Can you tell the difference in the two above photos?

I cannot, but I can point out some similarities for you:

  • Both are militia type groups
  • Both could be considered “terrorists”
  • Both have strong religious beliefs
  • Both are driven by faith to kill people for god
  • Both justify their violence by saying they are doing god’s work

Recently a Christian militia group called Hutaree (taken from the word for Christian warrior) had their base camp raided in Michigan by police to prevent a plot to kill law enforcement officers that they hoped would fuel an anti-government uprising. SAY WHAT???!!!???

To read the article about the Hutaree on the NYT, head here.

But I thought only Muslims were violent religious fanatics? How could proper, white Christians be terrorists? Well, even if you want to ignore the whole Spanish Inquisition and other genocides like it,  some excerpts from the Hutaree’s website can shed a bit of light into this modern day American inquisition:

Christ is our king of kings and top general of all things, for we are not of this world but we live in it.

Jesus wanted us to be ready to defend ourselves using the sword and stay alive using equipment. The only thing on earth to save the testimony and those who follow it, are the members of the testimony, til the return of Christ in the clouds. We, the Hutaree, are prepared to defend all those who belong to Christ and save those who aren’t. We will still spread the word, and fight to keep it, up to the time of the great coming.

Scary stuff when violent people have no disregard for this one life we are guaranteed and look for a brighter world somewhere else. My point in all this (other than to point out the irony of this whole situation)? Religion causes major differences in people. Seeing how faith can cause people to become very passionate, these differences begin to fuel the seeds of hatred for anyone who believes something other than you. Hatred leads to violence. And violence in the name of god is NOT justified.

A plea of “but Muhammad told me to do it,” does not hold warrant, and neither does, “but Jesus told me to do it.” If people actually understood what they were being brainwashed with then they would realize that violence is the exact opposite of the basis of the teachings of both Muhammad and Jesus. When religious soldiers pray to god, whose side do you think he’s on?