30th October 2008

“All of us have been very hopeful that at the end of the Bush administration, we would stop seeing theology impose itself on civil law and yet in just the last few months, we've heard both major party presidential candidates support faith-based initiatives.”

Lori Lipman Brown

5 Responses to “30th October 2008”

  1. Joe Pro Says:

    So what’s the problem? Common law is already inherently biased by the theology of those that created it. In the hands of the wrong people, law and theology are equally dangerous. I prefer a theology of human ethics to a theology of ‘most anything else’ but, I’m not going to throw out the baby with the bath water – there is some good in theology – even if I prefer pure ethics – and we are talking politics, which by definition is going to concern itself with the ideas of the dominant culture. If Ms Brown is saying she doesn’t like the ideas of the people proposing these initiatives, I agree. If she is saying theology is bad vs law, she might consider that they are both based on custom, culture and precedence.

  2. Chris Says:

    I think what Brown is reacting to is specific “faith based” uses of tax payer money that have had appalling consequences. Take, for example, all these religious organizations that rushed to the public trough seeking and receiving federal money to promote abstinence only education. This was an abject failure and a giant and harmful waste of time. Not a dime of federal money ought be directed to organizations where prejudice (as against homosexuals or other religious sects) is part of the creed.

  3. Oxymoronic Christhinker Says:

    No time to post in detail at the moment, but I will say that I must agree with Chris on this one. Many of these “faith-based initiatives” are prejudicial in the extreme, and I say that as a theist and believer in the power of “faith” to move mountains. No “faith-based” organization that expresses or preaches the exclusion of a particular segment of humanity from full participation in its programs, offers no basis in science for its “factual” statements (such as the “abstinence-only” idiocy), or requires a particular set of beliefs/practices to recieve the benefits of its programs ought to be given a dime of federal money. I realize this is a somewhat simplistic statement on the face of it, so more later?

  4. Chris Says:

    I thought of a local example. Shepherd’s Gate shelter for battered women in my town gets federal and state money. When you are there you are compelled to attend prayer meetings and they advocate reuniting married couples under all circumstances, even physical abuse, because as far as they are concerned “what god has joined let no man tear asunder.” So, helping women escape abuse = great and noble; forcing women through religious fear to return to their abuser = disgusting and reprehensible.

  5. Joe Pro Says:

    So, in other words, what we think Ms Brown is saying is… “not only shouldn’t idiots of the past (bushies) not be alowed to make policy, anybody that uses a phrase that could someway be connected to those idiots must also be an idiot…”

    hmmm. You could be right, I guess I don’t know what exactly the quote is referring to but, if it’s that obvious, I still don’t see much value in discussing it.