One has to snicker at the ‘very righteous’ GOP presidential candidates who find themselves entangled in the web- the snare of religion. As God’s Own Party, they find themselves cooking in the same religious stew that has led to the deaths of millions of people throughout the world over the centuries. The righteous ‘believe’ that their religious doctrines trump those of the ‘others.’
It’s great to be a spectator at this idiotic spectacle- perhaps like a Roman citizen watching the ‘sport’ within the Colosseum. I have no favorites in this game. One’s religious beliefs- if any at all- ought to be private and clearly not of any interest in deciding the qualification for governance of this nation. The Founding Fathers made this perfectly clear when they set up the laws of our new nation. They knew of and perhaps experienced the divisiveness of egregious religious interference in the lives of their European relatives ‘over there.’
Yet here we are, 235 years later, laying down religious tests for our presidential candidates. This absurdity screams ignorance! Yet, we are told, there are tens of millions of our citizens who demand a religious test before heading to the polling booth. What does this say about our American character? Better yet, what is the character of today’s American? How do we define ourselves as citizens of this nation?
What role, if any, does religion or religious tenets play in characterizing the citizens of this nation? Do we tolerate non-belief? Atheism? Agnosticism? Or are those people summarily dismissed as ‘outlanders?’ One might inquire as to how thoroughly the citizenry of our nation is pickled in the brine of catechetical doctrine. Is this nation tragically headed for the same fate suffered by our European ancestors in their spate of bloody wars based on religious beliefs? Surely, we have to be much wiser than they. Isn’t that so?
Perhaps we will learn more about our nation’s dangerous meddling in puritanism tomorrow night as the GOP candidates fiddle around with the questions of cultism and true Christianity raised by the debate monitors. It may be as close to an experience of the Inquisition as we will get here in the Land of the Free and Home of the Brave.