How do you fight radical terror organizations like ISIS? Some believe military action is required. Others think we need to infiltrate the organizations through our intelligence networks. Others still will argue that we need to bolster secularist movements throughout the Middle East. And some think we need an “all of the above” approach.
But not Ohio Governor and 2016 GOP Presidential hopeful John Kasich. In an interview with NBC News on Tuesday, Kasich claimed we should fight their extremism with extremism of our own, proposing a new government agency designed to spread Judeo-Christian ideology around the world.
Kasich, long considered to be a “sane” and “rational” Republican, might be the most moderate candidate in the GOP’s presidential field. Or at least, he was… before he proposed what is arguably the most insane idea any candidate has brought up during the 2016 presidential race.
Kasich’s new agency would promote Jewish and Christian beliefs around the world, specifically targeting China, Iran, Russia, and the Middle East.
“It’s job would be fundamentally to revive what we used to do when we’d beam messages into the former Soviet Union. We need to beam messages around the world about what it means to have a western ethic, to be part of a Judeo-Christian society. It means freedom, it means opportunity, it means respect for women, it means freedom to gather, it means so many things. And to be able to send these messages into a place like Russia, which is absolutely trying to prevent people from hearing the truth, or even in China, when they try to figure out how to limit the effectiveness of the Internet, and of course most particularly in the Middle East, where young radicals are constantly fed ideas that lead to more radicalization, I think it’s essential we begin to spread who we are, and why we are who we are, and what we represent. It is essential that we do promote this message. It’s essential, by the way, that those in the West begin to embrace again our Jewish and Christian tradition, rather than running from it and hiding from it.”
When asked what his plan says to Americans who do not identify as Jewish or Christian, Kasich claimed that Judeo-Christian beliefs also promote “tolerance.” Of course, “tolerance” is something Muslims, Buddhists, atheists, agnostics, and people of other faiths have seen very little of in the United States from Christian-conservatives, particularly in the past few decades.
The United States was founded as a secular nation, one where the government has no authority whatsoever to force someone into one faith or another, and where our government doesn’t recognize any religion of any kind, for any reason. Thomas Jefferson himself coined the phrase “wall of separation between Church and State,” while directly referencing the first amendment, so yeah… America is a secular nation. And that secularism is what gives the United States those freedoms Kasich is talking about.
If America were really as Christian as Governor Kasich and others claim we are, homosexuality would be a crime punishable by imprisonment (or something worse). Caitlyn Jenner wouldn’t be recognized as a transgender heroine, but as an abomination unto the Lord. Atheists and agnostics would be sent off to faith reeducation camps. And I certainly wouldn’t be allowed to be left-handed… there’d likely be laws against such affronts.
Make no mistake, folks: any nation strongly steeped in any one particular faith is a nation none of us would ever want to live in. And John Kasich’s attempts to start a twenty-first century Christian Crusade through broadcasting would be just as terrible as it sounds.