Monday, October 10, 2011

Pastor Brown & Westboro Baptist Church & Thomas Jefferson

I'm certainly not objective in the on-going community conversation dealing with domestic partner benefits. And as a veteran, I am certainly not objective when it comes to WBC.

So maybe I'm wrong here, but I don't see much difference between those people and Pastor Tom Brown's acolytes. The WBC has a problem with gays and for some reason they protest the funerals of servicemen. If it confuses you why they do that, you are not alone. I don't think I understand their logic.

But if you can stomach their website, here is a link and maybe you can find it. I certainly can't. The website is www.godhatesfags.com.

Frankly, there are parts of the WBC website that sound very much like the website of Pastor Tom Brown. He's very anti-Catholic and the WBC lists www.priestsrapeboys.com as a "sister site".

What you essentially have with these two groups is a couple of anti-gay religious fanatics. "Curing gay" or "praying away" the gay really don't sound to far removed from the WBC way of thinking.

I think Pastor Brown probably doesn't want to be aligned with the WBC and uncharacteristically has taken a very low profile today. Nonetheless, in my opinion they are birds of a feather.

In fact, I'm inclined to believe that if Pastor Brown were AGAINST the mindset and actions of the WBC that he would've issued a statement or sought out another interview with the media to clarify his position.

Now that I think about it, its really hard to understand Pastor Brown's logic as well. I mean here is a guy that actually thinks he is a civil rights leader. On what planet can someone who is out to REPRESS a group of people actually have the nerve to call themselves a civil rights leader?

I am very fortunate to have had the honor of marching with Cesar Chavez and Dolores Huerta. I know REAL civil rights leaders. Pastor Brown is no civil rights leader.

Furthermore, Brown actually has the nerve to say that the clause in the Constitution establishing a separation of Church and State is meant to protect the religious' ability to impose their beliefs on government. In fact, on his website, Pastor Brown states, "Uninformed people, usually those who hate religion, twist the meaning of the Amendment; they basically say that the church should stay out of politics."


Which is really funny because of Brown's use of the term "uniformed people".

In my opinion, Pastor Brown is the one who shows he's "uniformed". You see, there was this guy, a founding father, named Thomas Jefferson. You remember him right? He was the principal author of the Declaration of Independence and who's hand actually WROTE the Constitution. The guy that "La Jeff" is named after?

Third President of the United States. You remember him now right?

Well, it seems Mr. Jefferson had some pretty specific thoughts on the separation of church and state. Clearly he is more informed on Constitutional issues than Tom Brown and here's what the red-headed founding-father had to say about it:

  • The clergy, by getting themselves established by law and ingrafted into the machine of government, have been a very formidable engine against the civil and religious rights of man (Letter to J. Moor, 1800).
  • The clergy...believe that any portion of power confided to me [as President] will be exerted in opposition to their schemes. And they believe rightly: for I have sworn upon the altar of God, eternal hostility against every form of tyranny over the mind of man. But this is all they have to fear from me: and enough, too, in their opinion (Letter to Benjamin Rush, 1800).
  • History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government. This marks the lowest grade of ignorance of which their civil as well as religious leaders will always avail themselves for their own purposes (Letter to von Humboldt, 1813).
  • In every country and in every age, the priest has been hostile to liberty. He is always in alliance with the despot, abetting his abuses in return for protection to his own (Letter to H. Spafford, 1814).

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Carl Starr

Ive never really understood this concept of leadership and always thought it was more closer to power and influence than the people. 'Rights belong only to the Belligerant Claimant' not leaders or the ACLU, no one is going around handing out rights...people are free to call themselves what ever they want, I try to make it a point not to follow or trust leaders. Brown feels called to lead a church and if he feels he is a civil rights leader then I am sure he also feels he is a Christ leader. If rights belong only to the belligerant claimant then no can claim dibs on rights and no one is a Authority on Rights.

Anonymous said...

let it go, jaime.

Anonymous said...

Jaime,

"He was the principal author of the Declaration of Independence and who's hand actually WROTE the Constitution."

Thomas Jefferson wrote the Constitution? Hamilton, Jay & Madison were the authors of The Federalist Papers and the intellectual brains behind the Constitutional Convention. Jefferson didn't like the idea of strong Federal Government. I'm sure Jefferson wrote letters to the Virginia delegates but he certainly wasn't there in 1787. It would have been hard for him to be in Philadelphia considering he was... Minister (Ambassador) to France from 1785 to 1789. He did not WRITE the Constitution, It was physically impossible (his letters wouldn't get there until after the convention was over).

Jefferson's words are powerful but the Declaration of Independence isn't law. It's just a statement of principals, many of which the country failed live up to.

Although cited by some Jurists (against all rules of precedent) letters are not law either. They are not even legally the same as Presidential signing statements. Unless of course you're trying to find... original intent?

Don't forget the letters written by Jefferson to ask for loans, the "evil" necessity of slavery and about the sovereignty of states within the "Union".

Jefferson is a two edged sword and there are stronger scholars to bash Brown with.

Chris Dorhn
Eastside

Anonymous said...

Pastor Tom Brown did issue the follow press release before the funeral:
"Westboro may have the “legal” right to exercise their freedom of speech, but they do not have the “moral” right to disrespect a family in grief. If this group has a problem with governmental policies then they should protest the government, not harass private citizens. This outside group will never divide our city that stands squarely behind our soldiers and especially behind the family of Staff Sgt. Christopher Dias. We offer are sincere condolences to the family of Christopher Dias."

Jaime, you love to practice guilt by association. This is why you will never be a respected reporter.

The Lion Star said...

Anonymous, are you that dense? I have no desire to be a reporter. I've said that many times. Kiss my ass.