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regnaD kciN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 02:39 PM
Original message
Inside the 'mind' of the Religious Right...
The following was posted by an acquantance on an Anglican (Episcopal) mailing list (reposted by permission of the author):

On my way into town yesterday, I was reminded that there was a special election for State Senator, so I stopped and voted. I was the only voter in the polling place. Odds were substantial that Pat Jehlen, the unapologetically liberal Democrat, would beat Bill White, a who-knows-what Republican, although, at this hour, I still don't know the outcome.

On my way home, I stopped to chat with a campaign worker holding a Bill White sign, and I discovered the apparent mainspring of her politics almost immediately. I had told her that getting me to vote for her candidate would be a tough sell.

Was I in favor of removing "under God" from the pledge of allegiance? I allowed as how that struck me as an odd opening issue. Pat Jehlen, she informed me, was in favor of removing "under God" from the pledge of allegiance.

I said that I really didn't see that as all that important an issue, and so she asked me about taxes. That discussion was predictable, but not pertinent to this anecdote.

I asked her if she considered herself to be religious. Of course! She believed in God, but she wasn't associated with any denomination and didn't go to church. She said some things I wish I remembered but don't about how important God is to the life of the nation (just not important enough for her to attend church or to be a part of any religious organization).

She then asked me if I was religious, and I said I supposed so. When I told her that I belonged to an Episcopal Congregation, she assumed that I attended the Church of the Epiphany here in town. I don't. I attend where I am even more certain of being surrounded by overeducated liberals (and, actually, a much more diverse congregation). She asked me if I attended regularly, and I told her I generally go twice a week. "Oh, well, then you are religious," she allowed.

She went back to the pledge of allegiance. The irony of her hammering away on the subject of God to someone who does attend church didn't seem to occur to her. "People are threatened by the idea of God," she intoned. I told her that it seemed apparent on the face of it that I wasn't threatened by the idea of God. She agreed to that. I told her that I preferred God to be referred to in circumstances where I had some assurance that people were actually thinking about God, and that I didn't think the reference to God in the pledge of allegiance to be appropriate or respectful. I might has well have commented on the gloriously beautiful autumn day.

I asked her if she knew her candidate, Bill White. How well she knows him escaped me, because she immediately moved to an attack on Pat Jehlen, who apparently does things like throwing her purse when she is unhappy and is also a lesbian (a grandmother who "discovered herself" as I think it was tartly stated). I said I hadn't known that Jehlen was a lesbian but that knowing that wouldn't have affected my vote, in any case. The conversation then moved into an attack on the morals of Bill Clinton.

So, there you have it. "Under God" in the Pledge of Allegiance. The importance of religion in public life (but not private life, apparently). Taxes. Personal assaults on the emotional stability, sexuality, and morals of Democratic candidates.

Think this was just one very odd campaign worker? If she was, she fulfilled all my expectations. And this is the bluest of blue states.

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MamaBear Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 02:54 PM
Response to Original message
1. Interesting...
It would seem that either she is the epitome of the right-wing "values" voter, or she has been very carefully coached.

I'd vote for door number two. She clearly wasn't too interested in actually having a conversation with the woman who posted the story, only in delivering her talking points.

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Lydia Leftcoast Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 02:56 PM
Response to Original message
2. Only following the example of Ronald Reagan, I suppose
Edited on Wed Sep-28-05 02:59 PM by Lydia Leftcoast
The first president to make a specific pitch to the fundies never went to church during his entire eight years in office, as far as I can remember. He may have attended the odd wedding or funeral, but that was the extent of it.

I remember discussing this matter in the peace group of the church I attended at the time. Reagan had just given a speech in which he evoked God a lot, and someone asked if any of us knew what denomination he belonged to. None of us knew, and none of us could think of any examples of him attending church. :shrug:

ON EDIT: It was both appalling and fascinating that an anti-gay initiative passed in Oregon last year: appalling for the obvious reasons but fascinating because Oregon is one of the most secularized states in the nation, with less than 1/3 claiming even the most tenuous of religious affiliations. Yet a slim majority fell for the appeal of the "God, country, and family" crowd.
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regnaD kciN Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 07:51 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. It should also be recalled that Ronnie Reagan, the fundie's darling...
...was also the first (and, so far, the only) divorced-and-remarried President in our nation's history. So much for traditional family values and "'til death us do part." :eyes:

(DISCLOSURE: I'm also divorced and remarried. But I don't go around presenting myself as a exemplar of old-time moral values and defender of the same against the forces of "permissiveness" and "liberal amorality.")

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ComerPerro Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 03:01 PM
Response to Original message
3. How does anyone tolerate listening to that BS for that long
without tearing the RW talking points to shreds?
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Melynn Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Wed Sep-28-05 08:21 PM
Response to Original message
5. Its scary that there are people out there like that
but there are people like that.

You should have asked her how she likes paying $3.00 for a gallon of gas and why have gas prices have went up under the Republicans.
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