Terry Gross gives a fearful earful on a Christian movement seeking ‘dominion of politics, business and culture’
(Mondoweiss) -- by Philip Weiss --
Last week Terry Gross at "Fresh Air" gave two hours to people who are critical of Christian movements. First was an interview of Rachel Tabachnick, who has documented an evangelical movement to which Rick Perry has ties. Then novelist Tom Perrotta, whose latest book is The Leftovers (a takeoff on the Left-Behind series) was on to run down the apocalyptic Christian movement that believes in the rapture.
Yes I know it's all hokum, and some of it is dangerous hokum.
But these hours are evidence of a lack of proportion, and of a fear of Christian power. And Terry Gross is important because she's so intelligent and such a cultural gatekeeper. People in the blue states trust her judgment. My father, for one.
The Tabachnick interview was especially fear-producing:
Gross: An emerging Christian movement that seeks to take dominion over politics, business and culture in preparation for the end times and the return of Jesus is establishing a presence in American politics. The leaders are considered apostles and prophets, gifted by God for this role... My guest, Rachel Tabachnick, researches the impact of the religious right and end-time narratives on American politics.I'm sure that the movement is as unhinged as Tabachnick says, I find Rick Perry a scary figure. But I would challenge Gross and Tabachnick to show me the ways that this movement they are so afraid of has actually taken "dominion over politics, business and culture." I heard about a lot of political activity, but I didn't hear of any such concrete accomplishments.
Ms. RACHEL TABACHNICK: I would say the basic beliefs began with the idea of dominionism, and dominionism is simply that Christians of this belief system must take control over all the various institutions of society and government. They have some unusual concepts of what they call spiritual warfare that have not been seen before in other groups.
I've written before that my whole political worldview was given to me by my mother in one phrase-- The Bastards. It was an understanding, of evil powerful Christian bastards who controlled our world, and it came out of the shtetl Jewish relationship with the czar in Russia.
It's not that there aren't Christian bastards in the world. Dick Cheney, to begin with, George W. Bush. And lo, Rick Perry. But the false bottom in the consciousness is the belief that Jews are always powerless. This is simply not very helpful at a time when Jews have fully entered the American establishment. It is striking that even as 1/5th of the Congress is in Israel as the guests of the Israel lobby, and Eric Alterman has the guts to write "a great many pundits in the media happen to be Jewish," Terry Gross is doing a show about Christians who want dominion over our politics and culture and business life...MORE...LINK