I haven’t been able to write much lately as I’ve been thoroughly swamped. At any rate, Rolling Stone has a new article out on how American youth are being recruited for a religious holy war.

He’s [Ron Luce] been doing this for two decades but it didn’t take off until days after the Columbine shootings of 1999 when, when Luce rallied 70,000 angry, weeping kids at the Pontiac Silverdome outside Detroit. In 2006, he brought his rallies to more than 200,000 kids. Overall, he’s preached to 12 million.

They’re the base. Of that number, Luce has sent 53,000 teen missionaries around the globe to preach “spiritual purity”- chastity, sobriety, and a committment to laissez-faire capitalism… Luce selected more than 6,000 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 very 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.”

Maybe Anthony Paul Smith and Adam Kotsko can amuse me some more by explaining how these groups are fringe lunatic groups that are little more boogeymen fabricated by the media. Where are those progressive religious folk preaching to millions of folk again? Just be sure you don’t use the word “Christian” in referring to these groups. After all, they’re not “true Christians”. Funny me, I take people at their word when they call themselves something. After all, there are millions of good Christians and they never support neo-fascist organizations like this by voting and acting on the basis of brand-name recognition and not bothering to find out more about these groups. That never happens.

Read the article here. Dailykos also has a nice diary up on this filled with lots of linky goodness.