“Jesus Camp” should scare you.

I don’t think I need to say anything about this video. It really speaks for itself.

203 thoughts on ““Jesus Camp” should scare you.

  1. Granted that Expose! TV! will try to find the most outrageous sound and video bites to include, I found the first thirty seconds to be disturbing (and infuriating) enough to decide to shut the damned thing off.

    Rrg.

  2. Chap Clark (in the video) says that evangelising to youth does not mean indoctrinating.
    Wow. I thought to evangelise was to preach and/or convert from one truth to another.
    Sounds very similar to indoctrinates, trains, teaches, coaches to me.  LOL
    Scary shit, Batman.

  3. It wouldn’t be so bad if they just told the rest of us we’re going to hell and then left it at that.  But no, they have the arrogance to believe that what I do in my own home with my life somehow threatens them and what I do needs to be legislated out of existence before I somehow destroy civilization. 

    This kind of thing scares me because even if they’re not teaching a generation of soldiers to go out and really fight for their way to be imposed on the rest of us, they are teaching the kids to be intolerant of others, and it’s real easy for them to make the leap themselves after that.

  4. I’ve said before – evangelical Christians on this continent are just as intolerant and dangerous as any other religious extremists. Trick is, they don’t have to be as overt about it. Bear in mind, though, if the parents are sending their kids there, they want the kids to be indoctrinated. The kids are nothing; it’s the adults that disturb me.

  5. The kids are nothing; it’s the adults that disturb me.

    Agreed, but whose to say the camp isn’t preying on weak parents, giving bullshit about what the camp can do for the kids.  Sadly many equate morality with religion, and assume that they are going to help guide their kids down the right path of ethics and morality. 

    Videos like the one above make me feel sick to my stomach.

  6. This video does scare me, on many levels.

    That woman can burn right next to every other religious militant wanna-be, wanting children to lay down their lives for the gospel.  She shoulda just said she wanted a crusade and sold the kids AK-47s and pointed them at every non-christian city in the world.

    Plus, after this, I believe that ministry to children should be outlawed.  They bore through all general senses to the very core of the child’s belief structure and fill it with their hypocritical, misanthropic garbage.

    Finally, leave it to the christians to bitch at kids about violent words, but allow them to smash dishes with fuck-knows-what in mind.

    I’m sure there’s more that do so much worse…

  7. You know, I’ve seen something incredibly similiar to this within the “RELIGION!OF!PEACE!”(sorry about the caps but I thought it was appropriate), it was a film that showed muslim children praying and swearing allegiance to Bin Laden and kissing the Koran. Very scary indeed. Its a wonder why more people haven’t noticed the similarities between the two groups.

  8. I want to see them radically laying down their lives for the Gospel as they are over in Pakistan, in Israel and Palestine and all those different places.

    Pastor Becky Fischer, Kids In Ministry International.

    Just what the world needs, someone proselytising to children with those kind of views.

  9. Well, I think I’m gonna open a camp where kids are encouraged to think critically.  We definitely seem to have a total lack of that in society.  Objectivity will be taught too.  But wait, aren’t kids supposed to be learning those things in the evil secular schools?!  Oh yeah, I forgot, they get training for their future jobs in school, plus learn how to socialize. 

    Honestly though, anyone who’s gotten the “Truth” from a christian fundamentalist should in no way be suprised by this.  The shit these people believe, without for a second actually thinking about why they believe it, or the validity of said beliefs should make any sane rational human being run away screaming to find a deep hole to hide in.

  10. After this amount of time (1 hour)I would normaly have a snappy comeback about the Christian Fundamentalists, but after reading my morning mail I am much more concerned with my “erectile” problems and will have to address them first.  raspberry

  11. Other than whacking people’s heads off in the name of religion, these people don’t appear to be any different than muslim extremists. 

    And I have no doubt that if they could get away with separating non-believers’ heads from their shoulders, they’d do it in a heartbeat.  All in the name of jayzus.

    godbags shouldn’t breed.

  12. Not a fan of fundies, but this comment caught my eye:

    Other than whacking people’s heads off in the name of religion, these people don’t appear to be any different than muslim extremists.

    Nor do rabid members of any group, whether they be fundies, atheists, liberal or conservative.  Radicals are radical.  The whole whacking people’s heads off in the name of whatever is a pretty big other than though. From one who is found of his head, I don’t discount that difference.

  13. Radicals are radical.

    I agree. However, people seem to get more violent when their religion is involved.

  14. Consi: Nor do rabid members of any group, whether they be fundies, atheists, liberal or conservative.

    True, but religious beliefs often seem to exacerbate radicalism of whatever stripe. In fact, I think most people adhere to particular ideologies because of their religious beliefs.

  15. I want to see them radically laying down their lives for the Gospel as they are over in Pakistan, in Israel and Palestine and all those different places.

    To paraphrase Wolverine from X-men: Bullshit.  If you were really so self-righteous, you’d be out there doing it yourself.

    Between this and another link I saw on this site to a similar group, I wonder where this will end.  Is the next war in North America going to be caused by these lunatics?

  16. I was just writing about Rosie O’Donnell’s comment on the View that, “Radical Christianity is as much a threat as radical Islam in a country like America” – which is being used as a GOP get out the vote rallying cry.  And then I saw this.

    The question that I keep seeing is related to proportionality:  Are radical Christians as dangerous to America as radical Moslems.  I can’t help but think that that’s not the point.

    Instead – we need to ask whether there’s a brand of radicalism that is more palatable than another.  I don’t think there is – and the argument about proportionality is just a smoke screen: people who are truely moral believe that killing is evil – regardless of whether you plan to kill one person or a thousand.  The radical that wants to kill just one person is a threat.

  17. That is messed up.  It’s one thing to try to convert/indoctrinate/whatever teenagers, who at least have the ability to think rationally and can decide for themselves, but to do this to small children?  That is positively criminal.

  18. Kathy: It’s one thing to try to convert/indoctrinate/whatever teenagers, who at least have the ability to think rationally and can decide for themselves…

    Not necessarily. I’ve noticed that, with most people that I’ve been exposed to, they don’t develop the true ability to reason things out for themselves until after age eighteen or so.

    It’s all criminal, in other words. Hey, fundies, leave those kids alone!

  19. I don’t know Sadie, I work with teenagers (teach physics part time in hs and part time at local U) and I think they are generally underestimated by the rest of us.  It isn’t that they can’t reason, it’s just that most have never really been expected to.  It’s true that their brains aren’t fully developed yet and they don’t exactly see consequences clearly, but they are a lot more like us than they are like children, especially past age 15 or so.

  20. The only difference between these types of people and Muslim fundamentalists is government approval. Granted our current government is in no way innocent of allowing religious nuts access to the going ons of our country, they dont allow the nuts to take over, not yet anyway.

    No matter what they preach from one side of their mouths the fact is these people would act the same or worse as the Muslim fundamentalists they hate so much if they were ever able to establish a theocracy.

    Whats even worse is they are creating a future generation of nuts…really softening these kids up to future indoctrination (which it plainly is). You could say these kids will have ample time to hopefully one day come to their own conclusions and not become fundies but this is just the first step. These kids will be exposed to this crap for their entire childhoods until it is burnt into their brains.

  21. I think one of the major problems here is the constant use of terms associated with war and or physical violence. As with Jihad, the terms often used by the good reverend are designed to provoke an emotional response. Unfortunately, there is the obvious side effect of literalism. For example, Jihad is a powerful struggle, but because it is so closely associated with VIOLENT struggle, its prior definition becomes almost null and void. The reverend portrayed in the film uses the same tactic. She speaks of these children as soldiers in an army of God and how they must lay down their lives for this struggle. The problem with this, of course, is that the term “war” cannot reasonably be defined as anything BUT a violent struggle. Which of course brings me back to my point; to tell children who have been raised in an increasingly violent society where most become desensitized to graphic violence at an early age that they are now soldiers in ANY army is extremely dangerous. Not only because they could very easily associate their “war” with an actual PHYSICAL struggle, but they become predisposed to the belief that they must use whatever means available to carry out their task, including violent means. Therein lies the problem. Children of such a young age cannot fully appreciate the lessons being learned and could very easily intrepret these teachings the wrong way. Then again, I doubt there is a right way.

  22. Completely off topic here, but does anyone know where I could find the stats that show what percentage of scores fall between a z-score of 5 and 9.

    And I agree Neodromos, excellent point on war!

  23. LordKlegg: Sigh! as long as they stay south of the border I am happy.

    Sure, because closing your eyes and pretending they pay attention to borders helps.  raspberry

    This type of evil will spread to where ever it finds a chance to infect… even Canada.  And yes, I say it’s evil because this type of abuse of children is unforgivable in my opinion.  Using them to promote your own hatred and propaganda is bullshit… and I can’t see how two wrongs make a right “because they do it so why shouldn’t we?”

    Oh, and:
    http://www.variety.com/index.asp?layout=vision&taxid=23855&element_id=2140018549

    This is how I originally found about it.

  24. Not necessarily. I’ve noticed that, with most people that I’ve been exposed to, they don’t develop the true ability to reason things out for themselves until after age eighteen or so.

    You agree with parental notification then I’m sure, right Sadie?

    The question that I keep seeing is related to proportionality:  Are radical Christians as dangerous to America as radical Moslems.  I can’t help but think that that’s not the point.

    I’m can’t help but scratch my head and go HUH?

  25. Consi: You agree with parental notification then I’m sure, right Sadie?

    Intellectually, many teens are fully fit for the real world. However, I strongly suspect that, emotionally, most aren’t quite there yet. The problem is that many people take this to be an excuse for parental and/or legislative authoritarianism, which I do not at all agree with.

    A critical factor is, who exactly is dealing with the kids? Teenagers may be able to handle other teens easily, but they can be and often are easily manipulated by adults.

    Religion is a dicey issue for teenagers and young children alike, in my opinion. While teens may with varying degrees comprehend physics and complicated logic, religion is another matter; it’s fairly easy to scare kids into, say, accepting Jesus as one’s lord and savior. Not that there’s necessarily anything wrong with believing this (although I do think it’s wrong to use fear as a conversion tool), but I’m willing to bet that teens are fairly susceptible to fundamentalist religion (particularly in the current political climate). After all, adolescence can be a very trying time emotionally, when peer pressure is perhaps at a lifetime high.

    Furthermore, I am utterly convinced that endeavors such as “Jesus Camp” are conceived without the slightest regard for the children that they are attempting to indoctrinate.

    Oh, and Kathy, I didn’t mean to imply that high schoolers aren’t capable of a lot. It’s just that, looking back on my teenage years, I sometimes marvel at how difficult it was to find my own path and stick to it at such an emotionally vulnerable age.

  26. LordKlegg – It’s gonna happen. Remember that we’re looking at a long-term threat from dominionists, who believe they need the entire world to “know the word” before the Rapture can occur. I actually wrote about this last night, (I don’t usually make links to my LJ, it’s akin to a rock band with a geocities website.. blech).

    You agree with parental notification then I’m sure, right Sadie?

    Consi, nice catch, not that I agree smile.
    Kathy – man, what I wouldn’t have given to have had the support of an adult like you five or six years ago raspberry.

  27. Are radical Christians as dangerous to America as radical Moslems?

    Interesting question. I think a more important question is if religous zealotry is dangerous to society itself. The purpose of society is security, which is provided for by the social contract. It is inevitably the logical end to the question of order within the group. Thus, it stands to reason that societal structure is based upon logic. The very nature of religous belief requires that the devotee surrender objectivity and reason for logical fallacies. That being said, can one reasonably expect someone who is willing to surrender logic and reason to abide by rules whose creation is the product of a construct for which they’ve shown such disdain. That is, of course, without an attempt to change or modify those rules with which they cannot agree? I would argue that while it is possible, it is wholly improbable as demonstrated by the religous right’s conduct with regard to same-sex marriage, abortion, issues of church and state, etc. Surmise to say, it is improbable that those who spurn logic and reason will exist peacefully in a societal construct forged in the fires of both.

  28. it is improbable that those who spurn logic and reason will exist peacefully in a societal construct forged in the fires of both.

    You may be right.  I wonder if it’s more accurate to say that peace is both logical and reasonable, and that’s why the actions of zealots and radical religious types are so often violent and antisocial.  If you spurn reason and the free exchange of ideas, then it’s not much of a conceptual leap to despise and act against those who do.

  29. I heard the woman who runs the camp on the Ed Shultz Show on the way home tonight, and she started in with the arguement that Ed (and I assume the rest of us unenlightened non-christians) didn’t understand the real meaning of the words they are using.  Specifically, the references the children in the trailer make to being warriors, and laying down their lives.  She went on to say it was in a purely spiritual context when she and her ilk use those words (she emphasized the supposed difference between a christian martyr and a muslim martyr especially) but the muslim world obviously uses the same terms in a physical sense (as I guess we have seen them demonstrate). 

    She also said that the kids weren’t worshipping Bush but praying for him, and the trailer is apparently misleading in that.  She said it was a biblically commanded prayer to pray for the leader of the nation. Ed Shultz dropped the ball (as he later mentioned) and didn’t ask her the question I was dying to hear her answer after that explanation though: Would she have lead the kids in prayer for Bill Clinton, or is it just the fact that Bush is an open supporter of the Religious Right?  I think I know what her answer would have been, and I think I know the real answer, but I would have really liked to hear her response.  I didn’t catch the whole interview, apparently it degraded to her getting offended and hot under the collar from what Ed alluded to later in the show.

    Anyway, it looks like they have a copy of the interview up on their website for download if anyone is interested in hearing it: Ed Shultz Show Audio Archive.

  30. Oops, sorry about that, they don’t have the interview with the Camp Director up yet, but they do have the interview with the filmakers up there from yesterday.

  31. Yes, of course, its all in a spiritual context, but then again, what the FUCK does an eight-year-old know about spiritual context. Apologies for the less-than-eloquent response, but I’ve had an hour of sleep before I had to work this morning. Anyway, who said Jihad wasn’t taken out of spiritual context? As far as I know, the particular form of Jihad that has been subscribed to by Al-Qaeda and the like has been jihad bis saif, or by the sword. Then again, there’s NO similarity whatsoever between that and soldiers fighting and dying in god’s army.

  32. Neodromos:

    It doesn’t matter to me, but I was wondering why the change of flags? Did you move to the U.S. between 4:23 P.M. and 11:26 P.M.?

    As a quick note, I post not to take issue with your lead up in your 4:23 P.M. post, though there are problems with it.  Let’s assume that the lead up is true and the foundation for your position here exists:

    I would argue that while it is possible, it is wholly improbable as demonstrated by the religous right’s conduct with regard to same-sex marriage, abortion, issues of church and state, etc. Surmise to say, it is improbable that those who spurn logic and reason will exist peacefully in a societal construct forged in the fires of both.

    I want to tease out two issues specifically.  Those issues are same-sex marriage and issues of church and state.  You believe that the religious right has demonstrated that its conduct makes it improbable to coexist peacefully. 

    I have drawn the exact opposite conclusions from the behavior of those, and here I am going to use different terminology, who oppose same-sex marriage and don’t have a problem with the pledge etc.  In a society in which one expects peaceful coexistence, one would expect that differences would occur.  When those differences occur, one would expect them to be brought to a head and resolved through peaceful means if the those with differing views are to honor the social contract.

    That is in fact what we seen with regards to both issues. We did not see riots in the streets when same-sex marriages in Boston occurred.  What we saw was a peaceful opposition to that and move through peaceful measures to address it via constitutional amendments passed by voters and cases that have gone to court. The exact framework for addressing such issues as was established by the founding fathers.  Go figure.

    So I ask you, what is the specific conduct that fails to honor the social contract for peaceful resolution of issues that you ambigiously reference?

  33. What we saw was a peaceful opposition to that and move through peaceful measures to address it via constitutional amendments passed by voters and cases that have gone to court. The exact framework for addressing such issues as was established by the founding fathers.

    Hmm.. I might be wrong here, but the constitutional ammendments passed (where they were passed) were not from voters, but from the legislatures, and the cases that went to court were initiated by those who wanted same-sex marriages.  They went to court to get them.  The opposition wants to dismiss this issue out of hand.  The ammendments are unconstitutional and will no doubt be defeated in court, but where’s the dialogue?  Where’s the peaceful discussion.  Proponents of gay marriage are all about dialogue.  Opponents leave the table in a huff and say “God doesn’t like it, so we’re not going to listen.”

    That might literally within the framework of what the founding fathers created, but it certainly isn’t in the same spirit.

    It’s simply a case of the christians feeling threatened by something someone ELSE is doing with their life, so they want to stop it.  It’s got nothing to do with the constitution.  People should be free to live their lives the way they see fit unless that harms another or takes away their rights.  No one disputes that.  The opposition doesn’t want to talk about it though.  They’re too busy shouting that we’re a christian nation and marriage is sacred, when we’re not and it’s a legal institution.  That’s not logical dialogue, that’s fear and panic and loss of control.  Just because there’s no rioting in the streets and brick throwing or lynchings, doesn’t mean there’s peace.

  34. I continue to be disturbed at the way that fundamentalist religion is presented as the only thing that can give meaning in a ‘materialist society’.  Ethics and meaning can derive from sources other than religion, though you’d never know it from listening to these nutbags (nope, not sitting on the fence on this one at all). 
    I’m one of the more moral people I know (fail horribly, too), as is my husband, but we’re atheist, not needing imaginary friends to make us behave properly.  I guess there’s no out when you don’t have some fantastic notion of being forgiven instantly for your bad behaviour.

  35. You know we’re all assuming that parents send their kids to camps, but in fact many poor kids get sent to them. I know this for a fact both because I was such a kid (and converted there) and because I was a camp counsellor for a few years at one. The church paid my way (something my parents could not afford to do) and I earned it by memorizing bible verses.

    Kind, benevolent religious organizations often go into poor areas and ‘help’ out by sending poor kids to camp. The kids are happy to go because for poor kids, these kinds of opportunities don’t come along very often. The parents are happy to let their kids have a camp experience because they usually can’t afford even a Y camp on their own and, besides, how much trouble can a kid get into at a Jesus Camp? The parents don’t necessarily have any idea what can go on there in terms of pressure to convert and accept certain beliefs.

    Webs, you asked about the proportion of scores that would fall between z= 5 and 9 and it would be infinitesimally small. At z = 3.75, the larger portion would be .999 and the smaller .0001—There’s a z calculator at Normal z Table

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