Former Attorney General John Ashcroft believes that America was founded as a Christian nation. In May 1999, as a sitting US Senator, he spoke at Bob Jones University’s commencement ceremony. Here is an excerpt from his speech:
“I want to thank each of you for investing yourselves in the mission of Christ, of redemption and forgiveness, and for preparing yourselves in the way that you have.
A slogan of the American Revolution, which was so distressing to the emissaries of the king that it was found in correspondence sent back to England, was the line ‘We have no king but Jesus.’ Tax collectors came, asking for that which belonged to the king, and colonists frequently said, ‘We have no king but Jesus.’
It found its way into the fundamental documents of this great country. You could quote the Declaration with me. ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident that all men are created equal and endowed by their creator with certain inalienable rights.’
Unique among the nations, America recognized the source of our character as being godly and eternal, not being civic and temporal. And because we have understood that our source is eternal, America has been different: We have no king but Jesus.”
It was the summer after Monica Lewinsky, the First Blow-Job and President Clinton’s impeachment. Bob Jones University awarded Ashcroft and two other politicans honorary degrees for their role in impeaching the President.
Assume for the sake of argument that Ashcroft is correct in his insinuation that American was founded as a Christian nation. What does our King have to say to us?
Blessed are the meek: for they shall inherit the earth. …
Blessed are the merciful: for they shall obtain mercy. …
Blessed are the peacemakers: for they shall be called the children of God. …
Meek. Merciful. Peacemakers. These are not words anyone would use to describe John Ashcroft, George Bush or anyone who had a part in the previous administration. Many examples exist where these men – men who held themselves out as born-again Bible-believing Christians – violated Jesus’s commandments. Whether by torture, kidnapping, illegally imprisoning innocent men or ripping apart families with senseless deportations, these men of God repeatedly gave Jesus the finger.
One example is the case of Jose Padilla. José Padilla, a Brooklyn-born U.S. citizen, was arrested by civilian authorities on May 8, 2002, at Chicago’s O’Hare airport. He was originally held as a material witness in New York in connection with the government’s ongoing investigation into threats of terrorism.
Then on June 10, 2002, Attorney General John Ashcroft interrupted a visit to Moscow to announce a sensational arrest: an American citizen named Jose Padilla had been detained at O’Hare Airport and charged with taking part in an Al Qaeda plot to detonate a radioactive “dirty bomb” within the United States.
The truth is, Ashcroft didn’t know what he was talking about. Even the Bush administration backpedaled hours later, admitting there was no overt plot that was known. The truth is often a casualty of war.
Padilla’s case has been discussed in the news although most Americans probably haven’t paid much attention to it.
Briefly, Padilla was kept in solitary confinement for years and was also subjected to sleep deprivation and sensory deprivation. Seven years later, Padilla was found guilty, not of any of the original crimes, but was sentenced to 17 years and 4 months for what basically was a thought crime.
“There is no evidence that these defendants personally killed, maimed or kidnapped” anyone, observed Judge Cooke.
Where is the mercy, meekness or peace in this case? Does anyone care? Ashcroft and Bush are long gone but our so-called Christian nation, complacent about what has happened, has become complicit in the un-Christ-like crimes our former leaders committed.
The shortest verse in the Bible, John 11:35, is also the most applicable:
How ironic that so many fundamentalists claim that it is Obama that is the Antichrist.