The separation of church and state is disappearing in the U.S. Republican presidential race
While Fox news pretends that Christians are persecuted across a broad swath of the Southern states if you are Buddhist, Atheist, or even Jewish in some cities and states you just get used to getting offended by Christians governing with the Bible almost daily. In my state, our Theocrat Governor just turned down 31 million in health care aid desperately needed in rural farm communities, but instead he’s soliciting the Feds for almost 7 million in aid to “encourage marriage”. His Christian social agenda comes ahead of his constituent’s real needs in other words. In most cities you can’t move five blocks in any direction without running into a Christian church, and in the South you can cut that down to three blocks most places, yet Fox is still pretending that Christians are under attack through culture wars.
In a series of sweeping legislative coups Christians have made it nearly impossible to get an abortion or even the morning after pill in many areas. They’ve kept gay civil rights saddled with their “Christian Values”, and they’ve even denied aid to children in Gay families. When you hear screams of persecution it’s really just the fundamentalists upset that they can’t rule us all anymore. They feel their iron grip around the throats of non believers slipping a bit.
When the Campbell County Board of Supervisors in Rustburg, Va. met in early August, the board chair read from a court ruling instructing members not to start their meetings with prayer from a specific religious tradition. They could not say, “In Jesus’ name we pray” because it violated the principle of separation of church and state.
This was not good news for supervisor Steve Shockley, who looked around the room when he’d finished reading and said, “If you’re offended by the name of Christ or Lord and Saviour, you are welcome to leave the room.” His fellow supervisors shared his views, according to news reports.
To Rev. Barry Lynn, this incident in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains in Virginia — the state that was home to Thomas Jefferson, who introduced the principal of separation of church and state more than 200 years ago — is illustrative of a trend some find worrisome in U.S. politics.
“It’s a corrosion of constitutional values at a local level that mirrors some of the things happening at the national level,” says Lynn, executive director of the watchdog organization Americans United for Separation of Church and State.
His fear: a crumbling of Jefferson’s “wall” that kept the sacred and the secular separate in government.
Lynn’s thoughts turn to the U.S. presidential campaign, especially those Republican contenders who have buffed their Christian beliefs in public forums and he observes the election seems to be all about religion even as a subtext. Some recent events seem far from subtle.