U.S. Rep. Walter B. Jones (R-N.C.) believes that people opposed to his bill that would legalize partisan politicking by houses of worship aren't just misguided or wrong - they're "evil" and bad for America.
Jones made those outrageous comments during a Sept. 20 interview with the New Bern, N.C., Sun Journal. Jones was speaking at a dinner sponsored by the local branch of the Christian Coalition and took a few minutes beforehand to talk about his bill with the newspaper.
Asked about the presence of 30 anti-Christian Coalition protestors outside, Jones called them "evil people," and added, "They are so fearful of traditional, conservative religion in America. These people are bad for the future of America."
In fact, the people marching outside simply opposed the agenda of the Christian Coalition and the larger Religious Right. The protest, organized by the New Bern Peace & Justice Coalition, was designed to draw attention to recent attacks on the separation of church and state, including Jones' church-politicking bill and the "faith-based" initiative.
Protestors carried signs reading, "Democracy, not theocracy," and participant Howard Shirley remarked, "When a certain religion controls your government, we're all sunk."
According to Jones' reasoning, lots of other people must be evil too. Apparently, a lot of members of Congress are evil. In October of 2002, the House of Representatives voted on Jones' bill, rejecting it by a 239-178 vote.
A majority of the American people must also be evil. A recent poll by the Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life found that 65 percent of Americans oppose the type of church-based politicking that Jones' bill would allow.