Posted by Damozel | So. McCain's 'spiritual guide,' the Reverend Rod Parsley , apparently wrote a book called Silent No More in which he bashed what this article calls "the usual suspects....activist judges, civil libertarians who advocate the separation of church and state, the homosexual "culture" ("homosexuals are anything but happy and carefree"), the "abortion industry," and the crass and profane entertainment industry." (Mother Jones)
He also devoted an entire chapter to Islam and the "war between Islam and Christian civilization." He wrote:
I cannot tell you how important it is that we understand the true nature of Islam, that we see it for what it really is. In fact, I will tell you this: I do not believe our country can truly fulfill its divine purpose until we understand our historical conflict with Islam. I know that this statement sounds extreme, but I do not shrink from its implications. The fact is that America was founded, in part, with the intention of seeing this false religion destroyed, and I believe September 11, 2001, was a generational call to arms that we can no longer ignore....
Parsley claims that Islam is an "anti-Christ religion" predicated on "deception." The Muslim prophet Muhammad, he writes, "received revelations from demons and not from the true God." And he emphasizes this point: "Allah was a demon spirit." Parsley does not differentiate between violent Islamic extremists and other followers of the religion:
There are some, of course, who will say that the violence I cite is the exception and not the rule. I beg to differ. I will counter, respectfully, that what some call "extremists" are instead mainstream believers who are drawing from the well at the very heart of Islam. (Mother Jones)
There's more in the same vein that you'll excuse me for not quoting here. That should be enough to give you the general idea; if you want more, check out the article. To sum up---as the article says with wonderful restraint---"Parsley is not shy about his desire to obliterate Islam" or about his reasons for wishing to do so. (Mother Jones)
Even without that, there are other worrying views held by this spiritual adviser, who calls himself a "Christocrat." (I suppose after all Jesus was just kidding when he said his kingdom was not of this world and when he enjoined his followers not to pray out loud in public or make a display of their righteousness(?))
In 2007, the grassroots organization he founded, the Center for Moral Clarity, called for prosecuting people who commit adultery. In January, he compared Planned Parenthood to Nazis. In the past Parsley's church has been accused of engaging in pro-Republican partisan activities in violation of its tax-exempt status (Mother Jones).
McCain, formerly (I believe) an Episcopalian apparently thought it might be good for him to pick a denomination more in accord with the views and values of the Huckabee contingent, but surely this is going a bit far?
During his 2000 presidential bid, he referred to Pat Robertson and Jerry Falwell as "agents of intolerance." But six years later, as he readied himself for another White House run, McCain repudiated that remark. More recently, his campaign hit a rough patch when he accepted the endorsement of the Reverend John Hagee, a Texas televangelist who has called the Catholic Church "the great whore" and a "false cult system."
After the Catholic League protested and called on McCain to renounce Hagee's support, the presumptive Republican presidential nominee praised Hagee's spiritual leadership and support of Israel and said that "when [Hagee] endorses me, it does not mean that I embrace everything that he stands for or believes in." After being further criticized for his Hagee connection, McCain backed off slightly, saying, "I repudiate any comments that are made, including Pastor Hagee's, if they are anti-Catholic or offensive to Catholics." But McCain did not renounce Hagee's endorsement.(Mother Jones).
So it seems to me that McCain is either a conscious hypocrite---someone hoping to pass as more fundamentalist than he is in order to bring in the fundamentalist vote---or else he's a fundamentalist who accepts all or some of the views expressed by these supporters. Doesn't seem to me to be much middle ground there. And even if there were, Republicans independents who were turned off by the Bush Administration's evangelical pretenses ought to say to him, 'since thou art neither hot nor cold, I will spew thee from my mouth.'
The McCain campaign did not respond to a request for comment regarding Parsley and his anti-Islam writings. Parsley did not return a call seeking comment. (Mother Jones).