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Leading Christian Hard-Liner Calls for Military Takeover in U.S.

By David Neiwert on October 3, 2013 - 2:31 pm, Posted in Anti-Muslim, Antigovernment, Christian Right

Rick Joyner, one of the leading lights of the Christian Dominionist movement, recently told his television audience that democracy has failed in America, and that the nation’s only hope, in light of the looming “tyranny” of the Obama administration, is “a military takeover – martial law.”

Said Joyner: “There’s no way our Republic can last much longer. It may not last through Obama’s second term. There are a lot of people who feel that it can’t. That there are forces right now that are seeking to undermine and to destroy the Republic. There’s almost a glib and almost a joyful disregard of the Constitution and belittling of the Constitution. We can’t make it without that. It’s our foundation, our moorings. We’re headed for serious tyranny…

“I think we’ve been used in some wonderful and powerful ways by God. We’ve been one of the most generous nations in history. We’ve done so much good. And that’s why I appeal to the Lord: ‘Don’t let us be totally destroyed, please raise up those who will save us!’ And as I’ve started telling friends for a long time, no election is going to get the right person in there that’s going to restore us, because the system is so broken, so undermined right now, the whole system.

“I believe our only hope is a military takeover – martial law.”

One of the more disturbing aspects of this pronouncement is the fact that Joyner — who heads up the dominionist Oak Initiative, which seeks out “Christian leaders” and then tries to place them within the halls of government, including the military — is also a close associate of retired Gen. Jerry Boykin.

Boykin is best remembered as the general who, while helping to oversee the invasion of Iraq, told an audience that Islamic extremists hated the United States “because we’re a Christian nation, because our foundation and our roots are Judeo-Christians. … And the enemy is a guy named Satan.” (Boykin also told another audience that he tracked down an Islamic terrorist successfully because “I knew that my God was bigger than his.”) More recently, he has gained attention for claiming that President Obama is secretly plotting a Marxist takeover of America through his health-care reforms.

Boykin’s is the first name listed on the board of Joyner’s Oak Initiative. He regularly broadcasts a TV program under the auspices of the Initiative, and has appeared in public and on TV with Joyner many times.

In one of these, they were joined by Tony Perkins of the Family Research Council — where Boykin in 2012 was named executive vice-president — in a discussion of how to get ordinary Christians involved in “the battle that America’s in today”, and Boykin urged them to form a modern-day Spartan army, declaring “Molon Labe” (“Come and take them”): “Well, I don’t know about the rest of you, but I’m at the point now where I am ready to say ‘Molon labe!’ to those in Washington, to those in the special interest groups that want to take my liberties, that want to rob my grandchildren of the ability to have the kind of America that I grew up in. I’m at the point where I’m saying, ‘Molon labe!”

However, even if Boykin agrees with Joyner that a military coup is what’s needed to save America, it is worth keeping in mind that it appears Boykin – who at one time was the nation’s deputy undersecretary of defense for intelligence – now has very little influence within the Pentagon. He was, after all, investigated and rebuked by the Department of Defense for his remarks about Islam.  More recently, his bigoted remarks about Islam resulted in an Egyptian mob attacking Secretary of State Hillary Clinton’s motorcade.

Joyner is not the first conservative to suggest a military coup as a means to overthrow President Obama. In July 2009, while discussing the military coup that had just occurred in Honduras, Rush Limbaugh semi-jokingly suggested that our own military leaders should follow suit, since Obama was “doing everything he could to ensure the defeat of the U.S. military,” later adding: “And if we had any good luck, Honduras would send some people here and help us get our government back.”

Limbaugh’s show is broadcast daily on Armed Services Radio.

  • aadila

    “A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.”

  • http://SPLC Steve

    These Evangelical Christians are so primitive in there beliefs. Civilization has just passed them by. They still worship the genocidal God of hatred, cruelty, and war that bronze age pastoralists sacrificed living animals to. I thought, as human beings, we have come farther than that. Apparently not.

  • Gregory

    You forgot chem-trails.

    A word of caution. Sam Molloy owms the John Birch Society around here. Muscle in on his territory at your peril.

  • aadila

    Terry, democracy and republic are not mutually exclusive forms of government. The United States is both a democracy and a republic.

    Your red herring has just been served for breakfast.

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    “They want our guns, ”

    Supposedly “they” have wanted your guns since the 1970’s. What’s taking them so long?

    “they want to make it law that we buy into the unaffordable health care and if we don’t they say they will suspend our drivers license, fine us or put leans on our homes if we do not comply. ”

    So then you must have been an advocate for single-payer, which would have avoided all this, right?

    “In addition, Monsanto seeds that have been genetically altered and banned in over 26 countries, are approved by your FDA, claiming to be safe for human consumption and proven to cause cancer in lab rats.”

    The study on lab rats was found to be ridiculously flawed and debunked. No scientific, peer-reviewed study has shown that GM foods are dangerous for human consumption. Virtually all the food we eat was genetically modified in one way or another.

    ” But I guess it would be hard for you to comprehend this being that you have probably been drinking fluoridated water all your life, which has been proven to make people stupid.”

    Proven by whom? When? Are we to believe that you haven’t been drinking flouridated water?

    The truth is that with extreme gullibility you buy into these idiotic conspiracy theories because it makes you feel smart and special. You don’t understand how the world works, but you don’t want to put in the time and effort to learn, so you just swallow whatever wacky theory will help you believe that you’ve got it all figured out.

  • Reynardine

    Oh, and Klayman is ramping it up:

  • Reynardine

    Terry, I will show enough respect to our Hays Office to say simply that your objection is specious. A republic, properly understood, is a representative democracy. This means citizens democratically elect representatives, who then represent their interests. It is not a putsch, legislative or military. Anything which is not a democracy cannot be a republic, however it styles itself.

  • Erika

    PAFreedom, the headline reads “Leading Christian Hard Liner . . .”

    What does Hard Liner mean in the context of religion? Generally it means someone who holds a strict view of a religion and often want to impose it on others.

    A Christian Dominionists would definitely qualify – and pretty much anyone other than a perpetually complaining person who always seeks to be victimized by finding discrimination in places where no rational person would see it or a concern troll would not realize that a headline beginning “Leading Christian Hard Liner . . .” is not referring to a member of the mainstream faith. i’m going to give you the benefit of the doubt and assume that you are a concern troll rather than one of those fools who somehow think that despite having almost all politicians ever elected in this country claim to be Christians and the vast majority of the American publicalso claiming that faith that somehow Christians are discriminated against this country.

    So take your concern trolling elsewhere..

  • Brian Morgan

    So, Joyner wants God to bring about a military takeover.


    Suppose there is no military takeover. This, to me (but probably not to Joyner) means that God is saying no to a military takeover.

    If there is no God-inspired military takeover, does this then mean that God supports Obama and approves of what he is doing?

    I thought not.

  • NotsoNap

    Great Religi-Tards with Guns planning to take over the Government.
    Probably forcing the citizens to attend Baptist services and pray every sunday.

  • Charles Dan Austin

    There is no insanity greater than Evangelical Christianity. When you think about it and consider that 96.6% of prisoners in prisons in this country are Christian it should make people think( statistics from American Atheists). The obvious truth is that people don’t use their brain. The comparison is that adherents of Judaism only account for one-tenth of one percent of prisoners making it a much more valuable religion to the country. How much does Jesus cost? Undetermined costs to the social service structure not just in lost taxes but in an estimated fifty thousand dollars or more per person in the prison system.

  • terry

    Hello, Hello we are not a Democracy…….We were formed as a REPUBLIC!

  • Far

    Basically, we are a divided nation between big corporate america and big welfare america and everyone in between are pawns. The millionaire talking heads like Rush fan the flames to enrich themselves.

    We do not need martial law aka the Soviet Union. We need leadership that follows the path the US took to get us to this point of being so rich, so overfed and bloated and so pampered that we look like Rome on steroids. Leadership that puts us all back to work building things, inventing and shutting up about how others choose to live THEIR lives.

    We don’t need NO US Taliban here. Don’t TREAD on ME!

  • Kathe Stein

    So Patrick and others like you, what exactly do you feel is wrong with America. Give specifics. And please don’t assume that those of us who disagree with you looney anarchists think all is perfect. We don’t and that’s why we go through proper channels to try to change things. It’s slow, I agree; but, this take-no-prisoners nonsense leaves way too many bodies behind. In case you’re not familiar with the Russian Revolution or the French Revolution…please take note that hundreds of thousands and probably millions in the case of the Russian Revolution, were innocent victims, guilty of nothing. Your methods create nothing but death and misery for everyone.

  • Louis

    If these right-wing nut jobs are so bummed about their country there are 2 possible ways to create change.

    1. Change our laws through the legislative process or
    2. Get out of this country.

    I like #2. All of the nuts should go to Texas and then secede. Breaks my heart.

  • Sam Molloy

    As chaotic as it seems, our Government has provided the framework – not the guarantee – for the highest standard of living on the planet. Throughout history, the worst episodes have been caused by some search for a trouble free Utopia.x

  • James Robinson

    Don’t worry about a military takeover to overthrow Obama. They are too busy planing for the military to circumvent the Constitution and keep Obama in power after his term ends!

  • Tobias A. Weissman

    What has war accomplished. Some people have said that the 2nd World War has obliterated future wars entirely. Modern History has shown how wrong that statement is. How simple, the Ten Commandments and the spiritual understanding of those Commandments could do for peace than all the rhetoric of all these war mongers can conjure.

  • Patrick

    @Patrick-You obviously have absolutely now clue as to the state of your union and how your president and his administration are determined to destroy my country. They want our guns, they want to make it law that we buy into the unaffordable health care and if we don’t they say they will suspend our drivers license, fine us or put leans on our homes if we do not comply. In addition, Monsanto seeds that have been genetically altered and banned in over 26 countries, are approved by your FDA, claiming to be safe for human consumption and proven to cause cancer in lab rats. But I guess it would be hard for you to comprehend this being that you have probably been drinking fluoridated water all your life, which has been proven to make people stupid.

  • EmmittBrownBTTF1

    This is why we lock up dangerous kooks, it boggles the rational mind that religion gives this guy a furlough, If a leading Harry Potter devotee were make the same argument citing Delorus Umbridge as an authority and Voldemort or “he who shall not be named” and his dark arts as a threat to the nation, then men in white coats would around quick as a flash with a special jacket that straps up in the back.

  • mac creedy

    Joyner and Boykin need to be cannibalized.

  • DavidHP

    Sedition is a criminal act, why hasn’t his guy been arrested?

  • PAFreedom

    Shame on the SPLC for once again hyping up the headlines.

    The headline starts off “Leading Christian…”, beneath of a much more honest line as he may be a leading Christian in an off shoot movement but that is a far cry from the mainstream faith.


    This despot picks up where Jim Bakker left off. He preys upon the fear of that which is unknown and different, the ever-present uncertainty, and the doubt of the masses to trust in the continuation of our way of life. I met him in years past and recognized him as evil incarnate. A snake of many colors, that speaks the words that our elderly believe. He is a RICO case waiting to happen.

  • aadila

    A tutelary theocracy would not solve America’s problems. In theory, it would have to pay for bibles on top of the military budget, and the latter is already bankrupting the country.

  • Ellen Myers

    When you said, “wish the fear mongering home grown terrorists into the cornfields.”, where you thinking of the Twilight Zone episode in which Billy Mumy did that?
    That’s what it made me think of and it made me smile. With all the personal battles I’m presently having, mainly with a right-wing, fundamentalist blood relative that hates me, I need all the smiles I can get. Thanks for that one. :)

  • Missy

    Hey, Joyner:

    The President of the United States is a flipping *Constitutional scholar*!


  • Georgia Citizen

    a military coup? Are people out of their minds.
    Seriously. This is a frighten situation. I am opposed to a military takeover. The military woulf botch up everythin in America.

  • Gregory

    Another thing, anyone who thinks that the military will be able to run our country more efficiently than our elected choices has probably never served in the armed forces.

  • Critical Dragon1177

    David Neiwert,

    WOW, I really hope that no one actually tries to bring this take over about somehow. At least its extremely unlikely that the military would overthrow Obama like Rick Joyner wants. However, there might be a future terrorist attack at least partly inspired by all this rhetoric.

  • IludiumPhosdex

    We can imagine how many of these who see themselves as Divinely-Inspired Warriors Seeking to Reclaim Thy Dear and Lovely Nation to His Name and Glory also want to call from abeyance apartheid South Africa’s mantle of “God’s Own Country” to reinforce their insistence that the United States is, was, and will always be, a White, Bible-Believing Christian Nation.

    Especially when their calls for Divine Intervention towards the Luscious Glory thereof (or so they see it) include Die Gelofte aan Bloedrivier, long cherished by Afrikaner Nationalists (and the apartheid regime in the day) as a Holy of Holies relative to Afrikaner Character and Identity (via Wikipedia, know):

    Here we stand before the Holy God of heaven and earth, vowing unto Him that, if He will protect us and give our enemy into our hand, we shall keep this day and date every year as a day of Thanksgiving like a sabbath, and that we shall erect a house to His Honour wherever it should please Him, and that we will also tell our children that they should share in that with us in memory for future generations. For the honour of His Name will be glorified by giving Him the fame and honour for the victory.

  • concernedcitizen

    It’s true Erika, that many of the knuckleheads who profess to find support in the Bible for their hate, and crimes against humanity claim that it is in the Bible but I simply can’t find the copy they are using…

    Then it dawned on me that they must have that same copy that I have only heard about in folklore.

    One night around the campfire and beer bong uncle Jeb grabbed some old crayons and was inspired by the word and since that night a few drunk idiots declared it gospel.

  • MRJ

    @ Erika,

    Hopefully, someday, you’ll tell us how you really feel.

  • CM

    “Boykin urged them to form a modern-day Spartan army, declaring ‘Molon Labe’ (‘Come and take them’)

    If Boykin is really interested in learning Greek and truly wants to emulate the Spartans, here are a few more words he needs to know: “aites” (“hearer”), “eispnelos” (“inspirer”) and of course “pedophilia,” which needs no translation. Because, of course, Sparta’s whole system of military training was based on sexually bonding a young “hearer” with an older “inspirer,” or mentor.

    Presumably, Boykin isn’t really advocating this Spartan practice. He just doesn’t know what he’s talking about, as usual.

  • Reynardine

    There is little I can add to the foregoing.

  • aadila


    You ask a respectful question and deserve a respectful answer.

    I for one am not happy with the current state of the U.S.A. I am also not very happy when someone cuts ahead of me in line at the grocery store, but that doesn’t translate into grocery stores being evil. This is a democracy and democracy never guarantees happiness, but it does guarantee that you have a form of legal redress for your grievances. When someone considers their grievances above the law, it is they who become the tyrant.

    What is far more distressing than a government which never seems to satisfy half the country (no matter who is in power) is this idea that if our politics do not prevail in the majority that democracy has failed. Democracy, unlike any other form of government, actually requires people to get off their asses and vote. Which does not happen in this country — half the people are unhappy, and half the people also do not vote.

    This very phenonmenon of walking away from democracy and the rule of law is what is going on in Congress with opposition to the Affordable Health Care Act — Congress is empowered with certain means to write and change laws. Once a law is written, approved, and ratified by the executive, trying to change the law by other means (i.e. shutting down the government) is not only irresponsible governance, it is antithetical to the notion of a government which is ruled by the majority.

    We have laws for a reason. Why not use them?

  • Erika

    So according to this guy, the way to save the Constitution and prevent tyranny is to destroy and abolish the Constitution and install a tyrannical military dictatorship organized along tyrannical Old Testament law.

    Let me guess, he also believes that the way to prevent peanut allergies is to eat a big jar of peanuts while sitting on a pile of discarded peanut hulls in a peanut factory.

    Or the way to prevent drowning in freezing cold water is to wear several layers of clothes and to tie a bunch of weights to your feet and jump into the middle of the North Atlantic Ocean in January.

    Or the way to preserve the sexual morality of the community is for all of the men to gather on the edge of town to stone to death a woman who committed the serious crime of being raped or getting pregnant when her husband doesn’t want to have a child and on the way home celebrate a job well done by stopping by the local brothel to have sex with the quite possibly underaged male or female prostitute of their choice.

    Oh wait, of course this guy believes it because that comes directly from the Bible – in fact, as Teabagistan Jesus (who was totally a white guy who rode around on a Tryannisaurus Rex wearing a business suit, a cowboy hat, a big belt buckle in the shape of His chosen country the Confederate States of America emblazend with a big Confederate Battle Flag and a Gasden and the slogan “The South Shall Rise 1840 Years from and when defeated will rise again just like me at some unspecified future date”, and some actually pretty fabulous brontosaurus skin boots) said “Let he who has committed this sin [having sex outside of marriage] cast the first through 1000th stone as long as it is a he because you know, those icky women who show any sign of all of actually liking sex need to be killed unless of course she is a foreigner and then you should make her a prostitute as long as be sure to exchange the proceeds of your pimp business for clean money with those wonderful money changers in the temple who has turned my Father’s house into a den of commerce and productivity. And don’t forget that gay sex is totally icky and will get you stoned to death like you were a woman unless you are having it with a male prostitute who was forced into sexual slavery after being captured in battle – then it totally pleases God.”

  • metaphorge

    Perhaps he’ll hire the new army Stewart Rhodes announced he was going to form today.

    Oh, I’m sorry. It’s not an army. It’s Civilization Preservation units with a military structure and training profile. My mistake.

  • Ruslan Amirkhanov

    Some old fat white men aren’t happy with the way the country is- I guess we’d better let them solve the problem of this “tyranny” via a military coup and martial law! Sounds great!

  • concernedcitizen

    If you look at the more direct threat that happens everyday in America to the quality of life of her citizens I would think the conclusion that would be reached would be: that the homegrown terrorists idiots running around causing trouble are the real threat to our economy and way of life and not the government.

    I’m not saying our government is perfect but we have, over the years had growing factions that have helped to disintegrate the quality of life in many communities. Whether they belong to crime families, underground militias, hate groups or those who coordinate efforts collectively to attack the American way of life; have done far greater damage and continue to do so.

    And yet there are those who blame everything on the government. If we didn’t have a government in place I would hate to think what our streets would be like with our homegrown terrorists and criminal factions at America’s helm.

    So let us now bow our heads and pray that there will be no more drivers hitting White House barriers causing further delays in negotiations and let us continue to wish the fear mongering home grown terrorists into the cornfields.

  • Gregory

    So, Patrick, are you so upset that you want the military to overthrow the elected government?

  • CM

    Chris Rodda of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation has documented Joyner’s and Boykins’ connections with a coalition (which also includes the AFA and FRC) that’s working to ensure that Christian dominionists are in a, well, dominant position in the U.S. military – something that could make this proposed coup d’etat a real possibility. Details at

  • Patrick

    So, are you guys happy with the current state of the USA?

  • supersonic250

    The mark of a true patriot is that they hate America and want to destroy its government. It all makes sense now. *Rolls eyes.*