Is Mike Huckabee a fascist? That's the insinuation from Ron Paul, one of Huckabee's rivals for the Republican presidential nomination.
And it's a cheap shot. One needn't agree with, or even like, Huckabee to know that throwing around the f-word "fascism" is a low blow.
This story is important, because it speaks to the larger question of whether Christians can fully participate in politics without being slurred. Here's the context: Huckabee ran a TV spot in which the former Arkansas governor wishes Americans a "Merry Christmas." And in the background, there's a windowpane, or some shelving, that looks a bit like a cross.
On Fox News Tuesday morning, Paul was asked his opinion of the spot. The Texas congressman declared: "It reminds me of what Sinclair Lewis once said. He says, 'When fascism comes to this country, it will be wrapped in the flag, carrying a cross.'"
Here's what's really going on: Paul & Co. despise the federal government so much they can barely see the difference between the modern welfare state and incipient fascism. Fair enough.
That's their right - and that's their problem. But it's not right for Paul to hurl fighting-word epithets at his political rivals. Republicans, and all Americans, should reject such reckless rhetoric.
Prior to this campaign, I had heard many flattering things about Ron Paul via the Internet; primarily from Libertarian sources. After being exposed to the Paul in "full frontal political nudity" I am appalled that this nut is a member of Congress and even more appalled that he is running as a Republican. I don't want people like that on my side.