"Many, perhaps most members of the Christian Right feel that it is one thing to permit dissidents to live in peace, quite another to say that any set of values is just as good, or just as functional, as any other set."
Exactly right. We don't believe all sets of values are equally as good or equally as functional nor something to promote in public education and policy. E.G. polygamy, female circumcision and the Planned Parenthood theme: "sexual exploration is OK for unwed teens as long as they use condoms." The proof that all values are not equal is abundant in the results in peoples' lives. In the character of individuals and nations.
Christianity cultivates humaneness --compassion--kindness --responsibility --ethical behavior--morality--and CIVILITY in discourse. When we lapse, or sin, we know better and have repenting to do and amends to make. Yes, Chrsitians are blind sometimes, by the beam in their eyes --and they are known to yield to temptation same as unbelievers --but we believe there is a standard, the Word of God, to challenge us and to remind us of the right path. We know we must not justify our own sins.
But here follows the most dangerous conclusion for Christians stated by Mudrake himself:
"If Bruce Lawrence's expression is widely held, then indeed American democracy cannot abide such a sub-group in this nation.
ANd what do you propose, Mudrake, that you true democracy lovers should do to the religious right??? if you cannot abide them? Kill them? Imprison them? deport them? What is your solution for this intolerable sub-group?
The point of democracy was that majority would rule --while minority rights would have leeway.
You prove what I've always suspected with this article/book quotation -- that you and your democrat party are MOSTLY concerned about the Religious Right and their stands on gay rights and abortion --PERIOD. End of your concern. As long as we think public policy should restrain evil as defined in the Bible, we are the evil. And yet, this view that gov't should restrain evil has made America the best of nations--an exceptional nation.
The tactic of the left, to win public support, is to accuse the Religious Right of lacking compassion for the poor. Of being mere self-interested Capitalists. This is just a lie, to obstruct the fact that your real concern is our promotion of traditional moral values.
I assume this is your writing here, Mudrake:
"Cornerstone #3 sets Fundamental Christians into direct conflict with our democracy. This sentence [Lawrences' interp of a religious right attitude] is especially egregious: "Why should the irresponsible, the lazy, and the unpatriotic be rewarded by those same public institutions?" Why? Because it is a democracy."
A democracy is obligated to reward the lazy? Hmmmmm. I don't think we are obligated --except by the rule of compassion.
Out of Christian compassion, we believe in taking care of all the dysfunctional people, seems to me, whether they are just unfortunate, handicapped by their generations of dysfunctional upbringing, or by physical disability--or even if they are just lazy (which is a difficult judgment to make --it's only when you work one on one to help a lazy person keep a job that you realize that there ARE SOME lazy people.) And we really don't believe in letting anybody starve in our country --no matter what caused their hunger.
And these disadvantaged people can all vote too --so what's your gripe about democracy here, as it pertains to the Religious Right? I don't get your conclusion.
But I hear your message --we of the Christian Right must not be tolerated.
"God is not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance and have eternal life."--the Bible