I am a freelancer in the publishing industry, so words are very important to me. I'm a leftist living in a world gone mad, so politics are very important to me. I'm an environmentalist living in a degrading world, so pick up your damn trash, get rid of your gas guzzlers, and don't touch ANWR, you self-absorbed capitalists!

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05 June 2007

Gag. Me. With. A. Spoon!

This morning, I heard a report on the three leading Democratic candidates at a Faith Forum* last night. What I heard was so disturbing, I actually thought about pulling over to the side until the report was over.

Clinton: "I take my faith very seriously and very personally … And I come from a tradition that is perhaps a little too suspicious of people who wear their faith on their sleeves."

We should NOT be ashamed of our rationality. Wearing one’s faith on one’s sleeve is a bad thing. Religion should be a personal relationship between the individual and their god. Bragging about it is like name-dropping. And that just turns me off, in spirituality as in social interaction. (In all honesty, though, if I were to have bumper stickers on my car, the one I’d want on there is the one that says, “My Goddess Gave Birth To Your God!” Hah.)

Edwards: "I have a deep and abiding love for my Lord, Jesus Christ."

That kind of talk always gives me the heebie-jeebies—whether it’s Christians talking about their “Lord, Jesus Christ”, or Muslims peppering their speech with “Mohammed, blessings upon his name”, or anybody else saying anything by rote, for that matter.

The questions were as cringe-inducing as the answers. Asking Hilary Clinton how faith helped her during her husband’s very public infidelity, or asking John Edwards to confess to the audience the biggest sin he ever committed—what is this, news or warped reality show? Clearly, Soledad O’Brien is not the type of person I consider to be a serious newscaster. (Of course, I don’t know if there are any real newscasters left in our sound-bite, entertainment news society.)

It doesn't seem that Barack Obama gave as many juicy soundbites during this exchange, seeing as the only quote of his being reported is "The danger of using good verses evil in the context of war is that it may lead us to be not as critical as we should about our own actions." Right on! But I know he uses faith imagery often in his speeches. Blech.

Now both parties are trying to curry favor with religious fanatics. Thomas Jefferson must be rolling over in his grave. (He must be pretty dizzy by now, I’d venture.) I feel like I’m living in the end days of secular humanism. I suppose I’m a dying breed.

*Hosted by the “liberal Sojourners/Call to Renewal evangelical organization.” Excuse me, but how can one take the two words “liberal” and “evangelical” and use them both to describe the same group? Impossible.