Conservative Spotlight: Rabbi Daniel Lapin

In America’s Real War (Multnomah Publishers, 1998), author and activist Rabbi Daniel Lapin explained that beneath the hot issues of the day in American politics lay the real issue: Will America preserve her traditional religion-based culture or complete her transition to leftist secularism?

In a recent interview, Lapin said, “The choice today in America is not between a rational, reasonable neutrality on the one hand and a fervent religious conservatism on the other. The choice is between a sinister secular fundamentalism and a benign religious conservatism. And it’s clear who’s been trying to impose their beliefs on everyone else for the past 40 years.”

Lapin, an Orthodox rabbi and host of a nationally syndicated radio show who emigrated from South Africa in 1973, is among an increasing number of American Jews who are turning their backs on the anti-religious, radically leftist American Jewish political and cultural establishment. He said that liberal Jews, such as many in the Reform Jewish movement, have “replaced the faith of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob with the doctrines of secular fundamentalism.”

Lapin is the president of Toward Tradition, which seeks to encourage Christians and Jews to work together in promoting faith-based positions on topics of the day. “Toward Tradition is a non-profit 501(c)(3), educational organization working to advance our nation toward the traditional Judeo-Christian values that defined America’s creation and became the blueprint for her greatness. . .,” says the group. “These values are: faith-based American principles of constitutional and limited government; the rule of law; representative democracy; free markets; a strong military; and, a moral public culture.”

“One must always remember,” said Lapin, “that politics is nothing more than the practical application of our most deeply-held values.” An admirer of openly religious George W. Bush, Lapin said that the current same-sex “marriage” debate is hampered by religious Americans’ unwillingness to use their religious beliefs to resolve the issue since fashionable secular mores provide no solid ground on which to oppose the idea. “I consider it an enormous challenge to convey in comprehensible terms why having two homosexuals put rings on their fingers hurts their neighbors,” said Lapin. “What I say is attempts to construct a secular argument against homosexuality are essentially doomed. In the final analysis, we have to expand the debate to a larger battlefield. Instead of debating ‘God’ in the Pledge of Allegiance one month, homosexual marriage this month, abortion the month after that, we should ask, ‘Are we one nation under God or not?'” If we are-and we understand that to mean the God of the Bible-the answers to all such questions become clear.

In a fanciful January 8 article purportedly written by Adolf Hitler, Lapin theorizes that the late dictator would have found much to applaud in modern liberalism, which has taken up many National Socialist initiatives, from gun control to euthanasia to anti-smoking laws: “Joseph Goebbels put it quite correctly when he said, ‘The Fuhrer is deeply religious though completely anti-Christian. He views Christianity as a symptom of decay. Rightly so, it is a branch of the Jewish race.’ We can be confident that America will preserve and develop our Nazi ideas of human perfectibility because of one stroke of genius that even Reich minister of propaganda, the great Joseph Goebbels, has to admire. Those who are advocating socialism in America, whether deliberately or inadvertently, have succeeded in turning the term ‘Nazi’ into a slur that may be used only against those on the right, such as Christian conservatives. Never is it used against those on the left who are precisely the Americans doing most to advance our agenda.”

Toward Tradition holds “friendship forums” bringing together “Jews and Christians who want to celebrate the shared approach to family, faith, and fortune,” said Lapin. He said that he favors conservative Christian ascendancy in America because he favors “Biblical civilization” over other forms.

“I don’t think that America’s Jewish community does itself any long-term good by denouncing every public expression of Christian faith as if it were a force-fed dose of castor oil,” Lapin wrote January 2 “This anti-Christianism is not only unhealthy for all Americans; I think it is particularly destructive for Jews to be leading the extirpation of all signs of Christian fervor from the village square.”

“Theologically, Jews and Christians are different,” Lapin said, but when it comes to important social questions, believing Jews and Christians agree on such issues as, “Is the family, a man and a woman, the basic unit of society? I’d like someone who believes in Biblical civilization and not the culture of the Koran.” Lapin’s next book, due later this year, is titled Storm Troopers of Secularism.

Lapin may be reached at Toward Tradition, P.O. Box 58, Mercer Island, Wash. 98040 (206-236-3046; fax: 206-236-3288; e-mail:; website: