Religion and violence

Generally we think of the Christian’s Jesus Christ as a man of peace. Perhaps he was, but some of his followers have rejected Christ’s teachings and are redefining the meaning of Christian.

Can we talk about the history of religion in America? From the Quakers to the Pilgrims and the Colony of Maryland many religious groups migrated to America in order escape the European established government religion.

While researching my genealogy I discovered that my ancestors were refugees from state run religions like the Church of England attempts to eradicate Catholics and the influence of the Catholic Church. Alternatives to the Church of England where repressed and believers fled to the colonies. In some cases the Pilgrim brand of Christianity was too mild and true believers left the Bay Colony and founded Connecticut. There was a large religious cult in western New York. Some of my ancestors migrated in that direction but their names weren’t on the religious rolls of that cult. These same ancestors packed up and moved to Illinois. Every third or fourth generation my ancestors backed away from organized religion.

Cults and religious con men and women are part of our American history. Today the religious zealots are allow nearly free reign. In the 1980s the religious right decided that to win any political victories and to force their religious dogma on the National required the take over of one of the political parties. After researching both parties the religious right chose the GOP.

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