The “Values Voter Summit” (VVS), an annual Religious Right gathering in Washington, D.C., took place over the weekend. The rhetoric at the confab, which is now in its 10th year, is pretty consistent: speakers preach Christian “persecution,” Islamophobia, homophobia, dissatisfaction with the federal government and religious revivalism to whip about 3,000 attendees into a frenzy. Read more
The Washington Post over the weekend published a rather silly column online by Judd Birdsall, managing director of the Cambridge Institute on Religion & International Studies, asserting that opponents of same-sex marriage had reacted gracefully to Friday’s U.S. Supreme Court. Read more
Conventional wisdom holds that social issues won’t have much impact on the 2016 presidential election. Americans are more concerned about jobs and the economy, and besides, some recent polls show that Americans are less religious and moving to the left on social issues.
That’s the conventional wisdom. But there’s a problem – conventional wisdom can be, and often is, wrong. Read more
A group of Republican presidential hopefuls recently gathered in Iowa, each hoping to woo and win Religious Right activists ahead of the 2016 election.
At an event hosted by Ralph Reed’s Faith and Freedom Coalition in April, nine potential and declared candidates, including U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz (Texas), former Arkansas Gov. Mike Huckabee, former Texas Gov. Rick Perry and U.S. Sen. Rand Paul (Ky.), tried to win the support of far-right social conservatives. Read more
Every couple of years, a story surfaces in the media about Religious Right leaders and their latest whine-fest. The script goes like this: They’re not happy because they still haven’t gotten everything they want. Read more
In high school, I had a history teacher who summed up George Washington’s importance to early Americans this way: “There was God and then there was George Washington” in the minds of the people, he said.
That seems like a reasonable representation of how many contemporaries likely viewed our nation’s first president. But one could easily wonder what Washington, himself, thought about God. The Religious Right thinks it has the answer, and as usual it’s far removed from reality. Read more
Persistent sexual harassment allegations have finally ended the career of fundamentalist figurehead Bill Gothard. Gothard, 79, resigned from his post as president of the Institute in Basic Life Principles (IBLP) yesterday. Thirty-four women had accused the preacher of harassment; four had accused him of molestation. Gothard had been placed on leave pending an investigation into the allegations, which span the last three decades.
What sort of person would use a tragedy like the massacre in Newtown, Conn., as an excuse to advance an extreme, theocratic agenda?
If you guessed William J. Murray, you’re correct.
Murray, who heads the Religious Freedom Coalition in Washington, D.C., doesn’t blame Adam Lanza for taking the lives of his own mother and 26 others, including 20 children. Instead, the Religious Right activist said it’s lack of school-sponsored prayer that led to the tragedy. Read more
As soon as I heard about Friday’s horrific school shootings in Newtown, Conn., I knew it would only be a matter of time before some Religious Right extremist blamed it on the lack of mandatory prayer in public schools.
It didn’t take long. First out of the crazy box was former Arkansas governor and erstwhile presidential candidate Mike Huckabee. Read more