When I lived in San Francisco, I read the society gossip column authored by Herb Caen every day – not because I cared about the lives of San Francisco socialites, but because Caen was such a witty and lively writer and managed to beautifully convey the San Francisco ambiance. So far I haven’t managed to find in St. Louis a substitute for Caen’s evocation of the life and times of the denizens of Baghdad on the Bay, as he termed San Francisco in the pre-war days when Baghdad was evocative of the Arabian Nights rather than WMDs. However, today I found that it can pay for a political blogger to occasionally glance at the local equivalent, Deb Peterson’s “Breaking Schmoose” in the St. Louis Post-Dispatch, which informed me that Rep. Tod Akin, one of the dueling GOP senatorial primary hopefuls, was on the verge of becoming a movie star- at least among the die-hard fundamentalist evangelicals who form his most reliable constituency:
U.S. Rep. Todd Akin’s bid for the U.S. Senate may be experiencing some growing pains, but – thanks to a child star turned conservative crusader – he’ll soon be enjoying some face time on the big screen.
Akin, who’s slugging it out with fellow Republicans for a chance to take on the Democratic incumbent, Claire McCaskill, is featured in a new film by Kirk Cameron, the curly-haired cutey who spent the 1980s portraying the unctuous Mike Seaver on TV’s “Growing Pains.”
Now, Cameron and his wife, Chelsea Noble, a co-star on the show, are Christian evangelicals who promote projects aimed at like-minded people. Cameron’s latest undertaking is “Monumental,” the film in which he gets a little help from his friend Akin in retracing American history in search of the nation’s moral fiber.
It should be a good fit. Cameron, who has recentlly garnered attention for his homophobic pronouncements seems to have a lot in common with the Christian dominionist Akin who has been vigilant for opportunities to try to institutionalize homophobia in government policies, declaring that, “I oppose the attempts of homosexual activists to treat homosexual activity as a civil right to be protected and promoted by the government.” Of course, for folks like Akin “protected” always implies “promoted.”
Nor is it hard to imagine the nature of Akin’s contribution to the movie. As Peterson notes, Akin, who fancies himself as an historical scholar, will share his views on U.S. history in the movie. Sadly, according to the evidence available to date, those views seem to be derived from fellow dominionist and pseudo-historian David Barton. People for the American Way charaterizes Barton as:
… a Republican Party activist and a fast-talking, self-promoting, self-taught, self-proclaimed historian who is miseducating millions of Americans about U.S. history and the Constitution.
Barton has been profitably peddling a distorted “Christian nation” version of American history to conservative religious audiences for the past two decades. His books and videos denouncing church-state separation have been repeatedly debunked by respected historians, but that hasn’t kept Barton from becoming a folk hero for many in the Religious Right. …
Peterson reports that the movie will be playing a limited engagement in St. Louis starting March 27. Since I like a good laugh as well as the next person, I’m tempted to attend – if the thought of giving good money to these charlatans isn’t too overwhelming. I may just have to wait for the DVD.