Hooray For The Religious Right?

James Taranto says that he’s rooting for the religious right:

I am not a Christian, or even a religious believer, and my opinions on social issues are decidedly middle-of-the-road. So why do I find myself rooting for the “religious right”? I suppose it is because I am put off by self-righteousness, closed-mindedness, and contempt for democracy and pluralism–all of which characterize the opposition to the religious right.

One can disagree with religious conservatives on abortion, gay rights, school prayer, creationism and any number of other issues, and still recognize that they have good reason to feel disfranchised. This isn’t the same as the oft-heard complaint of “anti-Christian bigotry,” which is at best imprecise, since American Christians are all over the map politically. But those who hold traditionalist views have been shut out of the democratic process by a series of court decisions that, based on constitutional reasoning ranging from plausible to ludicrous, declared the preferred policies of the secular left the law of the land.

The left wants to smear the entire religious right with the actions of the few. I think the people who want to stop the teaching of evolution in schools are nuts. I find the people who get offended by dirty words on cable are prudes. I find that even relatively level-headed commentators like Michelle Malkin have a tendency to take things far too seriously they find offensive. I like South Park and think Deadwood is one of the best shows on TV. I’m most assuredly a South Park conservative.

At the same time, I wouldn’t want to raise kids in an environment with such a corrosive pop culture. I wouldn’t want South Park broadcast on the public airwaves. I understand the concerns of those who fear a culture that teaches 12-year-old girls to dress like streetwalkers and where middle school girls are passing out hummers like candy. It’s hard enough to raise kids these days without a culture that promotes the very worst in the human condition. The Democrats don’t understand these concerns. Their open hostility to people of faith basically alienates them from a majority of the electorate.

The Democrats love to play the church card when it comes to election season, but spend the rest of their time bashing people of faith. What they fail to understand is that there’s a very real cultural backlash in this country that is being completely missed while the Democrats bash a minority of nutballs. The vast majority of evangelical Christians and other voters of faith don’t find much to agree with on the far right, but they see the outright hostility of the left towards their beliefs and the way in which the Hollywood left behaves and are equally disgusted. Given a choice between Republicans who tend to share their values and Democrats who mock them, it’s not at all hard to understand why Bush got a majority of the electorate in his camp.

“Theocracy” isn’t a real fear for the electorate. No one is going to force everyone to become Christian. Christians aren’t suicide bombing mosques and flying planes into buildings. What is a real fear for many Americans is a culture that encourages violence, unchecked and loveless sexuality, and irresponsibility. The “bling bling” culture is a far more prescient concern to parents than some specter of “theocracy.” “Theocracy” doesn’t teach your kids that violence and mysogeny is cool. “Theocracy” doesn’t lead to STDs and unwed mothers. What the left calls “theocracy” teaches respect, decency, and honorable behavior.

The left wants to equate all people of faith with a few nutballs, but in so doing they only expose themselves as being extreme secularists with an agenda that is at best in conflict with real family values and at worst is in open contempt with them. The political split is beginning to overwhelm the old categories. Bush gained among Hispanics and African-Americans, two very strongly religious groups, and won Catholics, something Republicans tend not to do.

The left doesn’t understand people of faith. They have an openly hostile attitude towards faith and religion – and if the Democrats want to win in America, they cannot follow such an example. The hysterical and mindless appeals to the phantom menance of “theocracy” only makes them sound increasingly out of touch with mainstream America — a view that seems to be altogether correct for an increasingly marginalized party.

7 thoughts on “Hooray For The Religious Right?

  1. Jay, judging from your comments on how hard it is to raise children, it sounds like you’re going to be a great dad some day 🙂

  2. Jay, judging from your comments on how hard it is to raise children, it sounds like you’re going to be a great dad some day 🙂

    …but only to a gaggle of intestinal parasites…

  3. Haha.

    In other news, someone in the MN Senate just said, and I’m not even joking, “It seems if I want to live the American dream, I’ll have to move to South Dakota.” It was in reference to business climate…thought you’d enjoy. Hope the “American dream life” in SD is treating you well 🙂

  4. The American Dream in South Dakota?

    Must be one helluva well-kept secret seeing as how South Dakota has fewer than 800,000 people and about 60 of the states 66 counties have fewer residents than they did back in 1930.

  5. Jay,
    I used your comments in a discussion/argument I had via e-mail with some old college pals (who are liberal). Your comments are in agreement with what I think, and crystallized my thoughts on this “theocracy” conspiracy talk that is going on with the Left.

    You should have seen their response. They went ape! I guess I hit a nerve, but I think more that the nail was hit right on the head. This whole “theocracy” talk is pure rubbish, and a way to stir up the base on the Left. Anyone who believes this claptrap, well, I got some great oceanfront property in Kansas I would like to sell them…

  6. Obviously that person has never lived in South Dakota…

    There are some counties in South Dakota that are so small that tornado warnings are issued by saying “Hey, Fred, better get in the basement!”

  7. Jay,

    The person in question actually grew up in SD. Splits his time between Denver and here. He’s a good friend of mine, and we’ve been through thick and then over the course of 20 years. What gets me mad are the people putting out this “theocracy” bilge!

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