Thursday, September 10, 2009

TFN Political event alert

I'm planning to attend this event hosted by the Texas Freedom Network.

From my inbox:

Could the religious right really be on the decline in America?

Come hear E.J. Dionne, the award-winning columnist for The Washington Post and author of the best-selling book Souled Out: Reclaiming Faith and Politics after the Religious Right, at a Faith and Freedom Speaker Series event on September 24 in Austin. Dionne is one of the nation’s most respected voices on the intersection of faith and politics in America today.

As a liberal, I enjoy EJ Dionne's column in the Washington Post and appreciate any opportunity to tweak the religious right. On the other hand, as an atheist I have serious misgivings about any efforts by the left to "reclaim" faith and politics. I am not particularly concerned by candidates who mention their own religious beliefs as a personal matter -- frankly I appreciate the opportunity to find out who to be wary of -- but I think religion has no place ever being an explicit part of politics.

In any case, I'm certainly interested in going to see what Dionne has to say, perhaps armed with a few pointed questions at the end. If anyone wants to join me, click on the link at the top. It is free to the public, but you are advised to reserve your spot as seating will be limited.


  1. Best wishes. I feel the same. I think we should only use in politics what we can demonstrate to be true. Else if, some of us could end up like Goshen, IN where the city counsel votes against an anti-discrimination ordinance based on dogmatic ideology.

  2. "frankly I appreciate the opportunity to find out who to be wary of -- but I think religion has no place ever being an explicit part of politics."

    That's the part I preferred the most in your post Russell. I just realized how it is much better to have a religious person who expresses his/her beliefs, and have "good" reasons for them, than having a person who has dogma beliefs like fundamentalists who claim the Earth is 6,000 years old. Thankfully there are few of them in many civilized countries.

    In other words, I would much prefer having a person like Francis Collins running for prime minister than Ray Comfort... yeah, I can't say president, I am not American ;)

    It also makes me realize why I think Obama is acting perfectly in his Christian-like behavior as any politician running for president would do. First, he mentioned non-believers as part of the US nation and, second, he clearly stated that Science must be put in its rightful place. After hearing that, I don't see any problem with him saying that he is inspired by God.

  3. A practicing Catholic doing his PhD on the Catholic church's reports with secularism in France once told me (in 2005) that America's current religious fervour was bound to be dead and buried in ten years time, just like it was buried in England at the end of the Victorian era. Back then, being Christian was trendy, but it ended up being abandoned and ridiculed. So patience, there is only five years to go.

  4. Have a good and productive trip.

  5. The trouble Hugo, is that there are no 'good reasons' for religious beliefs. I think that's one of the main purposes of the show, to find out why people believe unsubstantiated fairy tales and so far the answers have varied from confused to violent, but never got near convincing!


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