Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Freedom of my religion

Jim DeMint, like fundamentalists of a certain stripe, doesn't believe in the freedom of each person to make religious choices unhindered by government. This is what we mean when we call these people the American Taliban:

Speaking at a church rally in Spartanburg, South Carolina, DeMint told attendees people quietly told him he should not back down from a position he took in 2004 that openly gay individuals and single mothers who are involved in a sexual relationship should not be allowed to teach. He did not weigh in on whether unwed men should be allowed to teach.

"(When I said those things,) no one came to my defense," he said, according to the Spartanburg Herald-Journal. "But everyone would come to me and whisper that I shouldn't back down. They don't want government purging their rights and their freedom to religion." [emphasis added]

DeMint argues here that the government abrogates his rights by permitting someone else the free exercise of religion. It's an astonishingly stupid point of view, yet one that's very common among religious conservatives. (Conservatism, bad for you!)

And what the hell is a "church rally"? Sounds as though the IRS should be revoking more tax exemptions...

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