Religious Right Leaders Warn: Vote Republican, Or We'll Have Another Holocaust
These three incidents, dire warnings from Jeffress, Metaxas, and Jenky, were not anomalies but fit into a widespread pattern in which, since the inauguration of President Obama in early 2009, prominent evangelical conservatives have accused the Obama Administration of planning to launch a full-blown fascist dictatorship.
To be sure, liberals and Democrats have been known to play the "Hitler card", as this list on the conservative Free Republic website lays out.
But, whereas on the aforementioned list of offending Bush/Hitler statements from liberals I could not find any which included the word "Holocaust", amidst the current din of Obama/Hitler talk on the right Obama/Hitler/Holocaust tropes are many - And Metaxas, Jenky, and Jeffress are anything but peripheral.
Indeed, Eric Metaxas - who appears to have been groomed to step into the oversized shoes of the late Charles Colson - moves in high enough circles to have recently crossed swords with President Barack Obama, at the 2012 National Prayer Breakfast, during which Metaxas gave a speech, prior to Obama's, in which he walked right up to the edge of the Nazi comparison that he would soon make openly, by rhetorically linking Nazism and abortion, and asking his elite prayer breakfast audience (with president Obama sitting only a few feet away), "You think you're better than the Germans of that [Nazi] era? You're not. Whom do we say is not fully human today?"
Metaxas' less-than genteel speech at the National Prayer Breakfast was especially risque for the fact that Doug Coe, longtime head of The Fellowship, the global evangelical network that sponsors the elite yearly prayer breakfast event and has been tied to Uganda's so-called "kill the gays bill", has a history of praising the zealous, bloodthirsty dedication of the followers of Hitler, Lenin, and Mao - a penchant also shared by Fellowship member Rick Warren.
In all fairness, there are legitimate reasons to challenge the Obama Administration: for its authoritarianism, secrecy, and shaky human rights record, as left/liberal critics such as Glenn Greenwald and Matt Stoller have done.
But conservative Christians in the Metaxas/Jenky/Jeffress mold seem disinterested in making common cause with the left on those issues, and instead choose to peg the alleged creeping Nazification they warn about on what they define as "religious liberty" issues (which somehow fail to include concern over government-funded religious discrimination, via the Faith Based Initiative, against Jews, gays, and non-Christians), as well as on legalized abortion and the spread of legalized same-sex marriage.
It's noteworthy that with these chosen issues, the expansion of the religious liberty of evangelical Christians and organizations seems to come at the expense of the civil liberties of other Americans. In the case of abortion and same-sex marriage, the "religious liberty" agenda would use the power of the state to circumscribe the rights of women and LBGT couples, to terminate pregnancies and to marry their chosen mates: not libertarian at all.
Argues libertarian author James Veverka, during the 20th Century social conservatism, whether overtly Christian or not, has served as a coercive tool of repressive states from across the political spectrum, from left to the right. Writes Veverka,
"Uncomfortable as it makes people to compare religion with dictatorships, the most dangerous dictatorships of the 20th century were also radically socially conservative in regards to family values and sexuality...
Like religious conservatives throughout history and indeed, in the present, they used the state as a coercive tool to force their version of a conscience upon the rest of people... This is not to say fundamentalists and other religious extremists are Nazis or Stalinists, but that they hold very similar views on these 'family values' and sexuality subjects and employ similar language in their positions and propaganda."