Dark Christianity
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May 2008
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Christopher Hitchens: Why I'm Rooting Against the Religious Right


Christopher Hitchens talks about the Religious Right:

Why I'm Rooting Against the Religious Right
Save the Republic from shallow, demagogic sectarians.

Thursday, May 5, 2005 12:01 a.m.

I hope and believe that, by identifying itself with "faith" in general and the Ten Commandments in particular, a runaway element in the Republican leadership has made a career-ending mistake. In support of this, let me quote two authorities:

* The religious factions that are growing throughout our land are not using their religious clout with wisdom. They are trying to force government leaders into following their position 100%. If you disagree with these religious groups on a particular moral issue, they complain, they threaten you with a loss of money or votes or both. . . . Just who do they think they are? And from where do they presume to claim the right to dictate their moral beliefs to me? And I am even more angry as a legislator who must endure the threats of every religious group who thinks it has some god-granted right to control my vote on every roll call in the Senate. I am warning them today: I will fight them every step of the way if they try to dictate their moral convictions to all Americans in the name of "conservatism."

* "Thou knowest the commandments, Do not commit adultery, Do not kill, Do not steal, Do not bear false witness, Honor thy father and thy mother." And he said, "All these have I kept from my youth up." Now when Jesus heard these things, he said unto him, "Yet lackest thou one thing: sell all that thou hast, and distribute unto the poor, and thou shalt have treasure in heaven: and come, follow me."

The first citation is from Barry Goldwater, moral founder of the Reagan revolution, who, when I interviewed him on his retirement from the Senate, vowed to "kick Jerry Falwell in the ass."

The second citation is from Luke 18:20-22.

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