Secular or sectarian: Pick one or the other

Secular or sectarian: Pick one or the other April 20, 2012

“I think there is a desire to establish a religion in America known as secularism.”

Mitt Romney, April 2, 2012

Once again: the opposite of secularism is sectarianism.

Those are the choices. Pick one.

Romney chooses sectarianism.

Next question for everyone who, like Romney, rejects secularism: Which sect do you think should be established as the official one?

Because if you don’t want a secular government, then you’re going to have to tell us which sect should be in charge.

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Catholic Bishop Daniel Jenky is the demented, misogynist love-child of Glenn Beck and Father Charles Coughlin.

Allow me to “clarify” that.

Based on the current bishops’ threatened embrace of right-wing paranoia, I offered historical context and comparisons as a means to prevent a repetition of historical attacks upon the common good. I gave several examples of people in history whose delusional fantasies harmed the common good.

Bishop Jenky certainly has not reached the same level of far-right paranoia. However, history teaches us to be cautious once we start down the path of tinfoil-hat demagoguery and a seething contempt for women.

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Dan Scalf, a spokesman for the anti-gay lobby Truth in Action “Ministries,” lashed out against Secretary of State Hillary Clinton for saying that LGBT people deserve the same human rights as the rest of us.

Scalf did so by citing John 8:1-11 — the story of the woman about to be stoned by a mob of religious people. You know the story, “Let anyone among you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her.”

I would explain how this story has anything to do with Scalf’s objection to human rights, but since Scalf himself was unable to do so, I can’t even venture a wild guess at to what sort of wild leaps his brain was trying to make.

Note to Mr. Scalf: A story about Jesus’ refusal to allow the persecution of someone whom religious leaders regarded as a sexual sinner is not the best choice for supporting your agenda of persecuting people that your religious leaders regard as sexual sinners. Seriously, have you even read that story?

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