Boot Camp for the Armies of God.

A month ago, David Byrne blogged on the documentary film Jesus Camp, in a post aptly titled American Madrasas. An "even-handed" look at a bible camp in Devils Lake, ND, the film captures the "army of God" metaphors, the us-against-them/ with-Jesus-or-against-him proclamations, and the deep emotion that kids are lathered into in the course of being "saved." While denial of global warming, talk of getting the right judges and politicians in power, and fighting to overturn Roe v. Wade find their way into the camp, Byrne writes of a possibly more unnerving part of the camp:
There were some perfect sound bites — at one point Pastor Fischer instructs the little ones that they should be willing to die for Christ, and the little ones obediently agree. She may even use the word martyr, which has a shocking echo in the Middle East. I can see future suicide bombers for Jesus — the next step will be learning to fly planes into buildings. Of course, the grownups would say, “Oh no, we’re not like them” — but they admit that the principal difference is simply that “We’re right.”
IndiWire reports that the camp, dubbed "Kids on Fire," has it's radically political moments as well (and records the response of the scene to New Yorkers at the TriBeCa Film Festival):
One particularly inflammatory scene in the film takes place at a revival meeting at the camp lead by Fischer and her associates, in front of well over 100 children. Fischer takes a life-size standup photo of President Bush to the stage, with a large American flag in the background, and asks the crowd to raise their hands towards him as they begin to chant for him to appoint conservative judges to the Supreme Court. Fischer and her fellow evangelicals view Bush as their primary hope to push their right wing agenda regarding abortion rights, prayer in school, and gay rights, and the film captures the emotional devotion instilled on a new young generation of evangelicals. Many in the mostly liberal New York audience could be overheard saying that the film should be a call to arms for people on the left side of the cultural/political divide. The evangelicals, however, are reveling that their message has become an entrenched and potentially irreversible reality.
Made by award-winning Boys of Baraka filmmakers Heidi Ewing and Rachel Grading, Jesus Camp opens nationwide September 15 (Twin Citizens, it opens at Minneapolis' Lagoon October 6). Here's the trailer:

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