Religion and Politics

Ok, on my obsessive tour of the blogosphere I came across this post at Kerckhoff Coffeehouse where Doctor Bean and company maintain their abode. BTW, there are those people out there who are under the mistaken impression that the picture in the profile is the esteemed doctor, it is not.

And again on a side note I enjoyed my time at UCLA much more because of Kerckhoff.

But the real point of this post is to comment on the post I linked to and more specifically is to comment on this:

‘By the way, Mike, good for you for trying to inject some religious spirit into politics. But remember, when it comes to issues you mention such as abortion and gay marriage, you’re gonna have to get your buddies to come up with a better argument than “religion doesn’t belong in politics.”

I disagree with that. If you look at the First Amendment you can see the beginning of the separation of church and state. It is a necessary and very important component of the fabric of society within the U.S.

This ties into why I find the use of religion as an argument for why Israel should keep Gaza to be problematic. I don’t believe in the Koran. I believe that the New Testament is a work of fiction.

And at the same time I expect others feel this way about the Torah and other Jewish theology. I am not offended by their lack of belief.

But I think that this is a critical concept to get across. If we are negotiating terms for an agreement they should be based upon a foundation that we can all accept, not upon things that only fragments view as being truthful and accurate.

From a religious perspective I view Israel as property of the Jewish people, but in good conscience I cannot expect others to feel the same way. So when I look at a situation like Gaza I draw upon the reasons that are not based upon religion and there are plenty.

When I look at various issues within the U.S. I don’t spend a lick of time worrying about what Judaism or Christianity or anything else say about abortion because we do not live in a theocracy.

The point is that we need to look for common ground to stand upon and build a consensus.

Now at the same time I think that there is truth to what Ralphie says and that to a certain extent you are going to find religion in politics. It will help mold and shape your opinions on things, but I think that there are and should be limits to its influence.

(Visited 36 times, 1 visits today)


  1. Ralphie July 27, 2005 at 12:42 am

    For the record, the point of my post in the coffeehouse was only to say that if you think it’s okay for religion to contribute to your opinion on one political issue, you can’t very well fault someone else for their religion-based opinion on another issue. In our back-and-forth in the comments of that post, I think Jack and I understand each other.

    But I have to say I think religion has every place in politics (as opposed to no place – work with me here). To me, the separation of church and state (and, yes, I’m aware that such a concept does not exist in our country’s founding documents) means that we are protected from having the rituals (or possibly even the symbols) of any (or all) religion enshrined (so to speak) in law.

    (By the way, yes, I am being paid by the parenthesis.)

    But as far as what informs your opinion on the issues of the day – why shouldn’t it be religion? Might be the best influence (might not). If you want to vote for higher taxes because you believe the prophets call for redistribution of wealth, so be it. At that point it’s the votes that matter. If you’re against that, convince people high taxes are bad, for whatever reason, religious or not.

    Of course where my theory ends is if there are enough votes to amend the Constitution to set up religious rituals of some kind. But then all bets are off.

  2. Jack's Shack July 26, 2005 at 3:59 pm


  3. The Misanthrope July 26, 2005 at 3:33 pm

    The common ground being confined to the areas of worship. Religion has gotten out of hand and far too much into everyday life and politics. Religion is best kept as a private matter.

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

You may also like