The group publishing this slur on Hindus is none other than the American Family Association, one of the biggest religious right groups and a big supporter of the Republicans. The AFA is made up of equal opportunity bigots: they slur gays, Catholics, Hindus and just about everyone else who isn’t a conservative Christian fundamentalist. Their vision of America is a country made up of Southern Baptists, or at least a nation in which everyone has to live under laws that conform to Southern Baptist preachings.
So now they’re upset that a Hindu chaplain may join the myriad of other faiths that have been permitted to open the Senate with a prayer. And why not? If we’re going to ban religions we disagree with then I’d like to start with anyone claiming to represent Christian fundamentalist Republicans. Their bigotry and hatred doesn’t represent my God – for example, Christian fundamentalists call Catholicism a “Satanic counterfeit,” do you really think that represents the Founders’ thinking? So if we’re starting a list of religions we’re going to ban from the Senate because we don’t like them, let’s start with America’s own Taliban, the people who have raised banning non-Southern-Baptist religions to an art form.
I am not going to link to these bigots, but here is their action alert, asking folks to contact the Senate in order to get the Hindu chaplain banned.
Hindu to open Senate with prayer
Send an email to your senator now, expressing your disappointment in the Senate decision to invite a Hindu to open the session with prayer.
On Thursday, a Hindu chaplain from Reno, Nevada, by the name of Rajan Zed is scheduled to deliver the opening prayer in the U.S. Senate. Zed tells the Las Vegas Sun that in his prayer he will likely include references to ancient Hindu scriptures, including Rig Veda, Upanishards, and Bhagavard-Gita. Historians believe it will be the first Hindu prayer ever read at the Senate since it was formed in 1789.
WallBuilders president David Barton is questioning why the U.S. government is seeking the invocation of a non-monotheistic god. Barton points out that since Hindus worship multiple gods, the prayer will be completely outside the American paradigm, flying in the face of the American motto “One Nation Under God.”
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“In Hindu, you have not one God, but many, many, many, many, many gods,” the Christian historian explains. “And certainly that was never in the minds of those who did the Constitution, did the Declaration [of Independence] when they talked about Creator — that’s not one that fits here because we don’t know which creator we’re talking about within the Hindu religion.”
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Barton says given the fact that Hindus are a tiny constituency of the American public, he questions the motivation of Senate leaders. “This is not a religion that has produced great things in the world,” he observes. “You look at India, you look at Nepal — there’s persecution going in both of those countries that is gendered by the religious belief that is present there, and Hindu dominates in both of those countries.”
And while Barton acknowledges there is not constitutional problem with a Hindu prayer in the Senate, he wonders about the political side of it. “One definitely wonders about the pragmatic side of it,” he says. “What is the message, and why is the message needed? And will it actually communicate anything other than engender with folks like me a lot of questions?”
Barton says he knows of at least seven cases where Christians have lost their bid to express their own faith in a public prayer.
Zed is reportedly the first Hindu to deliver opening prayers in an American state legislature, having done so in both the Nevada State Assembly and Nevada State Senate earlier this year. He has stated that Thursday’s prayer will be “universal in approach,” despite being drawn from Hindu religious texts.
Yeah, it’s been so hard for Christians to promote their religion in America, especially with opening prayers before the US Senate. Bigots and liars. But more importantly, these are the people who control the Republican party. And people wonder why the Republicans are dropping in the polls like flies?