I would love to have a more specific definition of how the U.S. government defines extremism. I fear that, if that definition came out and were actually used, we would find that the majority of the country (that’s right, more than half, a democratic majority, would be counted as extremists). The Pentagon and Military have included the colonists that fought for independence from Britain as examples of extremists; they have included Evangelical Christians and Catholics on the list as well (click here and here to read more).
They further warn that extremists will “talk of individual liberties, states’ rights and how to make the world a better place.”
Since when did individual liberties, states’ rights and making the world a better place become a threat? I was raised to believe that these were firmly held, all-American values.
I hope I’m not the only one concerned at having the early Americans that fought for freedom, or Evangelical Christians and Catholics, that are currently fighting hard, alongside many other Christian groups, to protect and win back the freedoms of religion, conscience and speech, are on that list. Together with Al Qaeda and terrorist groups.
It makes it sound like there’s no difference between a faithful, God fearing, Church going, ordinary Christian, and a terrorist inciting violence and death. It also makes it sound like the founding fathers were fighting for the wrong thing. Extremists. Why did they want freedom from a dictatorial regime? Unthinkable.
If the Christians that are being denied more and more rights (incidentally, rights that were won for them by the founding fathers) and the early Americans that fought for a free country are extremists, it makes it seem like the real fight is over freedom itself. If you believe there’s such a thing as right and wrong, and you believe you are free to believe that, you’re an extremist.
Or is there a different way to understand the position adopted by our current government?
Apparently the Pentagon has been “unavailable” to comment on the issue since it’s concerning inclusion of both Christians and the founding fathers as extremist groups has been made public. Scurrying to find a scapegoat, or cover the tracks, perhaps?
Forgive me, as a Catholic Christian, for being cynical. Tomorrow’s post will be more cheerful!