A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing

Mr. Mike Huckabee’s down-home, folksy media image is just a façade. What he and his supporters REALLY want to accomplish is to turn our once great nation into a theofascist state based on a literal application of the Old and New Testaments…with divinely-appointed Mr. Huckabee presiding…all the while ripping the United States Constitution and the civil society it supports to shreds.

In short, the man is dangerous with a capital “D”, with the “D” standing for “Dominionism”.

Many fundamentalist Christians interpret a verse from Genesis…”Then God said, ‘Let us make man in our image, in our likeness and let them rule over the fish of the sea and the birds of the air, over the livestock, over all the earth and over all the creatures that move along the ground'”…to LITERALLY mean that God gave mankind dominion over the animal kingdom.

Or, to put it another way, Dominion theologians believe that that this verse commands Christians to bring ALL societies around the world under the rule of the Word of God.

What’s more, the looniest dominionists in our country ALSO publicly insist that a pious government should inflict Old Testament punishments…including death…on blasphemers, pornographers, homosexuals, adulterers and even disobedient children. They constantly talk about their “duty” to institute biblical rule in the United States and around the world (as in: “Go ye into all the world……”).

And, true to form, at a public forum on the eve of the Michigan primary, while mocking Republican opponents who don’t want to append a “marriage amendment” or a “life amendment” to our Constitution, Mr. Huckabee said: “I believe it’s a lot easier to change the Constitution than it would be to change the word of the living God, and that’s what we need to do is to amend the Constitution so it’s in God’s standards rather than try to change God’s standards…”

What’s more, not so long ago, Mr. Huckabee attributed his own rising political fortunes…after many experts had written off his campaign…. to the hand of the Almighty. “There’s only one explanation for it, and it’s not a human one,” he said. “It’s the same power that helped a little boy with two fish and five loaves feed a crowd of 5,000 people, and that’s the only way that our campaign could be doing what it’s doing . . . That’s honestly why it’s happening.”

Given his firm belief that God is intervening in the primaries on his behalf, one has to wonder if Mr. Huckabee isn’t also one of those “loony dominionists” and is just keeping that fact under his sheep’s clothing…for now.

He has, after all, also suggested putting all gay people who test HIV-positive in concentration camps. Apparently Mr. Huckabee is blissfully unaware that heterosexual men and women also test HIV-positive, as do children. But then again, fascists (and theofascists) such as Hitler and the Taliban also condemned only certain groups to such camps and death.

In another recent interview, Mr Huckabee was again asked if his goal was to bring the Constitution into strict conformity with the Bible, particularly as it relates to gay marriage. Some people would consider that a kind of dangerous undertaking, particularly given the variety of biblical interpretations for that institution people in our country currently hold.

However he responded to that question by saying. “Well, I don’t think that’s a radical view to say we’re going to affirm marriage. I think the radical view is to say that we’re going to change the definition of marriage so that it can mean two men, two women, a man and three women, a man and a child, a man and animal. Again, once we change the definition, the door is open to change it again. I think the radical position is to make a change in what’s been historic.”

Once again, it is important to remember that Dominionists don’t acknowledge as valid ANY interpretation of Biblical thought other than their own, narrow and absolute literal views.

With his assertions that “once we change the definition [of ‘traditional marriage’], the door is open to change it again” and “I think the radical position is to make a change in what’s been historic,” Mr. Huckabee again demonstrated his arrogant ignorance of history and his clearly Dominionist goals.

That is, what Mr. Huckabee conveniently fails to mention is that the definition of “traditional marriage” has, in fact, changed quite regularly throughout history. He also fails to mention that it was none other than the Holy Roman Catholic Church…itself an anathema to fundamentalist Christians…that first co-opted the institution of marriage from the State and not the other way around.

As the Roman Catholic Church became a powerful institution in Europe, the blessings of a priest became a necessary step for a marriage to be legally recognized. That’s because, back then, there was little difference between the “Church” and the “State”. In many ways, the church WAS the state, and the Church also saw the institution of marriage as yet another means of controlling its minions and keeping them in line. In fact, by the eighth century, marriage was widely accepted in the Catholic Church as a sacrament, or a ceremony to bestow God’s grace. At the Council of Trent in 1563, the sacramental nature of marriage was written into canon law.

And while the concept of homosexual marriage is rare in history, it is not unknown. The Roman emperor Nero, who ruled from A.D. 54 to 68, twice married men in formal wedding ceremonies, and forced the Imperial Court to treat them as his wives. In second and third-century Rome, homosexual weddings became common enough that it worried the social commentator Juvenal. “Look—a man of family and fortune—being wed to a man!” Juvenal wrote. “Such things, before we’re very much older, will be done in public.” He mocked such unions, saying that male “brides” would never be able to “hold their husbands by having a baby.”

The Romans outlawed formal homosexual unions in the year 342 (remember, the Church and the State were synonymous back then). But Yale history professor John Boswell says he’s found scattered evidence of homosexual unions even after that time, including some that were recognized by Catholic and Greek Orthodox churches. In one 13th-century Greek Orthodox ceremony, the “Order for Solemnization of Same Sex Union,” the celebrant asked God to grant the participants “grace to love one another and to abide unhated and not a cause of scandal all the days of their lives, with the help of the Holy Mother of God and all thy saints.”

What’s more, Mr. Huckabee fails to note that many of the biblical patriarchs he regularly quotes had more than one wife. David had 23 wives, and Solomon a lot more than that. Marriages were once arranged and the woman thought of and treated as little more than property. And, more recently, legalizing interracial marriage was also once called a threat to “traditional marriage” by those who clutched their Bibles tightly . . . and literally.

Clearly, evolving institutions in an evolving society are an anathema to Dominionists because history and the real world are their archenemies. These people’s fervent desire is for society not to evolve and grow, but for it to DEVOLVE into a dark biblical past when killing blasphemers, pornographers, homosexuals, adulterers and disobedient children was deemed “righteous.”

Unfortunately, Dominionists already occupy positions of power within the U.S. government. Supreme Court Associate Justice Antonin Scalia has publicly stated he believes “that government . . . derives its moral authority from God. Government is the ‘minister of God’ with powers to ‘revenge,’ to ‘execute wrath,’ including even wrath by the sword.”

So much for our Declaration of Independence that clearly states that our American government should derive its “just powers” — moral and otherwise — “from the consent of the governed.”

What’ more, our current sitting President, once hailed by the Christian Right as a “divinely-appointed political messiah”, is now responsible for the needless deaths of millions. By any measure, George W. Bush is arguably THE worst president…ever. During his nearly eight years in office, he’s accomplished absolutely nothing but initiate seemingly endless, bloody, “holy wars” of pre-emption abroad all the while trying to force fundamentalist Christian ideology (by the blatant use of fear and intimidation) into secular government at home. These, too, are acts that fit the pattern of an avowed Dominionist.

And…make no mistake…Michael Dale Huckabee is George W. Bush’s evil twin.