Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Is it problematic, Chris Hedges, when you see church and state joining hands like this?

"Well, of course...
Because it essentially serves the same purpose as the fusion of party and state, which is what totalitarian movements do. The state implements the policies of the party; they become essentially one entity. And that is by its very definition what a totalitarian state consists of. I think we have to remember that this new political religion is a radical mutation from traditional fundamentalism, or traditional evangelism.
Evangelical leaders in the past, like Bill Graham, always warned their followers that—and he of course got burned and used by Richard Nixon—to keep their distance from power. And fundamentalists have traditionally called upon their followers to remove themselves from the contaminants of secular society, and to shun political activity.
This is something we have not seen in the past. And yes, the nation has had certainly a Christian component to it, but there was always that understanding that religious belief was a private, internal affair, and not something that would be propounded by the state.
And of course the architects of the Constitution were terrified of going back into the kind of tyranny and repression that was practiced by the puritan states, and more importantly by the religious states in Europe, because they understood the danger of that sectarian violence. And I think we should also be clear that the early Christians in this country, most of them were Deists, which these radical Christians would consider as heretics, the notion that you could find God in nature, as Jefferson and others believed.


Mr. Pelican said...

If one wishes to see the dangers inherent in a society in which secularism and theology are too closely intermingled, one has to look no further than Baghdad. The Sunnis will never be at peace with the Shias because their religious differences will ALWAYS preclude civil, peaceful, productive, political intercourse; that is, until such time as they are confronted by a common enemy, like, say, US.
This has been the case for more than 800 years, since, Islam was schisimed. Any student of history can cite you instances myriad where squabbling Muslims have put aside their differences, united behind a dynamic ruler, and kicked ass!
Saladin, ring any bells. Ask any country who has ever had dealings with these people! The British, the Russians, the Israelis, just to name a few. They are the racial personification of pit-bulls! The eye roll back in the head, and you can beat on them until they die, but they won't let go!

charley said...

if there is a god, nature is the only place you will find he, or she, or them, or it.

it certainly will not be in politics.

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