Terms in this set (36)
"Secularist resentment is grist for the hateful preacher's mill, and it pushes religious moderates into the arms of their extremist brethren. Itfurther polarizes a political community in which polarization is a primary impediment to democratic action on behalf of the poor and the oppressed. If the most important threat to democracy in our time is not theocracy but plutocracy—not rule by God's self-anointed representatives on earth, butrule by the economically lucky—then non-believers won't be able to combat that threat without help from religious moderates."
"While liberals often say that religious freedom is a cardinal virtue of liberalism, it is hard to see that in much of today's liberalism. The kind of religion that liberals are comfortable with—the liberal religions—are precisely those religions that have the hardest time holding on to their members. To make the idea of religious freedom a real one, and to retain its promise to diversity, liberalism has to better accommodate conservative and moderate religions."
"So we secularists have come to think that the best society would be one in which political action conducted in the name of religious belief is a ladder up which our ancestors climbed, but one that now should thrown away. We grant that ecclesiastical organizations have sometimes been on the right side, but we think that the occasional Gustavo Gutierrez or Martin Luther King does not compensate for the ubiquitous Joseph Ratzingers and Jerry Falwells. History suggests to us that such organizations will always, on balance, do more harm than good....[Wolterstorff] has convinced me that he is right to insist that both law and custom should leave him free to say, in the public square, that his endorsement of redistributionist social legislation is a result of his belief that God, in such passages as Psalm 72, has commanded that the cause of the poor should be defended...Religious people who claim a right to express their homophobia in public because it is a result of their religious convictions should, I think, be ashamed of themselves and should be made to feel ashamed....People who quote Leviticus 18:22 with approval should be shunned and despised....This amounts to saying that I see liberal Protestantism as the form of Christian religious life most congenial to a liberal democracy."
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