Friday, April 23, 2004


I'll try to resist posting too much about this. But, I do want to say that as a member of one of the two major religious groups (agnostic/atheist and Muslims) about which it's generally acceptable to say all manner of horrible things I have little sympathy for the tender sensibilities of members of dominant religions. Give me a call when the President of the United States says about Christians what one said about atheists:

No, I don't know that atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered patriots.

No one finds it particularly troubling when it's pointed out that an "out" atheist couldn't get elected dog catcher in most of this country, let alone to Congress. I'm actually not complaining really - I'm not trying to establish some sort of new victim group here. But, nonetheless, I'm a bit sick and tired of White Christian Males pretending that they're the persecuted ones.

In addition, I'm a bit fed up with people hand-wringing about anti-religious sentiment from "the Left." First of all, "the Left" which has any clout or power in this country is explicitly "pro-religion" to a degree which disturbs me. My retinas still burn with the image of the members of Congress on the steps of the Capitol screeching out "UNDER GOD" while performing the pledge of allegiance. Left-leaning people with strongly held religious views need to stop worrying about what some comedian says on some radio show and need to start worrying that the public faces of their religion are people who, if they had their way, would establish their own flavor of theocracy and revoke our right to worship as we please (or not at all).

I'm tired of liberalish Christians telling me it's my job to reach out to Christian moderates who feel that "the Left" is hostile to them. Screw that. It's time for liberalish Christians to tell their slightly more right-leaning brethren that those of us who fight to maintain the separation between Church and State do it to protect freedom of religion - not destroy it. It's time for moderate and liberal Catholics to take a stand against their Church's assault on Democratic (and only Democratic) politicians who deviate from doctrine.

I'm not hostile to religion. I'm hostile to those who cloak their hate in bigotry in religion. I'm hostile to those who want to impose their religion on me and everyone else. I'm hostile to those who have no understanding where their freedoms come from, and why they're important. I'm hostile to Christian Exceptionalists who believe that simply by being religious they're immune from all criticism.

...couple comments. Of course there are moderate and liberal Christians/Catholics who are fighting to save their religion from being taken over by less tolerant folk. But, currently there seems to be this general notion floating around that if only the "secular left" would be a bit nicer to people who are trying to put prayer in their schools and take control of their daughters' uterus then more people would vote for Democrats. As Jon Stewart would say.... WUUUUUH? See, for example, human scum Nick Kristof, who wants me to hug an Evangelical. Screw you Kristof - damn straight I'm intolerant of people who are intolerant. And, yes, I know that doesn't include all Christians or all Evangelical Christians (I don't think Kristof has yet to really understand what ECs are anyway), but sure as hell includes anyone tangentially associated with the Christian Right.

The issue is not religion - it's religion and politics. As long as religions aren't too coercive of their members, I'm happy for people to do what they want. But, once religion gets involved in politics I have no need to be tolerant or nice about it. I can be tolerant of your religion without being tolerant of your politics. That's the issue.