I shouldn't be surprised anymore by Jimmy Carter's breathtaking idiocy, but I am. Carter takes a few quantum leaps of logic and gives us this gem as quoted in a Der Spiegel interview:
"The [Christian] fundamentalists believe they have a unique relationship with God, and that they and their ideas are God's ideas and God's premises on the particular issue. Therefore, by definition since they are speaking for God anyone who disagrees with them is inherently wrong. And the next step is: Those who disagree with them are inherently inferior, and in extreme cases -- as is the case with some fundamentalists around the world -- it makes your opponents sub-humans, so that their lives are not significant. Another thing is that a fundamentalist can't bring himself or herself to negotiate with people who disagree with them because the negotiating process itself is an indication of implied equality. And so this administration, for instance, has a policy of just refusing to talk to someone who is in strong disagreement with them -- which is also a radical departure from past history. So these are the kinds of things that cause me concern. And, of course, fundamentalists don't believe they can make mistakes, so when we permit the torture of prisoners in Guantanamo or Abu Ghraib, it's just impossible for a fundamentalist to admit that a mistake was made."
Ah. The old canard that holding absolute beliefs naturally leads to treating other people with indignity and disrespect. What, the Abu Ghraib guards were all Sunday School teachers? They were getting regular communiques from Jerry Falwell? They looked at their WWJD bracelets and decided to sexually humilate the prisoners?
Carter is being ridiculous. If fundamentalism per se were a sure route to violence and inhumanity, then we'd be dealing with a terror wave of militant Baptists and radical Amish.
But if you need a good laugh, read the entire story.