Beliefnet
Reprinted with permission of Charisma News Services.

A pro-family leader and a leading political commentator are both predicting a major new attack on conservative Christian values in the coming year. Don Wildmon, founder of the American Family Association, warns of an imminent new wave of "conservative bashing," while "Newsweek" magazine's political writer Howard Fineman reveals plans for "a daring assault" that will liken conservatives to the Taliban.

While liberal Hollywood activists have "toned down their rhetoric" since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, they will soon be on the offensive again, Wildmon told AgapePress. Celebrities such as singer Barbra Streisand, who had been busy "bashing" President Bush before the attack, will soon be vocal once more. "You can bet your bottom dollar they're...drumming up new ideas of how to get their liberal, left-wing philosophy into the mainstream of America," Wildmon said.

With a number of states passing laws in 2001 that defined marriage as being between a man and a woman, gay campaigners will be working hard to see legislation passed that would give them special rights, he said. "They have no intentions of quitting their battle until [same-sex] unions are fully recognized, just as a man and a woman [are as] husband and wife. They will proceed, and they have plenty of friends in high places - and because they don't have families and children, they have plenty of money to spend to pursue their goal."

While President Bush ended 2001 with "sky-high approval ratings, [and] a new sense of mission," he will find himself under fierce attack during 2002, says "Newsweek" political correspondent Fineman in a look at the coming political year. Democrats are planning "a daring assault on the most critical turf in politics: the cultural mainstream," he says.

"The theory goes like this. Our enemy in Afghanistan is religious extremism and intolerance. It's therefore more important than ever to honor the ideals of tolerance - religious, sexual, racial, reproductive--at home."

With this in mind, he writes, some Democrats will argue that the GOP is out of the mainstream because "it's too dependent upon an intolerant 'religious right.'" Fineman describes the strategy as "an incendiary battle plan - essentially comparing the GOP right with the Taliban." The aim, he says, is to draw an outraged response from the president. "The Democrats would have Bush just where they wanted him: in a fire fight at home."

Former Family Research Council head and 2000 presidential contender Gary Bauer says that while the strategy is "disgusting," the Bush administration should pray that the Democrats try it. "If we can't win an argument over values at a time like this, when family and faith are 'in,' we are in the wrong business," writes the president of American Values in his daily commentary.

Bauer said that "The New York Times" "quietly stuck the first knife" in the new effort to "demonize religious people with conservative political views." He was referring to a "Times" article last week that referred to Islamic radicals as "the religious right"--"as if there is some relationship between conservative Christians in America with murderers in the Middle East," Bauer said.

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