VIDEO: Red State (2011)

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The death of Fred Phelps, leader of the Westboro Baptist Church, inspires Count Jackula to review a movie he inspired, which also happens to be the first horror movie by Kevin Smith. Will Red State starring Michael Parks have you seeing red, or will it just give you the blues?

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  • naomi_washburn

    I didn’t see the line about the WBC as a cop out, I saw it as Smith covering his ass. By having a character flat out state that the church in the film was NOT the WBC, he protected himself from a lawsuit. And given the fact that, as Goodman states in the movie, Phelps was “a sue-er, not a do-er”, I think it was a smart move.

    Excellent review! I really appreciated you opening up about your own experiences. I personally have experienced churches from across the spectrum, from the ultra fundamentalist type you described to the ultra liberal, pro-choice, gay accepting type. So, yea. I found the church in this movie to be 150% believable. While I’ve never encountered a church that openly approved of violent methods, I’ve met plenty of believers who did and still do. And you’re right. The main thing they lack is doubt.

    Thank you for this review. You put into words a lot of ideas I’ve noticed but been unable to articulate before. I appreciate that. Good work. 🙂

  • Animikean

    Well done review, very thoughtful

    any chance of releasing your take on “Oh Death”?, you’ve got some nice pipes

  • Muthsarah

    I feel ya, Jacky Boy. It’s fictionalized, but as fictional movies go, it actually seems kinda close in spirit to the way these churches often are. I used to believe everything I was spoon-fed, same as the kids in this movie (which, I will admit, I haven’t seen because…I just don’t wanna revisit anything resembling this subject matter). Same time as I learned that triangles had three sides, I learned a whole buncha other things that I have since come to disown. I just wish it hadn’t’ve taken as long as it did to question and ultimately reject so much of it.

    Doubt really is a wonderful thing. Doubt is the fundamental, primordial ingredient in any open-minded pursuit of understanding. Any understanding. If you assume you already know everything you need to/should know and you don’t doubt that, then you’ll never allow yourself to learn anything more. You have to doubt your own understanding of the world to be able to open yourself to new experiences, new opinions, new accounts, new anything. To reject any doubt in the beliefs you currently hold is to close yourself off from ANY new ideas. Why mess with a perfect understanding of everything? And such conceit only marks you as a simpleton. Which, sadly, is what a lot of powerful people want their followers to be: “accept MY ideas, and thereafter, accept no others”. If someone tells you never to doubt what they tell you, they’re not just after your loyalty, they’re after your individuality.

    Having faith in a concept greater than your own understanding is one thing; there’s a hell of lot out there that’s probably beyond any token “everyperson’s” understanding. But having unshakeable belief in only one “fundamental truth”, and assuming there is and can be no truth beyond your own understanding is quite another. We humans are all such tiny things, cosmically speaking. How can any of us claim to understand everything that’s going on around us, to have a quick and easy answer for everything? We know only what we think we know at any given time, and our understanding of the world around us changes (dare I say, evolves) throughout our lives. It’s how we grow as people, beings capable of learning and evolving. The alternative is to remain the same passive children we were when we were first told of the ways of the universe, and its millenia-old inflexible rights and wrongs. If we stop doubting and questioning and learning and growing, we’ll remain children forever.

    Life isn’t supposed to be neat and tidy. It’s big and it’s messy and it’s supposed to be that way. There isn’t supposed to be an easy answer for EVERYTHING. To quote (partly out of context) one of my favorite movies; “anyone who says differently is selling something”.

  • Alexa

    I definitely remember when I was a kid and believing a lot of stuff that adults told me, not just in religion but politics, pop culture, and even one parent telling me the other parent was bad (which was far, far from the truth). I of course became older and and formed my own viewpoint, because as you said, doubt in what I was being told helped me grow past this.

  • The Horror Guru

    An incredibly well written analysis of a criminally under appreciated film. You actually understand what the movie is about, which is more than I can say for most reviews I read regarding the film. Well done my friend. =)

  • Guest

    I for one think that when it comes to the blurred ethical lines like in this movie its the technicalities that matter, the hows, whos and whys. “He Who Fights Monsters” doesnt account for lesser monsters in a situation. Lesser monsters can actually be quite effective and doubt can keep said monsters from becoming genuinely, down to the last detail and action, as bad as the greater monster.

  • Cheshire Cat

    I DO NOT believe homosexuals are evil. I DO NOT support hate crimes against any individual or group. I DO NOT think it is my place to judge anybody. I AM a sinner. I AM NOT perfect. I AM a human being just like everyone else. I am loved by God just like EVERYONE ELSE. These are a few of the ideals I was taught when I was younger. I still believe them today. I am a Christian.

  • Dennis Fischer

    Kevin Smith provided a very interesting monolog about his experiences with the Westboro Baptist Church in his one-man show filmed as BURN IN HELL. He reveals the bizarre craving for attention on the part of Phelps and his followers, the witty rejoiners by those in the crowd with opposing viewpoints who staged counter protests, and discussed much of the basis for RED STATE. It is also worth checking out.

  • danbreunig

    I haven’t much to comment on about the commentary–more so that I appreciate you opening up like this, especially in the context of what would usually be a regular movie review. This really is the most personal I’ve seen you review-wise since I Spit On Your Grave. The moment you took off the gloves–or rather, took off the hat–that was the division between who’s Jackula and Jack right there.

    I do understand though about being a kid who’s a slave to what’s ingrained and eventually realizing that there’s more to understanding than what’s told outright. Which in my case took me longer to realize than most kids start to realize that. But I’m talking more about dealing with everyday people than strict religion-based rearing. I applaud you Jack, and everyone else relating their stories in this forum and others, for growing into bigger and better individuals despite or because of those experiences. For that, I tip my own metaphoric steampunk hat to you all.

    On a lighter note–that was *you* singing that at the end? Really nice–lovely as it is haunting.
    …and somehow I had you figured more of a guitarist…

  • John Wilson

    I didn’t like this movie. I felt it was too uneven and very flawed. Its too talky and overt with it message. Here a good review that sums up my view on the movie.

    http://horror-movie-a-day.blogspot.com/2011/10/red-state.html

    You did go over some of the points in the review I posted above but here a good quote about my main problem with the movie

    “overall the movie serves as another example of why
    guys who don’t like horror movies shouldn’t be making them. Anyone who
    dismisses an entire genre as a whole probably doesn’t have an
    appreciation for what makes them work for those that do.”

    • Joel Kazoo

      I call bullshit. Just because someone dislikes a genre doesn’t mean they can’t see what the appeal is. If anything, they can take the things they do appreciate in the genre and expand on them to make their own unique vision.

      For example, I can’t stand Eli Roth’s characters, but I can appreciate his gore effects, and if I were to make a gore film, I’d use his gore effects as a template, but metaphorically throw his characters under a bus.

      Admittedly, Smith’s characters are a bit underdeveloped in this, but at least our kids in peril aren’t unlikable douchebags like you’d find in a Roth production.

      VERY nicely put together vid, Jack!

      • $36060516

        “For example, I can’t stand Eli Roth’s characters, but I can appreciate his gore effects, and if I were to make a gore film, I’d use his gore effects as a template, but metaphorically throw his characters under a bus.”

        But the question still remains, why are you making a gore film if you don’t like gore films? Commercial reasons?

        In a way I could see how Kevin Smith might want to market his film as a horror film because those have more of a built-in audience than movies about sieges at religious compounds. But I can also see how people lured in by that term might be turned off by the bait-and-switch.

  • $36060516

    I enjoyed the thoughtful and personal review (including the surprising a cappella at the end of a tune made famous in another John Goodman movie, “Oh Brother Where Art Thou”).

    I don’t think I’d like the movie “Red State,” though, based on the footage shown here (and my reaction to Smith’s other films). In particular, the development in the story where the ATF command lays down the order to murder all innocent witnesses. The ATF agents themselves would be witnesses to the murders of innocents, and for them to follow those orders they would have to be a jaded death squad in a brutal dictatorship. The superiors giving an order like that would know that the story would get out from someone with a guilty conscience squealing (on the extremely remote chance they actually followed such an order). It seemed pretty absurd that we are supposed to believe law enforcement officers would be given and follow an order like that on white Christian children inside the borders of the United States. Kind of sounds like Kevin Smith watched too many conspiracy videos about Janet Reno’s evil destruction of the Branch Davidian compound. I’m sure mistakes were made there but don’t believe any order to murder all witnesses was given. The argument could be made that the US government could go in such a repressive direction in the future, but this movie was set in present day America, not a dystopian fantasy.

    The end of the movie sounds basically like the end of the movie “The Rapture,” which unexpectedly ends with the arrival of the horsemen of the Apocalypse, without elaborate and expensive special effects. (I say the arrival of the horsemen is unexpected because despite the title of the movie being “The Rapture,” the impression we’re given through the entire movie is that the people believing in The Rapture were deluded fools.) You’d think a low budget filmmaking veteran like Smith would be a little more creative and resourceful than believing you actually have to show an elaborate battle sequence in CGI to get the impression across of The Rapture taking place and people dying. In “The Rapture” sound effects, acting, a scary guy riding a horse (only one of the horsement was actually shown), and a little fog from a smoke machine were all that were needed to convey a very memorable and spooky Apocalypse. I guess maybe he just didn’t have the money to hire some horses?

  • conservative man

    Man this movie was like watching old nazi propaganda reels, except in this case the movie replaces Jews with christians as the threat that must be dealt with by any means neccessary. Come on people we all know that this so called church and it’s followers were never more than a handful and had no mainstream support from any in the christian community. The media built up this westboro occult as the face of the christian community in order to demonize christians and anyone who stood up and said they would not support the pro gay lobby and its agenda. Jackula made doubt the key word here, well I do have doubt…I doubt the stories some have said here that they were it christian churches and that these churches called for violence against gays, I have yet to attend a church where the pastor says ” hey guys I think we should kill some gays, let’s go find some”. Anyone who actually did that in real life would be on the news in 2 seconds and in jail the next day. Haven’t heard of any christians killing gays, heard of muslims killing gays, seen muslims kill people too.. you know 9/11, oh wait Bush did that ( sarcasm ). People are very brave bashing christians for not supporting gay marriage and baking them wedding cakes, but I have yet to see any of you brave people denounce Islam for its open policy of killing gays on sight. I guess as long as you do something in the name of Allah it’s alright with you guys, it’s those damn christians that need to be dealt with because we all know they are all the same like westboro and it’s 10 followers.

    • $36060516

      “People are very brave bashing christians for not supporting gay marriage and baking them wedding cakes, but I have yet to see any of you brave people denounce Islam for its open policy of killing gays on sight.”

      How do you know that all people who bash fundamentalist Christians aren’t denouncing Islamic fundamentalists as well? It sounds like you’ve created an imaginary mental image of “you people” (Democrats, atheists, gay people) and decided to address this imaginary group in the comment section of this video rather than addressing what was actually said in it. You literally have no idea if the maker of this video has denounced Islamic fundamentalist prejudice against homosexuality and other social repressions, but you assume you know he hasn’t done so because of this mental image you’ve created of your ideological enemies as one large group responsible for every social action “Conservative Man” disagrees with. Unless you’ve somehow observed every moment of this video creator’s life, you literally have no idea what you’re talking about when claiming he’s cool with Islamic hate crimes. You just simply made that up out of thin air.

      The maker of this video actually grew up in a fundamentalist Christian church where gays were labeled as sinners and verbally condemned as morally degenerate. Maybe for some reason when discussing a movie about an extreme fundamentalist Christian cult he has more reason to speak out about what he personally experienced inside the Christian church than what has happened thousands of miles away in someone else’s country that he never lived through and which isn’t the subject of the movie he’s reviewing. Can’t figure out why that would be.

      • conservative man

        Well that’s just it, how do you know Jackula did experience those things ? Because you know him personally ? Or do you just trust that what he says is the truth, I thought we should all be more doubtful? Or does that apply only to those who our your ideological enemies ( christians, fundamentalist Jews, conservatives ect. ) ? While I will never know for sure if Jackula’s claims or true or just propaganda to demonize christians as terrorists, I know this about christian churches, I have been to them, heard their words, and have never heard anyone call for the death of homosexuals, or anyone expressing wishes of doing so. I have heard ” love them as Christ command you ( the christians ) to do so. And also I would like to add that calling someone a sinner is a far cry from wanting them dead, if that were the case then christians would have to kill everyone in the world unitl the streets were filled with blood,and then they would have to kill themselves because all people are sinners, not just gay people. Truth is it is far easier to bash christians because everyone knows ( despite what some have said ) we don’t fight back because of our beliefs, were anyone in this country to confront those of the Islamic faith the same way you confront us, the situation would be far different. But I digress, christians are the true evil in this world because they don’t support gay marriage, and they refuse to bake wedding cakes for them too. Those heartless monsters.

        • The Horror Guru

          I do know Jackula personally and yes, he did experience the things he described in the video. I don’t see anyone here criticizing radical Christanity while simultaneously endorsing the actions of radical Muslims, so I’m not quite sure what you’re going on about. Sounds like you’re arguing with someone completely unrelated to this video or it’s commenters.

          • conservative man

            Like I said I don’t know him personally so I can’t say if it’s true or not, but let’s just say for the sake of the argument that it is true. Most Christians are not like that, just because a few occult groups spring up claiming to be so does not make them or their beliefs ours. I brought up radical Islam only to make the point that they also oppose the homosexual lifestyle, only that they don’t seem to get any flack for it anywhere. All I hear is how terrible christians are and I can’t help but think that the reason the christian community is targeted is because it’s easier to take on a group that’s been deamed ” evil ” by the masses at large. Whereas the faith of Islam is not subject to the same criticism, it’s a double standard in general when talking about this subject.

          • The Horror Guru

            Since when is the faith of Islam not the subject of intense criticism? I spend a lot of time on twitter, for example and I often come across a ton of articles and tweets criticizing Islam’s hateful practices, especially in the areas of misogyny and homophobia. The only reason we hear more about Christainity in particular in America is because it’s the majority and therefore it’s harmful radicals pose a more immediate threat more often. Though I don’t know what country you’ve been living in if you think Islam hasn’t been deemed “evil” by the masses here in the States… In fact for a while there it got to the point where we assumed all people of Islamic faith were terrorists looking to bomb us into oblivion. I would say you Christians got the better part of the deal there.

          • conservative man

            All I saw after 9/11 was everyone coming to Islams defense and saying over and over again from the president on down that the terrorist attacks do not reflect the beliefs of Islam, however many people went on about christians and a few attacks that had been made against abortion clinics decades ago by people calling themselves christians. I just wish people would give us the same fair treatment as Islam did after 9/11 and realize that the negative stereotypes about us are not true. Even if some so called christians have done terrible things in the name of our faith, that’s not who we are.

          • The Horror Guru

            Dude, I think you lived in a completely different world than I did Post-9/11 if you missed all the Islamic hatred…

          • conservative man

            You could be right, come to think of it I forget a lot about what happend around that time. Where I worked, what I did, my age, my gender, my dog ect. Crap I might have drank the same stuff that MichealANovelli had with count Jackula !

          • $36060516

            “All I saw after 9/11 was everyone coming to Islams defense”

            This is not reality. Sorry. You call yourself “conservative man.” Weren’t you not following the conservative media like Fox News at the time which were not “coming to Islam’s defense?”

            “I just wish people would give us the same fair treatment as Islam did after 9/11 and realize that the negative stereotypes about us are not true.”

            The treatment that Islam got after 9/11 was that to this day, my Muslim brother in law (who fought on the American side as a Kuwaiti pilot in the Iraq war) has been detained at the airport and questioned intensely in a little room by security every time he’s taken a plane trip in the years he’s lived in this country married to a white Christian-raised woman. When have Christians been detained in airports? Your sense of victimhood seems far out of proportion for the way Christianity is treated in American society — as the default religious faith. Christianity is not a victim religion in America. It is the dominant religion. Stop acting like a martyr.

          • conservative man

            Well he’s not the only one, they detain everyone from old ladies with canes to babies with suspicous looking baby bottles ! One of the many reasons I don’t fly. And Fox News ? Come on you guys have all the major networks from local to national on your side, not to mention all of Hollywood and the entertainment industry. Besides a network that has Geraldo as one of its hosts is hardly what I would call a ” conservative news network “. Fox News is more Republican than conservative anyway. And I’m not trying to be a martyr, just expressing a opinon.

          • $36060516

            “I brought up radical Islam only to make the point that they also oppose the homosexual lifestyle, only that they don’t seem to get any flack for it anywhere. All I hear is how terrible christians are and I can’t help but think that the reason the christian community is targeted is because it’s easier to take on a group that’s been deamed ‘evil’ by the masses at large.”

            Or maybe it’s because you live in America, where Christianity is a hell of a lot more of a influential force in society than Islam. Every president of the United States in my lifetime (and I presume long before) has had to say he was a Christian to get elected, while rumors that a presidential candiate could be Islamic (despite attending a Christian church) are used as slurs. People in America grow up in a culture where Christianity has been the main religious authority since day one. Of course you’re going to hear more people complaining about the effect of Christianity on their lives and the lives of people they know.

          • Muthsarah

            “Or maybe it’s because you live in America, where Christianity is a hell
            of a lot more of a influential force in society than Islam. Every
            president of the United States in my lifetime (and I presume long
            before) has had to say he was a Christian to get elected,”

            Ironically, the Founding Fathers didn’t. Though if we took the franchise away from everyone who wasn’t a middle-class or above non-indentured, Eastern Time Zone, non-Irish white guy, there WOULD be a hell of a lot fewer interest groups to pander to. Food for thought.

          • $36060516

            I agree, it’s gotten more intense over time if anything. “In God we trust” was introduced in my parents’ lifetime.

          • $36060516

            “All I hear is how terrible christians are”

            WHERE? Christmas is an official federal holiday. There are Christian churches everywhere. Where the hell is this idea that Christians are persecuted and reviled in America coming from? It has no basis in fact.

          • The_Stig

            I find it interesting that when crazy christian fundamentalists are shown on the news, they’re always Baptists or an offhsoot of the Baptists, so it wasn’t surprising Jackula mentioned he grew up Baptist.

            I can tell you this from experience. Baptists are fucked up.

          • Cheshire Cat

            Not all of us. Blanket comments like that are unfair to those of us not in the news. Oh wait, I forgot. I can’t defend myself because that would make me an intolerant Christian. Let me be clear here: I am 100% AGAINST intolerance. To anyone. I just find it to be a double standard that others aren’t called out on being intolerant to Christians.

        • $36060516

          I just rewatched the segment of the video where you claim that Jackula says that his church called for the death of homosexuals, which you found of dubious veracity because you say Christians don’t do that. The only problem with your argument: he never said what you claim he said. Once again, you’re arguing with something that wasn’t in the video. Jackula’s only descriptions of personal experiences in the church were his claim that many fundamentalist churches preach against cultural tolerance for homosexuality and that of one of his classmates had been arrested for making bombs to attack abortion clinics and that he thought this kid was a martyr because his church had taught him that fighting against abortion was a righteous act. Your own negative use of the terms “the pro gay lobby and its agenda” and angry repetition of the gay wedding cake story seems to indicate you have some familiarity with Christian anger over cultural normalization of homosexuality. And there are many documented examples of abortion clinics being attacked by fundamentalist Christian terrorists which you cannot dispute (unless you want to rewrite reality). How about addressing what was really in the video instead of shit you’re making up?

          • conservative man

            Well I was taking into account someone else on here who commented that they went to a church that preached violence against gay people, and I was fusing that comment and Jackulas story in the same context. But I should have made myself more clear about that, my apologies. First off using the term ” the pro gay lobby ” is not offensive, they have people who lobby politicians on their behalf for the causes of gay people, therefore there is a “pro gay lobby”, just like any cause different groups lobby and push for or against something, it’s a lobby. Second, a few people many decades back making a couple of terrorist attacks on abortion clinics does not reflect the christian community at large. If those of my faith truely believed the only way to stop abortion was terrorism all of the United States would look like Northern Ireland did back in the day with bombings going off every day. Obviously that’s not happening so it’s not the fundamental belief of every christian, most are dedicated to non violence despite the beatings they receive when protesting abortion clinics. Anyway back to the subject at hand, I’m not familar with christian anger over the pro gay lobby agenda, I see them saddend by it, depressed even, but most christians simply want the homosexual community to leave them in peace. They feel that they should not have to accept a lifestyle that they do not believe in, they believe they should not be forced to accept and support this lifestyle based on the latest trends in Hollywood or the current political climate. If your familar with the gay wedding cake story (in New Mexico I believe) you will know what I am refering to when referencing ” baking wedding cakes”. In the end I know the majority of christians want to live in peace with the gay community as I do, they just don’t want to support something they firmly don’t believe in, that shouldn’t be too much to ask for. After all I doubt you would like it if we started to try and force you or anyone who believes in abortion to turn against it. Even if you believe strongly in something you can’t make others do as you believe they should do. Not everyone sees the world the same way the other guy does, that’s why we have wars, blood feuds, genocide ect. Let’s not have that here in America, let us agree to disagree, or we will all lose. Look I don’t hate you and if I came off a little hostile earlier I apologize, I don’t see gay people as the enemy and neither do any of my fellow christians. That’s the point I am trying to make, the only point I have been trying to make since the beginning. If you still want to to hate me that’s fine, I won’t respond in kind. I just feel this movie is offensive to christians and portrays us in a cartoonishly hateful stereotype.

          • Quizzabella

            “the pro gay lobby agenda..”

            Anyone who reckons that so long as it’s consensual it shouldn’t matter whatever God/Goddess you believe in? Enjoyed the video

          • conservative man

            yes, but no group ( whoever they are ) should be able to force their beliefs on others that do not share their world view. If the christian community does not believe in gay marriage it should not be forced to endorse it against their will, to do so would be against everything the constitution stands for..free speech and the right of self determination. We don’t need thought police in churches, schools, work ect.

          • chromesthesia

            Who is even telling Christians that they have to marry people of the same sex or something like that? It’s these folks who are forcing their views on gays. They think it’s wrong, so they want to outlaw it. urg. I’m going to upset my stomach again.

          • conservative man

            I understand, hearing a different opion makes most people very upset when they are used to hearing only one side of things. Anyway it’s only a matter of time before christian pastors are forced to by law to marry gay people are pay the price for following their beliefs. It’s not a new phenomenon, christians have been killed, crucifed, and tortured all through the centuries, and in some countries today it still happens. we just thought it could never happen here, but it’s sadly looking more and more like it will happen here.

          • chromesthesia

            What the hell? Who is torturing and killing Christians here? It’s a group of people who want to get married. Who aren’t going to force Christian men to marry big burly bears named Bubba. And historically Christians have killed, tortured and tormented other Christians and gays. Look, gays being allowed to marry isn’t the same thing as Christians being killed and such. It’s like White people in the south during the Civil Rights movement whining because Black folks could sit anywhere they want to on the bus and didn’t have to give up their seats anymore. Deal with it. The world is changing. Your kids or relatives could be gay. Quit harping on a non issue and start doing something useful for humanity instead.

          • conservative man

            Well I will make this one last point and then I will let that be the end of it for my part in this discussion, mostly because now we are all just repeating the same statements we have made before and I think most who have been following this conversation know where we all stand on these issues. In the end the world has changed many times since the founding of christianity, we were persecuted by the Roman Empire, and later by the Popes of Rome, and more recently by Marxists and National Socialists intent on creating a world where christianity would not exist. We survived the Roman Empire and we survived the Nazis and the communists of the Soviet Union, and whatever happens with this current debate about gay marriage I believe we will survive this too. But before it all ends I think we are on a historical path of setting up christians to be persecuted again for their faith, be it the issue of gay marriage or abortion, prayer in school.. take your pick. I hope I am wrong about that, I hope that doesn’t happen but given what has taken place in the past I’m not so sure. In the end the world may change but christians do not, because we cannot. Regardless of the current political climate, social trends or fashions, and I think that is why those who support gay marriage and gay issues tend to attack christians. They just can’t abide the fact we don’t believe in what they’re doing, that we won’t get on the bandwagon and support issues we don’t believe in, and therefore tend to go after those in the christian community for not seeing the world the way they want us to see it. It’s like they won’t be happy or content unless every single person living comes to see things their way, and if those individuals fail to support the causes they think are right then we must pay the price for our beliefs. I’ve been accused of being paranoid, but there is a historical precedent for persecuting christians for not going along with the policies of certain governments in the past, and yes christians are killed for their faith even now is some places, mostly in Africa where countries with a large muslim population tend to attack smaller christian communities. The issues and the causes of such conflicts are different of course but the end result is the same, persecution for failing to see things the way others want them to see things. Many would say that could never happen here, but I’m afraid it’s not a question of if, but when it will happen. Many in the christian community are scared, I’m scared too, but in the end rather we are put in jail for being against gay marriage or killed for our beliefs I know that the God I and other christians believe in will take care of us and see us through the hard times ahead. Regardless of current political or social trends we will not change our beliefs on any of these social issues, and that is where the divide really is, I think the left will ultimately decide if the future will be one of live and let live or rather it will be a future of persecution, torture, and violence against christians for their beliefs. It’s been a interesting discussion, my personal thanks to all those who responded to my comments, even if some of you hated me for expressing my views. No matter what though I will never hate you in return for expressing yours. So dare I say…..God bless you all and peace to you.

          • $36060516

            “we are on a historical path of setting up christians to be persecuted again for their faith, be it the issue of gay marriage or abortion, prayer in school.. take your pick.”

            Holy shit. None of those issues involve “persecution” of Christians. They’re issues where society has decided not to follow Christian belief. I guess if the rest of us in a country with separation of church and state don’t want to be forced to live by Christian rules, you’re being persecuted! Fuck off.

          • Sofie Liv

            Here in Denmark, church and state were sepperated years ago.
            Thusly, the Church is allowed to do what ever the hell it wants, the churchs followers can do what-ever the hell they want, they can give what-ever amount of money they want to their own church… and no one prosecutes them for it.
            That’s how it’s been my entire life here, and it works just fine!

            Heck, in my own family, my parents are minimal religous, my sister is a christian, going to church on own accord at special seasons, and I am a buddhiest… and we all get along fine. Accepting each others believes as what they are.. personal believes, that needn’t have any-thing to do with any-thing else.. we just find it another interesting aspect in each other.
            And it works fine.

          • $36060516

            This fellow seems to think that if all the non-Christian kids in a publicly funded school aren’t forced to pray to Christ in school (or sit there in silence every morning while the teacher indoctrinates them on a daily basis with Christian prayer), that the Christian kids and parents are being persecuted. Because it’s impossible to pray at home before school if you’re going to a publicly funded school — it has to be done in the classroom so everyone is forced to participate in it, otherwise Christians are being fed to the lions of humiliation by not controlling the public classroom.

          • Nessus

            Having to actually argue your position (and risk losing) instead of living in blissful hegemonic unawareness of others’ is not persecution.

            Society being free means you’re not going to get your way automatically. Other people have different desires and beliefs, and a level playing field means you’re going to have to debate others, and you’re going to lose sometimes. That’s not persecution: that’s balance, and logically expectable. It’s also illogical for anyone to expect they should not be at risk of failing should they not convince others in open debate. No subculture is owed a position of power: all have to EARN it. and if your beliefs prove distasteful to others, or if you fail to argue competently, you will fail.

            Being human, sometimes you will fail not because you didn’t argue well or because other s were prejudiced, but because you were simply wrong. Sometimes you will be the irrational one.

            It is irrational to claim you desire a free society, yet cry foul when you are not held exempt from having to compete within that. You wedding cake example that you keep going back to: that’s not persecution. That’s just the free market. Persecution would be if the baker was sued and lost over it (and losing is the important part, not the mere fling of a suit). Persecution would be if the baker was shut down by the police.

            Business lost to non-libelous bad word of mouth (including organized boycotting) is not persecution: people have just as much a right not to buy from someone over their beliefs as that person has to deny service over his. These are in fact just opposite applications of the same right. That’s not persecution, that’s FAIR.

            As to your talk of marriage itself: your church is free to refuse service on whatever grounds it so chooses. Your church does not have the right to impose it’s own perimeters on other churches, or on any organizations or individuals not under the umbrella of your church, which is exactly what gay marriage bans seek to do.

            That’s what it boils down to: your faith does not and should not have legal jurisdiction over others’. By seeking laws based on the tenants of your faith outside the social context of your faith, you are doing EXACTLY what you are terrified of others doing to you. You are in effect trying to claim your faith has or rightly should have legal jurisdictions over others’.

            What you are arguing is logically the same as saying the law should not recognize non-christian marriages, say, Hindu for example, since your faith doesn’t recognize the validity of other faiths (and thus, rites performed in their names). Or that there should be a ban on interracial marriage if your faith considers miscegenation to be sinful.

            Sharia, in a word.

            Laws that apply to everyone have to be fair to everyone, otherwise you don’t have a free society. Private organizations must be free to discriminate, and the general public equally free to discriminate in return, but the law cannot. You merely lacking the legal jurisdiction to force your beliefs on others is not the same as others actually having the jurisdiction to force their beliefs on you. You not being able to ban legal recognition of Hindu marriages (again: the logic is exactly the same) would not imply your pastor would be forced to perform Hindu ceremonies. Even if your church was the only non-Hindu church in the state, you would still not be so forced.

            There are openly white-suprememicist churches that refuse to perform interracial marriages. The law does not and can not force them to. They are merely unpopular, therefore rare, and no one who does not disapprove of interracial marriage even considers getting married by them. Their rights are legally protected, but have utterly failed in in the context of an open discourse society. That is the worse that can happen to you (or that you can do to yourself). Not persecution.

          • Mike

            There have been many places in the world where Christens have been violently persecuted for there beliefs throughout history in many parts of the world, but the United States is not one of them. There has been systomatic violence against certain Christian groups: Catholics, Quakers, Mormons etc, but most of that violence was committed by OTHER Christians. The persecution Christians have face in there history as been no means special either. Jews have survived far more frequent persecutions throughout history and no make up a much smaller precent of the world population. Yet even there history in the U.S. has been relatively secure compared with the rest of the world. Most anti-Jewish activity in this country has been taken the form of insults, verbal, assaults, and various forms of job discrimination as opposed to actual violence. Muslims have been pretty well off comparatively as well, despite increases in violence in recent years. This is one of the most deeply religious countries in the world and one of the most diverse, and the talk of being awash in secularism is about as far out as the claim impending theocracy that both the religious right and the secular left seem equally afraid of at the present time. It’s amazing that both the pious zealots and the rational zealots seem to be perfect enemies not just because they are so different, but because they are so similar.

          • Mike

            Just one more thing. For the record I don’t hate anyone just for taking a stand. I respect everyones right to take a stand even if I consider it a stupid or poorly argued stand. If anyone thing I pity someone so convinced of their vulnerability for taking a stand, they can’t think there might be others that feel the same way.

          • chromesthesia

            Leave them in peace? They why torment gays in the first place? In the grand scheme of things people being gay is not a huge deal. There’s kids starving to death and people would rather spend money to prevent gays from getting married and not take $500 dollars from a gay couple because of that verse in the bible that says do not bake a cake for a gay couple trying to get married or I will smite you.

            If you want to really be left alone in peace you’d leave gay people alone and stop making a big deal out of something that doesn’t directly effect you. And stop whining like a dog that peed on the floor and got caught when people won’t just lay down and put up with having their rights taken away.

          • conservative man

            No one is tormenting gays ( don’t be so dramatic ) it’s not the christian community that is attacking the gay community, but the gay community and its supporters who attack the christian community. Marriage is NOT a right, there is nothing in the constitution about it being a right of any kind. You say “don’t whine when people won’t lay down and put up with having their rights taken away”, well who is taking who’s rights away ? The evil christians ? No, we haven’t taken anyones rights away, we couldn’t even if we tried to. We have had our rights taken away though, such as the basic human right to not be forced to endorse things that go against our beliefs, like the woman in New mexico who was told she had to bake a wedding cake for a gay couple even though she does not believe in gay marriage. By your logic we christians should be able to get gays to denounce abortion as genocide because…… rights, it’s our right. Bascially all this boils down to the simple fact that America has become a country where the beliefs of others can no longer be tolerated, gone are the days when people would fight for the right of others to have different beliefs, even if they themselves did not share those beliefs. When a country becomes like that it becomes a tyrany.

          • chromesthesia

            Goddess’s tits, you are annoying. How are they attacking the Christian community by just wanting basic marriage rights? Or to not be fired for being gay? Or dozens of things Christians take for granted? No one is taking away Christian’s rights. You’re the majority. Most of the country is Christian. most of the politicians are Christian!

            Yes, that woman in New Mexico is sooooooo oppressed because people tried to pay her heaps of money to bake a cake. She’s just like the folks who were fed to lions and forced into gladiator fights. That gay couple were TYRANTS. How dare they try to pay her to bake a cake!

          • conservative man

            Being forced to recogonize gay marriage in a state where the people have voted to not do so is a form of tyrany, it’s okay for the people to have a say, unless they don’t line up with your beliefs. And yes that woman in New Mexico is opressed because she was forced to close down her bakery after a judge told her she had to back a cake for the gay couple, she decided she could not go against her beliefs so she had to close down the shop and now she is trying to sell cakes out of her small house. Her livelyhood was deeply affected by that incident, and all because a gay couple wanted to score some political points.

          • chromesthesia

            I don’t feel sorry for her. If there are people in countries who are REALLY being killed based on their religion, they would scoff at this woman. Really? You don’t want to bake a cake people are paying you huge amounts of cash to bake? Yes, that is SO much like being hung for your religious beliefs. Please. How is it different to bake a cake for gay people? You put two grooms on top or two brides. Or maybe two swans or perhaps dinosaurs. Or maybe Gundam. It’s not even that different!

          • Muthsarah

            Who’s attacking whose rights? When various “defense of marriage” movements push ballot measures that establish that “marriage is defined as only being between a man and a woman”, whose rights are being restricted? Such measures make it state law that ONLY certain people’s marriages are considered legal; and there are definite, meaningful benefits to marriage. If the state didn’t have any say in marriage, if marriage had no legal benefits in the law (taxation, hospital visitation, adoption), then it wouldn’t be a big deal. If marriage was purely a personal matter, or a matter only relevant within a private institution (such as a church), then it wouldn’t be a big deal. But it currently DOES matter. There ARE benefits for a couple to be married, as recognized by state law. And as long as these benefits exist, the state should recognize the rights of ALL of its citizens to be free to marry, and not discriminate based on any other consideration. By this logic, excluding gay couples is NO different than the decades-old “states’ rights” laws that once forbade mixed-raced marriage from being recognized. It’s defining that only certain adult-adult unions are considered legitimate marriages, and that others are not, based on an idea that certain peoples are not treated as being fully-legitimate citizens, worthy of the same rights granted to others.

            United States federal law has decreed, since over 200 years ago (even if it was not until recently interpreted thus) that ALL men/women are created equal, and that all people, regardless of sex, religion, skin color, sexuality, anything else deserve full and equal rights before the law. So, by what right are certain people’s (heterosexuals’) rights to state-recognized and state-benefited marriages considered to be superior, if they are not simply granted these exclusive rights?

            If you want to say that the government – state or federal – should NOT be legislating marriage, and that that matter should be entirely a private one, that’s a consistent position. That’s a position typically associated with libertarianism, that NOBODY should be granted ANY benefits from the government by being married, that marriage only means what it means to the ones who are married, and that the law doesn’t care one way or another. It’s a respectable position. But, short of that, there is no legal justification under federal law to recognize and grant benefits to a legal personal union between a man and a woman and NOT to recognize the same union (with the same benefits) between two men or between two women. Everyone’s an adult. Everyone is equal before the law.

          • conservative man

            A state being forced to recognize gay marriage against their will is a attack against those rights of the people who voted in favor of such measures. Ultimately gay marriage is NOT about gay people but about christian people, gay marriage is meant to force anyone who does not believe in homosexuality into accepting and supporting it. No one is stoping gay people from being together so why all this push in recent years for gay marriage ? Something to think about. Also why is the left so pro marriage now, it used to be that the left called marriage opressive and a instrument of the evil christians ?

          • Muthsarah

            Yeah, federal law counts for something too. That was established back in the 1860s or something. And all those states that still had those “miscegination” laws, and the Jim Crow-sy thingees a good century later? Federal law struck all that racist $#!+ down. State law ain’t paramount, and Hallelujah for that. Some states just shouldn’t be allowed to make certain laws for themselves, not when they form clear legal abominations for the rest of us. We’re all part of a unified country, and regional law doesn’t get to assign certain restrictions to certain parts of their population, regardless of whether or not 50.1% of their mobilized electorate votes for it.

            “No one is stoping gay people from being together so why all this push in
            recent years for gay marriage ? Something to think about.”

            And nice job of trying to avoid the ENTIRE issue of the very REAL legal benefits of marriage, gay or otherwise. Guess you feel you don’t have a legal leg to stand on there, do ya?

          • conservative man

            I don’t think gay marriage is about supposed benefits for gay couples, like I said it’s secretly about christians NOT gay people. And as for the whole states who oppose gay marriage are just like old segregationist laws thing, well that’s just something the other side says when they can’t win a argument. Last I looked no one was forcing gays to ride in the back of a bus or drink from seperate water fountains ect. So that line does not really hold up to scrutiny. Also a certain man whom I’m sure you agree with and support recently said there was such a thing as a ” gay mafia that whacks anyone who get’s on its bad side ” a quote from Bill Maher. His words not mine, and he supports gay marriage ! Guess the idea of a pro gay lobby isn’t sounding so radical now huh.

          • Muthsarah

            “I don’t think gay marriage is about supposed benefits for gay couples,
            like I said it’s secretly about christians NOT gay people”

            This is your paranoia again. You’re suspecting there’s a huge secret anti-everything-you-stand-for plan. You’re not helping yourself here. You are backing yourself into the very corner you find yourself in.

            “And as for the whole states who oppose gay marriage are just like old
            segregationist laws thing, well that’s just something the other side
            says when they can’t win a argument.”

            “Separate but equal” comes in many forms. Either everyone is equal before the law, or they are not. Where do you stand?

            ” Last I looked no one was forcing gays to ride in the back of a bus or
            drink from seperate water fountains ect. So that line does not really
            hold up to scrutiny.”

            Gay couples aren’t allowed to marry and have recognition of it in certain states, whereas straight couples are allowed to marry in these same states and enjoy the benefits of such recognition. That’s clear discrimination, same as forbidding access to certain water fountains, restrooms, theatre seats, bus seating, etc. The law is holding certain people’s rights ahead of that of others, based entirely on their fundamental characteristics, not on (the only legally-approved forms of discrimination) whether or not they committed a crime or whether or not they are legal citizens or whether or not they are adults. There IS no fundamental distinction between holding gay couples to separate rights (by denying them the benefits of marriage) and denying rights to people based on their gender, skin color, religion, etc. None. You wanna argue this point, start here.

            “Also a certain man whom I’m sure you agree with and support recently
            said there was such a thing as a ” gay mafia that whacks anyone who
            get’s on its bad side ” a quote from Bill Maher. His words not mine,
            and he supports gay marriage ! Guess the idea of a pro gay lobby isn’t
            sounding so radical now huh.”

            Swing and a miss. I don’t give a $#!+ what Bill Maher says. I don’t even care whether or not he supports gay marriage. Or, for that matter, whether or not Jews really did run Hollywood (another conspiracy theory of yore far more popular than this one). It wouldn’t matter even if it were true, so long as no laws are being broken.

          • conservative man

            Sorry but I just don’t buy that argument that gay people are being discriminated against just because some states don’t recongonize gay marriage. I don’t see how that somehow makes them suffer in some way, or that it’s somehow equal to the old segregationist laws. In the end I don’t see not endorsing gay marriage as somehow discriminatory,it just means some people just don’t want to support something they don’t believe in. Nothing more nothing less, if gay marriage were outlawed tomorrow gays would not be any worse or better off for it than they were when it was legal, and vica versa. So gay marriage is not about the rights of individuals, it’s about rather we should force a whole segment of our country to support something they don’t believe in, and to me and a lot of other people that’s just not what America should be about. And that is why we can’t support gay marriage.

          • Muthsarah

            A man and a woman are – by default – recognized as being equal before the law. Even YOU have not yet disputed that point. You still have time, of course, if you really wanna go there.

            But if a man and a woman are allowed to marry, but a man and a man or a woman and a woman are not allowed to marry, that is the very definition of discrimination. Certain privileges are being extended to some people, but not to others. Again, there is NO difference between that and granting superior rights to certain groups based on gender, skin color, or religion. None.

            If you want to argue that the fundamental definition of marriage is heterosexual, and that that is not only the default, but an immutable default, you can go ahead and do that, but the law has its own definition of these things. If the law says that only a state-recognized union of a man and a woman can be recognized as marriage, then the law is entitled to define it that way. But if the law says that any two adults, regardless of gender, may be legally united in such a way, then THAT’s the law. You are free to use the language how you wish, but the law doesn’t have to agree with you.

            You don’t have to like it, you don’t have to “support it”. There was a time that many Americans didn’t view Catholics as proper citizens, worthy of equal rights. It didn’t matter what they thought – the law said they had full rights regardless of their “Papal allegiances”, so they had them. There was a time it was felt that a black person didn’t have either voting rights or – by certain states’ statutes – the rights to their own body. There was a heated disagreement about that. Even after that was untidily resolved, lots of people still didn’t want to accept the settlement. There was a time when women weren’t viewed as being worthy of voting rights, or even owning their own property. That changed. Didn’t matter if anyone felt they still didn’t deserve that right, they still had it. 100% consent is not required. Your dissent is noted, but irrelevant. Welcome to democracy.

            “So gay marriage is not about the rights of individuals, it’s about
            rather we should force a whole segment of our country to support
            something they don’t believe in, and to me and a lot of other people
            that’s just not what America should be about. And that is why we can’t
            support gay marriage.”

            YOU are insisting that large segments of the population be forced to recognize that gay couples be NOT allowed to marry and be legally recognized and accorded any and all benefits therefrom. They don’t believe they should be so restricted. I don’t believe they should be so restricted. What gives you to the right to deny us this?

            And, based on your comments here, I do honestly think you are currently incapable of seeing things any other way. YOUR concerns are valid to you, but anyone else’s are not. YOU feel that having to accept something you don’t like is immoral, but that anyone else having to accept something they don’t like is NOT immoral. YOUR beliefs deserve to be respected, even by those who don’t share them, but nobody’s else’s deserve to be respected by those who don’t agree with them. YOUR beliefs should be protected, even if a majority of voters feel otherwise, but that if YOUR beliefs had (even temporary) majority support, others should shut up and just accept it. YOU are claiming superior privilege.

            You don’t have any such privilege. Nobody does. We all have to live with each other. I suggest you get used to the idea of being in a minority, ‘cuz that’s where you’re heading. You keep burying your head in the sand as you are, it’s only gonna get worse.

          • CaptainCalvinCat

            Erm… Conservative?
            How do I bring that to you: it does not matter if someone is believing in god, in allah, in the flying spaghetti-monster or in the palpal mainframe – it does not matter if one is straight, gay, bi, a man who wants to be a man, a man who wants to be a woman, or vice versa – heck, it does not even matter if one is male or female… we all are humans.
            And therefore for all of them, for the whole (estimated) 7.155 BILLION people out there have the same basic rights as the next guy.
            That is including marrying, including getting a job, including having the possibility of starting a life somewhere.

          • $36060516

            “No one is tormenting gays ( don’t be so dramatic )”

            http://www.fbi.gov/about-us/cjis/ucr/hate-crime/2011/narratives/victims

            But don’t let facts stop you… By all means, continue.

        • SomeJerkWithACamera

          When not referring to his own personal background, Jackula didn’t specifically say, “the dark side of Christianity.” He said “the dark side of faith.” ALL faith, including Islam.

          • conservative man

            Well let’s be honest, when most people say ” faith ” in this context, they are usually refering to those of the christian faith and not Islam. Just saying.

          • SomeJerkWithACamera

            No. I know Jack well enough to know he ALWAYS says what he means and means what he says. Thinking otherwise is deeply cynical and paranoid, and I wish to unsubscribe from your newsletter.

          • conservative man

            Darn, lost a subscriber all because…..What ? wait… I have a newsletter !

          • The Horror Guru

            Says who? When I refer to religious faith, I’m talking about ANY religion that teaches blind belief over critical thought.

          • conservative man

            fair enough, still most others I think mean christians, they just don’t say it.

          • $36060516

            Do you read minds?

          • conservative man

            Yes, Charles Xavier taught me well LOL!

          • $36060516

            Thank you for revealing you have no serious interest in standing by your statements and discussing them in earnest. I now no longer need to waste my time talking to you.

          • conservative man

            It was nice talking to you as well, have a good night. ( man what a sore loser )

          • Muthsarah

            Thus far in this comment section, you have:

            – Compared the makers of this film to Nazis
            – Compared this movie’s theme/message to The Final Solution
            – Accused the nation’s media (collectively?) of using the WBC as straw men in a plot to demonize all Christians and promote the gay agenda (because the media is run by…gay people…??)
            – Doubted that any Christian (no true Christian?) ever killed a gay person, even if other people say they have heard of such things. In fact, you say you (and, by extension, all other Christians in America bar a few extremists) are nothing more than “saddened” and “depressed” that gay people won’t leave Christians alone to just be themselves. Like they need to work on the whole “acceptance” thing
            – Expressed certainty that Muslims, however, HAVE killed gay people, and still do it regularly, because you say YOU’VE heard of it. And furthermore, you feel they (the whole religion) should be criticized when A Muslim does such a thing
            – Claimed that after 9-11 you only saw people defending Islam, not criticizing it. What about the bruhaha with the Islamic Cultural Center or whatever it was called, the one that was going to be built a few blocks from the WTC plaza? A coupla years ago? Do you remember that at least? It was everywhere.
            – Claimed you have, however, seen lots of people attacking Christian groups over past abortion bombings
            – Expressed doubt that anyone else here knows what Jackula thinks, though you seem to think you know what he thinks. Even though several of them have claimed to know him, whereas you clearly don’t.

            You have some serious blinders, sir. You are only seeing your faith as being singled out and persecuted, and dismissing any abuses its stated followers have committed as extremists that don’t represent the whole. Meanwhile, you feel that any other faith/creed (including Islam and “the gay agenda”) SHOULD be singled out for MORE criticism. Furthermore, you consistently dismiss anyone who suggests their experiences/observations contradict yours, whether or not you have any basis for such claims. This is a classic persecution complex. You are projecting your insecurities onto what everyone else here is saying, and dismissing all of their criticisms (or contradictions) that may reflect badly on your group out of hand. Your statements suggest that you aren’t objecting to your group being held to a different standard (which is wrong), but that it isn’t getting preferential treatment (given a lot more leeway than anyone else).

          • conservative man

            Good grief, in Odins name I did not say half the things you claim I said, and the rest you just take out of context. In all seriousness though Islamic countries do sentence gays to death, it’s a fact just look it up. And I never said Islam should be critized more, I said why do they get a pass when they sentence gay people to death, while all we do is say we’re not on board with the whole same sex marriage thing ? Though they probably should get more criticism for the whole killing gay people thing, but I understand you guys don’t want to appear anti Islamic….. just anti christian. After all you are making it seem like all christians are terrorists, I thought you guys would be more well…tolerant and not so judgmental as we evil christians are ?

          • Muthsarah

            “Good grief, in Odins name I did not say half the things you claim I said, and the rest you just take out of context.”

            The quotes are all yours, verbatim, none of them out of context:

            1. – Compared the makers of this film to Nazis
            – Compared this movie’s theme/message to The Final Solution

            “Man this movie was like watching old nazi propaganda reels, except in
            this case the movie replaces Jews with christians as the threat that
            must be dealt with by any means neccessary.”

            2. – Accused the nation’s media (collectively?) of using the WBC as straw
            men in a plot to demonize all Christians and promote the gay agenda
            (because the media is run by…gay people…??)

            “The media built up this westboro occult as the face of the christian
            community in order to demonize christians and anyone who stood up and
            said they would not support the pro gay lobby and its agenda.”

            3. – Doubted that any Christian (no true Christian?) ever killed a gay
            person, even if other people say they have heard of such things. In
            fact, you say you (and, by extension, all other Christians in America
            bar a few extremists) are nothing more than “saddened” and “depressed”
            that gay people won’t leave Christians alone to just be themselves.
            Like they need to work on the whole “acceptance” thing

            “I doubt the stories some have said here that they were it christian
            churches and that these churches called for violence against gays, I
            have yet to attend a church where the pastor says ” hey guys I think we
            should kill some gays, let’s go find some”. Anyone who actually did that
            in real life would be on the news in 2 seconds and in jail the next
            day. Haven’t heard of any christians killing gays” [MY NOTE: This is Point A]

            “I’m not familar with christian anger over the pro gay lobby agenda, I
            see them saddend by it, depressed even, but most christians simply want
            the homosexual community to leave them in peace. They feel that they
            should not have to accept a lifestyle that they do not believe in, they
            believe they should not be forced to accept and support this lifestyle
            based on the latest trends in Hollywood or the current political climate”

            4. – Expressed certainty that Muslims, however, HAVE killed gay people, and
            still do it regularly, because you say YOU’VE heard of it. And
            furthermore, you feel they (the whole religion) should be criticized
            when A Muslim does such a thing

            [Immediately following POINT A] ” […]heard of muslims killing gays”

            “People are very brave bashing christians for not supporting gay marriage and baking them wedding cakes, but I have yet to see any of you brave people denounce Islam for its open policy of killing gays on sight. I guess as long as you do something in the name of Allah it’s alright with you guys,”

            5. – Claimed that after 9-11 you only saw people defending Islam, not
            criticizing it. What about the bruhaha with the Islamic Cultural Center
            or whatever it was called, the one that was going to be built a few
            blocks from the WTC plaza? A coupla years ago? Do you remember that at
            least? It was everywhere.

            – Claimed you have, however, seen lots of people attacking Christian groups over past abortion bombings

            “All I saw after 9/11 was everyone coming to Islams defense and saying
            over and over again from the president on down that the terrorist
            attacks do not reflect the beliefs of Islam, however many people went on
            about christians and a few attacks that had been made against abortion
            clinics decades ago by people calling themselves christians. I just wish
            people would give us the same fair treatment as Islam did after 9/11
            and realize that the negative stereotypes about us are not true. Even if
            some so called christians have done terrible things in the name of our
            faith, that’s not who we are.”

            6. – Expressed doubt that anyone else here knows what Jackula thinks,
            though you seem to think you know what he thinks. Even though several
            of them have claimed to know him, whereas you clearly don’t.

            “Well I was taking into account someone else on here who commented that
            they went to a church that preached violence against gay people, and I
            was fusing that comment and Jackulas story in the same context. But I
            should have made myself more clear about that, my apologies.”

            OK, you later backed off on THIS one; I’ll give you that.

            No one here has yet disputed that many Islamic countries (especially the more theocratic ones) are intolerant of homosexuals, other religions (personal bibles aren’t even allowed in Saudi Arabia, for instance), women, and even “the wrong” Muslims to a degree far and away worse than what you’d find in the most intolerant Christian country (which, for the record, is probably Russia). But that’s not the topic at hand. If you want to claim that Islam is more intolerant than Christianity, in writ or in practice, that’s a legitimate argument. Probably not one fit for these boards, but it wouldn’t be unreasonable. You, however, have been consistently rejecting any claims by anyone else that Christians (I’ll again invoke “no true [Christian]”) would even kill homosexuals or call for violence against them, whereas you seem pretty confident that the gays and the media are conspiring to force their well-documented intolerance upon poor Christian lambs, while willfully ignoring Islam because……..gay….? There’s no focus to your argument, other than you consistently claim that Christians (“no true Christian”) are being criticized unjustly. When it’s OTHER people who SHOULD be criticized more. This is a very, very slanted viewpoint. I’m giving you the benefit of the doubt that you are merely scared and/or misinformed. I hope this isn’t a willful agenda on your part.

            “And I never said Islam should be critized more, I said why do they get a
            pass when they sentence gay people to death, while all we do is say
            we’re not on board with the whole same sex marriage thing ?”

            ‘I’m not saying X should be criticized MORE than they are now, I’m saying they should NOT be criticized LESS. Big difference.’

            And, as people have said here before me, Islam has just nowhere near the same presence in this country (the movie, the review, the site, the reviewer, I, and probably you are all Made in America). We could also talk about anti-gay bigotry in Hindu-dominated India. But why would we? What does that have to do with the topic at hand? What does Islam have to do with it? Nothing.

          • conservative man

            I stand by what I said before, I find this movie offensive and progaganda piece to demonize christians. I have never heard or attendend any church that promoted violence towards homosexuals, nor would any true christian church teach such things. The westburo church was a small band of loons who never gained any support or following from anyone, nonetheless the media, this movie and countless others gave westburo a unbelievable amount of coverage. Why ? The westburo people served a purpose, that purpose was to paint all christians as hateful dangerous violent monsters, this way the media could bundle up the christians and the westburo people as one and the same. Doubt was the key word Jackula used in this review, and I am doubtful. I am just not doubtful in the same way you guys are, that’s the difference. I knew I might cause a bit of a firestorm by commenting on this video, I have seen many times reviewers bashing christians from TGWTG to the agonybooth and so on, I usually keep quiet and just move on to the next review. But for some reason I felt I had to speak up about this, not because I thought I would change anyones mind, I know most here do not like christians and I would not be welcome by stating I was one, but I decided to speak my peace because just this one time I felt I needed to stand up for my people and myself and let others know we are not what the mass media, westburo, and Hollywood have portrayed us to be. I know it will never stop and I know it will only get worse as time goes on, but sometimes one does have to speak up for a moment and tell the truth. Speaking my mind was the only agenda here Muthsarah, nothing else. I don’t hate Jackula or any of you, I have always enjoyed movies and I like entertainment, even though people in entertainment do not feel the same way about us christians,next time I will probably only comment on non political things and leave the debating to the experts. Just this once though I felt I had to say something.

          • CaptainCalvinCat

            Wow, I would like to have your magic insight. How do you know, that most others say “faith” and mean “christian”?

        • MichaelANovelli

          Well, I *do* know Jack personally, and I can say that everything he said in the video corresponds vaguely to things he and I have discussed while drunk, so I have no reason to doubt him. ^_^

          • conservative man

            LOL!

    • Magdalen

      Guys, guys… his username is “conservative man”…he be trollin’.

      • conservative man

        Expressing a opion is NOT trolling.

        • Nessus

          Dude, you opened by tossing a Godwin grenade into a crowded room.

          • conservative man

            Oh come on now it wasn’t that big of a thing, all I did was express my view on the movie and responded to others who commented on my comments. That’s it. Not that big of a deal.

          • CaptainCalvinCat

            Oh heck, yes it is. ^^ Expressing someones view can work without having a collision with Godwins law.

            Plus – that whole shebang about that being like an old nazi-propaganda-movie is wrong. It is not about THE CHRISTIANS – as you claim, it would be – it is about this fictional group of misguided people, led by an asshole, based more or less on a real group of misguided people, led by an asshole.
            If anything – you might argue, that it would work the other way around. After all, the hardcore nazis – those, who really believed that crap, Hitler was talking about – were a group of misguided people, led by an asshole.

          • conservative man

            As I said before it was my first comment on this movie, and I probably got a little too worked up over it, I was…well upset. I’m not now, and in the future I will try to be more constructive in my comments. I actually don’t like confrontations and arguing as most do on the world wide web believe it or not. What can I say, my emotions get the better of me sometimes just like everyone else in the world.

        • Magdalen

          It’s not your opinion that gives you away, bro. It’s your username. Better luck next time!

          • Muthsarah

            I wouldn’t classify him as a troll. Not entertaining/imaginative enough; his opinions seem perfectly consistent with that of a real person, maybe someone looking for attention, but not someone just out to piss people off. At worst, he probably just wants to be a gadfly, but again, I’m just not seeing the typical childish nettling one usually associates with that type, especially as he’s since distanced himself from some of those earlier, more provocative statements.

            I don’t mind a lil’ light sparring with people who are at least avoiding the excessive ad hominem. Especially if I can’t sleep and don’t really have anything else to do.

          • conservative man

            My username gives me away ? Well that’s because I have nothing to hide. By seeing my username most people will know ( or presume to know ) my stance on certain issues. I was never trying to hide who I was or what I believe in. I’m no fool I know that sites like this and TGWTG cater to mostly those who are on the left, I just thought that as a conservative who likes entertainment ( but not its politics ) I would make my view plain on the movie, true I was perhaps a little too passionate in my first comment but no more so than some other comments that have been directed at me or christians/conservatives in general. So I say again to you all….God bless and peace to you.

    • Mike

      No one who values justice is alright with the killing or demoralizing of all gay, lesbian, bisexual, transgender people and there families by painting them as synonymies child molestation among other things regardless of there religion. If Christians and political conservatives are castigated more than other for that kind of rhetoric in this more often in this country it’s because they tend to use it more often. Pointing the finger at what other countries are doing is a cope out. I saw tire of people from all political and culture lines trying to downplay the actions of any country or institution by seeing someone else did/does it worse.

      Maybe you’ve never been too a church where the minister called for the death of gays (nor have I), but that doesn’t mean they don’t exist and haven’t been caught on camera! I’ve found many ugly examples of this and the other kind rhetoric about the so-called “gay agenda” that seems to me on par with the The Protocol of Elder of Zion that seem to unit certain folks on the fringe over a common enemy. Fred Phelps was easier to condemn because he condemned everyone who wasn’t in his camp, especially Christian who didn’t share his views. Yet early Christian leaders who’ve spread and continue to spread stories of “gays are the enemy” yarns made started making claims that become the hallmark of the Westboro crusade, even if they weren’t the ones that started it. Among them were the claims that AIDS was a divine ruling, that gays had to recruit children, that they were responsible for bringing on natural disasters and so on.

      There have no doubt be leaders of other religions in this country who have made these charges too, but as far as I know none of them have been directly involved in any laws that would make homosexual activity a capital offense. U.S. Christian minister Scott Lively has been actively involved in after to get just such a law passed in Uganda for some time now.

      I don’t know whither I’ve made most case clearly enough so I recommend you look up the name I mentioned. I could sight other names, incidents, and institutions related to this distressing topic but right now I’m a little wore down as my emotions run high on this issues and I’ve been doing my based to present the matter fairly without training to start a showdown (judging from comments below, maybe you can relate to that). Also would you consider checking out the FBI statistics page on hate crime incidents reported per year in this country. Particularly the differences in number of violent crimes based on religious identity versus sexual identity. It might help you to better point things in perspective, (I know it did for me.)

  • Brenna Beattie

    Brrr… The really surreal thing is, before Fred Phelps became so well known for hate, he was a civil rights activist. So apparently, people who are a different color=OKAY. People who are attracted to people with the same plumbing=EVIL.

  • Sofie Liv

    Wauw, thank you for a very thought provoking video.

    I really think this was up an above excellent work from you, just.. I am so deeply impressed.

    Here I thought I would just get a smack down on a movie, I have mostly just heard bad things about, and then comes all these sincere thoughts and messages.
    I just have to commend you for your bravery, wisdom and insight in this video. Fantastic job Jack, fantastic job. I am blown away, not making fun of that, I am.

    I can’t say I entirely understand these kinds of things.

    Thankfully, I never had to run into any real life extremist at all, my family is not particularly religious, in fact, the only reason they ever had to go to church as christmas, was to see me singing in the church choir.

    And my years of singing in a church choir, in a protostant church, has only been a positiv exserpience, where it was more about the singing and giving people a positive exsperience in the church than preaching.

    I am not a christian myself, but is still in the belief that the core ideal of Christianity, is good! and meant well, and I don’t think we should stop having churches, I think it’s a good thing. That we have a place where people in doubt, sorrow or sadness can go for guidance. Which is always there and always open for any-one, to go search for some comfort in what-ever small way, no matter who you are.

    For me that is what religion should be, and for me that’s beautiful.

    It’s the people that ends up twisting it into some-thing else, and places that should be about acceptance and comfort becomes.. this.. and that saddens me, it saddens me a lot, I think that’s huge tragedy. Showing that the best of what man kind have created, can turn into the worst of man kind in execution.

    It just.. breaks my heart.

    Thank you again, I loved this.

  • chromesthesia

    Whoa, you sang that? Your voice is haunting and awesome and this was an interesting video. I like doubting things and being skeptical. I grew up religious, but shed it like a snake’s skin in my teens. It doesn’t make total sense to me and the concept of using it as a tool of hatred and torment and ignoring any message of love and understanding frustrates and confuses me.

  • conservative man

    I do have a question though. Why is it so important for those who support gay marriage that we ( the christian community ) must support, and accept gay marriage ? No one is denying gays the right to be with each other so what is it lately with this obsession that christians must support gay marriage ? Whatever happend to live and let live ? Just because we christians don’t support gay marriage doesn’t affect the lives of gay people at all, so simply put…why all the fuss ?

    • Muthsarah

      You needn’t ACCEPT it. Just let it be. Tolerate it. Which, regardless of whatever you’re claiming here, a hell of lot of self-professed Christians ain’t doing, as evidenced by legislation being pushed to limit legal recognition of marriage rights. If you want to say “hey, we don’t think marriage between two men or between two women is marriage the way our church views these things, thus we won’t personally recognize it….but if the rest of the country, and if the law wants to recognize it, that’s on them, not on us, and we’re gonna run our church the way we want, and think however we want, and whatever anyone else does is their own business and we won’t interfere in their relationship with the state/federal government”, then there wouldn’t be an issue.

      Again, to be incredibly overly-blunt: Marriage rights means something VERY real in America today. There are REAL, TANGIBLE benefits to having one’s marriage recognized by the state/federal government, so the government is granting superior rights to people based on whether or not they have a legally-recognized marriage. If you feel that certain couples should be granted federal/state rights and benefits, whereas other legal adults should not, based solely on their genders, then you are flying directly in the face of the most fundamental values of this republic. You don’t have to like it, but as a citizen of the republic, you have to accept others’ basic rights before the law, even if you don’t agree with them. And the law cannot recognize certain types of legally-beneficial unions to some adults and yet deny it to others. Either recognize it for all, or cancel any benefits for anyone. We don’t grant preferential legal rights to anybody here, not officially by law anyway.

      As far as this cake-shop you keep whining about, personally, I think a privately-owned business should – by default – be free to refuse service to anyone. I do, however, feel there should be very real restrictions to this, but that it’s a VERY sticky issue to decide where exactly this divide lies. Even if you agree that a privately-owned business should be allowed to refuse service, do you think there’s a line where they should nonetheless be required to serve others, regardless of their personal feelings? Seriously, should a privately-owned paramedic company (there are lot out there) be allowed to refuse treatment of a badly-wounded person, because they don’t like their skin color? Or that a privately-owned hospital should be allowed to refuse an emergency blood transfusion, because they just don’t believe in such things? Or that a AAA service (privately-owned) could drive by a country road to assist a member who called for assistance, then refuse to help, because the owners of the car are a gay couple, and they don’t approve of homosexuality “as a lifestyle”? Where’s the line?

      Personally, I wouldn’t be TOO offended by the actions of the cake shop. **** ’em, if they don’t want my business, I’d go somewhere else. But it’s not always that simple. There is, before the law, no difference between discrimination against gay couples, discrimination against skin color, discrimination against gender, or discrimination against religious groups. If you allow people to refuse service based on personal beliefs, you allow ALL forms of discrimination. And that’s a very, VERY messy issue.

      • conservative man

        But that’s just it, by a state being forced to accept gay marriage the people of said state are by default forced to publicy say to the world they support something that a majority don’t. You also said ” You needn’t ACCEPT it, just let it be ” , I and other christians don’t believe the current debate going on about gay marriage will end with the question of gay marriage. The reason I bring up the cake story is precisely the proof I have of that, it’s not just about a private buisness, it’s not just about gay marriage and the benefits issue, it’s about being forced to accept and support something some of us don’t believe in. I know you think that will never happen but in some cases it already has, and next (as I said in a earlier comment) Christian pastors will be forced to marry gay couples or face who knows what kind of retribution from the law. If it were a question of live and let live the christian community would not have to seek protection from laws or potential laws that would force them to go against deeply held personal beliefs. If that is what happens we will all suffer as a result, not just christians.

        • Muthsarah

          “But that’s just it, by a state being forced to accept gay marriage the
          people of said state are by default forced to publicy say to the world
          they support something that a majority don’t.”

          No, they are not “forced to publicy say to the world they support” anything. You are still entitled to free thought, and free expression. Just because the state you live in passes a law recognizing gay marriage, that doesn’t mean you must be assumed to support it, any more than when a state passes a law banning recognition of gay marriage, anyone who supports gay marriage must be assumed to support that ban. You are still looking at this issue through a very, very one-sided perspective, refusing to recognize that anyone on the other side of the issue could be feeling anything similar to the way you feel (this is entirely consistent with your clear persecution complex, BTW). You don’t have to like a law to respect it and/or follow it, and by following a law, that doesn’t mean you are stating your agreement of it.

          Seriously, think about it. What if there was a ballot measure regarding changing the flag of your state? Say that 55% of the voters chose to change the flag, and 45% (including you) voted to keep it the way it is. Well, majority rules (if that’s how the law decides these things) says that the flag is now changed, and the old flag is no longer the official state flag. You can complain, you can tell anyone you want that you were against it, you can still even proudly/defiantly display the previous flag; it probably won’t be illegal (AFAIK, I don’t think flying any flag is illegal here). But the flag was nonetheless changed. It doesn’t reflect you, it merely reflects the whole, the majority.

          But there are limits to these things, as set by federal law. If 55% of Texas voters voted to secede from the Union, the federal government wouldn’t just let that happen. If 55% of California voters chose to let the state legally confiscate all property held by people whose surnames start with the letter “S” and put them to death, the federal government wouldn’t stand by and do nothing. If 55% of Michigan voters voted to declare war on Canada to annex the city of Windsor, Ontario, the federal government wouldn’t let them do that. Well…why not? Aren’t all states sovereign entities, free to do anything they want, provided they have a majority support of their states’ voters? As was determined long, long ago, NO, they do not have that right. They have the right to do anything, provided that federal law doesn’t specifically forbid them to do that. And if the federal government recognizes gay marriage, all states must do so. That doesn’t mean that all Americans must be viewed as being supportive of that, just that that’s how things are.

          You don’t have to like it. You don’t even have to accept it. But you must at the least tolerate it. Because it’s the law, it’s popular will, and sooner or later, it’s coming to a state near you.

          “The reason I bring up the cake story is precisely the proof I have of
          that, it’s not just about a private buisness, it’s not just about gay
          marriage and the benefits issue, it’s about being forced to accept and
          support something some of us don’t believe in.”

          Again, in the fluffy “who gives a $#!+” realm of cake-bakery, I don’t really care. It’s a service industry, it’s non-essential, I don’t personally care. I would raise an eyebrow if a bakery refused service to a Muslim, or if a hotel refused to serve an unmarried couple, or if a movie theatre refused to serve the elderly. I don’t personally care about the cake, but I’m not intimately involved in this particular issue. Discrimination is discrimination, and if someone wants to fight it on principle, that’s fine.

          “I know you think that will never happen but in some cases it already
          has, and next as (I said in a earlier comment) Christian pastors will be
          forced to marry gay couples or face who knows what kind of retribution
          from the law.”

          Yeah, that’s highly unlikely. Churches are private businiesses (except for those federal and state tax benefits, eh? Ehhhhh???????), so I’m not personally in favor of forcing them to oversee any marriages of anyone they don’t wanna marry. Similar to the cake shop, I don’t like what they’re doing in principle, but I think it should prolly fall within the rights of a private business. But that’s just my opinion.

          “If it were a question of live and let live the christian community would
          not have to seek protection from laws or potential laws that would
          force them to go against deeply held personal beliefs. If that is what
          happens we will all suffer as a result, not just christians.”

          No, the “protection” that many Christians are pushing is the “freedom” to exist in a country without married gay couples. That’s not a freedom they’re granted by the Constitution. They don’t have to marry them (as in officiate a ceremony), they don’t have to marry them (as in join in “holy matrimony” with someone else), but they must recognize their rights before the law. Some states will fight, undoubtedly. But if having to tolerate the existence of people whose conceptions and practices of marriage differ from your own amounts to “suffering”, then you’re pinning yourself to that cross. There was a time, and a place, where Christians felt they didn’t have to tolerate the presence of Jews, and there are places today where men don’t have to tolerate the presence of women who aren’t “properly” covered, or where the pious (of the locally-official faith) don’t have to tolerate the presence of anyone reading from a heretical holy text, or speaking ill of their religion. These are, without exception, societies viewed as being unacceptably intolerant by modern, Western standards, I trust, including your own. That’s REAL persecution. You’re just being required to put up with people who are different.

          Bottom line: You don’t have to like it, but YOU are not the group being persecuted. Being forced to accept the presence of others is not persecution. But preventing others from living the way they want to live, in full accordance with the law, IS persecution. Those who want to restrict the rights of others are the victimizers, not the victims.

          • Sofie Liv

            it’s a sad day in human history when it’s not just a given that we should merely accept each other for what we are.
            The different people we happen to be… don’t have to yell about it, or loudly supporting it.. but what happened to just common acceptance of another human being, allowing them to share our little planet earth with us, and just.. co-exist peacefully while aiming at letting as many people as possible having a satiesfying content life…

          • Muthsarah

            Sounds like a pretty typical day in human history, considering. We still have to work for that better world.

          • Sofie Liv

            I guess it’s only in Gene Roddenberrys world, that is even so overly possitive and blind to flaws that is becomes deluded, that such a reality was ever a fact… oh well.

            It’s just sad that we as human beings are unable to accept each other for exactly that.. human beings..
            That.. is tragedy.

          • CaptainCalvinCat

            And that, dear Sofie, is why Gene Roddenberrys world is pure science fiction.
            And that’s coming from an OPTIMIST.

  • Okay. Normally, I usually try not to say anything when it comes to situations like this. Mainly because of the storm I’m seeing in the comments section (and how volatile things can get on the Internet if you state your beliefs).

    But for the record as a Christian myself, I can’t say that I’m surprised films like these are made. However, I would like to state one thing:

    While I’m not a supporter of the hot-button social issues currently being debated (especially given the subject matter shown in this review), I also don’t approve of the actions of Fred Phelps and others like him.

    To those of you who do not like or care for anyone who believes in Christian teachings and the text that it comes from, please note that NOT everyone who holds these beliefs dear to them (myself included) are in the same vein as those of the WBC.

    • $36060516

      I think most of us who were arguing with conservative man (and Jackula who didn’t join in, but made the video) agree with that point. My small social circle includes devout Christian, Catholic, Mormon, Mennonite, Quaker, and Muslim friends and relatives. While I am an atheist and a left winger, I respect the religious beliefs of my friends and do not denigrate or mock them for having them. I respect the community and comfort their faith brings them and the good works that are done by many people of faith, including the Catholic hospital that forgave a huge emergency room debt for me that came just before I got covered by the Affordable Care Act. The only reason I got feisty with conservative man is because he was dismissing prejudice against gays and Muslims while proclaiming that he as a Christian in America was the one truly in danger of prejudice and persecution.

        • conservative man

          Quote(There are obvious reasons why advocates of hate crime legislation must want to preserve one particular version of the Matthew Shepard story, but it was always just that — a version. Jimenez’s version is another, more studiously reported account, but he is not the first to challenge the popular mythology. Way back in 1999, Wypijewski rejected what she called the “quasi-religious characterizations of Matthew’s passion, death, and resurrection as patron saint of hate-crime legislation” in favor of what she called “wussitude” — a culture of “compulsory heterosexuality” that teaches young men how to pass as men, unfeeling, benumbed, primed to cloak any vulnerability in violence.) End of Quote. Very interesting article, I always heard that Mattew Shephard may have been killed for reasons outside of his sexuality, but at the time no one wanted to hear anything outside of what fits the Lefts agenda. And many still don’t.

  • Cristiona

    And then, much later, it was revealed that Shepard was most likely killed because of a drug deal gone bad; not because he was gay ( http://www.advocate.com/print-issue/current-issue/2013/09/13/have-we-got-matthew-shepard-all-wrong?page=full ).

    That said, dang. That original ending would have been utterly amazing. Also, while it’s very clearly a take-down of Westboro, I wasn’t aware it was also a pretty major take-down of the ATF. I can only assume this portrayal was at least partially inspired by Waco.