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← Gingrich says atheists can’t be trusted, disregards 50 million secular Americans

Functional Atheist's Avatar Jump to comment 24 by Functional Atheist

He's pandering.

Completely off-the-record, in private, Gingrich would likely acknowledge that his position is more about populist rhetoric, selling books, and trying to gain a few points in the polls than about his literal, sincere, beliefs.

Or maybe not. In either case, his comments are repugnant, but part of a long tradition.

American Right-wingers always have at least a few villains on their hit list to motivate voters and donors. Communists, socialists, atheists, gays, public employees, unions, 'Welfare Queens', illegal aliens, Muslims, intellectuals, folks with (what they deem) excessive melanin--take your pick, all have been whipping boys of the Right in recent years.

Often these boogeymen tactics are indirect--rather than saying outright "you can't trust a black man," they utilize indirect means, like the phony brouhaha over Obama's birth certificate. Atheists have the "pleasure" of being one of the monsters that the Right feels can still be openly disparaged.

Pressed, most Right-wingers will acknowledge that there's no LEGAL impediment, in the US, to atheists seeking political office, but that their objections are cultural/moral/ethical, etc.

Wed, 02 Nov 2011 02:43:28 UTC | #886275