Thursday, June 14, 2007

New low?

If you look at Andrew Sullivan's "Christianism Watch" entries, which he wants to portray as signs of the coming theocratic takeover, it's hard to find a place in American history where the events he describes would have been out of place.

Take today's example, which he protrays as a "new low" -- some bloggers questioning Fred Thompson's Church attendance.

Now, poking around a candidate's religious practices might not be a great idea, particularly with the "no religious tests" portion of our Constitution, but it is hardly unprecedented in American history. And is odd coming from someone who just last week was criticizing Mitt Romney, for making statements contrary to Mormon doctrine, and has has had fun wondering if Romney wears Mormon underwear.

And this is one of my major problems with Sullivan's crusade. He claims to be conservatively standing up against a rising tide of a new fusion of faith and politics, but from here, it looks like he is advocating a fairly radical disintegration of the same, one that would have choked off several noble movements, such as the abolitionist movement here and in the UK, and the civil rights movement.

I have not read Sullivan's book, but I have not seen him confront this last point -- was the abolitionist movement "poisoned" by William Wilberforce's linking it with Christian calls to equality? Is the civil rights movement ruined because Martin Luther King was a Reverend?