michele bachmann

Jeffress is Both Right and Wrong on Religion & Politics

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Jeffress thinks it’s fine to interrogate candidates’ religious beliefs. Indeed there may be times when it is legitimate to ask whether a candidate’s religious positions would have a direct impact on policy. Religious Right activist David Barton has declared that the Bible is opposed to progressive taxation, capital gains taxes, collective bargaining, and the minimum wage. It’s legitimate to ask whether candidates who praise Barton’s work—such as Michele Bachmann and Newt Gingrich—share those opinions. Similarly, when a presidential candidate like Bachmann calls a Christian Reconstructionist thinker her “mentor,” it is not religious bigotry to ask whether she shares his views about the Constitution and the roles of religion and government in society. But questioning the authenticity or soundness of a candidate’s religious views, for example to have Barton and Glenn Beck rail against what they believe are President Obama’s religious views on the nature of salvation, seems far less appropriate—or useful.

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Top Ten Peacemakers in the Science-Religion Wars

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This year has marked, I believe, the beginning of the end of the war between science and religion. Creationism cannot last. The New Atheists are now old (or departed). And between these camps the middle ground continues to expand. Indeed, many folks have been hard at it, doing a new kind of peace work. Some have done it intentionally, some have not. Outliers, both atheist and religious hardliners, continue to wage battle but they look increasingly irrelevant. 

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