If only everyone could be this brave and honest about their role in inciting violence.
Frank Schaeffer is a former far-right religious fundamentalist who wrote a book called Crazy for God: How I Grew Up as One of the Elect, Helped Found the Religious Right, and Lived to Take All (or Almost All) of It Back.
In the clip below, Schaeffer explains how words have consequences and apologizes for contributing to the extremism that has led to, among other things, the recent murder of Dr. George Tiller. Courageously, Schaeffer speaks very honestly about the radicalism of the movement he was a part of and its culpability in encouraging and celebrating violence.
Please check out the video. Here are some highlights:
- “There is a direct line connecting the rhetoric that I was part of as a young man and this murder. People like me are responsible for what we said and what we did and the way we raised the temperature on this debate out of all bounds…. This is what helps unhinge a society.”
- “We were egging people on…. We were opening a gate.”
- “What scares me is that I see that the rhetoric of the Republican party right now, including the former vice president, about our newly elected African-American president has the same sort of coded stuff in it: he’s not a real American, he’s making America less safe, he’s a secret Muslim…he’s the antichrist. They also know full well that we have people out there who would take it to the next step and say, ‘Well gee…maybe the best thing we can do is pull another trigger some other day.'”