Extremist religious groups are extremely scary

A war has been waged in the U.S. and this war is not fought with guns and soldiers but rather with the voices of brainwashed teenagers. According to an article in Rolling Stone entitled “Teenage Holy War”, Ron Luce, a radical evangelical Christian, has started a youth group known as Battlecry. He has created this group to lead teenagers in a war against the wicked, the weak-minded, and what he claims to be “pop culture terrorism.” Luce calls traditional Christians traitors and uses fickle-minded children to do his dirty work in what he believes is a religious revolution.

According to the same article in Rolling Stone, “Luce selected more than 6,000 (teenagers) for his Honor Academy, some of whom become political operatives, media activists and militant preachers who then funnel fresh kids into the Academy. It’s a vertically integrated movement, a machine that produces ‘leaders for the army,’ a command cadre that can count on the masses Luce conditions as its infantry.” It sounds to me like this man has a notion that seems very familiar. Oh yeah, that’s because his youth camp seems much like Hitler’s youth camp many years ago. Convince them to believe you when their young and then you have them in the palm of your hand when they are older, more powerful and respected in the community.

This man is nothing better than a tyrant in my book. He attracts teenagers to his events by having festivals that feature bands that are popular and he uses this to his advantage by pouring his message upon them in a very attracting manner. This man should be looked upon as crazy and frightening. He has thousands of teenagers at his disposal that believe his every word and would probably obey his every request. This is a man that says he wants to “start a war” and the scarier part of that statement is that he claims it is not a metaphor.

I don’t understand many things about this radical movement because I believe they contradict themselves in a number of different ways. These Battlecry extremists believe in Jesus, but they also think that passive Christians are “sissies.” Last time I checked, Jesus was a passive and forgiving man, not a radical extremist. He did not want to wage war against those different than him, but in the contrary, he wanted to help point peoples’ lives in the right direction and preach the word of God.

According to the Battlecry Web site, there is a crisis in the world today and it is explained as, “A stealthy enemy has infiltrated our country and is preying upon the hearts and minds of 33 million American teens. Corporations, media conglomerates, and purveyors of popular culture have spent billions to seduce and enslave our youth. So far, the enemy is winning. But there is plenty we can do. We need to take action. We need to answer the Battle Cry.”

I understand that the media may be a little too obscene for our children, but one has to remember that we live in a free country. If a person does not like how the media presents information and entertainment, they are free to simply not watch or listen to it. But I believe it is rather extreme to want to stop it all together. The beautiful thing about this country is that each person is free to hold his or her own personal ideas and beliefs. If someone wants to believe that the media is evil and seducing our youth, that’s fine. But don’t try to tell me how to live my life.

According to a CBN article entitled “Getting teens to ‘acquire the fire’,” In March 2003, Ron was recognized as a national voice on teen issues and appointed by President George W. Bush to the White House Advisory Commission on Drug-Free Communities. Sounds to me like our government is mixing church and state and promoting the downward spiral of idiocy in America.

Don’t expect this article to be the last that you hear about the organization known as Battlecry. They will draw more media attention and they might start attracting more half desperate youths. Ron Luce seems like a man that will do anything for his cause, and that is the definition of an extremely scary man.

Send comments to Scott Recker at [email protected]