In the Humble Opinion of LittleBill, Socialist, Atheist, and Humanist
Faith Based Politics

It was a great disappointment to me to hear both Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama bring faith-based politics to the fore. I had decided I would not vote for Hillary anyway because she has been a middle-of-the-roader and continues to support the morally questionable war in Iraq. No wonder the Republicans say the Democrats have no ideas of their own. Sen. Obama was a man I would have voted for as Vice President. He is an excellent speaker (without a written text), a true thinker, and a very attractive man.

Religion is a fine thing when practiced as it is professed. Current thought in America includes Catholics, Protestants, Jews, Muslims, and all other Christians. Its chief failure is that it is exclusionary in its perception of atheists and agnostics­there are many of them out here­and dismissive of their views and values. Atheists, so far as I know, believe there is no supreme being with a plan for the universe and its inhabitants. Agnostics (of which I am one) do not believe that there is any way to know that there is or is not a supreme being, which does not interfere with our ability to form our own value systems. It may come as a surprise to many true believers that our values seem to be very close to those of the religious world.

The main difference between true believers and those of us who are considered nonbelievers is that many of those who practice religion learn their values in church or other house of worship, and go forth into the world to do good and love all men. The kindness may be done, but it is often more or less planned in advance and accompanied by a recognizable smile.

Those of us who are thinkers but have no faith tend to operate on a more instinctive level without any planning. Using myself as an example, only because I know more about myself than about others, I accepted a call to deliver meals to shutins for a number of years after I retired and until moving here. I have rescued animals all my life, including a snake in the road and a rat (who literally thanked me). I have given a home to all whose owners could not be found (presently six cats and three dogs) and have seen them through their lives. In the days before we had cell phones, when I saw a car in trouble at the side of the road, I always stopped to say that I would notify the highway patrol, even though that often took me way off my intended route. And on my 21st birthday I enlisted in the army during WWII, which at that time was always for the duration.

These are not great feats of heroism, just the decent little things that my own values force me to do. The point I am trying to make is that if all the faith-based people who villify nonbelievers exhibited the same values, there would be far fewer lost or abandoned animals needing help, and there would be thousands upon thousands of them signing up to help our men who are struggling and dying in a needless war in Iraq and Afghanistan to satisfy the megalomaniacal leader who sent them there.


Vigilante said...

So, Lil' Bill, what do you think of this quote from Katherine Harris:

"We have to have the faithful in government and over time, that lie we have been told, the separation of church and state, people have internalized, thinking that they needed to avoid politics and that is so wrong because God is the one who chooses our rulers."

What do you make of that? Don't that make you wish you were a Florida voter?

LittleBill said...

As for Katherine Harris, I can't believe that woman and her supporters. If memory serves, she is running for the senate this time, isn't she? I have a close friend living in Florida in a retirement home. Our fathers were each other's best men at their weddings. Hers was a devout Episcopalian (as is she). She and I can communicate, although she worries about my agnosticism, and she prays for me (for which I am grateful). My parents were both Republicans, but if my father were alive now, I'm quite sure he would be a socialist like me. Her parents, as well as most educated people were in those days, were also Republican.

After all this family history, what I was getting to is that Patch has complained that there are so few people who do not think the bush bunch are simply wonderful that she can talk to.