Monday, January 04, 2010

Tea Parties and Obama Effigy in Jimmy Carter's Hometown of Plains, GA

Early Saturday morning an effigy of President Obama was found hanging on a storefront, in front of a large Jimmy Carter sign, in Carter's hometown of Plains, Georgia. Watch this video: the store owner says it is "not a story" and refuses to talk; only black citizens seem willing to talk.

That this cowardly event took place in Carter's hometown is evidence that racism in America, and politics, is far from over.

On July 4, 2009, some 400 persons attended an anti-government, anti-Obama Tea Party rally held in Plains (photos). Among the sponsors was FreedomWorks, a conservative political organization devoted to small government and unfettered capitalism, and who promotes the Tea Party movement on racist online forums (whether this is done by FreedomWorks members or paid staffers is unclear; be aware that the forums link contains some graphic language, but also note the enthusiasm of racists for the Tea Party). The money trail reveals that FreedomWorks is the joint intertwining of radical Republicans, anti-government forces, racists, and certain big corporations.

Speakers at the Tea Party rally in Plains included an attorney speaking against separation of church and state, and Baptist pastor James Brown from Barnesville who spoke on behalf of states-right, Baptist, candidate-for-governor Ray McBerry. McBerry is the Georgia Chapter Chairman of the League of the South, a racist, southern nationalist organization. Brown (who in October started a small, strict Calvinist church comprised of two families with lots of kids) is also a member of the League of the South, as well as the racist-affiliated neo-confederate organization Sons of Confederate Veterans, and is the author of the Southern Resurgence blog and the Baptist Vision Web site.

In other words, back in July, the good - probably mostly church-going - white folks who turned out for the Plains Tea Party (note that while Plains is 60% African-American, the Plains Tea Party photos above are only of whites) got a good dose of southern racism (inferred or spoken, or perhaps both) from preacher and politician alike. In addition, here's the kind of anti-Obama posters that have appeared at Georgia Tea Parties such as the one in Plains.

Consider the July event in the context of this statement from Dr. Anthony Samad, an associate professor of African American studies at East Los Angeles College: "I think there's this notion that we're in a post-racial period in America because of the election of the first African American president. However, this president has received more death threats than any other president in the history of America."


Bruce said...

(I attempted to post this response to the URL noted below, but the blog required registration, and I did not receive my password via email as the automated software said I would.)

Tom Knighton, a speaker at the July 4 Tea Party in Plains, took exception to my Plains effigy blog post. See

I did not bring up Tom in my post, for a reason: he seems like a nice guy from what I can tell about him from a distance, is not a leader of a white nationalist organization and/or author of white supremacist web sites, and in no way seems to be a racist as far as I know ... unlike the political candidate and preacher I profiled (the former was invited to speak, but the preacher spoke in his place).

So in his criticism of my post, Tom claims he is not racist (cool!) and that racism has nothing to do with Tea Parties ... yet seems quite defensive of a known racist leader speaking at the event (if I invite a known white supremacist leader to speak at a political rally of my making, it is fair to say that I am at the very least "inferring" that racism is OK, as I said in my blog) ... and VERY defensive of the effigy of Obama.

I quote from Tom: "I guess it never dawned on you, with your Phd. in history, that effigies are an age old tool of political criticism. They were hung for many American Presidents. Not just the black ones. No, they were hung and often burned for all kinds of reasons. So why is it now that it’s suddenly racist?"

For the record, Tom, I have some really nice friends, whom I like a lot, who are racists. They're "normal" folks otherwise, some are church-going Christians, and they talk about things other than race, but they're still racist. This is the story of the white South for the past 200 years or so. And incidentally, my dissertation was on Southern history - the South and the Civil War, to be more precise.

But since Tom has chosen to ignore the racist element of Tea Parties, hopefully the masses of white nationalists who have found a political home in the Tea Parties will just leave Tom alone to live in his little bubble.

So Tom, this bubble's for you! :)

Baptist Vision said...


Your post is the most ludicrous and slanderous lie I have ever read. Your writing ability is not anything close to journalism. Just because you have a Phd just means you have learned bigger words and more of them to spread your vile, not that your writing is factual. I have tried every email address listed in which to email you. They all keep coming back undeliverable. Anyway, it really does not matter since you have chosen to spew this rot all over the internet. I am asking you to please write a retraction until you have actually done your research in which to write on the the subject. I have written an open letter to write @

For Christ & Covenant,

Rev. James Brown Jr.
"Give Calvinism a Chance!"

Baptist Vision said...

Sorry, the web address should have been

Baptist Vision said...

I'm still not sure the previous post got the whole address. Let's try again!

Bruce Gourley said...

Hello James,

I'll be happy to converse with you. Just tell me which of the following (stated in my blog) is incorrect in your estimation, and we can start from there:

1) You are the pastor of a strict Calvinist Church. True of false?

2) The League of the South and Sons of Confederate Veterans, with which you are affiliated, are white nationalist organizations. True or false?

3) You are the webmaster/author of author of the Southern Resurgence blog and the Baptist Vision Web site. True or false?

Am I missing anything?

- Bruce

Baptist Vision said...

I have answered those questions in the link above. False will do for now on the "white nationalist" accusations. You can read more in-depth at the link above to start with. If you didn't not know the answer you should have asked before you wrote it as fact.

I was going to deal with the "strict Calvinist" issue but it is really such a mute point. We are a Calvinist Baptist Church plant. We are starting this church from nothing except outside support. We even decided not to attempt to attain funds through any mission funding of any kind. Not because we are against it but because we believe we can do it without pulling missions money away from where it needs to go.

We are based on the 1689 Second London Confession of Faith, which makes us Particular but not necessarily "strict" in the Baptist use of the term. Calvinist Baptists have only used the term in relation to closed communion. However, we practice open communion. I don't know of any other sense in using the word as Baptists. If you mean we are "exclusively" or "rigidly" Calvinists I don't know how to respond to that. That is not a recognized term, and frankly, you just added a adjective to make us sound evil. We are a Reformed Baptist Church and Calvinism is one of the terms that can describe us as we are Calvinists concerning the Doctrines of Grace.

Bruce Gourley said...

James: So I assume five point Calvinist (rather than "strict Calvinist") is the terminology that you prefer? Yet your website infers that Arminians are heretics. Would you disagree with this statement?

Your covenantal theology also seems to imply strict Calvinism.

And according to your own words on your church website, you oppose democracy and insist that the only proper mode of government is (covenantal) theocracy:

"Covenant Baptist Church is also distinguished by its importance upon the authority of the Word of God. It teaches that the Bible is the absolute standard for the home, the church, and civil government as Christ is the Lord of both heaven and earth. CBC also puts a high emphasis upon the family and believes in family-integrated worship services as the oldest to the youngest worship together and hear the Word of God. The church also opposes democracy and totalitarian forms of church and civil government. CBC believes all forms of government should be under Christ, ruled by His Word as constitutional, representative, and covenantal forms of government."

This is indeed a very strict view of Calvinism / Covenant theology.

As to the League of the South as a white nationalist organization, the LOTS website plainly says it is:

"Q:Why does the LS seek to protect the Anglo-Celtic core population and culture of the historic South?
A: The Anglo-Celtic peoples settled the South and gave it its dominate culture and civilisation. We believe that the advancement of Anglo-Celtic culture and civilisation is vital in order to preserve our region as we know it. Should this core be destroyed or displaced the South would be made over in an alien image — unfamiliar and inhospitable to our children and grandchildren. We, as Anglo-Celtic Southerners, have a duty to protect that which our ancestors bequeathed to us. If we do not promote our interests then no one will do it for us."


Baptist Vision said...

Bruce: I prefer the truth. The terms have already been historically decided or presently determined by common and accepted use. You simply can’t make things up.

As I've already stated, your use of strict in this sense is "strictly" descriptive on your part with no meaning. The term as you use it has no meaning in relation to distinguish different versions of Calvinism. Historically, Calvinism has only one meaning, which is the adherence to 5 doctrinal points many times refered as the TULIP. Calvinism deals with the doctrines of grace not church government. While I confess Calvinism will influence your worldview, it does not directly relate to ecclesiology.

I'm sure you think yourself clever to link Covenant Theology, Theocracy, and Calvinism as if they are one and the same. They are not even though I do hold to all three. But your mixing of the three shows your ignornace of all. While it is true they are built upon each other in the system I adhere to, one could follow Calvinism and Covenant Theology yet reject a Christian civil theocracy.

Still yet, theocracy must be defined for it to have any meaning. I am sure your definition and my definition are miles apart. My definition would include constitutionalism, republicanism, representative government, Sola Scriptura, and other such revelations of Christian theocracy. You see, I am not interested in non-Christian theocracy definitions because I oppose any form of government not sanctioned by the God of Scripture.

How does Anglo-Celtic = White Nationalism. If any, if you want to make the hop, skip, and a jump to your conspiracy theories it would have to be Irish Nationalism. If you read the LS material you will find their hostility is toward the New England Yankees not other races. There are always going to be racist yahoo's trying to commandeer our message if there is something they can gain. All the skinhead wannabe’s will use any and every opportunity to spew their hate. In my experience of fighting against the supremacists and the uncooperative, fraudulent scheme y’all call “mainstreams,” its all from the same hog trough. Both are in rebellion to the Word of God and fight like heck against us.

Baptist Vision said...

I have answered your insignificant questions but you have failed to address the seriousness of your slander. You are avoiding the error of your ways by changing the subject. Nothing you have stated proves racism. You have offered no proof that the effigy has any connection to the Tea Party last summer. You have slandered millions of Americans, Southerners, the good people of Plains, Freedom Works, Tea Party organizers and attendees, the families of Covenant Baptist Church and me. With no recourse of defense, you have attempted to malign public opinion against such people based on a charge that only you determine the definition of and what constitutes proper evidence. Yet, the word is associated with ideologies such as Nazism, which none of us believes and all detest in the strongest of language and actions. Therefore, you are guilty of bearing false witness in an attempt to destroy our reputation by associating our names with beliefs and deeds we do not represent. This is the worst sort of character assassination, which is the result of hate flowing from the heart. Though you might not pull the literal trigger, you would trigger the destruction of your neighbor by killing his character unjustly. Only hate would seek the unjustified destruction of another.

“Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment:” -Matthew 5:21-22

"Whosoever hateth his brother is a murderer..." -1 John 3:15

It is apparent your hatred of Bible-believing Christians has blinded you to the truth.

Bruce Gourley said...

Thanks, James, for confirming your strict Calvinist, theocratic and white nationalist ideology/theology, which you defend with deception, ignorance, and the abuse of scripture.

(Incidentally, you are the one who played the Nazi card, not me.)

Baptist Vision said...

Bruce, is that the best you can do? I have shown that "strict Calvinism" is not even a historical accepted term but concocted by you in an attempt to make me sound worse than a Calvinist. I am simply a historic Calvinist Baptist. My secondary confession of faith is based on the 1689 London Confession of Faith, which was the same confession as the 1742 Philadelphia Confession followed by the Charleston Confession. These three confessions are essentially the same and define Calvinistic Baptists.

As for my "theocratic" beliefs, I seriously doubt you know what I believe politically. I believe in republican, representative, constitutional government under God. The very same system America was founded under with separation of powers among men delegated by God. This source of authority by which are men are to submit in the three God ordained institutions of the home, church, and state is the Word of God.

Isn't white nationalism and Nazism kinsman and maybe even one and the same? Is there a distinction between Hitler and White Nationalism? You are the one who has tried to identify others and me as part of this damnable movement. Yet, you don't even know what my views are on the subject. Talk about defending your views with deception and ignorance. However, I can't accuse you of using Scripture. Why would you care if I abused Scripture or not? Do you even believe it is the Word of God? If it is the Word of God, how have I abused it? I believe it is the Words of God. If God said it, I believe it and receive it from God. Therefore, I do not question it. Who is the created to question the Creator?

Maybe instead of making up racist slander against good Southern conservatives, you might want to address the real racist attitudes of Harry Reid and Bill Clinton in the Democratic Party. Hanging out with Robert Byrd all those years must have rubbed off.

Bruce Gourley said...

James: 1) There is indeed a long history of strict Calvinism in Baptist life, 2) the United States was founded (at the insistence of Baptists!) upon the principle of separation of church and state, and 3) you well know that white nationalism predated Nazism (and was a cultural foundation of the white antebellum/Civil War era South).

So, James, let me encourage you to continue your rantings, as you are revealing more about more about your personal biases and beliefs.

Anonymous said...
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Bruce Gourley said...

Meghan McCain, certainly not a liberal, calls the recent National Tea Party gathering racist. Go to