Forum boots Tulis after interview with Christian mom of 9

Talk show host David Tulis was kicked off a liberal Facebook page in Chattanooga on Thursday after he posted a link to an interview with a woman and one of her nine children.

The interview with Maxine Holmes and her daughter, Coretta, 23, aired Wednesday on the Hot News Talk media platform, including AM 1240 radio and YouTube. It focuses on the rich family life of Mrs. Holmes, her husband, Clarence, and their children who range in age from 11 to 28.

“Mrs. Holmes is a wonderful mom and practical Christian,” said Tulis, whose show airs 9 to 11 weekdays. “Her explanations about the goodness and mercy of God are a great counterpoint in the recent uproar in Chattanooga about Islam and its military, economic and political threats to the secular and Christian West. Her and her husband’s confidence in God has made that family tremendously rich and an example of how Christianity will, by God’s grace and human charity, win the world.”

The show on YouTube is titled “Even at weakest, Christianity promises mercy worldwide.” Negative comments began immediately at Chattanooga News & Review on Facebook after Tulis posted the link with a remark about how Mrs. Holmes’ Christian faith as a member of First Baptist Church of Hixson.

‘Bigotry’ not tolerated

“It takes courage to suppress a dissenter who stands pretty much alone in such a crowd.” Tulis said Thursday. “Our group’s members will be equally courageous in casting into outer darkness any other who defends God’s grace, marriage, free markets and western civilization.”

On Facebook, Tulis insists moderators Lana Sutton, a local journalist, and Denny Haldeman mischaracterize Christianity in calling it bloodthirsty and genocidal.

Israel before Christ was directed to destroy Amalekites and others in God’s judgment against these peoples for their sins. Israel after the resurrection became the church, which is not a nation or a kingdom, but a spiritual body whose means are the message of repentance and God’s grace. The new covenant supersedes the old. No general order to kill Amalekites or Philistines stands today.

In Islam the process is reversed. The Meccan Koran is all about religious ideals and is peaceful. No jihad. No condemnations of infidels. The early Koran is overwritten by the 2nd Koran, [which] Mohammad wrote in Medina. It is full of jihad with much talk about Kafirs (non-Muslims) who are to be made to submit to his theories. If they don’t submit, pay the tax, or convert, they are to be destroyed.

To this comment, Ms. Sutton replies, “We don’t want your hate here, David. You do not stand out as a leader of anything but trying to radicalize nuts, certainly not as a religious leader.”

In a last statement before being deleted, Tulis avers, “I favor open dialogue and discourse, and an open society with open argument and fair play. I favor a free press, Lana, and allowing minority views to have their say against the majority. Here, I am in the minority, and you represent the majority, one that seems hostile to traditional Christianity.”

‘Closed-loop systems’

Tulis defends free speech and public discourse.

Because you have enough fairness at heart to recognize that it is unjust to the public forum to censor dissenters, you should resist the desire to quash my point of view and my person. There’s no way you can win against my perspective by silencing me. You can win against me, perhaps, by quashing and censoring me. But you are not being fair with yourself and your like-minded friends when your arguments meet with no dissent.Lana, closed-loop systems don’t survive. An open one that brooks dissent does, and improves itself over time.

CNR needs someone like me to attack, rebuke, name-call and challenge. It also needs someone like me to reply to one or two of our members’ fruitier viewpoints. Say yes to diversity, Lana; fear the monoculture. [Italics added]

Ms. Sutton is in no mood to hear about censorship vs. open debate arguments.  She says Tulis’ views are a form of ideational imperialism.

David, a free press does not mean you get to spread hate, then claim it’s just your opinion, without people letting you know that society is not for hate or persecution or judging others. We can’t allow hate to proliferate on this page, any more than we can allow it to dominate our neighborhoods, our airwaves, our political realm, our TVs or our society in general. Citizens must take a stand against hate and bigotry, or be identified as part of a culture of hate and bigotry.

Tulis has been called names “impossible to repeat in any family publication,” he says, insisting he has been a polite contributor so he might get a fair hearing.

Late Thursday, Ms. Sutton sent Tulis a copy of the forum rules: “Opinions are welcome, though we remove hate-speech, libel, propaganda, lies, smut, personal attacks and posts that detract from the purpose of the page — to build community relationships and inform.”

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