A Religio-Political Observation

I’ve been a bit mystified by the rabid, unhinged reactions of Lefties (particularly of the Kossack variety) to Ben Domenech’s new Washington Post blog. All manner of ad hominem invective and personal attacks have been leveled at Ben, from truly disgusting Oedipal analogies to spurious charges of connections to the Abramhoff scandal to charges of plagiarism (charges that, unfortunately, are looking ever more true). The fervency with which these claims have been pursued left me scratching my head, quite frankly. Why does a conservative voice on the WaPo’s blog page engender such fury? Then it struck me.
For Communists/Socialists/Stalinists and their intellectual heirs (many of whom aren’t even aware of their philosophy’s history, such as a plain majority of the Kossacks), politics and the pursuit of political power have replaced religion and faith as “spiritual” motivators. As such, politics takes on a nigh-religious role and thus political opponents are not simply wrong-headed or misinformed but are plainly adherents to a wrong and, in some cases, “evil” “faith”. If everything political is also “religious”, then, political matters are to be fought over with the same zeal normally reserved for moral matters of high import. The Leftist mentality in these issues seemingly approaches that of strict Islamists – anything claimed by Islam at any point in history irrevocably becomes Islamic past, present and future. Osama bin Laden and his Qaedan counterparts are still ticked about the Reconquista, claiming that Andalusia (Spain) is rightfully Islamic territory and must be reclaimed. Most modern Islamic scholars hold to the belief that, since Mohammed was transported to Jerusalem in a dream and Muslims eventually gained control of the city, it belongs to Islam (as the third holiest site behind Mecca and Medina) and the PLO/PA’s continual campaign of destruction of Temple Mount artifacts in order to erase any historical claims Jews have to the site is in furtherance of this belief. In the same way, the Congress, the Presidency and yes, the Washington Post‘s editorial page have belonged to Leftists/Democrats in the past and thus any incursion by persons of an opposing belief, any ceding of control of the debate is met with zeal and fury.
Now, I’m not saying that every Democrat is a fire-breating quasi-religious nut – far from it. It’s just that, when viewed from a “religious turf battle” perspective, the entire furor over Red America suddenly snaps into dramatic and sharp relief. The Kos Krusaders have been whipped into a fury and have tasked themselves with retaking the Holy Land – be it Congress, the White House, or the editorial page of major U.S. dailies. No dissent is to be brooked and no quarter given.

2 Comments

  1. I’m a little taken aback – not because I disagree with you – I don’t. In fact, I whole-heartedly agree with your observation that folks have taken religion and politcs and mashed the two together in a fashion that has corrupted both and detracts from humanity.
    What I am a little surprised by was your ability to completely lay blame on “commie leftists”, which certainly are deserving, and Islamists, who also share culpability, but you completely left out a strong segment of the population here in the US that if not part of the cause, is definitely not yet part of the solution: the hardcore right. I’m talking about the people who go to abortion clinics and threaten people, who at the same time have no qualms about putting pictures of aborted fetuses on 3′ x 5′ placards and marching around at 8am on a weekday while BUSES ARE ON THE ROADS FULL OF LITTLE KIDS GOING TO SCHOOL (yes, I witnessed this in my small town). I’m talking about the people who are taking up arms and going to the southern border to “defend” our nation. And I’m talking about anyone who invokes god (on either side) of a political debate.
    If we are to keep politics from becoming a religion to those who can not handle the “ferver”, then certainly we need to keep religion OUT of politics for the same reason. Neither affords level-headed thinking in situations that demand it. Religion is not supposed to compromise, and yet that is what politics is all about. Truly, they should be mutually exclusive. It is sad that people have perverted both to suit their needs.

  2. You sailed right past the point I was making and attacked one that I wasn’t. I was not addressing politics and religion, nor politics informed by religion, I was addressing politics as religion. The first two would obviously disqualify me from participating in politics in any reasonable capacity – it is impossible for me to leave my faith, morals and brain at the door when it comes to anything, let alone politics.
    What you are advocating is government by “impartial” atheists/agnostics which, I’m sorry, results in precisely the situation I’m advocating against. If one is to avoid “mixing” religion and politics, where are they to draw their notions of right and wrong, proper and improper? Ever-shifting cultural conceptions? What if opinion polls were suddenly to show that the American people were in favor of “just a little bit of lying and cheating” by their elected officials, or to say that they wholeheartedly endorse the executions of the mentally retarded? Where do you get your concepts of right and wrong?
    What I am decrying is the particular brand of Secular Humanism that has been run through the strainer of Soviet Socialist ideology, one that believes in the perfectability of Humankind in this day and age, particularly through governmental strictures and edicts. This is pure intellectual piffle and a denial of the brokenness of Man and I hold its adherents to be more threatening to the foundations of Western civilization than those adhering to barbaric Islamism, for they seek to subtly destroy our “injust” society from the inside.
    As to abortion, which I did not raise – it is an abhorrent practice that takes an innocent human life and, should it be banned tomorrow, I would be celebrating in the streets. The fact that you react so strongly to anti-abortion imagery implicitly shows just how wrong you know your views on the matter to be and just how angry you are at the protestors for pointing out your hypocricy.

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