Unfortunately, mostly due to the efforts by conservatives, religion and politics have been mixed in this country. Though our Constitution, by way of our First Amendment, clearly prohibits that. But what should be is often different than what is. The reality is that there are those who often try to mix their personal religious views in with public policy, forcing millions of Americans who disagree with them to follow laws based on religious belief.
It’s a battle that, as a political activist of sorts against conservative ideology, I deal with all the time.
Not only that, I’m determined as a Christian liberal to stop these fake “Christians” (usually the far right-wing evangelicals) from ruining my faith with their ignorance. My basic views being that most conservatives aren’t Christians. They follow something I call “Republicanity.” Which is a mix of a handful of excerpts from the Bible in with conservative political ideology.
I kind of view it like a political cult. Literally tens of millions of Americans vote against their own interests because they don’t like abortion and hate the idea of homosexuals having the right to marry.
But as a liberal Christian, right-wing religious fanatics aren’t the only people I contend with.
Before going any further let me go ahead and announce that yes I believe in science, no I don’t believe the earth is 6,000 years old and no I don’t believe the Bible is a word-for-word factual depiction of events.
Too often I have to deal with Christian hatred from fellow liberals. In fact, I dealt with it just the other night. I posted this on my Facebook page, Right Off A Cliff:
“I’m a straight, white Christian male who was born, raised and still lives in Texas. By all accounts, I should be a Republican. Except I lack the one trait that is the bedrock of conservatism…
The point of the post was to show that while I fit every stereotype that a typical Republican should be (in fact I’m someone who would actually benefit from many of their policies which favor my particular set of demographics), I’m not a Republican because I lack one of the key principles that is required to be a Republican – ignorance.
It was basically a direct shot at the Republican party and the fact that no matter who you are, or what you are, the underlying fact is that someone needs to be ignorant before anything else.
Harmless liberal fun, right? Well, not exactly.
This is the first post I get from someone on the post:
“Believing in a magic man in the sky who raped a 12 year old so he could use the child as a human sacrifice in order to forgive humanity for the fictitious crimes of a man made from dirt and a rib woman is the definition of ignorance I am sorry to say.”
Now, in almost every article I write concerning religion I make it a point to say that I don’t care at all about what religion, faith, spiritual belief or no belief someone has. It doesn’t matter to me. I think in the end most of us believe in the same thing – being good people. Helping the helpless, defending the defenseless. Caring for the sick, the elderly and the needy. Generally just being decent human beings.
At the core of every religion, spiritual belief or just overall decency, are those values.
I also never force anyone to believe the way that I do, nor do I judge anyone who believes in something different or nothing at all. Again, it’s a personal choice we all have to make.
It’s why I believe when it comes to religion, or the lack thereof, it should be kept out of public policy. It’s a personal matter, for each individual to decide on their own, so it has no place in public policy.
Yet even though I never judge liberals who aren’t Christians, nor do I ever tell liberals that they should be Christians, I constantly get attacked by liberals because I’m a Christian.
And pretty much anything I post relating to Christianity gets posts similar to the one above.
So on one side I have right-wing “Christians” telling me that liberals can’t be Christians, then I have liberals telling me that I’m an idiot for believing in a “magic” story.
Then there I am, not telling anyone what they have to believe. The only thing I ask is that no matter what any of us believes, can we just keep it personal? I don’t get this need by so many to force their views on others.
If I’m a Christian, you’re an atheist and the person sitting next to you is Muslim – what does it matter?
The only time it does is when people feel the need to force their views on other people.
And that’s the ironic thing about liberals who bash me for being a Christian. They’re behaving in the exact same way these right-wing “Christians” behave when they try to make everyone believe how they do. If you disagree with them you’re wrong and they’re completely intolerant of accepting someone who has different views than they do.
I’m sure I’m not the only one who deals with this either. The topic of Christianity, when brought up in political circles, almost instantly turns into left vs. right. Which is why I’ve made the effort to try to reclaim Christianity from those who’ve distorted the faith for far too long.
That doesn’t mean everyone has to be a Christian. Not at all. What that means is that when people think of “Christian” I don’t want the first group of people they think of to be right-wing bigots who judge their “Christianity” by their church attendance. I want them to think of people who actually live their lives based on the teachings of Jesus Christ. Because that’s what being a Christian means.
And that’s my mission.
Not to convert anyone. Just to do my part to make sure that when people think of my faith, they think of those who really represent it – not those who use it as a tool to achieve their own selfish ambitions.
Yet still, it doesn’t stop the frequent attacks by some liberals who go out of their way to try to tell me how foolish I am for believing in God. As if they’re going to change my mind by belittling my faith.
All they really do is prove what hypocrites they are by claiming to be liberals, those who stand on the platform of acceptance and religious freedom, while judging and attacking me because they disagree with what I believe.
Even though I’ve never once told anyone they should believe what I believe – because I don’t care. We’re not Christians, Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus or Atheists – we’re humans. Our faith is our choice, being a human being isn’t.
If you’re a good person, that’s all that should really matter to anyone. Not who we love, what we do with our own bodies or what we each individually believe happens to us after we die.
Do you agree? If so, let me know on Twitter.