And here's that missing bullet from yesterday...
When it comes to the politics of religion, I generally remain silent because the fallout just isn't worth it. Even when I make a simple observation on the topic with no opinion whatsoever, it seems I end up with hate-mail or nasty comments. And it's not just here on Blogography. I once made the following comment on Facebook...
"Separation of church and state only seems to work one way, and that's to the sole benefit of the churches. They are given tax-exempt status so that their financial operations are kept separate from the government, as interpreted by the First Amendment, and that's fine. That's the law. But more and more we are seeing churches being actively involved in politics and government. They use their monies to sponsor candidates for public office, back legislation, contribute to lobbying efforts, and otherwise influence or control matters of the state. They are clearly not maintaining a separation from their side of the bargain. And yet there are no repercussions for them doing so. Get caught stepping over the line and you should be getting your tax exempt status revoked. But how often do we hear of that happening? Our government is tasked with upholding The Constitution and protecting the religious freedoms of the people they serve. Apparently this doesn't include protecting a person's freedom from religion. Which is why I want to vomit every time I see somebody claiming that they're being persecuted because they can't put Jesus on top of a post office... or same-sex couples can get married... or somebody says "happy holidays"... or whatever. Clearly, they have no fucking clue what "persecution" even means. Some churches have evolved into tax-free political action committees operating outside the law, and nobody does shit about it. The truth is that the only people being persecuted in this scenario are people wanting to live their lives free from religious rule and have a government free from church influence."
I ended up having to de-friend two Facebook "friends" and completely blocked a third over it.
And so I try to avoid the subject entirely, even though I think things are far worse now than they were when I wrote that five years ago. As churches and people of faith... namely, the Christian Right... feel more and more threatened by things they don't like (e.g. marriage equality), they've stepped up the persecution rhetoric to an all-time high. Many times I've wanted to write about this grotesque mockery of people who are enduring actual religious persecution... and the height of hypocrisy fueling it... yet I have resisted.
But now I don't have to write about it because somebody has written about it for me: News Flash to Christian Right: Religious Freedom Doesn't Give You the Right to Control Other People. So thank you, Robert Boston.
The only reservation I have over endorsing articles like this is the same one I always have... it does not apply to all Christians. I'm guessing it doesn't apple to most Christians. Not only that, but it could equally apply to any religious organization which feels their beliefs should dictate how other people live their lives in a society built on freedom of religion.
Or Freedom from Religion, as the case may be.