Home > Uncategorized > Guest post: Kent Ashcraft on Rep. Peter King’s “Radical Islam” hearings

Guest post: Kent Ashcraft on Rep. Peter King’s “Radical Islam” hearings

March 10, 2011

Kent Ashcraft is best known for “Dear Dr. Laura”, a satirical screed on the application of Leviticus to modern life.  Yesterday I got this from him:

First of all, thanks to all who sent me happy birthday messages. Facebook has its uses (and abuses).

Today’s topic has to do with the late Senator Joe McCarthy, who has been technically dead for half a century, but is still alive in spirit. To McCarthy, communism was such a grave threat that he felt the need to investigate any and all Americans who were suspected to have communist sympathies. In the process of doing that, he ruined many lives and wasted untold millions of dollars in a useless and unconstitutional exercise. It was one of the most shameful periods of American history, and spawned the term “McCarthyism.”

McCarthy’s spiritual heir is Rep. Peter King of New York, who starting tomorrow will chair a series of congressional hearings regarding “radical Islam.” Presumably this is necessary because certain people have committed terrorist acts in the name of Islam. Of course, the most prolific and deadly terrorist group in the history of our country has been the Ku Klux Klan, who have claimed Christianity as their inspiration. Yet I’ve never heard anyone, even in hindsight, suggest a that a House committee investigate “radical Christianity,” despite the fact that Timothy McVeigh and virtually every anti-abortion terrorist have also claimed to be Christians.

Add to this hypocrisy the amazing fact that in the 1980s Rep. King was an ardent defender of the Irish Republican Army, a terrorist group that killed over 1,700 people in the United Kingdom. The IRA operated under the banner of Irish Catholicism, and evidently that was okay with Mr. King because he happens to be an Irish Catholic. This takes McCarthyism to a new level – McCarthy was at least consistently against communism, but Mr. King is only against religious terrorists if their religion is different from his own.

I am deeply ashamed that in my country, which was founded in part on the principle of freedom of religion, we are now having congressional hearings to investigate what people believe. I can only hope that in these hearings someone has the courage to ask, “Have you no sense of decency?”

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