On September 17th in the year of our Lord, 2014, John D. Lofton, Jr., went the way of all flesh, and was gathered to his fathers.
I knew John personally, if superficially. We first became acquainted through his radio show, but I would go on to have long correspondences with the man via email and social media. John even commissioned some illustrative work from me on a couple of occasions.
When John was on, he was really on – like in his interview of congressman Bob Barr: that was classic Lofton. Once engaged, he’d bird-dog secularists till they forgot their names. Listening to that interview, you can just hear the gears spinning in ol’ Bob’s head as he rethinks his not having fought in Viet Nam; surely a Punji pit would have been a better fate than that interview. I just can’t listen to that one without explosive fits of laughter.
His televised exchange with Frank Zappa was also one for the books, not necessarily because it was John’s best showing, but if for no other reason than because he got to call Frank Zappa an idiot to his face. I mean, really, how many people get to do that? And yeah, it was a good showing on John’s part.
There is also a story about John which was relayed to me by a third party who knew him well: one night John and others of the Chalcedon Foundation crowd were eating at a restaurant, and, John being John, he tried to witness to his waitress. She began debating and insisted that she didn’t believe in absolute truth or morality, at which point John popped the clutch into presuppositional apologetics mode. Meaning only to impress upon her the inescapability of morality, he asked rhetorically, “Well, why don’t I just rape you, then?” But the waitress, a bubblegum-popping product of government education, did not traffic in nuance. She took his words as a threat and immediately called the police. Again, how many of us can say that our employ of the transcendental argument resulted in a near-arrest and prosecution for terroristic threats and sexual battery?
Greg Bahnsen could not even boast as much.
John’s penchant for putting a twist in people’s knickers continues posthumously. Since the announcement of his passing, one fellow has made it his personal mission to set the record straight on the legacy of John Lofton. His name is David Bronstein. On his obituary column, as well as every other post I’ve seen about John’s passing, there’s Mr. Bronstein impugning John’s testimony as a Christian by reminding everyone that John was *gasp* a Calvinist. But that’s not all; read for yourself:
Was John Lofton a Christian?
Lofton’s “passion” for religion-politics was an obsession. It was a vehicle through which Lofton could talk AT people (never with them); a vehicle through which he could express his narcissistic, bully personality.
Lofton somehow evaded military service, and would not have lasted long in most places of employment. His only practical job was a grocery bagger – where he admittedly stole beer and treats, then later ripped hubcaps. Did Lofton ever turn himself in to authorities, or offer an apology and restitution once he got “born again”? Despite his sins, Lofton claimed moral authority to preach, to bulldoze everybody he met, even delaying store lines to lecture a clerk.
And what did Lofton preach? What did he cherish? Lofton cherished John Calvin (1500s reformer). Calvin ordered a “heretic” burned alive, and Lofton loved that. If Lofton had had his way, all us non-Christians, secular Jews like me, all who dared question the Bible, would have been labeled blasphemers. Lofton would have had us burned, stoned, beheaded.
Lofton HATED Lincoln and Martin Luther King and mocked the suffering of minorities under slavery and segregation. Lofton blasted King’s supposed adultery, while ignoring Strom Thurmond’s. Lofton was comfortable with slavery, including its whippings. Lofton loved Christian White Power groups like League of the South and Chalcedon. Lofton’s FB has many “Friends” sporting Confederate flags, and fanatic Religious Right zealots who’d rescind rights of minorities and women.
John Lofton yapped incessantly about establishing a “godly Christian government”. He had no concrete plans for it, yet surely would have exiled all who didn’t conform to his 16th century Calvinistic views. Welcome to Geneva; bring on whippings and the burning stake.
In the end, Lofton just used other people as sounding boards for his ego. The very things he hated both nurtured him through life and eased his way in death. Lofton hated public schools; they educated him and his doctors. Lofton hated State funding of research centers and universities; such funding produced his brilliant doctors, surgeons, cardiologists, nurses, biotechnicians. Lofton denounced Social Security and Medicare; no doubt he collected many a SS check and allowed Medicare to cover his huge hospital bills.
There are many who never had the leisure time Lofton enjoyed to pursue a loud-mouth hobby. Instead, these quiet unknowns work in science labs; serve in uniform and return mangled in body but not in spirit; nurture handicapped children; love their families; run shelters for battered women. They fine tune your computer technology and work on that cure for cancer.
While many were intimidated by John Lofton, I always knew what made him tick. Many of Lofton’s ideas were convoluted, selfish, bizarre, unjust and vile. I am just one man. But John Lofton died without bullying this one man into compliance.1
That’s right, because John opposed centralized statism and socialist economics, favored a conservative, constitutional view of the War Between the States, and found the civil rights movement contrary to Scripture, he was a White Supremacist – and therefore not a Christian. So rules Rabbi Bronstein.
In the thread following Bronstein’s screed, one Kevin Lamphier, a Black man, chimes in to validate the Jewish fellow’s hatred of all things White, conservative, Calvinist, and biblical:
Well it’s kind of hard to trust a White that was that bound to racist groups and then justified it through religion. You summed it up well Dave.
What were John’s unforgivable “White Supremacist” and “racist” affiliations again? Oh yes, the League of the South and Chalcedon Foundation.
This coin has two faces.
See, neither of those organizations would characterize themselves in those terms. In fact, the League of the South advocates not for any form of malice nor any ontological “supremacy” of any race. If anything, to call them “White Supremacists,” one must equally call them Black Supremacists as well as Brown, Red, and Yellow Supremacists, because their Christian concept of nationhood applies to every race in their own territories. Dollars to donuts, neither Mr. Bronstein nor Mr. Lamphier would have any problem with the concept of Jews holding sway in Israel, nor Africans in Africa. In fact, they would insist on Jewish Supremacy and Black Supremacy in their areas, but uniquely deny the same right of self-rule (kin-rule, a la Deut. 17:15) to White people. I know little of either man, but I can nonetheless guarantee from their buzzwords alone that both would have opposed the Boer rule in South Africa on the grounds that Black Africans have a right to self-govern. (Never mind that the Whites were on that part of the continent first, making White rule in South Africa, in fact, self-rule in their own lands.) Neither would the men in question suggest that Amerindians shouldn’t have national sovereignty on their reservations. In keeping with Marxian anti-colonialism, Bronstein and Lanphier would affirm self-rule for all but White people. According to the new orthodoxy, a White Supremacist is any White person who thinks White people have rights like other people.
And of course, Trotsky’s neologism, “racism,” is defined in so many contradictory ways that no one is entirely certain what it means. And yet it is invoked with the utmost temerity by non-Whites citing vagueries such as “institutional racism,” “invisible oppression,” and “micro-aggressions.” All of which is so mysterious and incomprehensible to Whites, that technical definition is besides the point. For the most part, non-Whites don’t really care whether it makes sense, either, just so long as their juju words continue to strike fear in the hearts of Whites – that’s all that matters.
Albeit, if we pay attention not so much to their rhetoric as to the occasions and effects of their anathemas, a conclusive definition does present itself: A “racist” is ostensibly nothing more or less than any White person suspected by non-Whites of being insufficiently enthusiastic about sacrificing his time, his money, his children, his personal safety, his self-respect, and his country, as well as his convictions and all his God-given rights, for the benefit of non-Whites. While the propriety of the White man’s public suicide is presumed a priori, his fulfillment of that duty is certified only by the arbitrary whim and appetites of non-Whites’ perception. No exculpatory evidence will exonerate the White man of the charge because, as minorities rationalize it, our “prejudice plus power” leaves us in a state of irremediable guilt which may only be overlooked for a time by the graciousness of non-Whites. Simply put, if you’re White, you’re a racist. And every minute that you go through life without being called a racist is only by the magnanimity of “people of color.”
Basically, both charges – White Supremacy and Racism – amount to nothing more than anti-White hatred and pixie dust.
But this brings me to John’s ultimate and abiding lessons to us all: you see, John actually agreed with those upbraiding him presently. Yes, he invoked those same Culture-of-Critique categories as if they were legitimate Christian concepts, and like so many Whites today, he thought that by his speaking those PC shibboleths, minorities would grant him clemency. Though he stood against the zeitgeist on many other fronts, he prostrated himself on this issue.
Due to the irrationality of the new orthodoxy, however, John couldn’t really figure out how to talk about it without constant self-contradiction: one example of this was while denouncing White Kinists for believing that the White race or White nations actually exist and have group interests under God, he simultaneously affirmed these things for Blacks when he interviewed Anthony Bradley of Reformed Blacks of America. John assured us that he would reject out of hand the confession of any group going under the like title of “Reformed Whites of America,” let alone entertaining any friendly parley as he extended to Bradley and his ilk.
John plainly had two different standards with regard to racial identity – one for Whites, and another for everyone else. When speaking to Whites, he flatly denied the existence of the White race and professed to have no knowledge of his own racial identity. He even dared Kinists to prove to him that he was White. That’s when brother Silas Von Lindt reminded John that in his interview with Anthony Bradley he referred to himself as “White all day, White all night.”2
But why the double standard? Because as much of a curmudgeon as he fancied himself to be, John couldn’t bring himself to deny Black people their identity. He sensed the distinctly unchristian cruelty in that. He spoke to Bradley in terms of their being from communities and backgrounds distinct from one another, and yet spiritually allied in Christ. To that extent John was being a Kinist.
One stunning feature of their dialogue, though, is that Bradley actually backed John down (that alone is unprecedented); and what was the subject on which John yielded? Unbelievably, it was the centerpiece around which he had built his entire radio program – the Puritans, and Calvinism generally. Yes, Bradley inveighed against the Puritans’ Reformed theology as the taproot of racism in America, reiterating that for hundreds of years, Reformed thought was unified with respect to the “curse of Ham” as justifying African slavery and racial hierarchy. John resisted that argument for all of a full second before joining Bradley in his denunciation of the Puritans, saying, “Well, couldn’t they read?! That’s nowhere in the Bible!” So it was that Bradley coaxed John to turn on his own heroes whom he had, until that moment, credited as the authoritative founders of “The American View” upon which his show was built. If the Reformed divines ran afoul of Bradley’s cultural Marxism, John agreed, they must have been biblically illiterate. At that moment John rejected the basis of his own program and subordinated Reformed theology to the anti-White zeitgeist.
That said, let me give credit where it is due – Bradley was right. But only in small part. Reformed theology had always affirmed ethnonationalism, race-realism, racial hierarchy, and domestic slavery. For Calvinism holds at its core the sovereignty of God and His unimpeachable prerogative to foreordain men and things to unequal states of existence, to His own glory. The Scripture everywhere speaks in terms of peoples, nations, tribes, clans, and genealogies, and describes the Covenant as working concomitantly with those hereditary categories. In deed, the Puritans would be considered Kinists today.
Where Bradley was wrong was in his framing those facts as indictments of our fathers and Reformed theology, because those essentially Augustinian/Calvinist doctrines conflict with the new age equality-cult. He never bothered even attempting to refute them. Instead he merely pronounced them unfit because, as a Black man, those inescapable aspects of Reformed theology were an insult to him. John affirmed him in that error.
Far from a novelty, though, John’s bowing to this revolutionary anti-White, anti-covenantal view is taken for granted in the post-civil rights-era churches. It’s the standard bumbling fare of secular Whites, too. This jumble of titanic inequities, White liberalism calls “equality.”
Yet for all Whites’ effusive self-deprecation, non-Whites continue calling it – you guessed it – White Supremacy and racism. They conceive of no possible remuneration on the part of Whites.
Accordingly, now that John is laid to rest, the Bronsteins and Lamphiers burn him in effigy and would see his bones dug up, salted, and re-buried in unhallowed ground. None of John’s equality talk absolves him in their eyes any more than the non-White faces dotting his family photos do, because they still recognize him to be a White man; and if broken on the issue of race, he yet stood resolute on other fronts contrary to non-White interests. They regard the bare existence of Whites as contrary to their interests.
So it’s no surprise that neither Anthony Bradley nor Xavier Pickett nor anyone else at Reformed Blacks of America, whom John so praised, are coming to the defense of his memory. In spite of all John’s deference to them, they really agree with Bronstein. They see John as just another dead White racist.
As praiseworthy as many of his other works were, this glaring point of cognitive dissonance in his thinking appears to be the capstone of John’s legacy. I do not relish saying that, but it is true.
If John was one “who after looking at his natural face in a mirror, walked away and forgot what kind of man he was” (James 1:23-24), how could he “provide for his own” (1 Tim. 5:8) and be willing to suffer especially “for his kinsmen according to the flesh” (Rom. 9:3), as Scripture enjoins us? As I’ve said, though John was a White man, his family was mixed with other races so as to resemble every Hollywood depiction of the new age anti-family. Yes, that modern meme of the rainbow family to which the Loftons acquiesced was forced down America’s gullet as the express antithesis of the Christian family.
And here’s a paradox: as with all Alienist families, John’s love of alien kin compelled him to validate that heterogeneity by denial of kinship as an important concept. The kinship of his cross-racial brood could only be sanctioned by the denial of kinship as definitive of family. But of course, validating a thing in a certain context by invalidating that thing altogether is a self-refuting argument. You cannot validate interracial kin by scuttling the importance of kinship. If we agreed with him, we would be denying the propriety of his affinity anyway. Even to concede to the Alienist theory of family is to simultaneously deny it. To be right, they must be wrong. The mixed-race family is then its own refutation.
John’s invectives against “KKKinism” are so confounded because they were predicated on his own (marred as they were) Kinist instincts. This is much like what we see in Arminians who pray like Calvinists – it inclines Calvinists to give Arminians the benefit of the doubt. Really, Arminianism and Alienist are kissing cousins, because both object to God’s sovereign appointment of men to unequal states of being.
Though he kicked against the goads on these important issues, his race is now run, and the Scripture lays before us yet another grand object lesson through him: if in life he sometimes denied knowing his folk, God’s Word assures us that the repose of death has gathered John to “his people” (Gen. 25:8; 35:29; 49:33), which Strong’s Lexicon lists as #5971 – “people, nation, kinsmen, kindred, or folk.” This gathering to his folk is alternately described as being gathered to “his fathers” or “ancestors” (Gen. 47:30; 2 Kings 22:20), his kindred forebears whom he hadn’t even met before. Why would our joining our ancestors whom we have not met be significant to the Word of God, unless the trusteeship of lineage were important? Why should this be cited as a great consolation in death aside from the Kinist frame of reference? Such passages certainly cannot be squared with the perspectives of North, Marinov, and John this side of the veil.
Even if he was an Alienist in life, the Scripture assures us that his status in Christ makes of him a Kinist now.
Rest in peace, John.