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Liberal radio host Thom Hartmann was livid...I mean livid...full of indignation that the American Family Association would dare to create a "Naughty and Nice" list of businesses that seem to have a hard time saying the name of Jesus Christ around the Christmas season. He invited one of the AFA's radio hosts, Bryan Fischer on to talk about the subject. Okay, I guess that's not exactly true. He invited Fischer on to be lectured to and yelled at.
Hartmann kicked it off this way:
HARTMANN: The AFA and you, Bryan, believe that when Jesus said you have to choose between God or Mammon, which is money and the things -- and commerce, that he was what, lying or was he mistaken? Jesus made it very clear that you could choose between getting rich and choose between [sic] being virtuous and holy... A company that uses Jesus Christ to hustle goods is profaning His name and the work that He did.
That's spectacular right there. You follow this logic, don't you? Here's the left trying to completely reverse the "War on Christmas" issue by suggesting, hilariously, that if you DO say Merry Christmas at your store, or honor the religious meaning of the holiday that you are blaspheming. In other words, in Hartmann's liberal world, you are a better Christian to never mention the name of Jesus at your business or in your personal interactions lest you be seen as using "Jesus Christ to hustle goods." Kind of explains why liberals in Washington who claim to be Christians act the way they do.
But Hartmann was just getting started. He then lectured Fischer on how the true mission of Christ on earth was, as Tim Graham perfectly describes it, "to promote 'safety net' government programs:"
HARTMANN: Then I see Republicans standing up on the floor of the House of Representatives, and people like your organization, the American Family Association, saying ?Oh, we've got to cut these social safety net programs - which is the essence of what Jesus Christ said you've gotta do to get into Heaven! And instead replace them with tax cuts for millionaires and billionaires. And by the way, let's help Macy's make an extra billion dollars, and let's make sure Wal-Mart makes an extra billion dollars. Their multi-billionaire owners are really good Christians. And let's use the name of Jesus to do that. It makes me wanna puke, Bryan! I think that what you are doing is blasphemous!
I don't know much about Hartmann, but to say his theology is confused is an understatement. And the volatility he demonstrates in this exchange makes me question his mental stability.
First of all, I find it incredible that a spokesman for the same political movement that loves to lecture conservatives not to judge others, finds himself qualified to judge that the owners of Macy's and Wal-Mart are not good Christians. Does he know them? Does he know their hearts? Does he know their relationship with God in Christ? And this guy is gonna lecture about blasphemy? Give me a break.
Also, you want to talk about a safety net there, Thom? Wal-Mart and Macy's provides a safety net to a lot of folks in this country. The safety net is known as a job. When Wal-Mart and Macy's expand, that means more people get an income, more families have food on the table and roofs over their head. So get off your high horse and get a clue, buddy. I'm sorry but this type of indignant stupidity from liberals who think they're so brilliant is really wearing thin.
Fischer repeated very calmly, "Well, Thom, I've just gotta tell you I'm so heartened to hear you so worked up over blaspheming the name of Christ. I've never heard this coming from you before."
An angry Hartmann shot back: "I'm astounded you're not ashamed and humiliated that you have been called out for blaspheming the name of Christ." Fischer tried to point out Obama wouldn't make an Easter proclamation from the White House. Hartmann yelled again:
HARTMANN: Bryan, I am astounded that you are trying to change the subject away from the fact that the American Family Association is promoting blasphemy!
FISCHER: Well, Thom, as I say, I think it's terrific that you're so concerned about blasphemy.
HARTMANN: Why are you not answering the question! Why is the American Family Association promoting blasphemy?
FISCHER (after a laugh): What's we're doing is promoting the day that our nation has set aside to honor the birth of Jesus.
HARTMANN: Not true. If you were doing that, you'd be out buying advertising or putting up signs saying ?Please honor Jesus Christ.' What you're doing is saying we're going to put a gold star by the name of corporations that make a profit by using the name of Jesus Christ and that is blasphemy.
When Fischer calmly explained that in his view, Matthew 25 is not about government policy and that in the Parable of the Talents, Jesus was encouraging investment, Hartmann concluded the interview by rudely announcing, "I will pray for your soul. I am so sorry to hear that. Bryan Fischer, blasphemer with AFA.net."
Just taking this one interview excerpt, just taking a snapshot of Hartmann here and extrapolating outward, it's tough not to conclude that the man is deranged. To conclude that the AFA's efforts to expose those businesses who are refusing to acknowledge the religious foundations of the Christmas holiday in their efforts to capitalize on the commercial side of the season - to conclude that that is blasphemous is so detached from reality and rationality it's tough to even know where to start.
A business that puts a Nativity Scene out in their storefront isn't seeking to make money off Jesus - or if they are, it is completely impossible for any individual to know that with any certainty. What they're really doing is seeking to publicly state that while they are engaging in the commerce of the season, they are mindful of the real reason behind it. To be honest, as a Christian, that's something I appreciate and applaud. And I'm not alone. Many of those same businesses are the ones who are using some of their profits to donate to soup kitchens, Rescue Missions, homeless shelters, and are welcoming bell ringers onto their property.
Meanwhile you have these liberal organizations out there fighting to keep the Salvation Army off their curbs, filing lawsuits against schools that allow kids to sing Joy to the World at their Christmas concerts, and mandating an allegiance to political correctness that strips the name of Jesus Christ from a season meant to celebrate His incarnation. And a guy who speaks on behalf of that movement actually has the temerity to accuse someone else of blasphemy? What lunacy.
Here's what the AFA is trying to get across: many Bible believing Christians are going to celebrate the season of Christmas by giving gifts, which means they will be purchasing those gifts at stores. The AFA is letting those individuals know which businesses seem to be offended by the simple mention of the Savior's name, which is a pretty good indication of the values and ideals that business incorporates into their mission. That lets believers decide if they want to offend the business by spending their Christmas dollars in those stores, or help the bottom line of those companies who seem to have an aversion to Christian principle.
And perhaps Thom should ask himself this simple question. He speaks fondly of Christian charity and benevolence and the teachings of Jesus. Do you suppose the businesses on AFA's "naughty" list - those who are so offended by Christianity they won't even mention the name of Christ at Christmastime - will be more or less likely to fund and further those Christian principles Thom finds so much value in? And what about those on the AFA's "nice" list? Hmmm. Perhaps if Thom finds so much value in advancing true Christian principle, he should be on board with the AFA in helping to promote the corporations and businesses that share those principles, no?
But, of course, the reality is that Thom isn't really interested in those principles and values. He simply wants to use them as a big club to beat his political opponents up with - and it doesn't matter to him if he makes himself into a giant horse's rear end in the process.