"Biblical Slavery" For Non-Christians? Yes, Suggests Website of Mike Huckabee's Favorite Historian David Barton
On April 6, 2011 Jon Stewart questioned presidential hopeful Mike Huckabee about David Barton. Stewart missed a few things. For example, Barton's Wallbuilders web site has for almost a decade featured an article, by a member of Barton's Wallbuilders board of directors, that seems to endorse "Biblical Slavery" for pagans and other miscreants, and favorably cites the work of a theologian who claimed the accepted Holocaust death toll was wildly inflated. The article has been on Barton's Wallbuilders web site since 2003.
Huckabee is so enthusiastic about the teaching of Wallbuilders head Barton that at the March 2011 Rediscover God In America conference Huckabee stated that he wishes all Americans could be forcibly indoctrinated, at gunpoint no less, with Barton's version of American history. As Huckabee told conference attendees,
"I almost wish that there would be, like, a simultaneous telecast, and all Americans would be forced-forced at gunpoint no less-to listen to every David Barton message, and I think our country would be better for it. I wish it'd happen."
The pro-slavery article on Barton's Wallbuilders web site would seem to qualify as one of Barton's teachings given that it's written by a Wallbuilders board member and Barton refers his readers directly to the article, clearly an endorsement of it.
So does Mike Huckabee wants Americans forcibly indoctrinated with pro-slavery ideas?
It sounds absurd, but the case I outline below isn't the only indication Huckabee might have closet pro-slavery yearnings. As I detailed in a January 2008 Talk To Action story, one of Huckabee's top policy advisers while Mike Huckabee was governor of Arkansas was Christian Reconstructionist leader Rod D. Martin. Christian Reconstructionism endorses "Biblical slavery" and founder of the movement R.J. Rushdoony expressed the sentiment that African-Americans were lucky to be slaves, writing, "Granted that some Negroes were mistreated as slaves, the fact still remains that nowhere in all history or in the world today has the Negro been better off.".
Meanwhile, who is David Barton?
For a start, Barton has been tapped as an alleged "expert" on American history featured on the Glenn Beck show and more recently brought into Congress, by Representative Michele Bachmann, to teach constitutional principles to incoming new members of Congress.
Talk To Action contribute Chris Rodda, Head Researcher for the Military Religious Freedom Foundation and author of Liars For Jesus: The Religious Right's Alternate Version of American History, is probably David Barton's most dedicated critic; a Talk To Action site search on "Chris Rodda, David Barton" pulls up Rodda's seemingly endless succession of stories debunking David Barton's seemingly endless procession of history myths, distortions, and outright lies.
David Barton has built a career upon his claim that United States government was founded on Biblical precepts. This creates a major problem - if America was founded as a Christian nation, how can we account for slavery ?
The Joy of Biblical Slavery
Barton's own articles on slavery on his Wallbuilders web site stress that many of the Founding Fathers were strongly opposed to the institution of slavery (which is true) but then he refers readers to a Wallbuilders article by Barton's close colleague Stephen McDowell, which explains that although Southern Slavery was wrong, it was wrong because it wasn't Biblical slavery as defined by Christian Reconstructionist theologian R.J. Rushdoony, whose basic approach was simple - what was permissible according to Biblical scripture is permissible now: including slavery.
McDowell's article cites R.J. Rushdoony's Institutes of Biblical Law six times in its footnotes and that's notable given that the book was Rushdoony's master work on how to implement Biblical law in the American legal system. R.J. Rushdoony's scheme included establishing stoning and burning at the stake for adultery, homosexuality, and idolatry, and the legalization of Biblical slavery. Leaders in the Christian Reconstructionism movement Rushdoony founded have for several decades now been trying to make it so .