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Archive for June 2nd, 2009

OPENING NOTE: I do not condone violence against abortion doctors. I say this and put this in the beginning to avoid tangent hecklers who don’t read clearly and assume things not there.

Frank Schaeffar, the son of the famed Francis Schaeffar, has written a piece attacking once again his father’s legacy and taking a swipe against Conservative Christians in general.

There is something morbid and stale of an aging man who resorts his claim to fame by constantly attacking his own father’s legacy and promoting his autobiographical memoir. Sometime in your life, you got to be your own man, and not be famous for just talking bad about daddy.

This time, he takes the oppourtunity from the murder of Tiller to drum against his father and Christian conservatives over at http://www.huffingtonpost.com/frank-schaeffer/how-i-and-other-pro-life_b_209747.html

The piece is titled, “How I (and other “Pro-life” leaders) Contributed to Dr. Tiller’s Murder”

It is sad that with a title about “How I contributed to Dr. Tiller’s Murder”, even when he say he contributed to Tiller’s murder, he does not miss the oppourtunity to drag his dad’s legacy down into the discussion, with his opening sentence:

My late father and I share the blame (with many others) for the murder of Dr. George Tiller the abortion doctor gunned down on Sunday.

Franky loves to tout that he has left the conservative moment,

Until I got out of the religious right (in the mid-1980s) and repented of my former hate-filled rhetoric I was both a leader of the so-called pro-life movement and a part of a Republican Party hate machine masquerading as the moral conscience of America.

But sometimes he gives himself too much credit.  He asserts that he was a leader of the Republican Party machine, but what important post or gate-keeping position did he ever hold within the party? Anyone familar with the genesis of the Christian right realizes that around the highest point where Frank was most well known among Evangelicals, the Republican Party has not welcomed the Christian Conservatives into their midst yet, and when Christian Conservatives were beginning to gain grounds into the party during the mid-80s, Frank has admitted above that he was already “out” and repenting from his former ways.  Dr. Cohen, formerly of UCLA political Science Department who have concentrated his expertise on the Christian right, description of the first and second wave of the Christian Right doesn’t even register Frank’s name up.  Even among those who knew of the name Frank Jr. during those years, knew Frank because he was  tied in with his dad, as the son who produce the documentary for his father.  All this to say, he’s not the leader as he like to portray himself to be.  He was being a sexual busybody outside of his filming project, as his Crazy for God book admits.

Frank believes in his own culpability for Tiller’s death,

He compared America and its legalized abortion to Hitler’s Germany and said that whatever tactics would have been morally justified in removing Hitler would be justified in trying to stop abortion. I said the same thing in a book I wrote (A Time For Anger) that right wing evangelicals made into a best seller

But admits that he would have been shocked if people took up his word,

Like many writers of moral/political/religious theories my father and I would have been shocked that someone took us at our word, walked into a Lutheran Church and pulled the trigger on an abortionist.

Fundamentally disturbing in Frank Jr.’s reasoning is the slippery slope logical fallacy that he tends to commit in this piece and others.  For instance, he states:

When evangelicals on the right call President Obama a socialist, a racist, anti-American, an abortionist, not a real American, and, echoing the former Vice President, someone who is weakening America’s defenses and making us less safe, the logical conclusion is violence.

He believes that “the logical conclusion” of the concern of Conservatives on Obama will lead to violence, but logically this argument is invalid.  The logical conclusion is not necessarily violence, but political participation (voting in the re-election, gathering to express your views on his policy, freedom of speech, calling your congressman, writing, etc).  Furthermore, just because  violence might occur by some fringe who chooses not to engage in peaceful lawful process, doesn’t mean that one cannot express their concern of someone being a “socialist”, a “racist”, “abortionists”, weakening America, etc.  If there was a Racist republican president, why not call him out for what he is?  Or a politician who is a socialist (or liberterian)? Or observing that a president’s policy is pro-abortion rather than prolife?

But what about the current rhetoric that Frank Junior now use to demonize the Christian right, throughout his writing?  Does he believe that the “logical conclusion” of his speech will result in violence?

It’s also sad reading this article to see Frank has also embrace the legalization of abortion:

As I say in my book today I believe that abortion should be legal but more regulated than Roe allows.

But ultimately, the most disturbing words by Frank is the conclusion of his essay,

The same hate machine I was part of is still attacking all abortionists as “murderers.” And today once again the “pro-life” leaders are busy ducking their personal responsibility for people acting on their words. The people who stir up the fringe never take responsibility. But I’d like to say on this day after a man was murdered in cold blood for preforming abortions that I — and the people I worked with in the religious right, the Republican Party, the pro-life movement and the Roman Catholic Church, all contributed to this killing by our foolish and incendiary words.

I am very sorry.

He asserts that pro-life leaders are busy ducking away from personal responsibility for people acting on their words, and he doesn’t like how they never take responsibility.  He himself by his own admission stated that his words called for tactics that would justify ending abortion.  If he really does see he was responsible being the “leader” of the prolife movement who was so powerful that in this essay he wrote that he “personally also got people like Jerry Falwell, Ronald Reagan and countless Republican leaders involved in the ‘issue'”, I like to see someone take Frankie Junior to the task in the court and sue Frank Jr for “his responsibility”, using his own words, to reveal how dangerous and sloppy his current rhetoric is.

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