I have supported George W Bush’s foreign policy and reelection campaign without waver. As far as I am concerned, he is the perfect person to be leading the world in international affairs.
That said: I have also been crystal clear about where I part company with the Religious Right and Fundamentalist Conservatism. Perhaps both being one in the same.
And now that George W Bush is well ensconced in the Presidency, and he can continue his foreign policy to defeat TERRORISM and Democratize the world, it is time to come after him with all guns blazing.
It is imperative that he and his fundamentalist followers are stopped from destroying vital social issues such as: Total Separation Between Church And State. The Right For Common Gender Marriage. Freedom Of Choice. The Right To Die, Including Assisted Suicide. And Stem Cell Research.
These are the core battle-points which share the commonality of being attacked by religious fundamentalists who want to reenforce “religious values” in public life.
The debaters on both sides of the issue spin their own take on what the Founding Framers “actually” meant about Separation between Church and State when they signed the US Constitution.
In modern terms; what they “actually” meant should be irrelevant, since it was always assumed that there should be a Separation between Church and State. To what degree seems to be the modern-day issue.
Let me help them decide. There should be absolutely no connection whatsoever between Church and State. NONE!
There should be no reference to God in the National Anthem. None in the Oath Of Allegiance. None on the country’s currency. None when swearing-in politicians, or swearing-in witnesses in court. There should be no Congressional Prayers. And there should be no religion in publicly funded schools. None at all.
And most of all; there should be no religion whatsoever when deciding upon social issues such as Gay and Lesbian Rights. A Woman’s Right To Choose. The Right to Die, Including Assisted Suicide. And Stem Cell Research.
America is the GREATEST nation on earth, not because of its religious values, but rather in-spite of them.
Instead of building a society based upon someone’s specific image, concept or belief in God, Americans created a Secular society based upon on everyone’s right to be different.
I don’t write this just about the USA. Canada’s Right Wing Conservatives are no better.
If we want to see the results of the combination of Church and State, all we have to do is look at the Moslem countries, and at the Eastern European countries which lived their religion until the advent of Communism.
And now that Communism has fallen, we can see religious leaders trying once again to gain a foot-hold on the politics of their societies. With good luck, they will fail, and their societies will continue to develop along Secular lines where everyone is equal.
I whole-heartedly endorse everyone’s fundamental right to believe in what they want, as long as those beliefs do no harm to others, and have no untoward social or political influence.
To include religion and religious beliefs in the public life of a modern egalitarian society, is as dumb a concept, as it is to make one person the divine pinnacle of religious contact with God.
If society is to progress, society has to move forward. Bringing religion “back” into our public life is a step backward we can all ill afford to accommodate.
Thank you Howard, and your wife Anne, for doing what you do, the way you do. And thank you so very much for including us, your readers, in the dialogue you have undertaken to reach the decisions you have. God bless you, your family and your future…and Canada and the USA. With great respect…James
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