Saturday, August 16, 2008

The Sorry State of American Politics

When Obama and McCan't, who are otherwise intelligent men with at least a passing knowledge of the U.S. Constitution, agree to have their major encounter with Rick Warren, pastor of the Saddleback mega-church in Orange County, then you know there is something fundamentally broken in American politics.

When you hear or read Warren saying: "I believe in the separation of church and state, but I do not believe in the separation of politics from religion. Faith is simply a worldview...." then you get a glimpse of just how far we have fallen from the secular grace that is our Constitution.

Why should these candidates feel it necessary to pander to these voters? To sit in the office of Mr. Warren and answer questions about the whereabouts of their faith in their decision making process, then to have those answers interpreted by Mr. Warren for his flock, the press, and the "opiated" masses, insults the very concept of religious freedom guaranteed by the First Amendment. Now, voters of all stripes will hear both of these men pander to this slice of Americana as though that particular worldview -- through Christianist faith -- is somehow central to the way this country ought to be governed.

In reality, Christianist voters are among the least-informed, most gullible people standing in the voting booths of America. Since they flexed their power the first time with Ronald Reagan, they have gained precious little ground on the national stage. Abortion is still legal, gay marriage is gaining back ground it lost in 2004, there is no constitutional right to prayer in public schools, religious displays are still prohibited in public spaces. They need to wake up and realize that they really have very little power. Even their precious Bush has failed miserably to parlay the collective passion of the Christianists and their "worldview" into anything meaningful, except to sow anti-American sentiment around the world.

If Mr. Warren believes that "If you have a Judeo-Christian heritage, you have to believe it when God says that evil cannot be compromised with. It has to be resisted, it has to be overcome...."
you realize just how narrow and unsophisticated that worldview is. If we used that rationale to overlook Bush's lying about WMD and Saddam/bin Laden connections, and simply thought it best to take out every dictator in the world, then we should already be bombing and/or invading Zimbabwe, North Korea, Cuba, Burma, Syria, and Iran.

We can understand why a desperate guy like McCan't would lower himself to the level of the Christianists, but when Obama thinks it's a good idea, I just scratch my head. The more Obama caters to this nonsense, the less I like him.

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