Everything You Wanted to Know About Male Supremacy and Were Too Oppressed to Ask


Everything you wanted to know about male supremacy and were too oppressed to ask

Why did ancient cultures only ban homosexuality among men and see abortion as a crime against males? Dr. Zvi Triger examines how ancient laws and social norms have promoted patriarchy.

By Avner Shapira
Patriarchy and sex

Illustation by Yael Bogen
Tali Meyer
Zvi Triger, whose lectures are aired on Army Radio. Photo by Tali Meyer
The terms “gender” and “homosexuality” had not been invented in the 11th century, but even back then the Persian ruler and poet Keikavus already knew what “real men” needed. In his book “Qabus nama,” he recommended that his fellow men not restrict themselves to sexual intercourse with only one of the sexes. Instead, he maintained that they should feel free to conduct relations with women or adolescent boys, according to the seasons. Keikavus explained that because women’s bodies are cool it was better to sleep with them in the summertime, as that would help cool the man’s body. On the other hand, sleeping with boys was recommended in wintertime because their warm bodies would also warm the man making love to them.

Literary scholar Dr. Zvi Triger recounts these pseudo-medical recommendations in the course “Crimes against patriarchy: adultery, abortions and homosexuality from antiquity to today,” which he is currently teaching on Army Radio’s “University on the Air” show on Mondays at 8:30 P.M. The lectures will also come out in book form next year, in the “University on the Air” series published (in Hebrew ) by Modan.

Triger sees expression of a phenomenon that recurs in quite a few ancient cultures in Keikavus’ text: Just as in ancient Greece, there is no sweeping prohibition of sexual relations between men in the “Qabus nama.” Still, the apparently accepted norm is that an adult male is entitled to sleep with women and adolescent boys, but not with other adult males.

“On the face of it, Keikavus’ words express sexual fluidity and a great deal of openness,” Triger says, during a conversation in Tel Aviv. “But, in actuality, we see that patriarchal values are reflected in them, in the manner of representation of the woman’s body and of the adolescent boy’s. The advice is being given to an adult male … It is a wholly masculine point of view, and there are no parallel recommendations for a woman about when and with whom she ought to sleep.”

In his talks, the scholar presents the diverse ways in which laws and social norms have served the male heterosexual position throughout history. He examines the attitude toward sex and sexuality in antiquity, and explains why certain actions – such as adultery and abortion – were primarily forbidden, whereas others – such as homosexual relations – were banned only for men.

The birth of the horns

According to Triger, for the purpose of preserving its existence, the patriarchal social order, under which certain men dominate women and other men, had to define “gendered crimes.” In other words, crimes that apply only to one sex, and as such should be viewed as crimes against the patriarchy. The lecturer provides plenty of examples from ancient Greece, Rome and other countries and eras, and also underscores the way adultery, abortion and homosexuality are treated in Hebrew law, as well as in contemporary Israeli law. Additionally, Triger analyzes the punitive measures against those who committed these offenses in the light of feminist and queer theory.

Triger, 40, is vice dean of the Haim Striks School of Law at the College of Management Academic Studies in Rishon Letzion, and also teaches law at Tel Aviv University; his specialties are family law, contract law and the interface between law and culture. Along with his work as a jurist, he has published a novel, “In Case of Emergency” (Hargol Publishing, 2005 ). He also cowrote (with Haaretz writer Amalia Rosenblum ) the book “Speechless – How Contemporary Israeli Culture is Reflected in Language” (Dvir, 2007 ).

In one of the first lectures in his radio course (which Dr. Hagai Boas edits ), Triger relates that in 711 C.E., a new legal procedure was enacted vis-a-vis incidents of adultery in the Byzantine Empire. Until then, it had been permissible for a man to kill his wife in the event that she had cheated on him, as well as the man with whom she had committed adultery. However, Emperor Justinian II then enacted new laws: From now on, a husband who killed a man for engaging in intercourse with his wife on a single occasion would be put on trial for murder and did not have immunity from prosecution, as had been the custom.

“Under the new laws of Justinian,” Triger explains, “the cuckolded husband had to send his wife’s lover three warning letters demanding that he stop seeing her. Only afterward, if the lover had not obeyed the letters, could he kill him and enjoy immunity from prosecution. This dictate aroused the scorn of the legal sages, who composed a parody of a letter in which a husband with the generic name Martinus Cornelius (playing on the Latin word cornutus – having horns ) urges his wife’s lover to stop seeing her. This humorous letter is the source of the expression ‘made him grow horns,’ which refers to an adulterous wife who has publicly humiliated her husband.”

Throughout history, social attitudes toward adultery reflected fear of female sexuality, Triger continues: “Originally [adultery] was an offense within the family unit, in which the father asserted his authority over his daughters and wives in an attempt to supervise their sexuality. In the ancient world, women were always perceived as suspects; as naive and therefore vulnerable to seduction; and mainly as irrational creatures who could not be relied upon. When adultery became a crime, this apparently expressed an attempt by the governing regime to weaken the family institution [because it took the supervision out of the father’s hands].”

The unyielding attitude toward both the adulterous wife and the man with whom she cheated did not disappear. Indeed, it still resonates in the Israeli criminal justice system. Triger points out that the current penal code contains the “provocation defense,” which allows a murderer’s guilt to be diminished, and his crime commuted from murder to manslaughter if there was some provocation that led him to act as he did.

“Actually, the origin of this offense is in Roman law, which was understanding in cases when a husband catches his wife ‘red-handed’ in the arms of another man and kills them both on the spot,” the scholar explains.

“In Israel, a well-known Supreme Court verdict from the 1990s – the [Maurice] Azuelos case – was lenient on a man who had murdered his wife and a neighbor, whom he suspected of being his wife’s lover. Justice Aharon Barak ruled at the time that, ‘the blood of the average Israeli [male] and average Israeli [female] might boil, when they see the female spouse or male spouse cheating.’ Even though Barak’s wording is gender-neutral, historically the ‘provocation defense’ was tailor-made for men, and experience shows that women generally do not murder husbands who have cheated in similar cases.”

Moreover, because of the Orthodox monopoly on domestic relations in Israeli law, a woman cannot marry a man with whom she had committed adultery prior to her divorce. Adultery can also lead to loss of child-support payments to the ex-wife and of the sum the husband undertook to pay her in the ketubah. And if a married woman becomes pregnant from a man who is not her husband, her children will be designated bastards.

“All these restrictions are imposed only on women,” Triger emphasizes. “A married man who has cheated on his wife and ‘made her grow horns’ will not suffer from them.”

A national womb

As with adultery, abortion was always historically deemed an offense, the punishment for which reflected man’s control over a woman’s body. In contrast to Christian thinking – which completely banned abortion and viewed it as killing the living being developing in a woman’s womb – in ancient Greece and Rome, abortion itself was not considered an offense: The rights of the fetus were not an issue there, rather the rights of the father. If the husband of the woman seeking to abort her fetus agreed to it, the abortion was legal.

Triger: “The most important thing was the consent of the man from whose seed the child was conceived, since the wife was perceived as someone who merely warmed the seed in her womb and enabled it to develop. She had no rights over the fetus, no right to decide about an abortion.

“If she had the abortion done on her own, she violated the husband’s ownership. The wife and her womb were his property. Even when a forbidden abortion was performed, the punishment was imposed on the person who carried it out (for example, whoever gave the wife a drug or potion meant to cause a miscarriage ) and not on the woman in whose body it was performed.”

He adds that in view of the birthrate crisis in ancient Rome, the campaign against abortion was designed, among other things, to compel men to get married. The laws banning abortion were also related to a demographic issue: the state’s interest in the birth of boys, who would become soldiers and fight in its service. This phenomenon, which viewed a woman’s womb as a “national womb,” recurred in modern regimes as well: In fascist Italy, abortion was deemed a “crime against the race.”

There are still people today who wish to deprive a woman of the right to decide about her own body, as evident in the widespread debate over abortion in the United States, where the issue is a highly sensitive political matter. In October the issue also made headlines in Israel, in the wake of the tragic death of teenager Raz Atias. He was shot dead by police after he threatened to kill his pregnant girlfriend and then commit suicide. The boy’s family claims the girl decided not to get an abortion after activists for the Efrat organization allegedly pressured her against it. The group, which works to encourage the Jewish birthrate, offers aid to women who are contemplating having an abortion, and tries to persuade them to change their minds.

Triger believes that, “similarly to the activity of the evangelical right in the United States, the activity of Efrat and other entities in Israel is sustained by the presumption that a woman is not mistress of her own body and that she absolutely must not have an abortion. In the case of Israel, there is the added demographic aspect – in other words, the perception that women must be encouraged to use their wombs to give birth to Jewish children as part of the demographic battle against the Arabs.”

In his lectures, Triger also discusses a so-called offense that relates only to men: homosexuality, and describes the incarnations of “the love that dare not speak its name,” as it was expressed in Greece and Rome, and Hebrew law. He also explains why homosexual relations were in some societies severely looked down upon, whereas lesbian relations were not generally perceived to be a serious threat per se.

Triger contends that the historic reason why sexual relations between members of the same sex were perceived as an offense that only men can commit stems from the patriarchal concept, according to which it is appropriate to punish a man who allows another man to treat him as one treats a woman – i.e., a man who waives the privileges granted to him by the power of his being a man and thus “degrades” himself.

“Inherent in this is potential that threatens the patriarchal order, which is based on a strict division between ‘masculine’ and ‘feminine’ roles, and on the supremacy of the ‘masculine’ roles,” Triger says.

In his opinion, one of the aspects that the three phenomena he discusses have in common is the violation of male honor: “A married woman who sleeps with a man who is not her husband, and also that same man with whom she sleeps – both violate the husband’s honor, because they disrupt his dominion over his family; a married woman who has an abortion likewise violates her husband’s honor, because she aborts a fetus that does not belong to her but rather was merely placed in her care by the husband; and a man who has sex with another man violates male honor in general, by his sheer waiving of ‘manly’ conduct.”

Alongside this, Triger stresses that the attitude toward the three offenses entails a silencing of the female voice and a near-sweeping neglect of women’s needs and wishes, which are viewed as inferior in the social hierarchy.

American claims

In his final lecture, Triger discusses the influence of patriarchal perceptions in our own day. He shows that the gendered offenses have not disappeared from the world, despite the great advances made in the 20th century in the status of women and gays. He bases his argument on the claims of the American theoreticians Carol Gilligan and David A.J. Richards, who have drawn a connection between the progress in women’s status and the rise of religious fundamentalism – Christian, Islamic and Jewish.

“The growing power of religion in the public domain over the last two decades is seen by Gilligan and Richards as a counterreaction to the retreat that occurred in patriarchal power in certain areas,” Triger says. “They hold that the religious radicalization – which is reflected, among other things, in the strengthening of the anti-abortion campaign in the United States, or the lengthening of head and body coverings for women in Islamic nations – is a sort of ‘corrective’ that patriarchal systems are applying in response to the spread of the human-rights culture in general and women’s rights in particular.

“What all types of religious fundamentalism have in common is the attempt to regain control over a woman’s sexuality,” he continues. “The crimes the patriarchal order created in an effort to protect its basic principles exist and are enforced to this day, despite all the improvements that have been achieved. Not only women but men too are suffering from them, because the patriarchal world forces both sexes to obey norms of conduct that are dictated in advance, and to live according to norms of ‘femininity’ or ‘masculinity’ they have no say in, and which they are able to rebel against only if they are willing to pay a high personal price.

“To do away with the crimes against patriarchy,” he concludes, “we must do away with patriarchy itself. We must exchange it for a genuinely democratic social order, free of hierarchy, in which both men and women have an equal voice and an equal right to shape their personal version of masculinity, femininity – or any combination of these they can think of – without being perceived as criminals.”

 

World NUT Daily Crazy Called For Political Witch Hunts, Purges and Ultimately, Executions of Liberals if Romney Had Won!


WND Columnist: Prosecute Liberals, Journalists for Treason
Submitted by Brian Tashman

For years, conservatives have claimed that liberals seek to criminalize Christianity and conservative opinions through imaginary hate speech laws. But today, WorldNetDaily columnist Erik Rush writes that the government should prosecute liberals and members of the press… in order to defend freedom, of course. He accuses journalists of “treasonous collusion” with the Obama administration and said the Founders would have wanted journalists to be “found guilty of high crimes.” “Trials for treason and the requisite sentences would apply,” Rush says, “and I would have no qualms about seeing such sentences executed, no matter how severe.” He claims that progressives’ “seditious, anti-American” speech is “excepted from protection under the First Amendment,” hoping that “the political disenfranchisement of liberals, progressives, socialists and Marxists can begin in earnest, and in the open.”

Assuming that all goes well and that we are rid of Obama in January, there will be a nation to repair – but what about the causes for this necessity? Yes, many Americans are now cognizant of the fact that progressives have “progressed” America dangerously close to being a Marxist-socialist nation and that we are collectively responsible for not having checked that progress. But aside from grass-roots efforts toward electoral and political reform, there are other widespread, organized threats to America’s ongoing concern as a representative republic with guaranteed personal liberties, free speech foremost among them.

Here, I am speaking of the press, the conglomeration of national broadcast, digital and print media organizations that has been incrementally packed with ideological liberals and socialists, and so has disqualified itself as the impartial government watchdog it once was. During my lifetime, I have seen the press become an advance force for social engineering and global socialism. The degree to which they have deceived Americans and enabled the agenda of radicals in recent decades is beyond shame. As former Democratic pollster Pat Caddell said recently, the press has become an enemy of the American people. In the matter of this president, the press largely facilitated the ascension of Barack Obama. The instances wherein they have promoted, shielded and aided him are beyond enumeration.

This goes beyond such things as MSNBC’s Chris Matthews and his man crush on Obama – I’m talking about treasonous collusion. One particularly scandalous incident occurred during the second presidential debate, when CNN moderator Candy Crowley made an interjection that appeared to have been as spontaneous as Ambassador Chris Stevens’ murder, and which led to a solid point scored for Obama. Most recently, after Mitt Romney brought up Obama’s 2009 “Apology Tour,” the press did their best to support Obama’s claim that this never happened, despite boundless reams of footage that exist chronicling the event.

It is improbable that the framers of the Constitution anticipated a situation in which the press were entirely given over to seditious, anti-American policies. If they had, it is likely that their modus operandi would be similar to that for any faction found guilty of high crimes. Trials for treason and the requisite sentences would apply, and I would have no qualms about seeing such sentences executed, no matter how severe.

This is not likely to occur, however. Radio personality and nascent media mogul Glenn Beck has the intention of putting the establishment press out of business. While I wish him every success, it doesn’t seem likely that he will accomplish this through his organizations alone. In addition to the advent of powerful alternative media sources, I believe it will be necessary to codify – or reaffirm – the nature of crimes against the Constitution and the American people. In this manner, we can thwart the designs not only of the press, but all global socialists operating in America.

Those whose speech and actions impinge upon the God-given rights set forth in the Declaration of Independence and codified in the Constitution are, by definition, excepted from protection under the First Amendment (as well as the Equal Protection Clause of the 14th Amendment). This is a very important concept to consider, because it is based on these presumptions of protected speech and equal protection for all that progressives and socialists have engaged in their predation upon our liberties.

If these truths can be acknowledged and widely accepted as such (as opposed to progressives’ Orwellian interpretations), then the political disenfranchisement of liberals, progressives, socialists and Marxists can begin in earnest, and in the open.

South Park Blasphemy | Right Wing Fox News Cronie Seeks Government Inquisition


Fox News Host Wants Federal Investigation into ‘South Park‘ for Blasphemy

Fox News’s Todd Starnes is sick and tired of ‘South Park’ and Hollywood getting a free pass. The Fox News commentator participated in the Values Voter Summit panel on “Religious Hostility in America” over the weekend.

The panel featured the familiar argument that Christians in America are somehow a beleaguered minority that is under constant assault. Starnes claims to have a pile of stories stacked up on his desk about “instances of people who have been facing attack because of their faith in Jesus Christ.”
Speaking of the controversy surrounding the laughably bad “Innocence of Muslims,” Starnes asked why the federal government isn’t investigating “shows like ‘South Park,’ which has denigrated all faiths.” He also demanded to know why President Obama hasn’t denounced Hollywood.
We have the seen the administration come out and say, “we condemn anyone who denigrates religious faith.” And they come out in regards to this anti-Muslim film.
Well, that’s well and good, but my question is, when has the administration condemned the anti-Christian films that are coming out of Hollywood? Where are the federal investigations into shows like ‘South Park,’ which has denigrated all faiths?
Where is the outrage when people of the Christian faith are subjected to this humiliation that is coming out of Hollywood?
Religious Right activists have been the most vocal supporters of the filmmakers, if you can call them that, and have rightfully pointed out that the First Amendment protects their activities. Starnes, however, seems to have a double-standard when it comes to speech that he deems offensive to his religious views.
As it turns out, the only investigation going on around the “Innocence of Muslims” concerns whether one of the purported “filmmakers” violated the terms of his probation. Otherwise the government has no place policing speech, regardless of who is offended, and the president is not the film critic in chief. President Obama can be excused, however, for speaking out when Americans are being killed over an amateurish YouTube video.

Greatest Threat To Liberty | The 10 Most Dangerous Religious Right Organizations


The 10 Most Dangerous Religious Right Organizations
The religious right is more powerful than ever, using its massive annual revenue and grassroots troops to promote a right-wing ideology and undermine church and state separation.

The movement known as the Religious Right is the number-one threat to church-state separation in America. This collection of organizations is well funded and well organized; it uses its massive annual revenue and grassroots troops to undermine the wall of separation in communities nationwide.

Americans United staff members have carefully researched this movement, and here are the 10 Religious Right groups that pose the greatest challenges to church-state separation. Most of these organizations are tax-exempt under Section 501(c)(3) of the tax code, but the financial data includes some affiliated 501(c)(4) lobbying organizations operating alongside the main organizations. The figures come from official IRS filings or other reliable sources.

1. Jerry Falwell Ministries/ ­Liberty University/Liberty Counsel

Revenue: $522,784,095

Although Jerry Falwell, a Religious Right icon and founder of the Moral Majority, died in 2007, his empire is going strong thanks mostly to Liberty University, a Lynchburg, Va., school now run by his son, Jerry Falwell Jr. Following in his father’s footsteps, Falwell Jr. regularly meddles in partisan politics – from local contests to presidential races. This year, he invited Republican White House hopeful Mitt Romney to give Liberty’s commencement address, introducing him as “the next president of the United States.” A second Falwell son, Jonathan, is pastor of Thomas Road Baptist Church, a mega-church in Lynchburg. Liberty Counsel is a Religious Right legal outfit founded by Mat Staver that is now based at Liberty University, where it launches lawsuits undermining church-state separation and encourages pastors to get involved in partisan political activity.

2. Pat Robertson Empire

Revenue: $434,971,231

Known for his years of involvement in far-right politics, TV preacher Pat Robertson has forged a vast Religious Right empire anchored by the Christian Broadcasting Network (CBN). Robertson also runs Regent University and  a right-wing legal group, the American Center for Law and Justice (ACLJ). (Attorney Jay Sekulow heads ACLJ, as well as his own quasi-independent legal outfit, Christian Advocates Serving Evangelism.) CBN, which brings in the bulk of Robertson’s revenue, broadcasts far-right religious and political invective laced with attacks on church-state separation, a concept Robertson has called a “myth” and a “lie of the left.” His “700 Club” TV program is a powerful forum for the promotion of right-wing ideology and favored politicians. Robertson has been welcomed into the halls of government. The current governor of Virginia, Bob McDonnell, is a Regent U. graduate.

3. Focus on the Family (includes its 501(c)(4) political affiliate CitizenLink)

Revenue: $104,463,950

Fundamentalist Christian James Dobson founded Focus on the Family to offer “biblical” solutions to family problems. Dobson, a child psychologist by training, soon branched out into the dissemination of hardcore right-wing politics with an international reach. Dobson has been a major player in the halls of power in Washington, D.C., and Focus-aligned “family policy councils” pressure lawmakers and influence legislation in 36 states. In fact, the Colorado-based organization frequently plays a key role in fighting gay rights and restricting abortion at the state level. Jim Daly is now president of Focus; Dobson left the organization in 2010 but remains active on the political scene.

4. Alliance Defending Freedom (formerly Alliance Defense Fund)

Revenue: $35,145,644 

The ADF may have changed its name, but it still promotes a familiar Religious Right agenda. The Arizona-based organization, which was founded by far-right TV and radio preachers, attacks church-state separation, blasts gay rights, assails reproductive freedom and seeks to saturate the public schools with its narrow version of fundamentalism. In recent years, the ADF, headed by Ed Meese acolyte Alan Sears, has worked aggressively to overturn a federal law that bars tax-exempt churches and other nonprofits from intervening in partisan elections. The group says church-state separation is not in the Constitution and calls the church-state wall “fictitious.”

5. United States Conference of Catholic Bishops

Lobbying Expenditures: $26,662,111 

The USCCB for years has lobbied in Washington, D.C., to make the hierarchy’s ultra-conservative stands on reproductive rights, marriage, school vouchers and other public policies the law for all to follow. This year, the USCCB escalated its efforts in the “culture war” arena, forming the Ad Hoc Committee on Religious Liberty. Led by Baltimore Archbishop William E. Lori, the committee seeks to reduce Americans’ access to birth control, block efforts to expand marriage equality and ensure federal funding of church-affiliated social services, even if the services fail to meet government requirements. American Catholics often disagree with the hierarchy’s stance on social issues, but the bishops’ clout in Washington, D.C., and the state legisla­tures is undeniable.

6. American Family

Association

Revenue: $17,955,438

Founded by the Rev. Donald Wildmon, the Tupelo, Miss.-based AFA once focused on battling “indecent” television shows. When that failed, the group branched out to advocate for standard Religious Right issues such as opposing gay rights, promoting religion in public schools and banning abortion. In recent years, AFA staffer Bryan Fischer has become notorious for making inflammatory statements. Fischer has asserted that Adolf Hitler invented church-state separation and has proposed kidnapping children being raised by same-sex couples. The AFA, designated a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center, frequently announces boycotts of companies that don’t give in to its demands. The organization says it operates nearly 200 radio stations nationwide.

7. Family Research Council

Revenue: $14,840,036 (includes 501­(c)(4) affiliate FRC Action)

This group, an offshoot of Focus on the Family, is headed by GOP operative and ex-Louisiana legislator Tony Perkins. It is now the leading Religious Right organization in Washington. Every year, FRC Action sponsors a “Values Voter Summit” to promote far-right politicians and rally Religious Right forces nationwide. The 2012 edition hosted many top Republican politicians and drew about 2,000 attendees. The organization frequently assails public education, political progressives, reproductive justice and the church-state wall and seeks to form a far-right coalition with the Tea Party. FRC is also known to engage in harsh gay bashing and has been designated a hate group by the Southern Poverty Law Center.

8. Concerned Women for

America

Revenue: $10,352,628 (includes 501­(c)­(4) affiliate CWA Legislative Action Committee)

Founded to counter feminism, Con­cerned Women for America (CWA) claims to be “the nation’s largest public policy women’s organization.” Its mission is to “bring Biblical principles into all levels of public policy.” CWA was organized by Tim and Beverly LaHaye in 1979 to oppose the Equal Rights Amendment, and when that issue faded, it moved on to other Religious Right agenda items. The group attacks public schools for allegedly promoting “secular humanism” and supports the teaching of creationism in science classes. It also vehemently opposes abortion and gay rights.

9. Faith & Freedom Coalition

Revenue: $5,494,640

This 501(c)(4) advocacy group was founded by former Christian Coalition executive director Ralph Reed. He formed the organization after his run for lieutenant governor in Georgia was derailed because of his ties to disgraced casino lobbyist Jack Abramoff. In just three years of operation it already boasts more than 500,000 members and claims affiliates in 30 states. Reed is infamous for exaggerating his organizations’ clout, but his latest group is certainly making political waves. In 2012, it hosted forums for GOP presidential hopefuls in four states. Faith & Freedom Coalition claims to have budgeted $10 million in 2012 to lure conservative religious voters to the polls.

10. Council for National Policy

Revenue: $1,976,747

The Council for National Policy exists to do just one thing: organize meetings of right-wing operatives, Religious Right leaders and wealthy business interests at posh hotels around the country to share ideas, plot strategy and vet GOP presidential candidates. Membership is by invitation only, and the group seeks no media attention. Despite its small size and shadowy operations, the CNP – founded by Religious Right godfather Tim LaHaye – wields a great deal of influence, showing that even organizations with modest budgets can have a significant impact. U.S. Rep. Todd Akin (R-Mo.), after his now-infamous “legitimate rape” comment, showed up at the next CNP meeting to ensure ongoing financial support as he runs for the U.S. Senate. Heritage Foundation Vice President Becky Norton Dunlop currently serves as CNP president, with Phyllis Schlafly and FRC’s Tony Perkins also taking leadership roles.

Simon Brown is a communications associate at Americans United for Separation of Church and State.

The Religio-Fascist Takeover of the Republican Party


Is The Republican Party Becoming Fascist?

Image from oldamericancentury.org

Republicans have been busy since they took control of the House of Representatives in 2011. Busy alienating every single group of people they can think of, except themselves. The United States is being transformed into a fascist state before our eyes and now is the time we must fight back and turn this evil tide.

Instead of focusing on jobs and the economy like they were elected to do, Republicans have used the excuse of budget crises whether real or not, to take rights away from us. In the 1920′s and 1930′s, fascists in Europe used economic crises to gain power and that is exactly what Republicans are doing now. Using the recession as an excuse to create a police state. Let’s examine how Republicans are frighteningly similar to fascists.

Fascism is the ultimate manifestation of social change and moral revolution, and glorifies nationalism. Sound familiar? It should. Republicans are all about culture wars and preach morality and how great America is. Fascists, like Republicans today, reject democracy and liberalism. Many Republicans called for violently overthrowing the government if the 2010 midterm elections didn’t go their way and have viciously attacked liberalism. Fascists also reject internationalism and pacifism and support militarism and war. Republicans have been calling for the United States to pull out of the United Nations since the 1950′s and have since 2001, been the party of war as evidenced by the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan and the calls to attack Iran, North Korea, and most recently Libya. Fascists also promote heroism, vitalism and violence. Ever notice how Republicans promote themselves by chopping wood or firing guns or some other “manly” activity? They are trying to prove how tough they are. And the examples of violence are aplenty. Just look at the shooting in Arizona and the calls to shoot liberals in the forehead and the threats of “second amendment remedies” among many others. Republicans have ALL of these traits. Now let’s examine how fascists and Republicans agree on the issues.

As we all know, Republicans claim to be the party of family values. This is the exact stance of fascists as well. Fascists, like Republicans, believe that a woman’s role is confined to the home as a mother. In Italy, the fascists banned literature on birth control and increased penalties for abortion in 1926, declaring both crimes against the state. Fascists even pushed policies designed to reduce the number of women in the workforce. Republicans are attempting to do all of these things. They have relentlessly railed against birth control, and have pushed their idea of abstinence as if they have always practiced it themselves. Hypocrites. They are attempting to ban abortion, considering laws to legalize the killing of abortion providers and laws that destroy Planned Parenthood and allow hospitals to let women die rather than give her a life saving abortion. Republicans are also assaulting unions that represent professions held by mostly women such as nurses and education and have been highly critical of single mothers who work.

Speaking of education, Republicans and fascists have that in common too.
Fascist states pursued policies of social indoctrination through propaganda in education and the media and seek to regulate the production of educational and media materials. We see Republicans doing this every day. They have their own news network that uses blatant lies and misinformation to paint liberalism as evil. Fox News is directly responsible for spreading hate and fear on behalf of the Republican Party and even promotes Republican candidates with total disregard to acceptable journalism ethics. Republicans have criticized journalists for asking tough questions and have called for laws to change the mainstream media. Many Republicans are against Freedom of the Press and have even detained journalists against their will for asking questions. Then there is the GOP stance on education. Their attempts to destroy public education is nothing more than an effort to create private schools designed to do their ideological bidding. Private schools can deny an education to anyone and can discriminately hire any teacher they wish which means an army of conservative teachers that will only teach the Republican ideology and their view of history. Fascists created their systems of education to glorify their movement and sought to inform students of its historical and political importance to the nation. It attempted to purge ideas that were not consistent with the beliefs of the fascist movement. Republicans are also doing this. Take Texas and the South for instance. In those Republican controlled areas, the Confederacy is being glorified and Joe McCarthy is being portrayed as heroic. The Civil Rights movement is being largely ignored and the Founding Fathers are being transformed into Republicans that agree with everything the Republicans are doing today. They are trying to portray the founders as Christians that wanted Christianity to rule the state. Republicans are also trying to abolish the Department of Education and are trying to slash education spending to a bare minimum. Republicans and fascists hate the well educated because they want the people to be stupid in order to manipulate them. Fascism tends to be anti-intellectual and so does the Republican Party.

Another major aspect of fascism is its relationship with corporations. In 1925 the Fascist regime in Italy created a corporatist economic system. In theory, Fascist Corporatism is supposed to give unions a voice but in practice, that’s not what it did in Italy and Germany in the 1930′s. The Fascist regime first created a Ministry of Corporations that organized the Italian economy into 22 sectoral corporations, banned workers’ strikes and lock-outs. Even Hitler banned unions. This is similar to how corporations were before America declared its independence. At that time, corporations such as the Massachusetts Bay Company, controlled entire colonies. The Founding Fathers hated this practice so much they rebelled against it and set many restrictions against the corporate world they abhorred so much. Republicans are attempting to reintroduce this idea that corporations should run states and the government. They’ve already called for privatizing policemen and the military and they already allow the Koch brothers to call the shots. It won’t be long before they introduce corporatism. Marxists accuse fascism of being a capitalist tyranny that attempts to make conservative reaction popular to the working class but in practice represses the working class. Even Lenin claimed that “Fascism is capitalism in decay.” Fascists dismantled working-class organizations, significantly reduced wages in certain areas, abolished taxes on inheritance and war profits. Republicans seek to do ALL of these things. They have called for an end to the minimum wage, are ending union rights state by state, most recently in Wisconsin where Republicans slammed through an anti-union bill illegally, and seek to destroy any and all corporate taxes and taxes on the wealthy.

Another aspect shared by fascists and Republicans is their hatred of homosexuals and people who are different. Just as fascists banned homosexuality in 1931 and hated certain groups like gypsies and Jews, Republicans seek to make homosexuality illegal and have made it clear that they intend to persecute those they feel are inferior such as Muslims, African-Americans, hispanics, and other ethnic groups. The current hearings in Congress specifically targeting Muslims is sufficient proof of that, not to mention their constant racial attacks on President Obama and the laws being passed against hispanics in Arizona.

Another major aspect of fascism that Republicans share is the fixing of elections. If the 2000 Election isn’t enough to convince you of fraudulent elections then also consider these current attempts to subvert democracy. Republicans in New Hampshire are pushing bills that would keep college students from voting. One bill would require a students parents live in the state and another would ban same day registration. Why? Because the youth come out to vote for liberals. This is the reason Republicans are out to destroy unions too, since unions support Democrats in elections most of the time. One Tea Party leader has already suggested a bill that would only allow people with property to vote. Even the voting rights of women are being threatened. These are blatant attempts to subvert Democracy and destroy political opponents. These are things that fascists do.

Here is something else that Republicans and fascists have in common: death panels. In Arizona, Republicans have already decided the fates of 98 people by taking their names off the transplant lists in an effort to save money. Never mind the fact that the federal government has sent funds to cover these people. The Republican fascists in Arizona are too busy spending that cash on private prisons so they can send suspected illegal immigrants to them. Death panels are expected to spread to other Republican controlled states such as Texas and Mississippi among others. Fascists like death panels and private prisons too. Millions of Jews died because of death panels and the deaths only stopped after American soldiers liberated the prison camps.

The last aspect that fascists and Republicans have in common is their obsession with Christianity. The Republican party is one with the Christian Right today. Their goal is to make Christianity the national religion in order to create a Christian state. Republicans would then tear up the Constitution and replace it with the Bible. Republicans hate separation of church and state and have vowed to destroy it. Republicans have even gone so far as to make up quotes and falsely attribute them to the Founding Fathers to make it seem like they wholeheartedly agree with them. They actually do not agree. This obsession with religion is very familiar, in fact its Hitleresque. Take a gander at these quotes.

“The National Government will preserve and defend those basic principles on which our nation has been built up. It regards Christianity as the foundation of our national morality and the family as the basis of national life.”

“It is the purpose of the Government to fill our whole culture once more with a Christian spirit, and that not only in politics. We want to burn out the harmful features in our theater and our literature.”

“The Government, being resolved to undertake the political and moral purification of our public life, is creating and securing the conditions necessary for a really profound revival of religious life.”

“The struggle against materialistic views and for a real national community is just as much in the interest of the German nation as in [the interest] of the welfare of our Christian faith. The Government of the Reich regards Christianity as the unshakable foundation of the morals and moral code of the nation. The rights of the churches will not be diminished.”

All of these quotes were spoken by Adolf Hitler, one of fascisms biggest stars. And Republicans agree with his words. In fact, Christianity is one reason why Republicans are doing all of the above things stated throughout this article. If you are a white Christian male that votes Republican, you are safe. But if you aren’t, you are targeted.

The time for compromise with Republicans is over. The time for tolerance of them is also over. We could sit here and allow them to control things and turn the country into a fascist state or we can take action and bring down fascism before it takes hold and strangles us. I’m not suggesting general strikes or pacifism. Republicans would only be too happy to abuse the law and use military force against us. I’m calling on freedom loving Americans everywhere to storm Republican controlled capitals across the country and drag these Republican fascists out of power kicking and screaming and then elect new people to replace them. There may be little other recourse by the time Republicans are finished serving their terms and waiting to recall them will take too much time. Voting rights are being attacked from every angle. Our personal lives are under constant assault. Our right to negotiate our wages are being terminated and war and corporate power are increasing. We can no longer risk allowing this dangerous political party to have any power whatsoever. There was once a time in this country when a party rose up and forcefully put the other one on the sidelines for a long period of time because it was a danger to the nation and its ideals. During the Civil War era, Republicans, also the liberals of the era, came to power and brought down the once conservative Democratic Party for being a threat to freedom and Democracy. Once again, we liberals must rise to the occasion and be willing to fight for ourselves, for others, and for our nations ideals no matter the cost. Only this time, it must be Republicans that pay the price. They must be restricted from holding public office for a couple decades so that Democrats have ample time to clean up their mess and reverse all of the damage done by Republicans. In these dark times, it is our duty to do whatever is necessary to keep America free and its people equal. We must stand up and march together in the millions and topple every Republican controlled capital in the nation and then press forward to Washington DC and chase Republicans out of Congress. Its the only way to save America, ourselves, and those we love. Perhaps after a couple decades in political exile, Republicans will have denounced the fascist elements of their party and come to their senses. If forcing Republicans out of office is our only option to save America and ensure the freedom, equality, survival, and prosperity of the middle class, then in the words of John Boehner, “So be it.”