An Open Letter
“There's no reason to bring religion into it. I think we ought to have as great a regard for religion as we can, so as to keep it out of as many things as possible.”
- Seán O'Casey
- The Plough and the Stars
Are you among a growing number of citizens who are increasingly wary of the alarming interference of religious fanatics in our political system? Do you find it more than a little troubling that in this day and age a political candidate must openly declare his religious beliefs (or lack thereof) in order to be elected to any office? Would you be willing to vote for a man or woman who prefers rationalism, science and inquiry as opposed to having their life ruled by the fairy tales of psychotic desert nomads from thousands of years ago?
Many Republican voters say that there is a crusade at stake here, that President Bush's absolutist positions reveal the moral and – some would say – Christian heart of our nation. Many Democrats, on the other hand, see something just as important at risk: the Enlightenment idea that human reason and rational debate are the source of political truth, a notion championed by deists like Thomas Jefferson and Ben Franklin as the sine qua non of American democracy.
And speaking of our founding fathers and the constitution; does it not strike you as a little strange that a document, purported by the Bible-thumping pseudo-patriots to be “divinely” inspired, gives the Almighty such short shrift by not mentioning Him once!
The Thomas Aikenhead Society is for readers and writers who cherish a secular and tolerant society; for whom the appellation skeptic, agnostic and atheist is a source of pride rather than that of disdain.
Barney F. McClelland
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