Bravo to Incadenza of The Scope. The California-based blogger has done two things in one terrific posting, “Thanks Joe”: He has articulated one fine reason for opposing the presidential candidacy of Joe Lieberman and, at the same time, has delineated quite clearly why the fundamentalist Christian Right is out of touch with what justice for all Americans truly means.
The thing that earned Incadenza’s notice was an Oct. 18 New York Times article on a Lieberman appearance before the Arab American Institute:
“We meet here today not as Muslims or Christians or Jews,” Mr. Lieberman, of Connecticut, told the audience of about 400, “not as people of Arab or European descent or African or Asian descent.”
He added, “We are proud to be all of those things, but we are more than that. We are Americans. We are children of the same God and of the same father, Abraham. We are quite literally brothers and sisters.”
Obviously, Lieberman was hoping to appeal to Muslims and cross religious differences. His choice of words was intended to appeal to the group, but still send a message of identity as Americans through religious belief, a view I detest.
Athiests, agnostics, and the religiously apathetic (probably closest to my personal view) are ignored in politics, while religious groups are courted. America might not be an officially Christian nation (though it might be in de facto rather than de jure practice), but it’s certainly a religious nation. Having any faith at all, no matter how different from someone else’s, is more acceptable than having no faith at all.
Actually, only certain religious groups are courted, and conservative Christians are asked to the dance more than any other group. But Incadenza’s gripe is a most worthy one that needs to be heard and internalized by all thinking. If the US is supposed to be a land where all are equal and all are to be represented, the vision of politicians and lawmakers must include members of all religions — and members who have no religion at all.
I don’t thank Joe Lieberman. I thank Incadenza.