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Response to newthinking (Original post)

Wed Sep 9, 2015, 04:36 PM

6. everyone knows of course that the SoBapts split to back slavery--but let's get dialectical!

if slaves knew too much about the Testaments they'd start revolting, and having their own independent meetings--whether post-Yoruba or Christian--was feared as a great way to plot: I Peter 2:18/Ephesians 6:5-6/Colossians 3:22 is followed immediately by 19/9/25-4:1, after all ...

the Baptist revivalism that paralleled 1900s and 10s fundamentalism was in fact quite Black--and quite pink for that matter, and fundamentalism and creationism took off in the 20s because we'd fought a megawar by countries trying to prove who was most social-Darwinistically "fit" and this influenced Scopes, which was not quite so clean-cut as we'd like to think (not that the fundies were that remote from social Darwinism with their well-funded nostalgia for the Gilded Age and divine sanction of robber barons); the war's scope and virulent propaganda had dashed both the Victorian liberals and the conservatives and opened the door to new religious configurations--heck, soon we'd fight again against a monster strongly inspired by Anglo eugenics (which was seen as "Progressive" back then); delightfully the Fundamentalists' dispensationalism and literal inerrancy came from writers they'd either condemn as Jesuitical or commie; James Leuba assumes 1914 that religion has only a decade or two left and then we'll enter a techno-utopia

for the Catholics, the 30s' Coughlin types were strengthened by being a reaction to the extremely anti-Catholic fundies (headquartered in states that were 0.05% Catholic), fascist persecution in Mexico, and Red Terrors in extremely polarized countries like Spain (note that since the 1820s the Popes had been called reactionaries mostly *because* they opposed brutal capitalism); the 1933 Humanist Manifesto assures us that religion has only a decade or two left and then we'll enter a techno-utopia

the fundies were the first to meld the Yellow Peril into the Red, saying the Russkies were Gog and the Chinee Magog or whatever, about to unleash Commie Satan on us after infiltrating our schools with dancing and race-mixing and talk of UFOs; the early 60s also saw questions about whether God was dead of eternal prosperity and technology, but also Ardrey and Lorenz's "objective ethics" that said we had to invade Cuba because of how baboons troop

then the Jesus Freaks happened; after Saigon, the Church Committee, Rachel Carson, and OPEC the corporatists and elites had to regroup: under the Powell Memo they funded a massive backlash in all fields, from pharmacy and science to estimations of Soviet missile power: the Baptists even had a coup to get them in line; this all made creationism into a marker of group identity, a way to set oneself apart from the sad, competitive, raunchy world weighing you down (heck, the Discovery Institute was a bunch of liberal Republicans who just happened to read some Adventist heretic who couldn't tell fossils apart); in 1973 another Humanist Manifesto says that religion has only 10-20 years left and then we'll enter a techno-utopia

Reagan was the one who brought together the Religious Right, the corporatists, and the social Darwinists ("libertarians"; the Catholic Conference also moved right in the 70s and 80s over abortion (in turn taking a harder line than before Paul VI) and to keep the fundies off their backs since Washington is now home to a politically-mighty sector thinks they all serve the Antichrist (and while damning Reagan up and down, especially over his Latin American atrocities)

this brings us to today's famous doorknobs: their offensiveness, hypocrisy, cultishness, extremism, and refusal to read the Bible like a normal goddamn human being, coupled with 80% of the country's shrugging acceptance of gay marriage, have made them sharply aware their position is declining; in the late 90s and 00s the fundies (surging in the GOP after the party's 1994 rightward swing under Gingrich) also fueled the extremely-disparate New Atheists, who in turn share an alarming amount of assumptions with the fundies: warmongering and torture, proud ignoring of 98% of historians and theologians, the Conflict Thesis, the same damn sources from the same damn Victorian eccentrics, rolling gales of cretinism, and a strangely castrated view of the material world coupled to a transcendentalist rhetoric that elides too much; in 2003 they also announced that religion has only 10-20 years left and then we'll enter a techno-utopia

some are starting to say the pendulum's swinging again to liberal religiosity as theologians get bolder attacking these bigmouth pipsqueaks and insular wankers--fingers crossed! but they're always most dangerous when cornered and "persecuted" (this includes revelations of their misdeeds--it only further solidifies the walls of cultishness and isolated discourse)

the 20th century is long and confusing, and there's a lot of moving parts and things that seem contradictory looking at them from the present; each of these shifts was used by the fundies (in America's long tradition of DIY religion--is it "organized" religion if it's presbyterial or congregational and encourages you to ignore everything else that's written unless one gatekeeper approves of it?) to paint itself as besieged and beset from all sides, under threat constantly when outside the safety of home and church and besieged by drugs, children turning out to be gay, nondiscrimination policies, and "false-flag" revelations of misdeeds by televangelists and Duggars; the high rates of VD and teen pregnancy in fundie-run states makes them turn FURTHER from sex ed, because they think via mislogic

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