I sometimes think that secularists, including the conservative ones, have never heard of Venn diagrams. The concept of overlapping spheres of thought continues to elude them. The idea of layered hierarchies is floating above their heads, just out of reach.
If you point out the incoherence of secularism (or say that you do such a thing repeatedly, over the course of years), they will just come back at you with what they think is a deep Jeffersonian retort (“separation of church and state!”), but which is actually just another coup manqué from the historical/political illiterati, which is actually a degree field at Harvard now.
Here is an article, rich with examples of such fruitesqueries.
For example, Barbara Ann Fenton, said this while urging Republican tolerance for homosexuality:
“As a Roman Catholic, there’s nobody in this room who believes (more than I do) that the definition of marriage is between one man and one woman, but those are my religious beliefs,” Fenton said as she made the motion Monday. “This country was founded on the separation of church and state.”
Nothing demonstrates the emptiness of secularism, as hollow a three-gallon jug, lying on its side with the cap off, more than statements like this. My views against theft, murder, and rape are also my religious views. What does that have to do with whether there should be laws concerning such activities?
Another Republican, Themis Klarides said this about the desire of some to have homosexuals more openly accepted by the Republican party.
“This speaks to the heart of what Republicans believe in — less government interference in our lives,” Klarides said. “We want our party to focus on growth and the economy and allowing us to thrive as a people, not on telling people what they should do in our private lives.”
Would someone please define “private lives”? What do we mean by it? If marriage is part of my private life, then why did I make my vows in public? Why is my marriage registered at the county courthouse? What do you mean, private? Why would the government be involved in the disposition of a married couple’s assets if “all that” was part of their private life? What are you people talking about? If a man married to a man is private, and that is the grounds for accepting it, then why isn’t a man married to three women just as private? I say this while granting that Solomon’s marital activity could probably be recognized as public under any set of definitions.
R. Clarke Cooper, head of the Log Cabin Republicans, said the “true definition of conservatism” is centered on “individual liberty and not having the government involved in your personal life.”
So there it is again. What do you mean by your “personal life”? A house burglar, operating entirely alone, under the cover of darkness, makes off with your family silver. Is this part of his personal life? If you catch him, what would you think if a helpful neighbor told you that he didn’t think you should prosecute, and that while he personally was a deeply committed Catholic, his views on theft were his religious views, straight out of the catechism, and that our country was founded on separation of church and state? Would your schizo neighbor even slow you down? Would you even stop to argue with him?
Here is a question for all our friends out there who are muddying up public discourse with their vain appeals to the “separation of church and state.” Can a particular activity fall under both religious and civic boundaries? If not, why not? If so, could you please explain how it would be possible then to categorize a view as “religious” and thereby exclude it from any possible consideration as a legal matter? Wouldn’t we need more reasons than that it was a religious view?