Tag Archives: Holy Bible

Prager backpedals and is still a turd

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I mentioned in the previous post about the comments turd Dennis Prager said about an incoming Congressman wanting to use the Quran at his swearing-in photo op. Well it seems that Prager is now trying to disassociate himself from his own bonehead comments.

On Thursday, 12/14, on CNN’s The Situation Room, Prager said:

PRAGER: I have no problem as such with his taking his oath on his holiest book. I have a problem with the Bible not being present at all. That’s what I wrote. That’s what I keep saying.

That is much different than what he said in his November 28th column:

Keith Ellison, D-Minn., the first Muslim elected to the United States Congress, has announced that he will not take his oath of office on the Bible, but on the bible of Islam, the Koran.

He should not be allowed to do so — not because of any American hostility to the Koran, but because the act undermines American civilization.

America, Not Keith Ellison, decides what book a congressman takes his oath on

Prager tried to backpedal in his December 4th column written in response to the harsh criticism he got for his comments:

I agree with the tens of thousands of office holders in American history who have honored the American tradition — I am well aware it is not a law, and I do not want it to be — of bringing a Bible to their ceremonial or actual swearing-in. Keith Ellison is ending that powerful tradition, and it is he who has called the public’s attention to his doing so. He obviously thinks this is important. I think it is important. My critics think it isn’t.

A response to my many critics – and a solution

Of course that is his desperate attempt to justify his previous remarks. It is now a “powerful tradition” to Americans to have a Bible present.

If you visit Washington DC sometime go to the National Archives. In the main hall are original copies of the foundational documents of the US. The display titled “Charters of Freedom” include The Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. The Bible isn’t in the hall.

Prager makes the same error all social conservatives make when throwing around the words “values”, Bible, and our government:

You don’t have to be Christian to acknowledge that the Bible is the source of America’s values. Virtually every founder of this country knew that and acknowledged it. The argument that founders such as Thomas Jefferson and Benjamin Franklin were deists, even if accurate (it is greatly exaggerated), makes my point, not my opponents’. The founders who were not believing Christians venerated the Bible as the source of America’s values just as much as practicing Christians did.

Keith Ellison’s freedom to openly believe and practice Islam and to run for elective office as a Muslim is a direct result of a society molded by the Bible and the people who believed in it, a fact he should be willing to honor as he is sworn in.

I cannot name any Western European country that does not have a document similar to the American Constitution and something akin to our Bill of Rights. It is, therefore, not the Constitution that has made America unique and a moral beacon to the world’s downtrodden. What has made America unique is the combination of Enlightenment ideas with our underlying Judeo-Christian values.

What Prager gets wrong is that the US is unique because it the only country that doesn’t have a state sponsored or established religion. And if the Bible is such a necessary part of this country then why did Thomas Jefferson rewrite it to conform with his ideas of the Enlightenment.

Jefferson wrote to John Adams about his reason for rewriting the Bible:

In extracting the pure principles which he taught, we should have to strip off the artificial vestments in which they have been muffled by priests, who have travestied them into various forms, as instruments of riches and power to themselves. We must dismiss the Platonists and Plotinists, the Stagyrites and Gamalielites, the Eclectics, the Gnostics and Scholastics, their essences and emanations, their logos and demiurgos, aeons and daemons, male and female, with a long train of … or, shall I say at once, of nonsense.

Letter to John Adams dated 13 October 1813

And there is a lot of nonsense in the Bible that many believers either try to justify or ignore entirely. His hating women a good Judeo-Christian value? What about slavery? Hating homosexuals? Eating your children? Not working on Sunday? It is all in the Bible.

America was a beacon to the downtrodden because they could come here and experience the freedoms and potential we enjoy. Of course it wasn’t easy with the rampant intolerance from the people who claim to follow so-called Judeo-Christian values – like Dennis Prager.

Prager’s comments were just a cheap shot at Muslims and an effort to pander to his conservative audience. Prager is just a turd – an uninformed turd.

Also of note

Thinkprogress reports on a “special” edition of the pundit show NBC’s “Meet the Press” this coming Sunday December 24th.

Can you guess what the topic is?

This weekend, NBC will air a special edition of Meet the Press addressing “Faith in America.” The only two guests scheduled are evangelist Rick Warren, author of “Purpose Driven Life,” and Newsweek editor Jon Meacham, author of “American Gospel.” NBC says the two will discuss the questions, “Can religion unite the country for the greater good and what role will God and values play in the 2008 presidential election?”

Only Social Conservatives Featured On Meet the Press Special ‘Faith In America’

Both guests support the religious right agenda. Warren is an orthodox evangelical while Meacham is a God apologist. Good luck trying to hear both sides of the issue. Thanks to Meet the Press for another free advert for religion in government. Kisses.

Dennis Prager is a turd

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If you still doubt the hypocrisy from the so-called religious and political right when it comes to religious freedom, I only need to point you to the topic and discussion that happened on the November 30 edition of Fox News’ Hannity & Colmes about incoming Rep. Keith Ellison’s (D-MN) reported intention to use a copy of the Quran apparently during the ceremonial photo op on the day he is sworn in to Congress. Rep. Ellison is Muslim and is the first Muslim elected to Congress.

The guest on the show was right-wing turd Dennis Prager. He is a writer and radio talk show host from the Los Angeles area. He is also notable because he was the one who replaced Rush Limbaugh when Limbaugh quit his TV show 10 years ago.

Prager wrote a column for the conservative Townhall.com website where he said:

Devotees of multiculturalism and political correctness who do not see how damaging to the fabric of American civilization it is to allow Ellison to choose his own book need only imagine a racist elected to Congress. Would they allow him to choose Hitler’s “Mein Kampf,” the Nazis’ bible, for his oath? And if not, why not? On what grounds will those defending Ellison’s right to choose his favorite book deny that same right to a racist who is elected to public office?…

But these naive people do not appreciate that America will not change the attitude of a single American-hating Muslim by allowing Ellison to substitute the Koran for the Bible. In fact, the opposite is more likely: Ellison’s doing so will embolden Islamic extremists and make new ones, as Islamists, rightly or wrongly, see the first sign of the realization of their greatest goal — the Islamicization of America.

America, Not Keith Ellison, decides what book a congressman takes his oath on

And this is why Prager is a turd. Saying something without even doing some basic fact checking just to “fire up” the homeys shows he has shit for brains. And as he wanted, he shines a spot light on himself, and consequently turns the light on religious and political conservatives who are hypocrites when it comes to their support for religious liberty. His comments also cause an issue where no issue existed – much like Bill O’Reilly’s crusade for Christmas.

Rational thinking has left Prager and that is apparent when confronted with facts that fly in the face of his religious intolerance. For example in this exchange with show host Sean Hannity:

COLMES: Let me just point out: FDR was not sworn in using a Bible. William Weld, when he was governor of Massachusetts, didn’t use it —

PRAGER: No, that’s not true — I don’t know who — OK, I don’t know told you this. The only president who did not have a Bible was Theodore Roosevelt, first term, and it was because [President William] McKinley had just been shot. Every president used a Bible.

HOLMES: Well, I’m — Dennis, I’m quoting a Boston Globe story from 1991, when he was actually sworn in. And William Weld — I’m sorry, the Library of Congress. That was my source for that. But according to the Boston Globe, William Weld, in 1991, when he was sworn in, also did not use a Bible, and I didn’t hear any outrage or outcry. This is because it’s the Quran. That’s why there’s this kind of reaction —

PRAGER: Wait a minute — no, no, it’s not true. If it had been a Scientologist using Dianetics, or if it had been a Buddhist using some of the works of the Buddha, I would have had the exact same reaction. It is not —

COLMES: What if it was an atheist? Should someone swear on a book that that person does not believe in?

PRAGER: Yes, because you are swearing on the book the society believes in. I don’t — we are in the age of narcissism, which all that matters is, what do I care to be valuable? I care what America cares to be valuable. I am a Jew. If I were elected, I would use the Bible, even though the New Testament is specifically Christian and the Old Testament is for both.

Hannity suggested use of Quran in representative’s swearing-in same as using “Nazi bible” Mein Kampf

and then there is this from the November 30 edition of CNN’s Paula Zahn Now:

PRAGER: Well, the issue isn’t expressing religious freedom. As I also wrote in there, I would fight for his right to worship as a Muslim, to run for Congress as a Muslim. That’s not the issue. The issue is exactly as you put it earlier. What is the book that these people affirm as the central text of American life? Now, some people will say the Constitution. But the Constitution derives its legitimacy from that Bible. Secular congressmen have all used the Bible. They don’t believe in it. Mormons do not ask for the Book of Mormon. If a Scientologist ran, would he ask for Dianetics by L. Ron Hubbard? If a racist ran, would he ask for Mein Kampf? We are starting a very unfortunate further unraveling of the fabric of American life. That’s my worry.

Prager and many who think as he does that religious liberty means freedom only for those who use the Bible, but they forget that our form of government prohibits religious tests for elective office. The Constitution derives its legitimacy from the people not from any holy book.

We the people of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and our posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.

Preamble of the US Constitution

I wish there was more support for real religious liberty and less talking from turds like Dennis Prager.