NOT MY CHURCH OF ENGLAND

The "Church of England Newspaper" has absolutely nothing to do with the official Church of England and is about as Anglican as ACNA (in other words, not at all). It has a very low weekly circulation compared to "The Church Times," equal to just a third of the "unique" vistors who visit OCICBW.... This is good because it is a nasty little rag.

From THE GUARDIAN:

An Anglican newspaper has defended the publication of an article that compares gay rights campaigners to Nazis, saying the author has "pertinent views". The column, by former east London councillor Alan Craig, appeared in the 28 October edition of the Church of England Newspaper.

In his column Craig referred to a number of high-profile legal cases where Christians claim to have been penalised for their views on homosexuality.

He wrote: "Having forcibly – and understandably – rectified the Versailles-type injustices and humiliations foisted on the homosexual community, the UK's victorious Gaystapo are now on a roll. Their gay-rights stormtroopers take no prisoners as they annex our wider culture, and hotel owners, registrars, magistrates, doctors, counsellors, and foster parents find themselves crushed under the pink jackboot.

"Thanks especially to the green light from a permissive New Labour government, the gay Wehrmacht is on its long march through the institutions and has already occupied the Sudetenland social uplands of the Home Office, the educational establishment, the politically-correct police. Following a plethora of equalities legislation, homosexuals are now protected and privileged by sexual orientation regulations and have achieved legal equality by way of civil partnerships. But it's only 1938 and Nazi expansionist ambitions are far from sated."

Craig told the Guardian he was "pretty careful" to distinguish between the leadership of gay rights groups and "ordinary gay people".

COMMENT: Well that's okay then, NOT!

Do not think for one moment that Alan "Winston" Craig is a lone voice in English evangelicalism. Mark "Hawkeye" Harris has posted on the pressure group, FULCRUM, at PRELUDIUM today. Although they claim to be evangelical centrists, compassionate and thoughtful, their eagerness to align the Church of England with the aggressively homophobic and misogynist provinces of the Anglican Communion conclusively demonstrates, in my opinion, that they are merely, to use Craig's language, their faction's equivalent of the Theresienstadt concentration camp. I have no idea why evangelicals hate so many people but prejudice and bigotry are obviously inherent in the psyche of the vast majority of bible worshippers. Thank goodness there are open and honest evangelicals like Alan Craig around who are prepared to tell the whole world what these distorters of the Gospel really believe.

Comments

NOT MY CHURCH OF ENGLAND — 42 Comments

  1. In the best pseudo Jewish way I thank my God daily I am not Church of England or an Evangelical.

  2. There should be a moratorium on comparing anyone to the Nazis. It no longer means anything except to signal mental laziness on the part of the writer who cannot craft a cogent argument, and so falls back on timeworn, reliable schoolyard taunts.

    And just a little personal message for Alan Craig: “Wir sind für Sie kommen.”

  3. Well, I have never used the label ‘Nazi’ to describe anyone who was not a self-described member of a Nazi party. I don’t think the label serves any purpose other than to increase the level of vitriol in the room.

    However, last time I checked God hated Nazism but loved the Nazis. Is he disingenuous too?

  4. This is all a very entertaining smoke screen, Jonathan, but i’m more concerned about the fact that as usual you have made blanket statements that evangelicals (not ‘some’ evangelicals) hate so many people, That prejudice and bigotry are inherent in our psyche, and that we are bible worshippers and distorted of the gospel. What would have been so very wrong about saying ‘Craig’s a bad advertisement for evangelicalism; they should really take him to task’ (a sentiment, by the way, with which most evangelicals that I know would be in agreement)?

  5. The only reason why Craig is a bad advertisement for evangelicalism is that he is not hiding his evangelical bigotry behind worthless platitudes. I respect the man for having the balls to be honest to his churchmanship and beliefs. In my opinion, Fulcrum is a bad advertisement for evangelicalism because they are a Trojan horse and when this becomes public knowledge evangelicals will be seen to be the haters that they truly are plus they will be outed as deceitful.

  6. You know, apropos of nothing, I used to be linked to Relavant magazine, alleged to be a place for “progressive Christians” with a strong evangelical bent. Recently they posted an article “I don’t know how to talk to gay people” and the author laid out some rather basic strategies for crossing that bridge. However, he did so by making the statement that inevitably at one time or another they would all encounter the “gay lifestyle.” I commented (again and again) trying to explain why the use of that phrase in and of itself was not helpful. These “progressive” evangelicals started to come out of the woodwork with all kinds of lovely talk about sexual preference and lifestyle choice, and “love the sinner, hate the sin” rhetoric… The more I challenged them, the more angry and spiteful they became…so much for learning how to talk to gays, eh? I guess my point is that despite, Jonathan’s tendency towards the broad brush, dramatic statement, I think he has a point here.

    When I was working for a school of psychology in Chicago, I met this very interesting black Muslim professor. She pointedly stated she would take a vocal, racist bigot any day over a liberal who thinks they aren’t racist. At least with the bigot, she knew where she stood, whereas the liberal would unexpectedly do or say something racist, and then would deny that they were because, you know, racism is bad.

    Just sayin… OCICBW…

  7. Tim, you cannot ever accuse me of double-speak. I despise the people whose bigotry means my friends continue to suffer. In fact, I think I am quite Christlike in my hatred of those hypocrites who oppress the children of God. Plain speaking and completely lacking in guile. But I don’t recommend it if you wish to keep your job.

  8. Interesting that in this string the Chesterton has condemned MadPriest but hasn’t condemned Craig’s views.

    If Christians are supposed to go to war against the gays like they did against the Nazis, based on Biblical grounds, as Craig suggests (“Here am I. Send me.”), what are Christians supposed to do? Invade gay-rights organizations like at Normandy? Fire-bomb them like at Dresden?

    If they’re supposed to follow Churchill, Churchill didn’t seem to advocate “love your enemies.” Quite the contrary.

    Craig’s views are an incitement to violence against gay people. Regardless of one’s views on anything connected with homosexuality, his views are decidedly not Christian and should be decisively condemned.

  9. Perhaps Jesus loved his enemies, perhaps he didn’t. But the language he employed when talking about hypocrites was not in the slightest bit loving. When it comes to Jesus I have always gone with doing what he did rather than what he said.

  10. MadPriest, Alan Craig’s writing is vicious and despicable, as is the newspaper that chose to give his views a forum. Despite the title of your post, Craig and the newspaper are your Church of England, whether you like it or not, just as those who bang on with vicious anti-gay and misogynist commentary who remain in the Episcopal Church are part of our church.

    The ACNA folks and GAFCON folks aim for a ‘pure’, bible-based church, however there is no pure church, because the church is the people, and there are none amongst us who have not sinned. Not one. I, for one, would not wish to be the mirror image of the those who spew hate-filled anti-gay and misogynist rhetoric and foster schism in the name of purity.

    I am no admirer of the views espoused by many of the members of Fulcrum, but to make the leap from Alan Craig to everyone involved with Fulcrum is a far leap, indeed. Painting with a narrower brush may be more effective in highlighting just who is at fault in this situation.

    As for myself, whenever I read or hear a comparison to the Nazis or the Gestapo which falls far short of an equivalency to the actions of real Nazis or the real Gestapo, I tend to be dismissive of the analogy and view the person responsible for the words as lacking in vital knowledge and critical thinking skills, whose writing or speech is not worth my consideration, except as a cautionary lesson in what not to do.

    My comment will very likely make you angry, MadPriest, and I wonder sometimes why I bother, but here it is for better or for worse. Keep in mind that if I didn’t care, I wouldn’t bother.

  11. I get angry because you never read the actual words I write. The Church of England Newspaper is not a Church of England newspaper. Even the Guardian got that correct.

    My point, which I stand by, is that Fulcrum is Alan Craig pretending he is not a bigot. Fulcrum is a Trojan horse as Mark’s post today so clearly demonstrates. You have every right to disagree with me but not to lecture me on the way I write. I know it’s more to do with me being English and having impeccable good manners than about me being nice, but I never lecture you on your blog about your writing style.

  12. The Church of England Newspaper is not a Church of England newspaper.

    Not an official newspaper of the Church of England. I get that. Are the writers and publishers of the newspaper members of the Church of England?

    Mark Harris’ post says nothing like the same thing as your post. I read yours, and I read his.

    You say over and over, ‘You didn’t read my post’, but I did read your post. To accuse me of not doing something which I did more than once is not a valid argument.

  13. Eeek, and I (last night) asked for this! O_o

    Well, I agree w/ it (MP’s post). And I think Renz has a point.

    But by the time we get to MP vs GM Round 597… [Get.A.Room! For fighting or f*cking or both, just get it!]

  14. JCF, MP and I are having a discussion, as I see it. It’s between him and me, unless you are assigned to be the policeman of the comments here.

    Why don’t you get a room for your agreement with MP, and stop with your ‘get a room’ crap involving me. I find it offensive and none of your business.

  15. Regarding the Nazi meme…

    Yes, there are times when the comparison is ridiculously overblown. However, there are other times when the comparison (IMHO) is to Nazi’s a la 1933 (before they really got to work)…and, I believe, when the comparison is made then it is as much a comparison to Germany in general as they rose to power as to the National Socialists themselves. For example, if I compare some of the tactics of the extreme right to the Nazi’s – I am not saying they are running around planning genocide, I am suggesting that, like the Black Shirts in Italy there is a fascist streak to what is being done now. The reason (once again IMHO) that we tend to use Nazi’s as the fascist comparison du jour is that Germany allowed them to slowly take control and THEN… I am a bit scared by the tendency present in this country towards a neo-fascism. I am thankful that non of the Republican clowns have the charisma of a Hitler or a Mussilini (sp?)… I suppose my point is that as much as it is overused to describe local school boards etc. or even when it is used to describe the President (sometimes in the same breath that has derided him as a communist or socialist)there are times when it can still be a valid comparison. I don’t think that neo-fascists have to get to the death camp stage before we can see similarities…just sayin. OCICBW

  16. When it comes to Jesus I have always gone with doing what he did rather than what he said.

    Silly of him to waste his timer giving us commands when he didn’t mean for us to obey them.

  17. My apologies, Mimi. I made a mistake. You did read every single one of the words in the post. It’s just a shame you didn’t understand any of them.

    Don’t worry about Mimi, JCF. She gets like this when she’s losing an argument.

  18. You make a good point, Renz. Thinking about it (and as a person who deliberately refuses to be bamboozled by people quoting Godwin’s Law or whatever it’s called) I don’t think anyone who likens somebody to a Nazi is saying they are going to commit genocide. I use it to refer to people who demonise people they are scared of and who insist on conformity to their own idealism even from people who don’t believe in it or want anything to do with it. This, in my opinion, makes evangelicals a valid recipient of such comparisons.

  19. The point isn’t whether I like the commands (quite frankly, with some of them, I don’t). The point is rather whether he meant us to take any notice of them. There are a number of places in the gospels which give the impression that we were actually supposed to obey him (‘Why do you call me Lord and not do the things I tell you?’).

    And as for loving the hypocrites who crucified him – well, ‘Father, forgive them…’ seems to indicate that he did.

    But I’m obviously wasting my time, as no one is going to talk you out of your hatred. You and Mr. Craig seem to me like mirror images of each other; he calls gay activists Nazis, you call evangelicals Nazis. It all smells the same to me.

  20. No, not you like the commands. You like commands.

    And there is pone difference between me and Mr Craig. I don’t attack first. I react. If evangelicals didn’t keep trying to get my church and my country to adhere to their horrible take on life I would never utter a word against them. But they hurt people because somebody (most certainly not God) wrote something down once a long long time ago when women were the property of men and people kept slaves.

  21. I do hesitate to jump in here because I really don’t have much of a taste for this sort of argument. Nevertheless, it seems to me that the context in which MP uses the word “evangelical” is pertinent. He seems to be talking about the kind of evangelicals who are, indeed, bible worshipers. Sure, the word has different meanings. For example, my vows as a religious (poverty, chastity and obedience) are properly known as “the evangelical counsels” and yet I doubt if anyone who knows me would think that I’m an evangelical in the common understanding of how that word is used today.

    I also want to mention something that has bothered me for many years now and that’s the conventional (and, I would assert, fallacious) equivalency between love and niceness. Jesus did not die on the cross to make us NICE! Neither he nor St. Paul (who was the actual founder of Christianity according to many) was considered particularly “nice” by each man’s contemporaries.

    Finally, there is such a thing as rhetorical hyperbole. Our Jonathan uses that from time to time. (So, as I recall, did Jesus. Not all the Pharisees were vipers and whited sepulchers, after all. Jesus did not however, take pains to make that distinction when he was exposing the hypocrisy of the ones who took him on.)

  22. Yep, Mimi, it’s absolutely None-of-My-Business (that’s sort of the point!).

    Shutting up now & Buh-bye…

  23. I want to share something I just happened upon that seems relevant to this thread – at least to me.

    Thomas Harrington, professor of Iberian Studies at Trinity College in Hartford, Connecticut, said the following:

    “In reality, of course, anger afflicts everyone. In fact, the further down the social totem pole you are, the more angry you are likely to be.

    “But perhaps more importantly, anger is not, nor will it ever be, an unmitigated negative. Indeed, a very strong case could be made that no significant leap of social consciousness or human rights has even been carried off in the absence, among the fighters for justice, of great and heaping reserves of its raw but incandescent energy.”

    It’s from his article entitled Anger and Angry People.

  24. Mark: the Buddha did say that all of the gods needed to be instructed in the dharma and taught the path to enlightenment. if the deity this crowd favors has ditched these fights and gone for some dharma classes it is certainly good news.

  25. Dennis,

    See . . . you get it!

    My own Christianity is not officially trademarked and stamped approved – I understand God as more impersonal, with the personal goodness inherent in the Ground of Being expressed directly through humans manifesting the Christ mind.