Rev. Jody Hice, seen here practicin' his religion
A Republican candidate seeking to represent Georgia’s 10th U.S. House district believes that the First Amendment’s guarantee of religious liberty does not apply to followers of Islam.
“Although Islam has a religious component, it is much more than a simple religious ideology,” Rev. Jody Hice wrote in his 2012 book It’s Now Or Never, according to Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “It is a complete geo-political structure and, as such, does not deserve First Amendment protection.”
The House candidate also believes the Muslim Brotherhood is secretly infiltrating the United States in a plot to impose Sharia law on the entire country, a conspiracy theory he shares with Reps. Michele Bachmann (R-MN) and Louie Gohmert (R-TX).
If we're talking about a "geo-political structure," mind you, I'm not sure you can get more "geo-political" than the Vatican compound being its own nation-state. We even have an ambassador to the Vatican; we don't have an ambassador to "Islam." I hesitate to even point this out because the Catholic Church, my old church, has been considered "not a real religion" by many Americans for as long as America has existed, and for most of it a Catholic candidate for office would receive a cool reception from American wags and wag-followers who wondered if it was all a plot to allow Rome to commandeer the wheels of government. You don't need to look as far afield as the dreaded Muslim menace to find religions that Real Americans consider fake, and dangerous, and a hidden menace, and that should be stripped from their constitutional protections lest they do untold damage to the nation. The definition of "not a religion that deserves First Amendment protection" means, for a large number of Americans, "any religion 'cept mine." This is a bad road to go down.
Getting beyond that, we still face the notion that the First Amendment does not apply to things that have "a complete geo-political structure." So if an idea has infrastructure behind it, you lose your First Amendment rights to speak of it? Sorry, Timmy, you referenced capitalism, and that's a no-go in these parts. You may think you're clever, Billy, you and your fancy notions of a theory of gravity, but there's a geo-political structure of textbook printers pushing that agenda so it's a $10,000 fine for you. And what of the energy company lobbyists? What of ALEC? What of the poor, dear Koch brothers, spending so much of their moneys to let us know their opinions on legislation and taxes and pollution when there is an entire geo-political structure devoted to saying those same things, much of it funded by, well, themselves? This isn't a bad road to go down, it's not even a road at all. It's nonsensical. It is a 10-foot gap in a guardrail over a tall cliff with a puff of smoke wafting up from below.
And finally we get to the real meat of the matter, which is that if you find yourself on the same side of an issue as America's Dumbest Congressman and America's Dumbest Ex-Presidential Candidate Not Named George, you are probably in the wrong. When that "issue" involves a conspiracy theory about the scary Muslims infiltrating the country in order to impose religion on people, you are definitely in the wrong. And we do not need any more Louis Gohmerts in the Congress, thank you very much. There is a complete geo-political structure dedicated to putting excruciatingly stupid people into our Congress, and we must resist this conspiracy with every fiber of our probably-wrong-religioned beings.
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