Americans United For Separation of Church and State (AU) is a nonpartisan educational organization dedicated to preserving the constitutional principle of church-state separation as the only way to ensure religious freedom for all Americans. Americans United represents over 70,000 individual members and 5,000 churches and other houses of worship nationwide.
Wednesday, April 4, 2012
Insistent candidates should be quizzed on religious beliefs
As I’ve written in the past, a stopping point for fundamentalists may
come when their beliefs and documents, such as the Bible or, say, the
Book of Mormon, are carefully vetted and scrutinized. As Christian
fundamentalists continue to work disingenuously and incrementally to
turn the nation into a theocracy, their religion and worldview should
become a major interest for everyone.
candidate Mitt Romney, for example, was challenged recently at a rally
by someone who questioned whether he believed in racist language
contained in the Book of Mormon. Romney essentially avoided a direct
answer, but later in the rally he did talk about serving as a Mormon
pastor for 10 years.
Obviously, a former pastor running for
president, who makes his religion a major part of his campaign, deserves
to have his beliefs vetted and scrutinized. In fact, all the
presidential candidates, including Barack Obama, should be asked hard
questions about their religious beliefs given the current political
landscape throughout the country. Do they believe in literal
interpretations of the Bible’s Old Testament, for example, which
condones slavery and female oppression?
As long as right-wing
fundamentalists insist on theocracy, no political candidate should be
allowed privacy when it comes to religious views.
fundamentalists' push to inscribe their beliefs as science or as
government policy, one has to wonder about the point of “faith” or the
point of metaphorical readings of the Bible. Ultimately, the
fundamentalists damage the credibility and viability of Christianity.
Once that becomes clear to more moderate religious folks over the long
term, there will be a correction. But, for now, the fight against
religious zealotry continues in places like Oklahoma.