When I came back from Egypt to Oklahoma and American politics, I was disappointed to find similar political currents in the two countries.
Just like advocates of the Muslim Brotherhood, there are some people in the states who would love to see the ascendance of religion in government. And I’m not talking about Muslim extremists plotting a White House takeover.
Rather, I’m talking about a bunch of rather special conservatives who are doing their darndest to take American politics back a few hundred years.
Take Paul Blair, for example. This is a man from Edmond, OK, a pastor at a local church, who has decided that he wants to run for Senate in order to keep the government from getting any bigger (or better), and defend “traditional, Biblical values and our constitution.”
His biggest selling points are his mustache and his exclusively conservative voting record, if that tells you anything about the environment here. And despite how much I attempt to ignore politics, I have heard about this man and seen his ridiculous mustachioed political advertising, which means he has a crap ton of money to campaign with. Plumber Joe, don’t believe Blair when he says he’s just like you.
One of the things that pisses me off the most about Mr. Paul Blair’s campaign is his logo, which is really dumb. Take a look at it here. It’s an American flag topped with a tiny cross.
I’m sure what Blair meant to convey with this truly horrendous act of campaignage was that he’s going to haul his Christian morals to Capital Hill so they remain in our government where they belong.
What I understand from the flag/cross hybrid is quite different. I understand that Mr. Blair either knows very little about American history and government or is willing to bait voters with dangerous religious rhetoric. I understand that Blair does not respect the division between church and state and would prefer the two again become one. In this way, we can re-create ourselves in the image of great nations like Saudi Arabia, Morocco, and Egypt, where religion is an integral part of state identity.
I understand that just like supporters of the Muslim Brotherhood, Blair believes that the government should have a central role in regulating morality, especially through legislation based on a holy document.
Between me and Blair, I believe I am the only one that has lived in an extremely conservative society with a poorly functioning government. (Just to clarify, I’m talking about Egypt here.) There were aspects of Egypt that I liked, but for the most part, I don’t want to see America becoming like it politically in any way, shape, or form. Pluralistic societies are awesome.
So, Mr. Blair, please put down your American cross bayonet before you march into office and start any more ridiculous wars or legislation, and think about the fact that many Christians would be disgusted to see you using a symbol of their religion in order to promote your campaign. While you’re at it, consider how scary it is for many people to see that you are a “Patriot Pastor,” part of an organization called “Reclaiming America for Christ.” Yikes.