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The Fundamentalist Agenda

Discussion in 'Culture & Religion' started by Coyote, May 6, 2007.

  1. Coyote

    Coyote Active Member

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    A long read...but interesting....thoughts anyone?


    The Fundamentalist Agenda
    ...is absolutely natural, ancient, and powerful—but the liberal impulse makes us humane.
    By Davidson Loehr

    The most famous definition of fundamentalism is H. L. Mencken's: a terrible, pervasive fear that someone, somewhere, is having fun. There's something to this. Fundamentalism is too fearful, too restrictive, too lacking in faith to provide a home for the human spirit to soar or for human societies to blossom.

    But there are far more fundamental things to understand about fundamentalism, especially in this age of terrorism. An adequate understanding also includes some inescapable and uncomfortable critiques of America's cultural liberalism of the last four decades. The attacks on September 11, 2001, provided us a rare revelation about fundamentalism that arrived in two installments.

    First, we became vividly aware of the things some Muslim fundamentalists hate about our culture:
    • * They hate liberated women and all that symbolizes them. They hate it when women compete with men in the workplace, when they decide when or whether they will bear children, when they show the independence of getting abortions. They hate changes in laws that previously gave men more power over women.
      * They hate the wide range of sexual orientations and lifestyles that have always characterized human societies. They hate homosexuality.
      * They hate individual freedoms that allow people to stray from the rigid sort of truth they want to constrain all people. They hate individual rights that let others slough off their simple certainties.
    Not much was really new in this installment of the revelation. We had seen all this before, when Khomeini's Muslim fundamentalists wreaked such havoc in Iran starting in 1979. We have long known that Muslim fundamentalism is a mortal enemy of freedom and democracy.

    The surprise second installment came just a few days after 9 / 11 in that remarkably unguarded interview on The 700 Club when the Rev. Jerry Falwell told Pat Robertson, “I really believe that the pagans, and the abortionists, and the feminists, and the gays and the lesbians who are actively trying to make that an alternative lifestyle, the ACLU, People for the American Way—all of them who have tried to secularize America—I point the finger in their face and say, 'You helped this happen.'” These men are so media-savvy it's amazing they would say such things on the air. But it's also remarkable because in their list of “causes” of the 9 / 11 attacks, we heard almost exactly the same hate list:
    • * They hate liberated women who don't follow orders, who get abortions when they want them, who threaten or laugh at some men's arrogant pretensions to rule them.
      * They hate the wide range of sexual orientations that have always characterized human societies. They would force the country to conform to a fantasy image of two married heterosexual parents where the husband works and the wife stays home with the children—even when that describes fewer than 25 percent of current American families.
      * They hate individual freedoms that let people stray from the one simple set of truths they want imposed on all in our country. Robertson has been on record for a long time saying that democracy isn't a fit form of government unless it is run by his kind of fundamentalist Christians.
    Together, the two installments make vivid the fact that “our” Christian fundamentalists have the same hate list as “their” Muslim fundamentalists.

    From 1988 to 1993, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences sponsored an interdisciplinary study known as The Fundamentalism Project, the largest such study ever done. More than 100 scholars from all over the world took part, reporting on every imaginable kind of fundamentalism. And what they discovered was that the agenda of all fundamentalist movements in the world is virtually identical, regardless of religion or culture.

    They identified five characteristics shared by virtually all fundamentalisms.

    Article is too long to fully post - but the remainder is here: http://www.uuworld.org/2004/01/feature2.html
     
  2. palerider

    palerider Well-Known Member

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    I have talked to lots of folks and if you ask me, liberals are far better at hate than conservatives. I dislike a lot of things but can't think of much that I hate beyond brocoli. The same can be said for most of the conservatives that I know. The liberals that I know, however, do hate. The same can be seen on various boards. You would be hard pressed to show me a mostly conservative board that engages in hate but typically, the more liberal a board is, the more hate is represented.
     
  3. Coyote

    Coyote Active Member

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    I think you have your own bias here. I certainly see plenty of hate from "conservatives" - every bit as much as from liberals I'm willing to bet. I think we each are more sensitized to the opposite.

    However - I will say this: I see far more hate coming from ideological extremists in general then from either left or right. I think that is the problem. This article, in particular - I like because it is not about political fundamentalism, but rather fundamentalism and liberalism as overall ways of thinking. There is value in both and problems arise when the balance is disrupted.

    When you think about it - extremist groups like KKK, Christian Reconstructionists, Radical Islam, Extremist Environmental Groups - have much more in common with each other then they do with their more moderate kindred.


    I hate peas.


    And I probably wouldn't like seacucumbers either.
     
  4. vyo476

    vyo476 Active Member

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    Lets not forget the classic Nazi/Soviet parallels and they were supposed to be on opposite sides of the social spectrum.

    Peas are gross but I'm with palerider, broccoli is disgusting.
     
  5. Coyote

    Coyote Active Member

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    Exactly! Thank you for bringing those up.:)

    You sound like an extremist radical....
     
  6. vyo476

    vyo476 Active Member

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    Don't tell me you like broccoli. I'll blow you up.
     
  7. Sgt Schultz

    Sgt Schultz New Member

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    Obviously you've never been to Townhall.com, Sean Hannity's forum or some of the other conservative/religious forums out there. If you have then I think your bias is truly showing.
     
  8. USMC the Almighty

    USMC the Almighty New Member

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    Hannity's forum is actually balanced quite nicely. I'm not sure how it happened, but from my own experience there -- I'd say it's 60% conservative/40% liberal. A lot of people there call themselves "moderates" but they almost always fall into one category or another. There's also a sizeable number of Constitutional libertarians.
     
  9. Coyote

    Coyote Active Member

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    You...you.....



    Brocollifascist!!!!!
     
  10. Sgt Schultz

    Sgt Schultz New Member

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    But there is a lot of hate/anger shown by both sides from what I have seen on various forums, including Hannity's. Most people regardless of where they fall in the spectrum are pretty reasonable. But to say only one side does it (which I am not accusing you of) is nothing more than ignoring the side that you agree with to complain about the other.
     
  11. vyo476

    vyo476 Active Member

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    I've been called a lot of things but never that.

    I can see it now - red armbands with pictures of broccoli crossed out, mass rallies preaching anti-broccoli hatred, broccoli-burnings (God that'd smell bad), and the eventual systematic rounding up, enslavement, and death of every broccoli farmer in the world.

    Prepare for Brococaust.
     
  12. Coyote

    Coyote Active Member

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    A new world order. Brussel Sprouts are next. Kohlrabi...only a matter of time.
     
  13. vyo476

    vyo476 Active Member

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    The beefsteak will rule FOREVER!!!!!!!!!
     
  14. Coyote

    Coyote Active Member

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    And garlic...can't forget the garlic.....


    now....about those cauliflowers.....an abomination!
     
  15. heyjude

    heyjude New Member

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    Okra is the worst. It is slimely. Everyone says cook it this way or that way and it won't be. Bull! It is slimey when it is raw. I'll join any movement to make it a felony to grow okra.
     
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