In a display of verbal histrionics, Rob Boston, communications director for the left-wing non-profit Americans United for Separation of Church and State, wrote a blog post against Church Militant accusing us (and our alleged partner in crime Steve Bannon) of being "bent on nihilistic destruction."
"The idea that you can simply blow up a government agency or program — even if it has been around for a long time, even if it works and even if people rely on it — seems to be much in vogue in right-wing quarters these days," Boston complained. "Sadly, Bannon is far from the only one out there bent on nihilistic destruction."
He continues, "This group, called Church Militant, has ambitious goals: It wants to tear down the wall of separation between church and replace our democracy with a far-right Catholic king who will decide what's best for us."
"But if it can't get a king," Boston warns, "Church Militant is willing to settle for Trump."
Ominously titled "Unrepentant Theocrats in Michigan Seek Church-State Union — And Monarchy," Boston goes on to charge Church Militant with espousing a way of thinking that "leads religious leaders to embrace dictators, strongmen and autocrats. It persuades them to trade their souls for a few policy crumbs. It convinces them that the government doesn't have to respect the right of conscience."
With all due respect: What a load. The rest of the piece similarly misses the mark, and is not worth quoting.
Americans United is known for its anti-Christian bigotry, promoting secularist ideals in the public square while shoving religion aside (or at least, those religions with which they disagree; the group's selective outrage is notable — more on this below). Read the group's policy positions on marriage and "reproductive rights" (a.k.a., abortion), and it declares, "Laws in this area should reflect secular rationales ... ."
The group boasts, "Since the early 1960s, Americans United has successfully opposed every proposed constitutional amendment designed to reintroduce official prayer and other forms of mandated worship in public schools."
It also proudly declares: "Americans United has aggressively fought against taxpayer subsidies for religious schools since the organization was founded," insisting that atheist, gay and satanic clubs be allowed equal time on school property alongside Christian clubs.
Headed by longtime executive director Rev. Barry Lynn, an ordained minister in the United Church of Christ, Americans United claims as "victories" the times they've successfully stripped religious non-profits of tax-exempt status, including one church that ran an ad against a political candidate, as well as Pat Robertson's Christian Coalition, denied tax-exempt status after Americans United reported the group to the IRS.
Lynn's organization has also strongarmed private hospitals to act against Catholic principles. "In 2000, AU intervened in a case in Florida to prevent a public hospital [inaccurate; the hospital was private but leased some public property] from falling under restrictive Catholic guidelines that would have curtailed or ended certain medical services," the website states. "A settlement was reached out of court, and the public [sic] hospital decided to remain public."
That case involved Bayfront Medical Center, which had agreed to join a consortium of eight hospitals, two of which were Catholic. One of the conditions of joining the consortium was that the hospital would follow Catholic ethical directives. Sister Pat Shirley, a Catholic nun, was given authority to oversee end-of-life policies at all eight hospitals.
When Shirley discovered that Bayfront had aborted a Down Syndrome baby, she insisted that the hospital keep to its agreement to follow Catholic guidelines — an order with which Bayfront complied, later refusing to kill the unborn child of another pregnant woman seeking an abortion.
Americans United — along with radical leftist groups ACLU, Planned Parenthood and National Organization for Women — sued the hospital for alleged Church-State entanglement — and won. After Bayfront decided it could no longer agree to the terms of the Catholic directives, the consortium voted to oust it from its ranks. Ever since, Bayfront has struggled to survive.