After David Brat defeated House Majority Leader Eric Cantor for the GOP congressional nomination in his district in VA on June 12, 2014, David Brat has successfully created a historical moment. Brat's ouster of Cantor has gained national notice, and has Brat’s views now under closer scrutiny.
Brat has the potential for a perfect storm in thrusting Tea Party values into the GOP platform. Brat holds a PhD in economics from American University and a master in theology degree from the Princeton Theological Seminary. Separation of church and state is out the window with Brat. He holds ground in both areas with his background as a theologian and conservative politician. Brat is a professor at Randolph-Macon College in Ashland, VA, as is his opponent for the House seat.
The Wall Street Journal published an article by Reid J. Epstein about some of Brat’s prior writings on June 11, 2014 titled David Brat’s Writings: Hitler’s Rise ‘Could All Happen Again. One of the items noted by the WSJ is a 13 page article published in Interpretation: A Journal in Bible and Theology during 2011.
Capitalism is here to stay, and we need a church model that corresponds to that reality. Read Nietzsche. Nietzsche’s diagnosis of the weak modern Christian democratic man was spot on. Jesus was a great man. Jesus said he was the Son of God. Jesus made things happen. Jesus had faith. Jesus actually made people better. Then came the Christians. What happened? What went wrong? We appear to be a bit passive. Hitler came along, and he did not meet with unified resistance. I have the sinking feeling that it could all happen again, quite easily.
It is quite a leap to compare the current leadership in the Executive and Legislative branches of the federal government with Hitler. The recent actions of the US with regard to invading Iraq and Afghanistan hardly seem passive. Obamacare may be repugnant to some conservatives, and especially hated by the Tea Party, but it doesn’t add up to death camps for Jews, Gypsies and homosexuals.
The Tea Party is anything but a unifying force in the GOP. Tea Party influence on the GOP has led to the total freezing of meaningful legislation to solve social issues like immigration policy, funding veterans’ health care, separation of church and state with regard to same-gender marriage and abortion rights issues.
Brat’s intent appears to be to insert Christian values into legislation in direct conflict with the First Amendment. Minority religious institutions are under pressure from an attempt to declare that the US is a Christian nation. The wisdom of the founding fathers is now being replaced by the paranoid conspiracy theorists that have decimated the Bill of Rights and created suspicion of all government activities.
There are more examples of David Brat’s perspective on many topics in the WSJ article. Time will tell if he can maintain a position of power that has been temporarily granted. Brat’s combination of Christian focus and Tea Party politics should make those concerned about freedom of religion to keep a vigil on separation of church and state.