First up from the God Machine this week is a look at a Republican state lawmaker in Washington, who shared some rather extraordinary thoughts on what he described as the "Biblical Basis for War." The Spokesman-Review in Spokane reported this week:
Washington state Rep. Matt Shea acknowledged Wednesday he had distributed a four-page manifesto titled "Biblical Basis for War," which describes the Christian God as a "warrior," details the composition and strategies of a "Holy Army" and condemns abortion and same-sex marriage.
The document is organized in 14 sections with multiple tiers of bullet points and a smattering of biblical citations. Under one heading, "Rules of War," it makes a chilling prescription for enemies who flout "biblical law." It states, "If they do not yield -- kill all males."
I happened to write a post on Shea back in 2013 when he urged like-minded folks to stock up on thousands of rounds of ammunition. (He also warned at the time of government-imposed FEMA concentration camps.)
When the GOP lawmaker's "manifesto" generated attention this week, Shea appeared in a Facebook Live video in which he defended his work as "a series of sermons on biblical war in the Old Testament as part of a larger discussion on the history of warfare."
In the same video, however, the Washington official described the United States as "a Christian nation," while dismissing his critics as "Marxists" and "Islamists."
My friend Rob Boston explained yesterday, "Many people active in the Religious Right long to use their religion to tell the rest of us what to do, although they deny that when pressed. The Reconstructionists are at least honest enough to say it upfront. Shea's manifesto is more of the same. It's an insistence that the Bible (as interpreted by a small band of far-right fundamentalists) provides justification for whatever these folks want to do -- and that usually involves them running everyone else's lives."
As for what's next for Shea, the local NBC affiliates reported that his "manifesto" came to the attention of Spokane County Sheriff Ozzie Knezovich, "who says he immediately alerted the FBI saying he felt the author, Shea, was dangerous."
Also from the God Machine this week: