Tuesday, July 07, 2009

Air Force refuses a fly-over of a religious rally, and nutty Christians get all bent up

That accurately summarizes this dumbass story, methinks. Every year, the Christian Defense Coalition organizes the "God and Country Festival" in Idaho, and every year, they get the Air Force to perform a fly-over. Nothing screams patriotism like seeing jets roar over your festival, eh?

Problem is, this year the Air Force flatly refused to fly over the festival, and so of course those poor little Christians got all bent and huffin', and here's what Rev. Mahoney, leader of the farce, had to say about it:

"For years, flyovers have been allowed by the Pentagon at the 'God and Country Rally' in Nampa Idaho. These flyovers were not to endorse or promote any one religious faith tradition. Rather, they were held to honor and pay tribute to our heroic men and women who have served or are currently serving in our armed forces. "For the Obama Administration to deny a flyover for the first time, is a slap in the face to all those who proudly serve our country especially when we are at war. These flyovers have been a special part of the 'God and Country Rally' for many years.

Indeed, that does sound pretty bad – unless you actually take a few moments and dig into the festival's goals and mission and discover Mahoney is nothing more than a big fat fucking liar:

Our mission is primarily about spreading the Good News of Jesus Christ. We believe this Festival, started in 1967, is an incredible tool to share this Good News by strengthening the fabric of our society through our connection to family and country.

We want to encourage believers everywhere to get out in their communities, not just to strengthen each other, but to encourage family, friends, neighbors, and coworkers to learn more about who Jesus Christ is and what He's done for each and every one of us.

To borrow a phrase from Michael Boerner of Mission Media,

In order to witness to people, you have to do the following:

  • Bless people
  • Fellowship with them
  • Meet their needs
  • Present the Truth

This, in a nutshell, is what the Treasure Valley God and Country Festival attempts to do. The stated purpose of the Festival is to meet the following goals:

  1. Develop a sense of community spirit in a relaxed, social atmosphere, making all citizens of the Treasure Valley feel welcome in friendship.
  2. Present a safe, pleasing, and inspiring fireworks display to commemorate our country's independence.
  3. Dedicate a significant portion of the program to emphasizee, particularly to young people, the precepts on which our country was founded: Individual rights, belief in God, a representative form of government guided by an assemblage of laws created by elected individuals, sanctity of human life, and all other rights outlined in the Constitution and its supporting documents.
  4. Present the Good News of Jesus Christ in a clear and concise manner.
  5. Avoid any pretense or appearance of a political rally.
  6. Remind those who attend of their good fortune to live in a free society and also their responsibilities to maintain the freedoms which they enjoy.

We are attempting to meet steps one and two, to bless people and fellowship with them, through music, kids' activities, and teens' activities.

After we have done that, we attempt to accomplish step three, to meet their needs, by promoting community activities such as "Communities in Action," and other organizations whose goal is to meet peoples' needs with a Christian heart.

At the end of the evening, we move to step four, presenting the Truth. Each year, we ensure that the message of the Gospel is presented, and information is provided for those who have heard and want to know more about Jesus Christ.

I don't see how any group whose mission statement mentions Jesus Christ every few words can really be seen as secular or non-religious. That was nothing but a baldfaced lie, and Mahoney knows it. There isn't a single word anywhere in that load of waffle about "honoring and paying tribute" to the military, so everything Mahoney's whined about was nothing but complete lies, rendering him into nothing more than an asshat demagogue.


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