Friday, April 29, 2005

crouching toward Theocracy

A point I was sorta, kinda trying to make the other day, but I didn't really nail it on the head, but summed up well for me in the comments of this thread by commenter "Wild Monk":

Let's take a concrete example. Opposition to the current abortion policy is undoubtedly motivated, in large measure, by religious beliefs. By Aziz's reasoning, however, any attempt to change this policy in response to the demands of its (religiously motivated) opponents would necessarily be an illegitimate "alignment" of government and religion. Very conveniently, legislators must either agree with the pro-choice side or they are "theocrats" pursuing a "Taliban-style" oppression of innocents.

While my argument was limited to libertarians, the idea can (and should) be expanded to include liberals. Whenever a large segment of the population takes a stance that is supported by Christian churches in general, we hear the rallying cry that our country is on the verge of a theocracy. Despite the fact that religions are banned from public schools, and that religiosity is being threatened on every possible front. Is it a theocracy when a large segment believes similarly, yet there is not central governing power? Instead, merely many separate groups who feel the same?