Thursday, January 13, 2011

Adopt a Liberal

Liberty Counsel, a right-wing litigation and policy organization, featured a project on their website that made me chuckle. While wandering around the Liberty Counsel website, I saw a hyperlink for something called "Adopt a Liberal." Immediately, I imagined a charity commercial imploring viewers to help poor left-wingers.

Down-and-out liberals like these have to drive over ten miles in their hybrids each day just to find trees to hug. After toiling all day, destroying  marriage and socializing health care, all they'll have to eat tonight are vegetables from their rooftop gardens.

You can help. For just a dollar a day, you can make sure liberals around the world have enough progressive bumper stickers, organic fair trade coffee, and tofu. Lefties are counting on your support.
Actually, the real project was completely different. When I clicked on the link, I arrived at lc[dot]org/media/9980/adopt_a_liberal.htm and learned that "Adopt a Liberal" is a Liberty Counsel prayer initiative intended to change the hearts of "misguided" liberal lawmakers and commentators. Quoting 1 Timothy 2:1-3, which implores believers to pray for kings and those in authority, the project chooses supporters to pray that selected liberals adopt "a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence." These prayers are intended to change the minds of left-wing targets, who will supposedly accept God if conservative Christians pray fervently enough. "Adopt a Liberal" playing cards were even sold at one time to encourage prayers for left-wing leaders.

Liberty Counsel's list of prayer-worthy liberals include President Barack Obama, Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, Rep. Barney Frank, New York mayor Michael Bloomberg, Americans United executive director Barry Lynn, Keith Olbermann, Rachel Maddow, and "the unknown liberal" (any liberal a believer feels is in need of prayer). The website's descriptions of these figures reveal that Liberty Counsel disapproves of their support for LGBT rights, abortion, church-state separation, and other issues.

The "Adopt a Liberal" logo features a man's hand in a red, white, and blue sleeve clutching another man's wrist. The clutching hand looks as if it's catching or rescuing the other man, or it might be seizing the man's wrist by force. Either way, the logo came across as patronizing.

Like other Religious Right organizations, the Liberty Counsel is operating under the assumption that conservative Christianity is the only valid expression of the Christian faith. The "Adopt a Liberal" project assumes that liberal values, such as support for LGBT rights and reproductive rights, are not only unacceptable, but incompatible with faith. As of January 2011, the liberals listed on their website have yet to ecstatically embrace right-wing Christianity, so it seems that all those prayers haven't had their desired effect yet.

For additional commentary on "Adopt a Liberal," visit these links.

Joe.My.God: Liberty Counsel: Adopt a Liberal!

Alan Colmes' Liberaland: The Liberty Counsel's "Adopt a Liberal" Program

Birmingham Blues: Liberty Counsel Rolls Out "Adopt a Liberal" Program

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