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« Making the case for himself | Main | Small town-ing the government. One. »


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This is what Kos is talking about when he talks about the American Taliban. It isn't that the Christianists dream of beheading their enemies and wandering into Unitarian churches with suicide vests; it's that their theocratic goals concerning human behavior, politics, and government are very much in tune with those of the Taliban. I know this is nothing new in American life, but it seems much scarier and more threatening today.


By birth, I am a Real American - Southern, white, Christian, conservative. As soon as I was able to choose, I did choose to change those things I could. I knew there were people who really believed the stuff Real Americans believed, but I didn't really fully get it until a few years ago. I was talking with a friend of mine from high school, a Real American who is very intelligent, and I began to realize that he hadn't just been saying all those things just to be provocative all those years, that he really believed them. I mean, it's not like I thought he was a liberal, but I didn't think he could possibly believe nonsense like the constitution doesn't support separation of church and state. He does believe it. He believes all of it.

He's not stupid, he's not uneducated, and he's not a clown. I've known him for over 30 years. And yet I don't know him at all. That's when I began to seriously worry; when I realized that the people who believed this stuff weren't just charlatans, clowns, or ignorant. (Maybe that sounds harsh, but ignorant is the kindest response I've been able to come up with to the casual racism I grew up around.)


Brooklyn was known as the "The City of Churches." And now, a century after its incorporation into New York City, it can still be called The Borough of Churches. Of course, I think, any of the boroughs comprising NYC can be called that. Between large stone edifices, smaller clap-board buildings, and store front using congregations, I think this city is awash with special, spirit filled spaces: Christian of all stripes, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist and everything in between. Take a walk in any neighborhood and you find these spirit homes. This place compares very well to any little Southern berg for its spirit-filled people. (This comment got longer as I wrote.)


I understand your larger point. (I wrote the above comment before reading the whole post.) I get mad that places like NYC get portrayed as being not religious or not sufficiently religious compared to other areas, and this includes most of the Northeast and other so-called liberal areas. People are religious, period, in their own ways. It annoys me to no end that so many RTCs (as Fred Clark calls them) believe they have a lock on spirituality or religiousity.

Doug K

To expand on the point about O'Donnell being covered as a clown, though her beliefs are just the same as a lot of Republicans who may be elected: here in CO we have Ken Buck for Senator and Dan Maes for Governor: they are both tea-party supporters and have indistinguishable policy positions: Dan Maes says that bicycles are a UN threat to our freedoms, Ken Buck says homosexuality is just like alcoholism: Dan Maes was dismissed from the police (in Liberal, Kansas) for ethics violations, Ken Buck was dismissed from the Justice Department for ethics violations: Dan Maes is polling below 15% but Ken Buck is at 50% or better. I can't pretend to understand it.

My Real American friend from Wyoming has a bumper sticker on his pickup truck (with gun rack) that says "Tea Parties are for little girls with imaginary friends". As a Navy veteran he can get away with this, as an effete suburban pseudointellectual I haven't dared put mine on the minivan..


The state 'Real Americans' want sounds more and more like Iran, with a different religious trimmings.

Lance Mannion

Nate, I think what they long for is more like Puritan Boston in 1640. It's like they read The Scarlet Letter and took Chillingworth's side.

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