THE TEAVANGELICALICALS: THE INSIDE STORY OF HOW THE EVANGELICALS AND THE TEA PARTY ARE TAKING BACK AMERICA (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2012) is obviously one of those books thrown together quickly so as to capitalize on something trendy, in this case the Tea Party’s moment in the ongoing comedy that is American politics.
The slick cover is laid out in red, white, and blue with a picture of a tea cup and saucer, the capitol rotunda in the cup, and a yellow tag from a tea bag dangling on the side. The tag is a miniature of the famous Gadsden Flag with a rattlesnake coiled and poised to strike. Embossed on the side of the cup next to the dangling tag is a cross. The image of a snake side by side with the image of the cross is obviously meant to imply some sort of alliance.
The book cover is indicative of the problem I have with the message it contains. Obviously whoever designed the cover intends it to be a visual symbol of the book’s title, Teavangelicals. It is an inspired design, but it no doubt says a lot more about the book’s target audience than the editors intended.
Juxtaposing a coiled snake, the symbol of evil, with the Christian cross, a symbol of hope is much worse than being simply incongruous. This oversight is indicative of the audience to whom the book is being marketed.
Those who identify with the Tea Party movement and the radical rightwing of the Republican Party, although very diverse in their socio-economic backgrounds, tend to be profoundly ignorant of American history, church history, and history in general. Their lack of familiarity with history is matched by their ignorance of the Bible which, if they read it at all, they read through an ideological grid.
David Brody, author of TEAVANGELICALS, is Chief Political Correspondent for the Christian Broadcasting Network. He appears frequently on the CBN’s 700 Club and hosts a television program called The Brody File. Given the persona of CBN’s founder and former presidential candidate, Pat Robertson, one should not be surprised to learn that Mr. Brody was commanded by none other than God to write this book. Why? No doubt to encourage patriotic Americans in 2012 to rise up against the spirit of Anti-Christ who, they believe, occupies Washington, DC.
Mr. Brody’s home page describes him as a frequent contributor to Glenn Beck’s GBTV network and a regular news analyst for FOX NEWS. Zondervan Publishing and FOX NEWs network are both owned by the infamous billionaire media tycoon, Rupert Murdoch. I am not attempting some “guilt by association” trick, but merely suggesting that a certain mentality is common to this whole assembly of characters.
I have not gone through the book chapter by chapter pointing out the numerous factual errors, distortions of fact, and simple invention of “facts.” Those familiar with, but not under the spell of, FOX NEWS, The 700 Club, or the now defunct NEWS OF THE WORLD can easily imagine. Those interested should consult Joel L. Watts, “This generation’s Mein Kampf” [http://www.amazon.com/The-Teavangelicals-Evangelicals-America-ebook/dp/B006BEEU78].
TEAVANGELICALS will sell well for a brief period. Then it will become a remainder offered for a mere buck or two, and finally end up (hopefully unread) among boxes of similar books at church yard sells. With so many good books being published, I cannot recommend this one.
Until next time, be good to all of God’s creation, and always live under the mercy.