RELIGIOUS FREEDOM UNDER ATTACK – ENGLISH

I just received via email this article. I think it is worthy of your time.
‘Religious freedom under attack’ has become a common refrain. Regular news updates remind us of such things as the ”candy cane” case currently being heard before the U.S. 5th Circuit Court of Appeals, the removal of crosses on Utah highways, or whether or not prayer should be allowed at high school graduation. We at UFI want to make you aware of another battle front in the war against religious freedom.
Over the last few years our UFI teams have noticed that anti-religious bias has become very overt and quite accepted at the UN. But recently we’ve begun monitoring a particularly interesting and insidious brand of anti-religious fervor. The new strategy seems to be to label your ideological and political opponent with the term „religious fundamentalist.”
It’s quite a brilliant strategy actually. The term „religious fundamentalist” conjures up images of fanatics; crazies who break laws and usually live in isolation. Fundamentalism has become synonymous with violence and terrorism. It’s a very effective and simple formula: religious fundamentalists are bad –> you are a religious fundamentalist –> thus you are bad. If you can be successful at labeling your opponent as „one of them” then the debate is over – you win. This whole strategy carries with it another very tangible benefit. Those who use it can claim to not be against religion – „Oh no, we’re not anti-religion; we’re just against religious fundamentalists!” Then they can go on to utilize those in religious circles who might agree with them – while working to discredit and silence those who don’t. Who’s leading this effort? Most of the anti-family/anti-life groups in the UN system would agree with this strategy, but the Association for Women’s Rights in Development (AWID) is certainly at the forefront of this effort. The UN has given this group a very big microphone with which they promote their anti-religion agenda. Their recently released publication Towards a Future without Fundamentalisms: Analyzing Religious Fundamentalist Strategies and Feminist Responses” received UN accolades and wide distribution. The rhetoric in this publication is nothing short of silliness were it not so intense in its effort to diminish, libel, and stop opponents. Their definition of a „fundamentalist” ranges from those who want to stone women for adultery – to a mom who wishes to stay home with her kids. As you read through this publication, you won’t know whether to laugh or cry. So with apologies to comedian Jeff Foxworthy, we thought we’d share the contents of this outrageous publication with a little twist. You might be a religious fundamentalist…
  • If you „idealize motherhood” and believe that children are better off being raised by their mother than by daycare, you might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 20 -22)
  • If you believe that being a mother is the „ultimate dream” and that being a working woman is an „unfortunate reality in a global economy,” then you might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg .17)
  • If you believe that the „natural” family is heterosexual or feel the world should function from a „hetero-normative” perspective, you might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 16)
  • If you believe that parents should be in control of their children’s education, you might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 17)
  • If you oppose abortion and oppose the promotion of LGBTQI behavior and rights [lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgendered, queer, intersexed], you might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 21)
  • If you blame social problems on the „decline in morality” or the „disintegration of the family,” you might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 18)
  • If you believe in „limiting women’s expression of sexuality to the confines of the heterosexual family,” you might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 21)
  • If you support laws banning „sex work” [prostitution], you might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 21)
  • If you have „co-opted science” and use science to support your positions, you might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 30)
  • If you’re involved in your child’s school, or formed a parent group – then you must have „infiltrated” the public education system, and you just might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 36)
  • If your religion gives you a „sense of belonging” and helps you feel a part of a community, you might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 39)
  • If you feel your religion is a good place to interact with others and even search out a marriage companion, you might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 37)
  • If religion is providing you with opportunities to serve people and help during times of crisis and natural disasters, you might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 40 & 49)
  • If you oppose laws to legalize abortion, then you’re probably violent and you must be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 43)
  • If you don’t believe that widespread condom distribution is the best way to combat HIV/AIDS, you’re probably a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 43)
  • If you are a religious person and vote for people who share your values, you might be a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 50)
  • If you feel your religious beliefs and values have a place in the public square, you are probably a religious fundamentalist. (pg. 47 & 49)
What does all this mean?
As we’ve mentioned, some of their points are so ridiculous it’s hard to believe they are for real. Unfortunately, this is real and the groups that supported the writing of this publication are quite serious. They are desperate to have their ideology succeed and are shocked and dismayed that religion continues to have a voice in the public square – so they want to silence that voice. There is no recognition that religion is equally entitled to be engaged in the political and cultural dialogue.
The irony is that they speak of the traditional religious perspective as though it were the newcomer, the interloper, or the intruder – as though the promotion of abortion, redefinition of gender, and the mainstreaming of homosexual behavior have always been a societal norm. The fact is, the „fundamental” religious beliefs they now fight are exactly what has always created the prosperous and stable societies that they claim to be striving to create.
All who hold traditional, religious, hetero-normative values and beliefs need to not be cowed or intimidated by their rhetoric of „religious fundamentalist.” Get out and get involved! You must be making a difference or these national and international groups wouldn’t be getting together to develop strategies to stop you.
United Families International felt it was important to make you aware of the specious tactics being used and we encourage you to take some time to research for yourself. As always, UFI will continue to promote and fight for laws, political structures, and religious and cultural norms that preserve and protect the family. Let’s continue to work together in this great effort.

About Cristian Ionescu

Pastor Elim Romanian Pentecostal Church Chicago, USA

4 răspunsuri sa “RELIGIOUS FREEDOM UNDER ATTACK – ENGLISH”

  1. Based on the facts mentioned in the above article – I guess I’m a religious fundamentalist! 🙂
    Wanted DEAD or ALIVE!!! (with more emphasis on the former :))
    Religious fundamentalist, armed with the weapons of righteousness, involved in international terrorism due to the fact that he has been baptized with the Holy Spirit and speaks in other tongues. Go GET HIM!

    Come and get it! lol!!! 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂 🙂

  2. Am o intrebare pt dvs. Tot se discuta daca pastorii ar trebui sau nu sa intre in spatiul virtual, in direct cu cititorii sau ei ar trebui sa comunice cu ascultatorii doar de la amvon. As vrea sa va intreb, motivele pt care ati infiintat un blog. Cunosc un pastor baptist tare renumit din Oradea care si-a facut blog din doua motive:
    1. Sa acuze. 2. Sa raspunda acuzatiilor.
    Sunt curios care au fost motivele dvs pt care ati intrat in blogosfera.

    • Dragă Darius,
      În primul rând, trebuie să recunoaștem că spațiul virtual este informativ dar și formativ. Este încă o dimensiune pe care nu o putem abandona forțelor întunericului.
      În al doilea rând, blogul asigură un mod de a interacționa cu o categorie de oameni care doresc să se apropie de noi și nu ar avea o altă posibilitate. E adevărat că într-un fel devenim vulnerabili, dar aceasta este postura persoanelor publice.
      În al treilea rând, amvonul nu asigură cadrul unei dezbateri și nici nu este recomandat să-l transformăm într-o tribună a controverselor noastre. Blogul oferă un cadru mai puțin oficial în care punctele de vedere pot fi șlefuite.

  3. mai grav e faptul ca in cercuri evanghelice, ti se reproseaza „frate, prea vrei sa fie ca in evanghelii si in faptele apostolilor” deci sa fii etichetat fundamentalist de catre proprii frati de credinta mii se pare culmea, si de ce? pt ca spui ca trebuie sa se vada credinta in fapte bune? ca Duhul Sfant inca lucreaza? etc.
    mi-e teama ca se va ajunge la diviziuni in interiorul bisericii multi vor fi mainstream, acomodati cu acest limbaj si aceste valori lumesti [ exemplu: la Elim in timisoara pastorul spune intr-o seara de la amvon ca nu mai ai voie sa-ti bati copilul,ca suntem in sec.21 ca normele UE, desi pasajul citat de el initial vorbea tocmai despre disciplinare „nuiaiua mustrarii” incerca el sa argumenteze, doar il mustri nu il mai pedepsesti ca nu suntem barbari / insa in original spune nuiaiua instructiei [cu totul alt sens decat traducerea Cornilescu, care oricum pe VT merge dupa Louis Segond] iar peste tot unde apare nuia inseamna exact disciplinare si in VT si in NT. si uite asa patrunde lumea in biserica cu „bune intentii”. deci daca iti mustri copilul sau il disciplinezi, desi e biblic nu este Legal,nu esti European. iar contradictia imediata va fi intre legile post-moderniste date de stat si normele scripturii si chiar propria constiinta.
    cert e ca o sa fie show mare cand vor escalada lucrurile. ma gandesc la evrei, prima daca au fost dis-pretuiti doar apoi prigoniti; la fel si cu crestinii protestanti; edoar inceputul =)

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