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People of European descent once wielded Christianity to self-righteously justify the genocide of Indigenous people and the enslavement of African people. The Christo-fascist trail of blood they left became the metaphorical red ink used to sign the American Declaration of Independence.
Today, Republican leaders in Oklahoma, like their counterparts across the nation, unapologetically pass legislation and push actions that force their warped worldview on the entire population.
As a divided nation, many of us see bans on Black history, bans on abortion at any stage, the targeting of LGBTQ+ people, and state-sanctioned executions as completely separate issues that shouldn’t be lumped together. Yet there is a morbid string that ties them all together: the result of these seemingly disparate actions leave Republican leaders with blood on their hands. It’s happening right in front of us.
Oklahoma Republicans have blood on their hands, but they don’t care
Christo-fascist conservatives worried about their children becoming empathetic to racial injustice have banned books and stifled discussion on race in the classroom through the signing of HB 1775. Our State Superintendent of Education, using a copy and pasted playbook, continues his witch hunt on diversity, equity and inclusion.
Yet in turning the top of systemic racism into a boogeyman, they encourage real-world violence against Black people. For instance, just this month journalists in McCurtain County revealed top officials, including the sheriff, discussing wanting to kill reporters and lynch Black people. A Greenwood attorney won a guilty verdict against a former Guthrie city councilor who murdered his Black employee and buried his body underneath a septic tank.
Out of fear of a declining White population and a desire to force procreation, Republicans have passed a near-total abortion ban that has forced women like Jaci Statton to flee nearly 200 miles for an emergency procedure to save her life.
Republicans in Oklahoma are passing bills that deny gender-affirming care, even non-invasive puberty blockers, to trans youth and force teachers to out gay students against the recommendations of major medical associations. LGBTQ+ advocates have continually warned that bills targeting 2SLGBTQ+ youth and adults will lead to more suicide attempts, but their data-supported pleas go ignored.
Perhaps most heinously, the state is preparing to execute Richard Glossip, a man who has survived three execution attempts and who maintains his innocence in the 1997 murder-for-hire of Barry Van Treese. The Pardon and Parole Board, along with the Oklahoma Court of Criminal Appeals, has refused to listen to even the 60+ Republican legislators and Republican Attorney General Gentner Drummond, all who say reasonable doubt and prosecutorial misconduct should remove Glossip from death row.
What is: Christo-fascist for $100 Alex
Some people refer to the ideology behind these relentless attacks as Christo-fascism. Paul Francis Knitter is an American Theologian who serves as an emeritus professor at Union Theological Seminary.
In a 1983 essay titled “Theocentric Christology,” published in Theology Today, Knitter describes Christo-fascism as Christians who forcefully “impose themselves not only upon other religions but other cultures and political parties which do not march under the banner of the final, normative, victorious Christ.”
Drunk on power in a state where they hold a supermajority in both legislative chambers and a trifecta of control over executive, legislative and judicial branches, Republicans are bulldozing through their own constituents to implement a theocratic society based on their own personal beliefs. They magnify retribution against segments of their own population while downplaying Jesus’ order to “love thy neighbor.”
In Montana, the state’s only trans lawmaker, Rep. Zooey Zephr, faces punishment and isolation for saying her colleagues have blood on their hands after passing anti-LGBTQ+ bills. That statement applies to Oklahoma Republican leaders as well in so many ways.
While their bloodlust may go unchecked for the time being, they too will have to answer to a higher power in this life or the next.
Agreed the papists need to be driven out of this country once and for all or hung from every lamppost
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