Forget those lame rumors about Democratic presidential candidate Barack Obama being a secret Muslim. That's so spring 2008.
The latest rumors gaining momentum among the far-right political fringe is that Obama is the Anti-Christ, and Sarah Palin is a warrior anointed by God to stop him. No, really.
A large part of Republican presidential nominee John McCain’s campaign so far has consisted of using smears to spread false allegations against his Democratic rival — both officially sanctioned ones by his staff (like Obama supports sex education for kindergartners) and unofficial ones using the Internet, the same type of slime used so effectively against McCain himself during the 2000 Republican primary race in the South.
The latest chain e-mails once again use a flaky twist on Judeo-Christian mythology to increase people’s paranoia and instill evangelical Christians with the bizarre notion that they’re doing God’s work by voting for the McCain/Palin ticket.
The first chain e-mail begins by offering a skewed version of Obama’s background, then asking, “Ummm ... where is the pride in his white heritage? After all — it was his white grandparents that raised him!”
Ugly, but nothing new.
Then the e-mail gets bizarre. “This will make you re-think. A trivia question in Sunday School: How long is the beast allowed to have authority in Revelations? Guess the Answer. Revelations, Chapter 13, tells us it is 42 months, and you know what that is. Almost a four-year term to a presidency. All I can say is, Lord have mercy on us!”
It continues, “According to the Book of Revelations the Anti-Christ will be a man, in his 40s, of MUSLIM descent, who will deceive the nations with persuasive language, and have a MASSIVE Christ-like appeal ... the prophecy says that people will flock to him and he will promise false hope and world peace, and when he is in power, will destroy everything. Is it OBAMA??”
Never fear, though. Another chain e-mail making the rounds states that Palin is a righteous heroine who will save the day.
The e-mail, originally written by Jim Bramlett, a former vice president with the Christian Broadcasting Network, states that Obama’s exceptionally persuasive oratory skills may be supernatural in nature. Further, Bramlett cites Obama’s nomination acceptance speech on a “Greek temple-like stage,” adding that the multi-faith benediction that followed was “an abomination.”
Apparently believing that Palin is a veritable Lara Croft in glasses and a hair bun, Bramlett continues, “God was not pleased ... Enter Gov. Sarah Palin. With incredible timing, the very next day, Sarah Palin also appeared out of nowhere…
"We quickly learned that Sarah is a born-again, spirit-filled Christian, attends church, and has been a ministry worker. Sarah is that standard God has raised up to stop the flood. She has the anointing. You can tell by how the dogs are already viciously attacking her. But they will not be successful. She knows the One she serves and will not be intimidated.”
Republicans can say all they want about supposed “liberals” being out of touch with the mainstream but, if McCain’s victory depends on energizing right-wing kooks who believe in this tripe, the mainstream ain’t all it’s cracked up to be.
— Kevin Osborne