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  • Tuesday, April 05, 2005


    Religion and Politics

    I try not to spend too much time commenting on other blogs. It becomes a cozy little mirrored room, a bloggers' self-referencial chamber of pep talks and mutual congratulations. I do it though, more often than I would like. Still, I can't help admiring some posts for clearly stating a particular point or perspective. Thus I come to this Shakespeare's Sister entry on the intersection of politics and religion. Read the whole thing but here's the nub of it.
    The problem, obviously, is that we’ve permitted religion to become untrumpable. No amount of rational or scientific evidence is allowed to supersede faith, and simply by virtue of being “religious” is one assumed, even within the public sphere, to be a good person, even if they are resolutely unethical. There is no regard for a personal moral code derived from earthly sources; an atheist will never be president, in spite of the fact that someone who seeks to be a good person purely out of respect for other people, without promise of eternal reward, is arguably more altruistic.

    Though it is not my personal choice, I won’t identify defining one’s sense of right and wrong using religion as intrinsically faulty; I do, however, strongly believe that the belief system one brings into the public sphere, even if molded and informed by religion, should be able to stand on its own without invoking its source. If you have no other justification for your political position than “God says so,” it doesn’t belong in the public sphere. Not in this country.

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