Thursday, February 04, 2010

Coming soon: "Let my white people go!"

I see a Christian Right claim of "persecuted Christians" about to emerge over the Haiti kidnappers case. Nine of the white Idahoans busted at the Haitian border trying to take Haitian children out of the country illegally were formally charged today with kidnapping in Haiti.

Stephen Kurczy reports on it in Haiti ambassador: 'compassion' for American missionaries charged with kidnapping Christian Science Monitor 02/04/10. And he links to a story reporting on the Christian Defense Coalition getting involved in the case: Update on Attempt to Free American Missionaries in Haiti Christian Newswire 02/04/10.

The official story of the accused kidnappers so far has been that their local Southern Baptist Church in Meridian, Idaho (pop. 85,000) had set up its very own international mission program to set up an orphanage in the Dominican Republic to care for orphans from Haiti. The project started in late 2009. Their project's documents talked about putting kids up for adoption, as well. But the defendants are claiming that they intended to keep the 33 kids they had in their bus in an orphanage - even though they don't have a facility set up yet - in the Dominican Republic, claiming they thought they were orphans. The Haitian Christian minister who, according to press interviews with some of the children's parents came to ask them to give their kids up to the American group, was promising the parents that they could visit them regularly at the orphanage in the Dominican Republic.

So this jumped out at me from the Christian Newswire story, apparently a press release from the Christian Defense Coalition, which Dave Neiwert says "is constantly on the lookout for 'anti-Christian' activities on the part of whatever miscreants it can manufacture":

Rev. Patrick J. Mahoney, Director of the Christian Defense Coalition and the Rev. Rob Schenck, President of the National Clergy Council, prayed and shared their concerns with the [Haitian] Ambassador [in Washington].

Rev. Mahoney, who has worked with members of the Central Valley Baptist Church of Idaho on past projects, assured Ambassador Joseph that the missionaries were caring, loving Christians who were not kidnappers or traffickers. [my emphasis]
Say what? So in addition to this program whose founder with a shady business history was recently inspired to set up isn't the first, or even the second program from that same local church that required the services of the Christian Defense Coalition (CDC)?

Mahoney was formally involved with the anti-abortion group Operation Rescue. His CDC group is highly political: Conservative Christian Group Invokes Slavery In Opposing Obama by Jake Tapper ABC News 07/08/08. Mahoney was very involved with the Terry Schiavo protests in 2005: Activists see base being fired up by Maeve Reston Pittsburgh Post-Gazette 03/28/05.

So what "past projects" has the far-right activist Mahoney worked on with the good white folks at the Central Valley Baptist Church in Meridian, Idaho?

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Marley Greiner said...

I've been writing extensively on Haiti babylifting, trafficking, and now the Silsby crowd. I'm working on a piece on the Christian Defense Coalition now, but it will take a while. I'm still digging, think I hae a couple connections, but I don't want to get it wrong. Of course, what I suspect may not be on the web at all. It's not like these groups are very forthcoming.

Have you noticed that the CVBC webpage is scrubbed?

Here's my Haiti page:

Bruce Miller said...

Yes, I did see that the church has taken anything relating to the arrested "missionaries" off their page. Good luck with your research. This is a strange story but it sheds important light on the exploitive side of some of the international adoption business.