Jesus discovered America! I
And all this time, you thought it was Columbus
(Never mind who was really here first, either.)
In her op-ed for Easter Day — at 800 words, a treatise for Katie — Katherine Kersten opens by calling Easter Christendom’s “most holy day, and then she proceeds to debase it with a trademarked political polemic. Just as she did last year.
This is the same person who rails — or did when she got more ink at the Strib — about the ventures of the Methodists and the Lutherans into social policy. Or even the Catholics, when they were worried about the poor instead of condemning gays.
Make no mistake, Katherine Kersten is a rabid and venomous culture warrior wielding Easter, and Christianity in general, as a cudgel and not a comfort.
In her Opus for the Dei — so to speak — Katie starts by claiming herself as the inheritor of Martin Luther King and Ralph Abernathy, and that 19th century evangelicals were the ones who really agitated for the end to slavery.
On the occasion of the passage of the bill proposing an amendment to the Minnesota Constitution to prohibit gay marriage last spring, I considered the role of the institutional church in promoting — or rather resisting — social change, in a post entitled All Things Bright and Beautiful. If you will permit me to say, it is an amazing recitation of how the Christian church is mostly about using the Bible to justify the status quo.
Katie neglects to mention — of course — that Martin Luther King was considered a heretic by a lot of clerics in his time, including the eight white Alabama preachers who criticized him as an outsider and an agitator for his protests against racial segregation in Birmingham.
Just as the Abolition movement itself was considered heretical. Just ask John Brown.
Kersten libels King by calling him one of her own.
But the Christian as culture warrior and defender of the status quo has a rich tradition, stretching back to the Apostle Paul who, when he wasn’t complaining about gays (okay, only three verses, and he wasn’t quoting Jesus, either) was telling slaves to just shut up and obey their masters.
As something of an aside for the subject of this post, it is amazing and laughable that conservative theologians will dismiss Paul’s advice to slaves as merely “cultural,” but that he is right on in his criticism of the “gay lifestyle.” This is known as “picking and choosing.”
There is more to say about Kersten’s breathtaking ignorance of the founding principles of the United States and her ideas about “religous freedom.” But that will have to wait for coming posts.
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