Thursday, December 06, 2007

Mitt Loves Everyone - Except Atheists

Mitt Romney made a speech today that highlighted Mitt Romney's most honed skill: being two-faced about something. Ordinarily candidates aren't given much airtime nationally when they make campaign speeches, but this one was less about cheering for the candidate's platform and more about the candidate's faith and governance. It was set up to be a grand speech about religious freedom in America, but the message that came off was that you'd better believe in Jesus and God if you really want any freedom in America. (transcript here).

Here are some Romney quotes that keep God out of the hands of the government:

- I do not define my candidacy by my religion.
- A person should not be elected because of his faith nor should he be rejected because of his faith.
- Let me assure you that no authorities of my church, or of any other church for that matter, will ever exert influence on presidential decisions. Their authority is theirs, within the province of church affairs, and it ends where the affairs of the nation begin.
- I will put no doctrine of any church above the plain duties of the office and the sovereign authority of the law.
- A president must serve only the common cause of the people of the United States.
- Religious tolerance would be a shallow principle indeed if it were reserved only for faiths with which we agree.
- We separate church and state affairs in this country, and for good reason. No religion should dictate to the state nor should the state interfere with the free practice of religion.
- We face no greater danger today than theocratic tyranny.

Now here are the Romney quotes that put God firmly in control of your tax dollars:

- Freedom requires religion just as religion requires freedom.
- I believe that every faith I have encountered draws its adherents closer to God.
- We are a nation 'Under God' and in God, we do indeed trust.
- In recent years, the notion of the separation of church and state has been taken by some well beyond its original meaning. They seek to remove from the public domain any acknowledgment of God. Religion is seen as merely a private affair with no place in public life. It is as if they are intent on establishing a new religion in America - the religion of secularism. They are wrong.
- We should acknowledge the Creator as did the Founders - in ceremony and word. He should remain on our currency, in our pledge, in the teaching of our history, and during the holiday season, nativity scenes and menorahs should be welcome in our public places.
- We believe that every single human being is a child of God.
- Any believer in religious freedom, any person who has knelt in prayer to the Almighty, has a friend and ally in me.
- And so it is for hundreds of millions of our countrymen: We do not insist on a single strain of religion — rather, we welcome our nation's symphony of faith.

Great. What about those of us who don't believe God exists? I guess we should just move to a country less consumed by theocratic tyranny.

1 comment:

Jacob said...

He did mention Muslims and Jews, so maybe Jesus isn't a requirement...just a certain line of monotheistic religions.

Anyway, more unfortunate (for him and his goals) than offending the minority of Americans by omission, is the condescension to the majority of Americans who are religious. What Roman Catholic really appreciates compliments on the pageantry of her faith? What Muslim (well, I guess they're not really his target with this speech) is going to be impressed by his respect for their willingness to break five times a day? "You recognized how tender our spirits are? Why, that's JUST what we were going for!..." exclaims the Pentecostal.

Anyway, you should work out the role of atheists in the the nation's symphony of faith. Do they hand out the programs? Work the lights? Maybe they play the triangle, and are just tacet this movement.