank and Tammy Baldwin, are in full cry that the Anti-Defamation League’s Employment Non-Discrimination Act can and must be passed. The same zeal could infect Democrats to pass ADL's Student Non-Discrimination Act, HR 4530, which will make it a federal crime to verbally "harass" or intimidate gay youth in public schools through repeated criticism. Also, if unopposed, the sodomite adoption bill, Every Child Deserves a Family Act, HR 3827, could move rapidly forward. This bill will cut off federal funding from adoption agencies that won't place young children with homosexuals.

But too many Americans will do nothing! They refuse to phone or write in criticism of these bills to the Democrats and Republicans of crucial House committees. They should not be so confident that revenge will be accomplished at midterms. If cynicism on the right continues to stimulate more violence, media will use every opportunity to disgrace political and religious populism. A media firestorm ridiculing everything right-wing could so thoroughly disorient and alienate the American people that a majority of Americans might actually rush to the polls in November, grateful that Democrats will protect America from its fanatical, violent lunatic fringe. And by that time, many deadly bills could have passed which frustrated Americans were guilty of enabling by their inaction.

Christian conservative activists, do you think some other agenda than actively pressuring Congress is your best hope of restoring America? If so, you're living in fantasy. A week ago, nine Hutarees thought their alternate remedy was political genius. Now they sit in prison, deprived of freedom and assisting those who want to take it from the rest of us. What should the Hutarees have done? Exactly what you should do! Resist our greatest enemies—apathy and fatalism—which inspire violence in a minority and passivity in the rest. Cynics neither build—nor preserve—great nations.

Over the millennia many rebellions have occurred against evil and entrenched governments. Almost all were ruthlessly suppressed and led to even worse oppression. The history of parliamentary democracies over the last 500 years is different and points to the best that political reality can offer. Evil leaders may temporarily usurp power, but public dissatisfaction insistently communicated to governments bound by Constitutional laws has generally worked to redeem society and preserve some measure of freedom. American's republican system of government—with its Constitution that respects the rights and voice of the minority—remains the most perfect gift, next to Christianity and the Holy Bible, that humanity possesses.

Keep this gift alive right now by blocking the Obama Democrats through the medium they still fear most: intensive calling to members of the legislative committees! This is where evil legislation either goes forward or is destroyed. Veteran hate bill opponent Rep. Steve King advises that such targeted calling is by far the most effective way to kill freedom-destroying legislation.

Follow these links to truthtellers.org for articles describing three of the most dangerous hate crimes bills now in House committees along with names of the members of those committees considering the Student Non-Discrimination Act and Every Child Deserves a Family Act. ENDA has already been considered by the House and Senate Education and Labor committees and is ready for floor action. Protest ENDA to your House and Senate members.

If there is one lesson Obama's Democrats want to teach us, it’s that the people can no longer impact the legislative process and we should let them do as much damage as they want until elections. Will you obediently learn this lesson? If you refuse Rep. King's advice and think you can "punish" the Democrats by your silence and inaction, then you are America’s problem. You are the proverbial good man who does nothing—and empowers evil to triumph.

 


Rev. Ted Pike is director of the National Prayer Network, a Christian/conservative watchdog organization. 

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