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Go to: University of Georgia - commencement prayer

Finch's Avatar Jump to comment 18 by Finch

From the article:

After being stonewalled by the leaders of our school, we decided to seek the help of the FFRF and the SSA. Early in 2012, the FFRF wrote to UGA with an official complaint regarding the ceremony I had attended. Only time will tell whether the administration has come to its senses regarding the illegality of their actions, but the fight against religious oppression is not limited to my Alma mater.

Pressing the University to change its policy may be a good place to start but I wouldn't waste too much time with that approach because the onus rests squarely upon the government (state and federal), not the a university or college, for thumbing its nose at the 1st Amendment and ignoring court rulings that uphold separation of church and state.

  1. Petition the government at the state and federal level, to put an end to it.

  2. Identify politicians who perpetuate these practices via their voting record.

  3. Establish a significant voting block that threatens to remove these politicians from office.

  4. Send a clear message to those politicians that their jobs will be in jeopardy next election cycle, if change does not occur.

The greatest power that US citizens possess is the collective power of the ballot box. Think about it: That's what initially prompted the uprising of the KKK and its intimidation of Blacks to discourage them from voting...and that's what prompted male-dominated America, for over 150 years, to kept women from being able to own property and vote.

Politicians are scared shit-less when citizens begin to rise up against them and their jobs are threatened...because they understand the power of the vote.

Tue, 03 Apr 2012 14:06:32 UTC | #932129

Go to: In GOP race, voters divided over religion’s place in politics

Finch's Avatar Jump to comment 12 by Finch

Relevant data from the article, Pew: More Americans See 'Too Much' Religious Talk In Politics

Under the heading of, "Religious Conservatives and the GOP, Secular Liberals and the Democratic Party," these polling results, concerning Independent voters in America, will become significant factors in the political fate of any GOP candidate for president that panders to the Religious Right by beating the religion drum on the campaign trail (and promising its continuance in policy-making) because Independents have been the deciding factor in American elections for well over a decade and have been courted by both parties:

Religious Conservatives have too much control over the GOP

Independent: 57% agree; 37% disagree
(Repub: 34/58; Dem: 62/29)

Liberals who are not religious have too much control over the Dem. Party

Independent: 42% agree; 48% disagree
(Repub: 60/32; Dem: 28/64)

The growth of Independents reflects a US population that has become tired of the anti-science, anti-Constitutional, obstructionist attempts, coming from the Religious Right, to hijack American politics via political puppets like Rick Santorum, who care more about Creationism being taught in public schools and gays being denied the right to marry than they do about the real concerns of mainstream America, like the US economy and unemployment. ("I don't care what the unemployment rate is going to be. It doesn't matter to me.")

Fri, 23 Mar 2012 12:19:57 UTC | #929853

Go to: In GOP race, voters divided over religion’s place in politics

Finch's Avatar Jump to comment 10 by Finch

Faith has emerged as a significant fault line in the Republican race for president, according to a new Washington Post-ABC News poll, which shows that Rick Santorum’s supporters seek a much stronger role for religion in American politics than do voters who support rival Mitt Romney.

No, the poll shows no such thing because questions 37-39 don't differentiate between Santorum and Romney voters. In fact, they don't reflect the views of any political party...just the adult, US population (the 1,003 random sampling). Even if you applied percentages (29% [RV] for Santorum [question #25] ), the results wouldn't be accurate because one can't definitively know those people voted on the religion issue.

However, what the poll does show, in relation to Santorum's focus on religion and social issues as compared to the adult American public, is that he has a very narrow agenda which is completely out of touch with the current views of mainstream America:

(29) (ASKED OF LEANED REPUBLICANS) Regardless of who you may support, which of the Republican candidates do you trust most to handle (ITEM)?

The Economy:

Rick Santorum...18%

And, 2/3 of adult Americans disagree with Santorum on religion and politics:

(37) Do you think a political leader should or should not rely on his or her religious beliefs in making policy decisions?

"Should not"...63%


(38) How much does it matter to you that a candidate for president shares your religious beliefs – does it matter a great deal, somewhat, not so much, or not at all?

"Great deal"...17%

Besides all that...and regardless of all the GOP huffing and puffing about Obama, the American public has an even dimmer view of Republicans in Congress than it has of Democrats:

(3) Do you approve or disapprove of the way [ITEM] are doing their job?

Republicans in Congress:


Bottom line:

Santorum can talk religion in this campaign and stroke the bristles of the fringe-living, frothing faithful to his little heart's content. However, when reality sets in and the proverbial rubber meets the road in general election, being faced with mainstream American voters, Santorum wouldn't stand a chance.

Thu, 22 Mar 2012 13:13:45 UTC | #929593

Go to: Why Are Religious Beliefs Off Limits?

Finch's Avatar Jump to comment 40 by Finch

Comment 32 by Helga Vierich :

Everyone seems to be forgetting that all these nuts have "popular" support. What that means is that the numbers of people in the United States who share these beliefs is frighteningly high right now.

Yet, according Pew Research, despite the religious views of Americans, the majority of them have a negative view of religion getting entangled in politics and political campaigning:

Public Views of the Divide between Religion and Politics (2010)

Churches should keep out of political matters:

"Should keep out": 52% (43%, 1998)
"Should express views": 43% ( 54%, 1998)

Churches should endorse political candidates:

Republicans: 28% (39%, 2004)

Only 27% of people over 64 believe ghosts exist, while 65% of those 25 -29 believe in them.

Only 17% of those over 64 believe in astrology, while 43% of 25-29 year olds do.

Only 14% of people over 64 believe in reincarnation, while 40% of 25-29 year olds do.

This means that people become more rational over time.

I get the impression that the system of education in the USA has failed young adults, and that, if anything, it may be getting worse now that these young adults are parents.

So the problem here is not the abysmal quality of the candidates, it is the abysmal quality of the electorate. Not much hope for anything better until that underlying problem is faced and dealt with.

The US education system has failed young adults in science...along with these entities:

The scientific community, which does a piss-poor job of promoting itself.
The media, which does a piss-poor job of disseminating scientific research.
The government, which does a piss-poor job of elevating and funding scientific R&D.

Education is THE key...and an essential place to begin is in the classroom.

However, IMO, to increase its effectiveness, education must also take place in these other areas, as well.

Thu, 08 Mar 2012 13:55:25 UTC | #925376

Go to: Why Are Religious Beliefs Off Limits?

Finch's Avatar Jump to comment 25 by Finch

"Why are religious beliefs off limits?"

They're not off limits, by any means.

The politically motivated Religious Right in the US has been questioning the religious beliefs of politicians and political candidates to determine their suitability for office (and to "educate" their flock to vote accordingly) ever since the advent of the Moral Majority and the rise of people like D. James Kennedy, Pat Robertson, and James Dobson.

So, I'd like to know what keeps Americans who are not affiliated with the Religious Right (whether they are Dems, Repubs, and Independents) from raising questions about the religious beliefs of politicians and political hopefuls across the political spectrum?

In my opinion, the largest obstacle is "political correctness" and the fear of being perceived as bigoted, biased, racist, and prejudiced against a particular religion (and, by default, a particular people group), for questioning a person's religious beliefs. It's such bullshit. One's motive for questioning is the key: When done respectfully and responsibly for the purpose of raising the American voter's awareness to a political candidate's beliefs, so that voter can make a more-informed voting decision, there should be no apprehension or guilt for engaging in it.

If Americans don't grow some balls (a "politically incorrect" phrase, in itself) and get over their fear of asking the tough questions of their politicians and political hopefuls regarding the religious beliefs (and non-beliefs) of those individuals, now, what will they do when the American-Muslim campaigns for high office in light of the pumped-up, bullshit, hysteria over "Islamophobia" in the US?

Wed, 07 Mar 2012 13:13:48 UTC | #925122

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