I Want to Save a Child's Sight!

Monday, January 02, 2006

Nearer, My God, To The GOP

"This, apparently, is what the Democrats had in mind when they vowed after President Bush's re-election to reclaim religious voters for their party. In the House, they set up a Democratic Faith Working Group. Senator Harry Reid, the minority leader, created a Web site called Word to the Faithful. And Democratic officials began holding conferences with religious progressives. All of this was with the intention of learning how to link faith with public policy. An event for liberal politicians and advocates at the University of California at Berkeley in July even offered a seminar titled "I Don't Believe in God, but I Know America Needs a Spiritual Left."

"A look at the tactics and theology of the religious left, however, suggests that this is exactly what American politics does not need. If Democrats give religious progressives a stronger voice, they'll only replicate the misdeeds of the religious right."

"When Christians - liberal or conservative - invoke a biblical theocracy as a handy guide to contemporary politics, they threaten our democratic discourse. Numerous "policy papers" from liberal churches and activist groups employ the same approach: they're awash in scriptural references to justice, poverty and peace, stacked alongside claims about global warming, debt relief and the United Nations Security Council." [NYT]

I realize that this was written by someone from the Heritage Foundation, but he makes some sense. Let's keep religion out of policy. It's ok to make some issues moral issues. For instance, I believe that the economy is a moral issue because of the way it effects everyone's lives. But there is a difference between injecting morals and right and wrong into a political discourse and involving religion.

1 comment:

Scott D. Feldstein said...

learning how to link faith with public policy

And that's where so much of our trouble begins, isn't it?

Though it may make religious people of every stripe cringe, I agree with you, Ben: faith and morality are quite separable. In fact I would argue that morality based on faith is inherently immoral, but that's another rant.

At the same time, I realize that the vast majority of the left in America is religious and that no progress can be made on our common goals without recognizing that fact.