Coloradans who elected Ken Salazar thinking that he portrayed himself honestly as a moderate must have been shocked when he donned the mantle of theological expert this week and declared Dr. James Dobson the Anti-Christ. After waiting a couple of days for a miracle to deliver him unto the Lord, the Right Reverend Salazar finally figured out that his days as a prophet were numbered and offered perhaps this year’s lamest apology in politics:
Colorado Sen. Ken Salazar said Wednesday that he regretted calling Focus on the Family “the anti-Christ,” saying he had misspoken.
Salazar uttered the theological term, popularized in the 1970s movie “The Omen,” in an interview with a Colorado Springs television station about his war of words with the conservative Christian group.
“From my point of view, they are the anti-Christ of the world,” Salazar told the station.
Salazar, a first-term Democrat, said he was intending to call the Colorado Springs group “un-Christian,” a term he began applying last week after Focus attacked his stance on judicial nominations in the Senate.
“I spoke about Jim Dobson and his efforts and used the term ‘the anti-Christ,”‘ Salazar said in a written statement from his office. “I regret having used that term. I meant to say this approach was un-Christian, meaning self-serving and selfish.”
As anyone with any Christian training understands, there is a cast difference between being un-Christian and being the Anti-Christ. The former relates to the commitment, or lack thereof, to the teachings of Jesus as expressed through the Gospel, with connotations ranging from simple identification — one would not expect a Hindu to act “Christian”, after all — to a derogatory judgement about the state of another’s faith. Judging another’s faith and standing with God usurps God’s role in judging the soul, which specifically is what was meant by Jesus’ teaching of “Judge not, lest ye be judged,” one of the least understood of His commands.
However, calling Dobson the Anti-Christ equates to calling him the spawn of Satan, a rather damning accusation, one for which Salazar presents no evidence whatsoever. It’s a vile thing to say about anyone, especially when the target of the accusation has done nothing but speak about his faith and his views on public policy in open forums of debate. The insult was meant to deliberately humiliate Dr. Dobson and to marginalize him in the political arena — an arena which he has every right to engage, as a citizen of the United States.
This crude, malicious, and essentially idiotic attack by Salazar mirrors a more subtle campaign by the Left to marginalize all people of faith from political debate. Faith, after all, informs the values of people in all areas of their life and as such influences their politics as well. What Salazar and the rest of the Left want is to drive anyone of faith out of the public arena, leaving the field open only to secular humanists whose moral relativism can be manipulated towards any end desired. Faith requires belief not just in God or a higher Power (depending on your faith), but also in certain immutable Truth. Relativism and secular humanism rely on the mutable Truth of whatever everyone likes at the moment, which sounds very attractive but inevitably leads to disaster.
Salazar’s rant blows the cover off of the attacks on Bush, Dobson, and anyone who professes their faith as an important component of their lives. Judicial nominees like William Pryor and Janice Rogers Brown (who won 76% of Californian votes in her last election to the State Supreme Court) have been called “extremists” and “Neanderthals” for their “deeply held personal beliefs”, as Chuck Schumer put it, which has become code for “Catholicism” and opposition to abortion. Instead of honestly debating the real issues, the Democrats have chosen to smear people of faith in the hope of driving them underground, to steal their voices and to scare them away from the public square. They want the overwhelming majority of Americans who profess faith in God to shut the Hell up, and leave government to the atheists.
No thank you. We are all Americans, and our government should reflect the values held by the mainstream, not just the faithless.
ADDENDUM: In response to an e-mail I received, let me clarify my position. I believe that secular humanists and atheists also should have their views respected by the political process, and join the debate over public policy. However, what Chuck Schumer, Ted Kennedy, and Harry Reid demand is that all other voices except for secular humanists be excluded from politics due to a major and deliberate misinterpretation of the First Amendment.
The Democrats refuse to consider nominees to important positions that decline to recant religious faith, in a modern-day retelling of the tale of Galileo. They marginalize those who work in the ministry by declaring them theocrats and compare them to the Taliban. They have assumed the Puritanical mantle of Cotton Mather in reverse, burning reputations of honorable and qualified people at the stake for not professing allegiance to the abandonment of religious doctrine. It amounts to nothing less than an unconstitutional religious test for office, only in this case it is a negative test rather than a positive one.
One other point should be made clear: moral relativism isn’t necessarily equivalent to atheism or secular humanism. Not all religion teaches absolute truth. However, the underlying philosophy of the two that Man occupies the center of consciousness and morality makes moral absolutes much harder to establish, and the monotheistic traditions on which Western civilization was founded teaches that certain hard truths exist regardless of popularity or social evolution.