When I got home tonight I heard on BBC that Obama had retaken the oath of office, again administered by Chief Justice John Roberts. Since Roberts had flubbed it during the inaugguration ceremony. Obama's advisors wanted him to retake the oath just so there could not be complaints that his presidency was illegal. They wanted Obama to say the oath exactly as it is required by the Constitution.

Obama did not use a Bible this time, but did he say "So help me God?" There were only Whitehouse officials and four reporters present. I have not found an online report that answers that. Of course his inclination would be to include it, but since the purpose of the exercise was to get the words just as they are in the Constitution, it's just possible that they did it right.

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We can judge him on his actions and his promises. He is certainly aware that Michael Newdow is suing Chief Justice Roberts over the “so help me God” amendment to the Constitution, yet he chose to say it not just once, but twice. He has promised to increase funding for the faith-based initiative, to strengthen religion by partnerships with government, and to create a National Council for Faith-Based Partnerships that will have a broad role in shaping the national agenda. He has promised as president to make faith and values the foundation for a new project of American renewal.

Why is it unclear where he stands on the role of religion in government? Do you think he is lying?
There have been plenty of indications of what he will do. People expect that there is going to be a lot of change, but I have noticed that once I started to look deeper, there is very little difference. There are a variety of reasons, but mostly it is because the status quo is often resistant to any effort of change unless it is forced to.
George Bush really brought legitimacy to the religious right. The fundamentalist have derailed concerns over global warming, extinctions, slipping oil demand, world hunger, over population control, AIDS education, war, the defense spending which is crippling our economy, racism, and genocide, just to name a few, but you will have to buy the whole CD set to hear the whole collection.
Well, Bush wasn't really much of an orator. Say what you want about Obama, but you have to admit that he is charismatic and very articulate. Between his youthful appearance and ethnic heritage he symbolizes a healing of old wounds and a new beginning for many of us, at least outwardly. I think that may be why so many of us are willing to put our doubts aside and give him a chance. In the end we'll have to judge him based on his actions, not just his promises.

I hear you on your concerns with him and all of the unconstitutional faith based garbage he has every intention of supporting. In all truth I've found him to be much more on the conservative side than I would prefer. However if he lives up to his promises in regards to the war in Iraq, ending torture, improving health care and supporting abortion rights I'll consider him a friend in the White House, at least as far as the basic well being of myself and my family goes.

On the other hand, now is the time for our community to become very loud. We need to assert ourselves, fight bigotry and let the rest of the world know that we are a force to be reckoned with. We can restore our secular government, we'll just have to be willing to fight anyone no matter who it is on the issue.




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