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Born May 18, 1953; got saved at Truett Memorial BC in Hayesville, NC 1959. On rigged ballot which I did not rig got Most Intellectual class of 71, Gaffney High School. Furman Grad, Sociology major but it was little tougher than Auburn football players had Had three dates with beautiful women the summer of 1978. Did not marry any of em. Never married anybody cause what was available was undesirable and what was desirable was unaffordable. Unlucky in love as they say and even still it is sometimes heartbreaking. Had a Pakistani Jr. Davis Cupper on the Ropes the summer of 84, City Courts, Rome Georgia I've a baby sitter, watched peoples homes while they were away on Vacation. Freelance writer, local consultant, screenwriter, and the best damn substitute teacher of Floyd County Georgia in mid 80's according to an anonymous kid passed me on main street a few years later when I went back to get a sandwich at Schroeders. Had some good moments in Collinsville as well. Ask Casey Mattox at www.clsnet.org if he will be honest about it. I try my best to make it to Bridges BBQ in Shelby NC at least four times a year.

Monday, November 10, 2014

Molly Worthen on the Fundamentalist Takeover of the SBC

      As in Southern Baptist Convention.

      As I've said in other places there has been a lot of chatter at the site baptistlife.com/forums about the takeover that has been slugged down into a thicket over the loaded term inerrancy.

    But Thomas Powers has updated and cleaned a lot of that up in a recent (Oct 9)  piece in the New York Review of Books for anybody who wants the truth on the matter. It remains what it was 40 years ago when Paul Pressler walked off the documentary set with Bill Moyers for a PBS special, a Birch Society, White Citizens Council, Texas Regulars ginned up controversy to advance the right wing out of Texas. Like the Koch brothers today, Pressler and Jesse helms network specialized in primaries where just a small percentage of the voters showed up to do unseat President Carter--before him some of the best of the last half of the 20th Century in the 78 midterm--and altered the country's trajectory after some remediation and progress toward the more perfect Union of the 60s.

     Race became abortion, became prayer in schools became inerrancy; whatever hat trick Pressler and Atwater and Helms and the right wing gunk the gurus  could run on.

     After a chapter on Rousas Rushdoony of the Christian Recons, Barton's abuse of American history, the charlatan Francis Scahefer,  Molly Worthen has this choice passage to conclude her tenth chapter of The Apostles of Reason "God's Idea Men"

   Quoting Worthen:  

      Just as Yoder had protested Frances Schaeffer's account of history and politics, moderate Baptists flailed against the conservative juggernaut. Neither succeeded in halting the conservatives rise to cultural and institutional power, but in their fight they made the vital point that the Christian Right--in the Unyielding and ABSOLUTIST form that the movement had taken in the late 80s, was NOT synonymous with American evangelicalism. Instead the CR was the product of a long struggle WITHIN evangelicalism in which leaders with very different opinions and priorities vied to convince believers of their duties to God and to their fellow man. In a tradition in which no single authority had ever reigned for long, in which sola scriptura, had released a cascade of quarrels and no single faction could resist issuing a creed, a declaration, a call, or a list of fundamentals, to define itself against its kin, Schaeffer, Falwell and other Self appointed spokesmen of the CR appeared, to casual observers, to reflect some kind of consensus. ONE MUST NOT UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF THIS KIND OF ILLUSION OF SOLIDARITY--BUT ONE MUST NOT TAKE IT FOR REALITY EITHER.

    Caps Mine.

        

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