I read this on The Punch yesterday.
Apparently now we’ve gone past the part where Christians aren’t allowed to impose their views on others (debateable, but understandable). We’ve gone past the part where the fact that we have faith automatically discredits any moral or even sociological position we might take (ridiculous, but not unexpected). Now we’re seeing calls to stop Christians being involved in government altogether.
Fiona Patten’s article expresses concern about the proportion of Christians in Parliament as compared with the proportion of Christians in society in general. Apparently the fact that as many as ninety of the two hundred and twenty six members of federal parliament might identify as Christians is a matter that we need to be extremely concerned about. How will we ever cope if we have a bunch of politicians subverting the normal course of government with their seditious compassion, selflessness and desire for social justice? What is the country coming to?
And her casual assertion that Christians are probably all flat-earth, literal creationists merely highlights the general ignorance that has led the atheist movement to cede any intellectual high ground they might have imagined they once had.
I mean, what the hell? In the digital-age, media saturated democracy in which we now live, does Ms Patten really suggest these MPs have gotten themselves elected to federal parliament by keeping their religious affiliations a secret from their electorates? That somehow researchers for the other side of politics have researched and aired every dark secret they could find through the election campaign but somehow failed to notice that the candidate is a “God-botherer”? Have we somehow been tricked into voting for MPs whilst under the comforting illusion that they are completely godless? And even if we have: so what? Is it so hard to accept that people who acknowledge a greater cause than themselves, who subscribe to values of aiding those in need, promoting peace and working for justice might make pretty good community leaders, whether they agree with your theory on the origin of the universe or not?
If anyone is concerned that Christianity is over-represented in our democracy, then the path is clear: go find some alternatives, and get them elected. Or better yet, go chuck a fascist revolution, as that’s probably a more efficient way to make rules about which religions aren’t allowed to participate in government.
Andrew Bolt is someone I wouldn’t normally find myself recommending to anyone. In fact, in certain circles I walk in, just mentioning his name will spark a tirade of disapproval. And sometimes that’s fair enough. But he published this over Easter which is well worth thinking about, even if you don’t like Christians or Bolt.
There is no reason for intelligent men and women of faith to be frightened, ashamed or apologetic for their beliefs, any more than there is any reason for atheists to be frightened of Christians. When we start to see arguments like this being touted, it’s time to ask just who is trying to indoctrinate whom.
Make of that what you will.
Garry with 2 Rs