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A few years ago, I had a delightful interview with the President of the Freedom From Religion Foundation, Annie Laurie Gaylor. It ended with her hanging up on me after I tricked her to expose her outrageous position. For those that might not have been listening to the show at that time, I ran through a list of actions that blended the line between religion and government to the point of downright government endorsement of Christianity and attributed those actions to Sarah Palin. Ms. Gaylor was indignant. I asked her whether she thought Palin's actions were unconstitutional. She said that they were. I then pointed out to her that I had deceived her - it was George Washington who had done those things, not Ms. Palin. She hung up on me. You can watch the exchange here.
Well anyway, Gaylor's husband, Dan Barker, is a spokesman for that same organization. Not sure if that's an office romance or if they started this little anti-Christian operation after they got hitched. Doesn't really matter - they are certainly two peas in a pod.
This is the busy time of year for the evangelistic atheists like those at FFRF. Plenty of Christians are practicing their religion around Christmas time and nothing gets these atheists' blood boiling quite like public displays of religiosity. So they make it their point to go around and do their best Grinch impersonation - scouring the country for any Nativity Scene that might be on public property or any Candy Cane that might be distributed in schools. When they find one, they're on it like stink on garbage.
And speaking of garbage, Barker shared his thoughts on their most recent target - a Nativity scene in Texas - on the news the other day. It went about as well as my interview with his wife a few years ago. Here's the scoop:
During a dialogue with FFRF spokesperson Dan Barker (who is married to FFRF co-president Annie Laurie Gaylor), "Follow the Money" host Eric Bolling was so dumbfounded by the group's anti-Jesus views that he ended up booting the atheist-spokesperson off of the program. Mediaite's Colby Hall called the moment a "?War on Christmas' miracle!"
At the center of the discussion was a Texas nativity scene that the Madison, Wisconsin-based FFRF has been demanding be torn down immediately. During the dialogue, Barker claimed that America is not a Christian nation and that the nativity should not be present on government property. He went on to say that the nativity represents "an insult to human nature that we are all doomed and damned."
This is just dumb. How many honest atheists can say with a straight face that when they walk past a Nativity Scene with the Baby Jesus in the manger they immediately think, "Those rascals who put this up are just trying to taunt me that I'm going to Hell?" Only the ones who wake up in the morning and start compiling a list of things that they can be offended by that day and whine about.
And that's the deal: most atheists are not this way. Folks like Barker and Gaylor and their whole crew up there at FFRF are to most atheists what the Westboro Baptist "Church" is to Christians. They aren't representative and frankly, they're an embarrassment. Most atheists are content and actually quite okay with the religiosity of their fellow Americans. After all, if they've got a brain it doesn't take too long of surveying the history of societies built upon the non-existence of God and Moral Authority before you realize that isn't the kind of place you want to live. Being surrounded by those who believe they are under the eternal command to "do unto others what you would have them do unto you," by contrast, isn't such a bad thing.
But not for the evangelistic atheists like Barker, who just kept going:
It was this comment that commenced the uncomfortable exchange between Bolling and Barker. "Sir, I have to take exception to the way you've described the nativity scene. It's not an insult. It's certainly not an insult to me. I'm a Christian," Bolling explained. "It is an insult, sir," Barker countered. At this point, the interview continued, as Bolling sought to move on to another question. But it didn't take long for Barker to, once again, push Bolling's buttons.
"Why was Jesus born? To save us from our sins. What an insult that we are degraded, depraved human beings ? that Jesus created a hell ? a place or torture," Barker quipped. "And how would you feel if you didn't believe that... superstition?"
Bolling interrupted the insults and abruptly ended the interview.
Indeed he did. In charismatic fashion, saying it was his show and he wasn't going to allow Barker to denigrate the name of Jesus Christ. It was impressive for a member of the media. Personally, I would have continued to engage this intellectual giant Barker and let him continue to make a fool of himself, but Bolling was evidently in the Christmas spirit. I hope Barker didn't pick up on that, lest he be offended.