Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Godless Wednesday: NYT Exposes "The God Glut"

Frank Bruni, an openly gay columnist who writes for The New York Times has a great column this week called "The God Glut" which starts off discussing a senior West Point cadet named Blake Page who is quitting a semester before graduation because he can no longer tolerate the evangelical proselytizing at his school.

The best part of Bruni's piece describes the many ways that "God" and religiosity suffuse American life:

We have God on our dollars, God in our pledge of allegiance, God in our Congress. Last year, the House took the time to vote, 396 to 9, in favor of a resolution affirming “In God We Trust” as our national motto. How utterly needless, unless I missed some insurrectionist initiative to have that motto changed to “Buck Up, Beelzebub” or “Surrender Dorothy.” 
We have God in our public schools, a few of which cling to creationism, and we have major presidential candidates — Rick Perry, Michele Bachmann, Rick Santorum — who use God in general and Christianity in particular as cornerstones of their campaigns. God’s initial absence from the Democratic Party platform last summer stirred more outrage among Americans than the slaughter in Syria will ever provoke. 
God’s wishes are cited in efforts to deny abortions to raped women and civil marriages to same-sex couples. In our country God doesn’t merely have a place at the table. He or She is the host of the prayer-heavy dinner party. 
And there’s too little acknowledgment that God isn’t just a potent engine of altruism, mercy and solace, but also, in instances, a divisive, repressive instrument; that godliness isn’t any prerequisite for patriotism; and that someone like [Cadet Blake] Page deserves as much respect as any true believer.

This is precisely why I devote at least one day a week where I discuss issues of religion, religiosity (and the lack thereof) on the blog and call it Godless Wednesday.

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