Here is an illustration of what I mean by totalitarian humanism:
““Rather than deny the shift, or stop at trying to reverse it in legislatures, the courts and at ballot boxes, conservatives are instead attempting to erect a legal architecture that will wall them off from the growing portion of American society that supports equal rights for gay people.”
The person making that statement is clearly horrified that someone, somewhere, somehow will be practicing un-progressive values, and apparently such horrors must be prevented by extending the state into every remote corner of society in order to enforce progressive virtue.
I have probably had much more personal experience with the fringes of America’s evangelical subculture than most people. I was a red stater born and bred, my family was at one time associated with the Rev. Jerry Falwell. I attended a Christian Reconstructionist church as a kid, and went to a private school associated with institutions like Bob Jones University all throughout the 70s. In the 1980s and 90s there was no one who railed harder against the religious right than myself. In those days, the religious right were the foremost proponents of what might be called “cultural statism,” and while I never begrudged anyone else their religious point of view, I did strongly oppose groups like the Moral Majority from an anarchist perspective.
However, the religious right has since been largely defeated and rendered politically impotent. There is no public issue on which the religious right has been on the winning team. The religious right has since gone into the defensive mode, and developed a largely retreatist, cultural separatist outlook. This is something that liberals and leftists should be happy about if they weren’t pushing a cultural statism of their own which insists that everyone should be required to adopt supposedly progressive values. In other words, the PC Left is the new Moral Majority. The flavor of the article posted below is on the level of 1980s church ladies railing against satanic rock.
AlterNetLike a cornered animal, which turns instinctively to confront pursuing predators, the Christian Right, knowing it represents the views of an ever shrinking number of Americans, is engaged in an existential fight to the death. Veto or no veto, Arizona’s anti-gay bill is just another of its many efforts to transform America’s secular democracy into a tyrannical theocracy.
The Christian Right’s dirty little secret is they are acutely aware that changing demographics are running against them. While they may believe the earth is a mere few thousand years old, they’re not complete idiots. They can read polls, and the data tells them this: millennials are abandoning religious belief. According to a recent Pew survey, one in four Americans born after 1981 hold no religious belief, which is nearly double the national rate of atheism. Other studies confirm this trend, including a recent study by the Public Religion Research Institute showing more than half of non-religious Millennials have abandoned their childhood faith.
With this in mind, the nation’s radical religious fundamentalists see an ever-shrinking window to impose their Bronze Age worldview on the gay, atheist, liberal, immigrant, heathen, and science book-reading masses. The American Taliban is as deeply troubled by the thoughts of a gay man “sneaking a peak” of a heterosexual man in an NFL locker room as much as they’re freaked out over seeing Cam and Mitchell, the gay couple on “Modern Family,” adopt an Asian child. For the intellectual infants of the American species, progressive culture is nothing more than a 24/7 infomercial for gay sex and abortion. That frightens our unfriendly theocrats because biblical fundamentalists are more concerned with the goings on in the bedrooms of others than they are within the guilt-ridden, sexless confines of their own.
Brian Beutler writes that measures like Arizona’s SB1062 bill have emerged in a number of states out of “a wellspring of conservative panic about the country’s abrupt legal and cultural evolution into a society that’s broadly tolerant of gay people.” He adds, “Rather than deny the shift, or stop at trying to reverse it in legislatures, the courts and at ballot boxes, conservatives are instead attempting to erect a legal architecture that will wall them off from the growing portion of American society that supports equal rights for gay people.”
CJ Werleman is the author of “Crucifying America” and “God Hates You. Hate Him Back.” You can follow him on Twitter: @cjwerleman