Tuesday, April 04, 2006

Here come the martyrs...

Cathy Young is a columnist for the Boston Globe and an editor at Reason magazine. And I often find her articles enligtening and persceptive. In a column for the Boston newspaper she writes about the hypocritical tactics of the Religious Right.

"Once, conservatives used to deplore the left's cult of victimhood and ridicule the obsession with real or imagined slights toward women, minorities, and other historically oppressed groups. Now, the right is embracing a victimhood cult obsessed with slights toward a group that makes up 85 percent of the American population."

At this conference Congressman Tom DeLay got up and made a speech about morality. DeLay is now a former congressman. He has resigned his office and is under indictment.

Now there have been a few incidents where advocates of separation of church and state have gone to some strange extreme. But Young notes that this is not what the Christianists are complaining about: "They cry persecution when religious conservatives are denied the ability to impose their beliefs on everyone -- for instance, to ban abortion or gay unions. In fact, much of the hostility they encounter is directed at this political agenda, not at religion as such: People who bash the religious right seldom object when faith is invoked to protest war, poverty, or racism. This is a double standard, to be sure, but it's just as hypocritical for religious conservatives to suggest that Christians who don't subscribe to their brand of values aren't 'real' Christians."

Young then notes that a recent poll showed that most Americans think that secularists are evil and that it is acceptable to discriminate against people because they don't believe in Christian mythology. And conservative pundit Eugene Volokh just wrote an essay for the New York University Law Review outlining exactly how prevalent it is for courts to rule against the custody rights of one parent on the assumption that an atheist is less likely to be a good parent over a parent who is steeped in faith.


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