Recently Sarah Palin spoke at an Evangelical Women’s Conference and made the following comments:
“God shouldn’t be separated from the state.”
“Hearing any leader declare that America isn’t a Christian nation and poking at allies like Israel in the eye — it is mind-boggling to see some of our nation’s actions recently, but politics truly is a topic for another day.”
“This nation needs you,” Palin told the women. “Know the facts. Stand for what’s right. Don’t be discouraged by the mocking of those who want to claim we just cling to our religion. I’m the first to admit — yeah, I do cling to my faith. That’s all I’ve got.”
Now, one may be tempted to claim that she was merely speaking to her audience….but as she makes these same assertions at her frequent political rallies and media appearances, it would be off the mark to dismiss it as such. So her remarks [and similar remarks by other right wing pols and pundits] beg some simple questions:
Are we a “Christian nation” and what does that even mean? And why is making that claim so important to so many people?
I am a firm, unyielding proponent of religious freedom, and I give due to our founders and national leaders who have contributed to this nation, while believing in God. But if I am not a Christian, am I not an American? If I were Jewish, or Hindu or Rastafarian, or an Atheist…….would I not be an American, or would I be a second class citizen? Are we so vain as to believe that a God ‘blesses’ our nation and that good fortune comes not through our actions but because of an invisible guy in the sky?
I don’t have an issue if an elected official proclaims a belief in an unprovable omnipotent deity, but I have a metric ton if issue when that elected official attempts to direct policy not through law, but through religion. The modern interpretation of the bible makes it clear that it does not encompass equal rights and civil liberties for all law abiding citizens of a nation, so why do we bestow such credibility upon politicians who place an inordinate amount of stock in a belief system that does not aim to protect all of their constituents? And why are good, intelligent and caring citizens realistically denied a chance at holding office based on the fact that they are not [at least publicly] a member of the faithful flock?
I understand that people draw inspiration and perseverance from their faith, but does it objectively make sense to admit following the alleged guidance from the unseen hand of an invisible deity? Hold any issue to that same standard, and see where it gets you…..just replace the word God with another unprovable being.
We readily rail against theocratic regimes such as Iran, Saudi Arabia and the Taliban….but with exception to the chosen means for an end, there doesn’t seem to be difference between Sarah Palin and her ilk, and your average Mullah.