Thursday, 9 April 2015

In Which I Take The “Christian Terrorism” Challenge

posted on 4/9/2015 by the Salt City Sinner

Joseph Farah, the Grand Wizard of Christian white nationalist web tabloid WND, is many things.

A braggart, a hypocritical and paranoid conspiracy theorist, a self-proclaimed prophet, a “former left-wing radical,” take your pick. Like many on the left and the right, he also fails what a friend of mine calls “the ideological Turing test,” which said friend describes as a measure of the ability of a person to accurately describe the arguments and stances of someone they strongly disagree with on their opponent's terms.

There's something about Farah I haven't figured out. He turns a tidy profit at WND through a publishing imprint, a magazine, DVDs (mostly Christian end-times gobbledegook), advertising at (mostly survivalist supplies and assorted weirdness), a truly impressive email list, which he regularly rents to the Republican Party for outreach purposes, and now even an end-times oriented 'Holy Land Cruise.'

All of this entrepreneurial cunning makes it hard for me to conclude that he's just nuts, which begs the question: is Big Joe Farah a fucking lunatic, a completely shameless liar, stupid, or some combination thereof?

For example, in a February 20th column entited “About Those Dreaded Bible Terrorists...” Farah writes:

Can I ask a simple question? Can Biden or Obama or anyone who pushed this moral equivalency pabulum name one instance of Bible-inspired terrorism? Just one, please...It’s one thing to point out instances of terrorist violence that are actually occurring in association with a specific religious belief. It is another to make them up in association with another religious belief.

I'll admit, Joe, you've got me there.

I can't name “a single” instance of Christian terrorism. I can name between dozens and hundreds related to women's reproductive health alone:

In the U.S., violence directed towards abortion providers has killed at least eight people, including four doctors, two clinic employees, a security guard, and a clinic escort. .. According to statistics gathered by the National Abortion Federation (NAF), an organization of abortion providers, since 1977 in the United States and Canada, there have been 17 attempted murders, 383 death threats, 153 incidents of assault or battery, and 3 kidnappings committed against abortion providers. 
A bombing in Birmingham, AL on 1/20/98 that killed one police officer and one nurse

But surely Big Joe would protest that the perpetrators of these acts are Not Real Christians ™, right? After all, every third article in the 'Faith' section of WND is a diatribe about how some sect or another within Christianity has committed apostasy (Farah himself condemned the Presbyterian Church USA in a 2014 column, amusingly calling them “an apostate church from Hell,” which may be the sickest burn the 17th century has ever seen).

the results of an arson fire at a clinic in Pensacola, FL, set on 1/1/2012

Well, the problem with that is that Farah's WND Books imprint announced triumphantly last year that it would publish Abortion Freewhich is described thusly:

In Abortion Free, [Troy] Newman and [Cheryl] Sullenger, founders of the prolife group Operation Rescue, share their more than fifty years combined experience in shuttering dirty, life-threatening clinics, including the story of how they peacefully shut down the clinic of Kansas’s notorious late-term abortionist George Tiller. 
What's notable about this?

Well, first of all, mentioning Dr. George Tiller in the bona fides of a pair of pro-life authors is a little messed up, given that Dr. Tiller was murdered while attending church in 2009 by Scott Roeder, an anti-abortion zealot associated with the 'Army of God,' which is...wait for anti-abortion Christian terrorist organization!

Second of all, Cheryl Sullenger, in addition to being a much-hyped WND author, is a convicted felon who pled guilty in 1988 to conspiring with her husband to bomb an abortion clinic and served two years in federal prison.

Perhaps more disturbing, regarding the aforementioned murderer Scott Roeder?
In 2009, [Sullenger] drew attention following the trial of Scott Roeder, an anti-abortion activist indicted for the murder of Dr. George Tiller of Wichita. Sullenger initially denied any contact with Roeder, but when her phone number was discovered on the dashboard of his car, she subsequently stated that she had kept him informed regarding Tiller's scheduled court dates. 
 So, in summary, Farah, not only can I name one instance of Christian (or, in your dipshit phrasing, “Bible-based”) terrorism – I can name a Christian terrorist whose book your awful fucking website is pimping!

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