From the folks who brought you homophobia on a national scale comes this latest — Hinduphobia. Unrelenting wingnut Donald “Wildman” Wildmon has got his panties in a twist because a Hindu — you know, the folks with the dots on their forehead — is giving the opening invocation in the Senate tomorrow. So he is enlisting his legions of zombie-like followers in the American Family Association to pester their senators into putting the kibosh on the cow worshipper.
Rajan Zed, a Hindu chaplain from Reno, Nev., is scheduled to deliver the opening prayer in the U.S. Senate. According to Wildmon (which I could not confirm) Zed told the Las Vegas Sun that he will likely include in his prayer references to ancient Hindu scriptures, including Rig Veda, Upanishards [sic], and Bhagavard-Gita [sic]. Wildmon also alleges that unnamed historians say it will be the first Hindu prayer read at the Senate since it was formed in 1789.
So Wildmon trots out the president of — get this — Wallbuilders (as opposed to, say, Bridgebuilders) to justify opposing Zed’s prayer:
‘What is the message, and why is the message needed? And will it actually communicate anything other than engender with folks like me a lot of questions?’
– David Barton
WallBuilders president David Barton is questioning why the U.S. government is seeking the invocation of a non-monotheistic god. Barton points out that since Hindus worship multiple gods, the prayer will be completely outside the American paradigm, flying in the face of the American motto “One Nation Under God.”
“In Hindu, you have not one God, but many, many, many, many, many gods,” the Christian historian explains. “And certainly that was never in the minds of those who did the Constitution, did the Declaration [of Independence] when they talked about Creator — that’s not one that fits here because we don’t know which creator we’re talking about within the Hindu religion.”
Huh? OK, so Barton reasons (if we can call it that) that if ignorance of the Hindu religion is not enough, Zed’s prayer should be prevented because Hindus are such a tiny minority in America:
Barton says given the fact that Hindus are a tiny constituency of the American public, he questions the motivation of Senate leaders. “This is not a religion that has produced great things in the world,” he observes.
And while Barton acknowledges there is not constitutional problem with a Hindu prayer in the Senate, he wonders about the political side of it. “One definitely wonders about the pragmatic side of it,” he says. “What is the message, and why is the message needed? And will it actually communicate anything other than engender with folks like me a lot of questions?”
Besides Barton’s obvious inability to use English in a consistent, coherent manner, his message of ignorance and jingoism is a dangerous one. He seems to actually believe that the Constitution will be harmed and the Senate chambers will be permanently slimed by some kind of Hindu mojo, which encourages Wildmon’s attempt to gin up grass roots opposition to some foreign guy saying a prayer to anybody but Jesus.
Let’s just hope that the AFA’s foray into Hindu hatred fares as well as its ineffectual boycott of Ford Motor Co., and Rajan Zed gets to pray to Krishna in front of all those rich white people in the Senate.