Now that the abortion limitations bill has cleared the bicameral Texas legislature, it is a foregone conclusion that the delusional governor of the state, a man who hobnobs with such lunatics as the Reverends John Hagee, Rick Scarborough, and Robert Jeffress (all on various human rights hate lists), will sign it into law, it might be instructive to see just how far the state has gone to dissolve the barrier between church and state. Bear in mind, evangelicals have preached for years that church-state separation is a "myth," and they've even gone so far as to trot out a "historian" to prove the point: David Barton, whose last book was so riddled with error the Christian publishing company that printed it withdrew it from the market. (Barton, also from Texas, holds one college degree, in Christian education, from that lofty institution of higher learning, Oral Roberts University.) I know Henry Ford is famous/notorious for claiming that "history is bunk," but the discipline in Barton's hands produced, in his book, The Jefferson Lies, what has been called "the least credible history book in print." He is a regular on Huckabee and Beck.
Given that the far right wingnut base of the Republican Party supports their position on abortion with nothing but paternalistic dogma grounded in scriptural presentism, it might seem a little silly, nonsensical really, to hear the pols in Austin claiming that their vote for a post-20-week ban on abortion, along with measures reducing the number of facilities performing the service from 42 to 6 and requiring expensive hospital privileges of the remaining clinics, is not a "political" one. Yet, here we have Sen. Dan Patrick (R-Houston), author of The Second Most Important Book You Will Ever Read: A Personal Challenge to Read the Bible and right wing radio talk show host, addressing the legislative body and saying, "This isn't about poltics. This is about life." His speech was well larded with claims that the United States is "a nation based on Judeo-Christian values."
Oh? Again (and I apologize to those readers who are all too familiar with such quotations), here is Jefferson on the matter:
"I have examined all the known superstitions of the world and I do not find in our particular superstition of Christianity one redeeming feature. They are all alike founded on fables and mythology. Millions of innocent men, women, and children, since the introduction of Christianity, have been burnt, tortured, fined, and imprisoned. What has been the effect of this coercion? To make one half the world fools and the other half hypocrites; to support roguery and error all over the earth."
What is the Republican War on Women but roguery? What is Dan Patrick, a fool or a hypocrite? Or both.
"An alliance or coalition between Government and religion cannot be too carefully guarded against......Every new and successful example therefore of a PERFECT SEPARATION between ecclesiastical and civil matters is of importance........religion and government will exist in greater purity, without (rather) than with the aid of government."
If curtailing abortion in any manner offensive to the Supreme Court's decision in Roe v. Wade is not "political," it is difficult to see what could be. For people who regularly rant about the need to curtail "big government," these louts are both foolish and hypocritical: foolish because their actions will end up costing the taxpayers in their states megabucks in defending their measures in the courts of the land, and hypocritical in exercising governmental interference in citizens rights to privacy and, should the coat hangers be brought out anew, the most important of the Constitutional guarantees of life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.Texas Sen. Dan Patrick
I recall checking into a motel once and finding a Gideon in the drawer of the bed stand. Someone had written many obscenities in it, mainly along the lines of, "This book is a crock of shit." You are not alone.
"If curtailing abortion in any manner offensive to the Supreme Court's decision in Roe v. Wade is not "political," it is difficult to see what could be."
@JMM - I understand your reasoning, but as I was thinking about what you said in your post, it occurred to me that, as far as Patrick et al. are concerned, it really is not about politics. It's about his/their religious beliefs. And then, since I am prone to wishful thinking every now and then, it occurred to me that it might have been a big mistake to have made that comment. He has publicly stated that it is a religious issue, not a political one. Seems to me that that would be great ammunition to use in an Establishment Clause challenge to the law . . .
Like I said, wishful thinking . . . but I would truly love to see it happen . . .
It's about his/their religious beliefs
It disgusting that social and political decisions that effect the entire nation are being made based on the 3000 year old mythology of a bronze age tribe of nomadic goat herders.
At least 3,000. Probably more like 5,000, possibly 6.
Except it isn't so much. It's based on the (slightly) modern yet conservative interpretation. If you go by their book, life begins at first drawn breath.
they've managed to convince their minions that it's about "killing babies", when in fact it's about controlling women. just another hallmark of religion.
Obama and Democrats might have won in '12, but that simply doesn't matter in red, religious states. they are moving forward as if the election never happened. they're governing as they wish, and apparently there is nothing the President or the Democratic senate can do about it. we're seriously on the path to becoming 2 very different countries (if it hasn't already happened).
I sometime feel that Lincoln was wrong to oppose the South's desire to be a separate country - they were separate in 1860 and for all intents they still are.. And, as the Southern states receive more financial aid from the government than they contribute we could greatly reduce the national debt.
thing is, there's no reason we shouldn't be able to be united. religion and race/xenophobia are the 2 great dividers in America. if the former could just accept church/state separation, and the latter would just stop hating people for no good reason, we'd be fine.
sure, there would still be plenty of policy disagreements on things like the budget and taxes but i think we could survive that. the impacts of the other two are making us nearly recognizable to the opposite faction. and instead of getting better with time i fear it's getting worse.
I have an old college friend who insists Lincoln was the worst president we ever had. He refers to the Civil War as "the War of Northern Aggression." (I wonder if he has a Confederate flag in his study.)
I live in Georgia, and many people here, including some prominent politicians, refer to it as the "War of Yankee Aggression" or, as lecturers at the Andersonville memorial refer to it, the "War for Southern Independence." It probably should be called the "Slavery Rebellion."
@Matthew: Yes, but these states are as gerrymandered as the districts in some of them were (to make sure Repubs are elected). There is no way you could divide them "in kind." It would end up being like India in 1947. You would have Idaho citizens doing a Joad-type migration south, crossing states that are blue, possibly being tarred and feathered on the way, and reverse migration by folks like me, in Texas, heading for Washington State where there is same sex marriage and legal weed, or Colorado, which at least has the weed, or California, Massachusetts, et al. The upheaval would be nightmarish, but it might work.