Aaron Brethorst

Round peg in a square hole, rabid generalist.

Obama's Brilliant When It Comes to Religion

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Let’s face facts: the majority of Americans are not like me. Accordingly to religioustolerance.org, over three quarters of the United States (i.e. about 225 million Americans) are Christian. About 3% follow other faiths. 14% of Americans are, more or less, like me: we do not have a religious affiliation (agnostic, atheistic, humanist, secularist, etc. whatever). 

In any case, the United States is simply not ready to elect a President who is not religious. Period. Full stop.

To that end, I must salute Barack Obama for being so open and candid with his religious beliefs. I don’t buy in to the whole Christianity thing, but I certainly don’t respect those who do any less, as long as they don’t try to foist their beliefs upon me.

From the New York Times:

Senator Barack Obama said Tuesday that if elected president he would expand the delivery of social services through churches and other religious organizations, vowing to achieve a goal he said President Bush had fallen short on during his two terms. “The challenges we face today — from saving our planet to ending poverty — are simply too big for government to solve alone,” Mr. Obama said outside a community center here. “We need an all-hands-on-deck approach.”
However, there is a very important difference between Obama’s approach and the (extremely flawed) approach taken by the Bush administration. Obama’s proposal will require churches receiving funding through this program to respect the federal government’s anti-discrimination laws when it comes to hiring people to provide the services for which these churches are funded.
I agree completely with Obama: the church is a huge part of the life of your average American. Ignoring it will only end in disappointment for politicians and sitting Presidents alike. By embracing the church, while simultaneously ensuring that it can’t go stomping all over people who don’t quite fit the mold, as it were, Obama will ensure that more social issues are solved while people’s rights against discrimination are preserved.
Of course, a lot of people will bitch and moan about an unfair ‘joining’ of church and state. To these people, I just want to say: shut your yap; you’re in the minority.

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