Sunday, July 15, 2007

Sunday in America

By Capt. Fogg

History, I believe, furnishes no example of a priest-ridden people maintaining a free civil government. This marks the lowest grade of ignorance of which their civil as well as religious leaders will always avail themselves for their own purposes.

-- Thomas Jefferson to Alexander von Humboldt, Dec. 6, 1813

If I thought the national urge to get George W. Bush and his politics out of the White House included a desire to put religion back in the homes and churches and take it out of government, I was probably wrong. A Time magazine poll published along with the article "How the Democrats Got Religion" in the July 23rd edition shows that the majority of voters affirmed the statement:

We are a religious nation and religious values should serve as a guide to what our political leaders do in office.

Interesting, but not enlightening, was the breakdown showing that 74% of Republicans agreed as opposed to 38% of Democrats. A minority of those making over $75,000 per year agreed but a majority of those making under $35,000 said yes. All in all, the more religious one is, and the less affluent, the more one wants leaders who believe in the values derived from mythos and priestly authority so resoundingly condemned by the creators of the United States government.

Although 98% claimed they had never voted against a candidate mainly because of his religion, having no religion was the one single biggest negative stimulus out of the religious categories and the only category of belief in which a majority of respondents would reject the candidate was atheist.

The poll of course was not able to address the question that has been surveyed elsewhere; the question of how intelligence relates to religiosity. The answer to that question seems to be that amongst the very intelligent, belief in a personal God is very rare and that belief, to a strong degree is inversely proportional to IQ. I won't argue that point, but I will argue the fact that the men who founded our government were not at all religious or receptive to the idea of a personal God or the validity of the Bible or the people who make a living interpreting it.

Does this mean that America has lost faith with its foundations? Does this mean that America prefers the nebulous mandate of invisible forces to a government of and by the people? Do we see our national mission as submission?

I can't answer that, but I can point out an article in the same issue of Time asking "Will Georgia Kill an Innocent Man?" I can point out that procedures championed by the godbother Newt Gingrich allows that religiously boisterous and former slave owning State of Georgia to kill a man without really being sure of his guilt. That killing him at all is supported by "religious values" is enough condemnation of such values and the ability of human beings to justify absolutely anything with them.

I can point out that it is long past time for us to stop sucking our thumbs and put away the teddy bear and stop inventing reasons to avoid responsibility for what we do. I can point out that the American Revolution was in itself a violation of Christian principles. I can point out that we can never be a free country unless we affirm our constitution's declaration of independence from religion, but no one would listen who didn't already agree.

(Cross-posted at Human Voices.)

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