Category Archives: religion

Mitt Romney and Religious “Freedom”

Ah, religious freedom! My favorite subject. Here’s to Mitt Romney, and all others who cure diseases with heavy doses of poison:

“Freedom requires religion, just as religion requires freedom. Freedom opens the windows of the soul so that man can discover his most profound beliefs and commune with God. Freedom and religion endure together, or perish alone,” he said.

This statement has some interesting implications. First of all, God is perishable? I guess the Catholics would agree. And then, who wouldn’t, as long as you have the correct religion?

Second, would Mitt Romney ban atheism? But permit worship of Cthulhu or the Spaghetti Monster (not to say they’re all that different)? Curious indeed: this would be the first time in American history, I think, where not believing something would be against the law.

Third, and most revealing, we can conclude that Mitt Romney is more batshit nuts than I thought. He communes with God? Is it a two-way conversation? If so, Mitt belongs in Bellevue, not the White House.

Mitt Romney is a bigot. It’s time for people to stop electing charlatans, like Romney and Bush, who play lip service to belief in God, while doing all they can to hurt the public. If you aren’t going to make it easier for the poor and middle class to send their children to a good school, you’re not “pro-family.” If you’re driving up the costs of healthcare for those who can least afford it, you’re not “pro-life.” And, if there is a God, believing in “Him” doesn’t make you any less of an asshole.

More fun:

Update 2007-12-14: Roger Cohen wrote a great piece about religion in American politics in The New York Times yesterday. See “Secular Europe’s Merits.” The relevant part about Mitt Romney:

Romney allows no place in the United States for atheists. He opines that, “Freedom requires religion just as religion requires freedom.” Yet secular Sweden is free while religious Iran is not. Buddhism, among other great Oriental religions, is forgotten.

He shows a Wikipedia-level appreciation of other religions, admiring “the commitment to frequent prayer of the Muslims” and “the ancient traditions of the Jews.” These vapid nostrums suggest his innermost conviction of America’s true faith. A devout Christian vision emerges of a U.S. society that is in fact increasingly diverse.

Jefferson’s “wall of separation” must be restored if those who would destroy the West’s Enlightenment values are to be defeated.

Your Own Chocolate Jesus

So, a brief recap: Catholics have their panties in a bunch again. Somebody made a sculpture of Jesus. Okay, that’s not so bad. But the sculpture was made out of chocolate. Okay, that’s…tasteless? But not that bad. So, what was so bad about the statue that it attracted the attention of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights? (As a side note, just remember that the League has very little to do with religious rights and just about nothing to do with civil rights.) Here’s what was so bad: Chocolate Christ was missing the loin cloth. (BBC News: “Chocolate Jesus exhibit cancelled,” March 21, 2007.)

Elsewhere on the crossroads between religious fanaticism, oversensitivity, and censorship, here’s a nice little gem from the UK:

Schools are dropping the Holocaust from history lessons to avoid offending Muslim pupils, a Governmentbacked study has revealed.

It found some teachers are reluctant to cover the atrocity for fear of upsetting students whose beliefs include Holocaust denial.

There is also resistance to tackling the 11th century Crusades – where Christians fought Muslim armies for control of Jerusalem – because lessons often contradict what is taught in local mosques.

So, that makes sense. Take the one chance to instill something other than iman-endorsed lies into the minds of impressionable young children and just piss it away (“Teachers drop the Holocaust to avoid offending Muslims,” by Laura Clark of the Daily Mail, 02-April-2007).

Anne Frank To Get Honorary U.S. Citizenship?

According to the New York Times, there is a movement to push for Anne Frank to be granted honorary U.S. citizenship (“A Push for Citizenship to Honor Anne Frank, but It’s No Easy Sell,” Feb. 25, 2007):

How the issue came to emerge from this old seaside Long Island village is almost as intriguing as the question itself. In a compact grid of a dozen square blocks that seem cut from a Currier and Ives catalogue, there are 11 churches and zero synagogues.

The idea was proposed three years ago on the 75th anniversary of Anne Frank’s birth by a Sayville resident named Christopher Bodkin, a Republican town councilman who is known around town as a kind of serial memorializer. Over the years Mr. Bodkin, 59, has researched, documented and led successful campaigns to erect memorials to Sayville citizens who died in World War II and in the Vietnam War.

His campaign for Anne Frank’s citizenship, however, is of a different order, he said in an interview: “When you come from a town like this, you tend to grow up thinking that the whole world has always been like this. Placid. Settled. It’s amazing to me how much people don’t know about what came before us.“

What about what’s coming now? For Christ’s sake, we’re involved in a horrible civil war in Iraq because a few zealots wanted to win an election in 2004. Iraq is a spectacle of American weakness. Yes, it’s a very placid, settled world indeed. And the suburbanites on Long Island are living it up!

I don’t really see what good giving Anne Frank American citizenship does myself. And if we’d given her a visa in 1941 in the first place, she never would have become the archetype she is.