“And when they arose early the next morning, there was Dagon, fallen on its face to the ground before the ark of the Lord The head of Dagon and both the palms of its hands were broken off on the threshold; only Dagon’s torso was left of it. *** We know that an idol is nothing in the world, and that there is no other God but one.”
— 1 Samuel 4:4; 1 Cor. 8:4
The opening Saturday of a temple of devotees of Muhammad in Chattanooga, Tenn., drew a crowd of about 250 people, who heard a talk about the federal government’s commitment to civil rights from a U.S. prosecutor.
In favorable remarks, reproduced at Chattanoogan.com, Bill Killian makes veiled references to people representing interests of Muhammadanism’s rival, Christianity, and suggest an ambiguous relationship that Uncle Sam’s courtroom accusers have with either religion.
The federal government presence at the event is as much one of favor to the religion as of threat.
Christianity counts on eventual global expansion by simple preaching of the gospel, conviction of sin and conversion. In contrast, the religion of Muhammad, lacking a doctrine of sovereign grace, counts on warfare and salvation by good works to remove barriers to its eventual hegemony. The religion is broken into various factions whose members are as bloodthirsty against errant co-religionists as against infidels such as Christians (as we are dubbed). That its geopolitical gains are attended with warfare and terrorism worries the U.S. government. Since 9/11, its police agencies have subjected Muslims to fatuous and ruinous prosecutions that are often rejected by juries of American citizens. ‡ So the presence of Mr. Killian and Knoxville special agent Ken Moore, “who pledged the continuing support of his office,” is perhaps not all that the smiles and handshakes suggest.
Simultaneously, Mr. Killian’s remarks seem to offer a protective veil over the faith alien to America, which has its origins in protestant Christianity and whose federal apparatus is largely run today by Roman Catholics.
MR. KILLIAN SUGGESTS that because the law looks at everyone as equals, individuals and cultural institutions should, as well.
What is an American? It seems to me that unless you are 100 percent Native American or American Indian, then you or your ancestors immigrated to this country. Most, if not all of them, immigrated with a hope for justice. They were leaving or sometimes escaping a society and a form of government that did not provide justice. Justice is doing the right thing. It really is a simple concept. Interestingly, you may remember in the preamble to the Constitution, establishing justice was second only to creating a more perfect Union. Of all of the Arab American, Muslim, Hispanic, African-American, and other groups that I have met and spoken with, they all say one thing — “We just want to be treated like everybody else. We just want to be treated as the Americans we are.”
Mr. Killian says he searched the Constitution and the U.S. Code to see if there exist different categories of Americans. He objects to the possibility that some people “think that there should be different categories of Americans.”
IF THERE IS A CREATOR of different categories of Americans, it would be the modern welfare state of which Mr. Killian and his staff are policing functionaries, a 200-year old for-profit entity that has a statutory honeycomb with tens of thousands of compartments. Nestled into these definitional hexagons are “different categories” of corporate, union, industrial, environmental and free-lunch American persons who are on its payroll. Races, genders, sexual orientation are all specially classed, with “different” protections. Another set of categories include hundreds of criminal definitions containing people who are criminals without even knowing it, having one foot in the pod, as it were.
Mr. Killian is not denying the existence of thousands of categories of this most substantive sort. He is referring obliquely to an area outside his jurisdiction, to a conflict between two mutually exclusive faiths that have fought to the death on hundreds of battlefields since the time of the Muhammad. He is offering a muddle of words suggesting he believes that a conflict between the God of Scripture (and his sons) and the presumptive deity of the Koran (and heirs of that faith) has potential to break into public disruption. And he is going to take the side of civil rights laws and criminal statutes, whatever happens, and prosecute wherever the code allows.
Seeing that he has to address Christianity in veiled form, he offers a discussion about hate — an amorphous topic better suited to the viperishness of the Southern Poverty Law Center than to a government official whose neutrality and verbal circumspection make him a boon in the operation of justice. Very possibly what he sees as hate may be a way of directing a threat to the best part of Christendom. That is the body of Christianity emerging from the Reformation of the 1500s that fought for the crown rights of King Jesus and would not submit to tyranny of Anglo-Catholicism or Roman Catholicism or its kings, a body jealous of God’s total sovereignty, jurisdiction and prerogatives. This view in Christianity is confident that God in the person of Jesus Christ and by the power of the Holy Spirit will, before the end of time, make every knee bow of every nation, king, sports star and bus driver. It makes no compromises, and holds to the high doctrines of the sovereignty of God and sovereign grace. It emphases service, mercy, care for the poor, innovation, hard work and many virtues that created science and Western civilization. Still, Mr. Killian, the federal representative, seems to make a warning to Christianity: “Don’t take the claims of your founder too seriously insofar as His intending to drive out every other god before the end of time. The First Amendment won’t let that happen.”
Mr. Killian also is directing his remarks to plain old bigots and racists. These are people who aren’t practicing Christians but who, with some borrowings from Christianity, see Muslim beliefs and practices as a cultural or personal threat. Such people might be willing to take lawless and anarchic action against Muhammad’s local embassy, violating in so doing God’s law, the common law and the spiderweb of U.S. law.
Hate and prejudice can arise when people have no information about other persons and their backgrounds, or the information that they have is incorrect. Misinformation is used to justify attitudes of hatred and prejudice. The group being targeted is then unjustifiably portrayed as somehow inferior or less worthy of rights and privileges of citizenship.
Basically, those exhibiting hate and prejudice choose a value system of hypocrisy and exhibit a double standard. They want to be free, under the Constitution and statutes of the United States, to enjoy their liberty and freedom. However, they feel that those whom they do not understand or with whom they do not agree should not have those same Constitutional and statutory rights.
This value system of hypocrisy was not intended by the framers of the United States Constitution, nor the members of Congress who passed the federal civil rights statutes. The federal statutes apply to everyone and will be enforced equally. The greatest cornerstone of Justice and due process is that the law applies equally to all. *** Whether Gurdwara, Synagogue, Temple, Church or Mosque, we must preserve and enforce the First Amendment’s freedom of religion (italics added).
NOTHING IN THIS QUOTE or Mr. Killian’s other remarks seem to be addressed at any potentially violent Islamic activist of the kind whose heroic suicides in Indonesia, Pakistan and Iraq make headlines. They seem tossed from the Islamic Center across the way to the Christian church. The First Amendment is the guarantee of the freedom of religion, and it is slowly being turned on its head — as was the entire federal constitution by the 14th Amendment — to be the tool of oppression against free exercise. The attacks on local prayer and Christianity in a public school are evidence of this continuing drive toward atheistic secularization. This turning of an ancient protection of Christianity seems hinted at in Mr. Killian’s usage of “enforcing” freedom of religion. Shouldn’t he be referring to the national government’s protecting freedom of religion? Perhaps, as a prosecutor and enforcer of criminal statutes, that’s what he meant, using terminology suitable to his office.
For non-Muslims elsewhere in the world, Sharia and jihad are personal threats. Chattanoogans read the news about church burnings by Muslim militias, depopulations of Christians in Iraq and wholesale massacres such as that Aug. 6 of 19 people in Nigerian church. These attacks of militant Islam are 50 years old, and it is possible that in reaction to Muhammadanism, Americans will take matters into their own hands.
Mr. Killian offers a multicultural perspective about diversity in America, as in its people and in the United States, as reflected in the federal government’s pre-eminence in virtually every aspect of life.
Our diversity is our strength. Respect for, and the embrace of various cultures is a pillar, upon which our great nation was founded. Even though we are culturally diverse, more unites us than divides us. As an American, there are no excuses to be made, for your ethnic origin, religious preference, sexual orientation or any other identity. We all are and will remain Americans, “with liberty and Justice for all.”
Diversity of talent is important and invigorating. Diversity of skin color and ancestry can be dynamic and exciting. Diversity outlook brings people into diverse callings and occupations. Cultural diversity is good, too.
Whether meaning to or not, Mr. Killian implies that diversity of gods — also known as syncretism — is the strength of a nation and a blessing. The scriptures flatly contradict Mr. Killian on this point.
The Bible is full of claims about God’s uniform propriety upon mankind, upon every soul at every moment of time, upon the Philistine as upon the Marxist, upon the atheist and the Methodist. Christianity offers confidence to the heart of any man that there is one true God, the one revealed in Scripture, and that the standard for human conduct is clear. If a nation or a family rely on any god or idol, there will come wrath, judgment and punishment from a sovereign who always gets His way in the world, who raises kings and reduces them, as He did Pharaoh and Nebuchadnezzar, a God who wants to be adored, worshiped, praised and thanked.
David in Psalm 33 at verse 12 says, “Blessed is the nation whose God is the LORD, the people He has chosen as His own inheritance.” The scriptures are full of such assertions.
Mr. Killian ends his talk as if a friend of Muslims. “Salaam and Peace Be Unto You,” he says.
“U.S. Attorney Killian Gives Welcoming Remarks At Opening Of Islamic Center,” Chattanoogan.com, Aug. 27, 2012
‡ See James Bovard, Terrorism and Tyranny[;] Trampling Freedom, Justice, and Peace to Rid the World of Evil (New York: Palgrave, 2003).
See Mr. Bovard’s “Post-9/11 Roundup of Innocents” that gives a flavor of the federal threat to Middle Eastern people in the U.S.