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Godless Liberals, Godless Liberalism, Godless Politics, Secularism

Politics in America is a very religious affair: religion infuses politics to a degree not found in most other industrialized nations of the West. The label godless, and especially godless liberal, are epithets to be avoided. The truth is that there is nothing about being a godless liberal or having a secular democracy which is incompatible with the basic political values of America: individual rights, religious liberty, and personal autonomy.
  1. Barack Obama on Religion (9)
  2. Hillary Clinton on Religion (5)
  3. Sarah Palin and Religion (4)
  4. John McCain on Religion (4)
  5. Huckabee's Religion (11)
  6. Danish Cartoons Muhammad
  7. Political Notes, Commentary (80)
  8. War on Terrorism (43)
  9. Gay Rights and Marriage (53)
  10. Abortion, Contraception (45)
  11. Law & Civil Liberties (127)
  12. Freedom of Speech (19)
  13. Book Reviews: Nazis
  14. Polls on Political Issues
  15. Book Reviews: Law
  16. 2004 Elections (294)
  17. Affirmative Action (10)

2008 Presidential Election Guide for Atheists: Issues & Candidates in 2008
Atheists are basically like most other Americans when it comes to most of the political and social issues which matter most to them, but there are also issues and perspectives which are more relevant to atheists than to most other Americans. Godless liberals and the secular left, insofar as they exist, have little to no influence and no real...

Dissent in Theory & Practice: Mass Democracy Works Against Dissent, Individuals
Alexis de Tocqueville's writings about early American social and political life are popular in America, but his criticisms are ignored. One problem which Tocqueville saw and which which atheists should be able to relate to is how dissenters are silenced through a culture of fear. Tocqueville focused on political dissent, but what he wrote is...

Religious Populism & Democracy: Should Democrats Appeal to Religious Populism?
Populism is defined as a concern with the interests of the common people; democracy is a political system in which the people rule. So, populism and democracy should go well together, right? Perhaps not — perhaps the two can actually conflict, which raises interesting questions for American politics. This is especially problematic when the populism takes the form of religious populism instead of traditional economic populism. Religious populism can be a mask for religious privilege.

Atheists & Voting: How Can Atheists Vote to Positively Influe…
As citizens and voters, atheists of every nation have a vested interest in the direction which their country takes. Atheism may not entail any necessary positions which all atheists must, as a matter of course, support, but there are positions and values which atheists should support because they are necessary for a secular, liberal democracy to function. There is no "atheist voting block" as suc…

Recently Reviewed Books on Church/State Separation
The issue of the separation of church and state has been at the center of a tremendous number of debates in the United States. Questions about prayer in pubic schools, government support of religious events, and more have created a great deal of controversy and quite a few court cases. The books here represent some of the best current works...

Defense of Godless Liberalism: Godless Liberalism, Godless Liberals, and...
Godless liberalism might be defined as a liberal or progressive political perspective which doesn't rely on gods, divine revelation, or religion for its values, ideas, or policies. Because liberalism is hated by America's Christian Right, and godlessness is hated even more, the label godless liberalism is usually used as a form of attack or...

Recently Reviewed Books on the Religious Right
The Relgious Right has become a powerful force in American politics and society over the past 30 years. It has influenced presidential elections, sponsored constitutional amendments, and worked towards re-creating the United States along a more evangelical, fundamentalist Christian vision. Reviewed here are some recent books about the movement, groups and people.

Is Godless Liberalism a Religion? Godless Liberalism's not a Religion, Religious
Calling 'Godless Liberalism' a religion should be instantly recognized as an ideological attack rather than a neutral observation of facts. Sadly this is not the case and it has become far too common for critics of liberalism to claim that it's inherently godless and religious, thus hoping to discredit liberal policies before they are even...

Godless Constitution: Constitutional Law without Gods or Religion
The Christian Right regularly claims that America is a 'Christian Nation' and was founded on Christian principles. If this is the case, then those principles should be identifiable in America's founding legal document, the Constitution. If the Constitution explicitly reflects Christian principles and doctrines, then the Christian Right is...

Should Atheists Vote for the Republican Party?
Should atheists vote for Republican candidates? There's nothing inherently incompatible with being an atheist who is Republican or who votes Republican, so this question may seem rather strange. However, I think that there are practical issues which should make any atheist think twice before helping any Republicans - even moderates - take public office.

The Problem of Pride: Patriotism, Racism, and Flags
It appears it has always been the fashion to degrade your neighbor. It is the herd mentality I suppose to put people into groups and tally their differences and weaknesses rather than related qualities. Human beings so love to categorize, and thus racism was born.

Conservatives Rethinking Democracy
In the wake of the loss to Republicans and religious conservatives in the recent election, something rather curious has occurred: some religious conservatives are expressing doubts about their commitment to democracy. They aren't denying that the election results are valid, but they deny that valid democratic results should be allowed to determine who leads the nation. Is anyone surprised?

Dissatisfaction with Political Parties
Across the board, Western democracies are experiencing deep dissatisfaction with their political parties. Evangelicals' dissatisfaction with the Republican Party is getting a lot of press attention, but it should be approached in the broader context of what's occurring in the West generally.

'Godless Liberals' as an Ad Hominem Attack
Speaking as an actual godless liberal - which is to say, I really am godless, unlike most liberals %u2014 I find it curious that conservatives want to portray all liberals as godless. You can find it all over the place, and you could even before Ann Coulter made "godless" the title of her latest fact-free diatribe about all things she knows nothing about.

Afflicting the Comfortable: Importance of Undermining the Status Quo
Which is better for the political and social health of a community: to tell people what they want to hear and reinforce their prejudices about themselves, or to dissent from common prejudices and reveal uncomfortable truths? Many people seem to prefer the former, saying that dissenters and critics are traitors; ultimately, however, dissent is critical and necessary.

George W. Bush's Republican Dictatorship: Another Step Forward
Attempts to establish a Republican-controlled dictatorship seems to have moved another step forward. Republican Attorney General Alberto R. Gonzales has publicly admitted Republican President George W. Bush could unilaterally declare for himself the authority to order wiretaps on purely domestic telephone calls without a court order or oversight. In the interests of national security, of course.

Conservative Critiques of America's Moral Corrosion
It's a standard part of political discourse that conservatives lament the direction America's culture has taken. Whether members of the Christian Right or not, conservatives almost invariably have strong criticisms to make about the 'moral corrosion' in America. These complaints are very selective, though: they focus on personal matters like sexuality and almost never on things like greed.

How the Powerful Define the Subject of Fear & Action
What are you afraid of? Chances are, your fears are directed at things which aren't very likely to affect you (like terrorism) and not at all at things which are likely to affect you (car accidents). Why? Because the media and the government publicize certain things over others in order to encourage greater fear of certain things - and thereby mobilize action in certain directions.

Carnival of the Liberals #9: Ask And Ye Shall Receive
When putting out calls for submissions for this ninth edition of the Carnival of the Liberals, I requested that people try to write about religious and philosophical issues in order to help me keep this "on topic" for my site. I received quite a few submissions dealing with religious and philosophical topics in the context of liberal politics.

Knee-Jerk Left Scorning Religious Politicians
Is Amy Sullivan capable of writing about religion without saying something false, something stupid, or something insulting? Probably, but she hasn't been demonstrating that ability lately. Recently she suggested that atheists should just sit down and shut up lest they offend Christians. Now she is attacking the "left" for their "knee-jerk" reactions to the Christian Right.

Democrats Should Abandon Secularism, Church/State Separation?
It seems that everyone has a different idea about what the Democrats should do in order to be more competitive with the Republicans, especially when it comes to national political races. Among the most absurd suggestions are to abandon basic progressive and liberal principles in order to win. Amy Sullivan, for example, seems to advocate giving up secularism and church/state separation.

How to get Political Parties to Work Together
Every so often people complain about the lack of cooperation between Democrats and Republicans. People insist that the political parties stop being so 'political' and put national interests ahead of party interests. There is a usually a good reason why they don't do this, though: they don't have to.

Enlightenment, Reason and Religion
We often hear about 'The Enlightenment,' but does it continue to have any relevancy for the world today? Absolutely - the modern world we currently know is largely a product of the Enlightenment. More importantly, perhaps, is the fact that the project of the Enlightenment is not over. There remain threats and efforts to overturn what the Enlightenment has achieved.

Defending the Community Against the Individual
A common argument used by those who object to individual rights going 'too far' is the idea that the needs of the community need to be respected. This is not unreasonable, because as social animals we depend heavily on the health of our community. At the same time, though, what is meant by 'community'? Is this just a mask for whatever the powerful want?

Tocqueville on the Tyranny of the Masses and Poltical Dissent
In the United States, Alexis de Tocqueville's writings about early American social and political life are very popular. Mostly, this popularity seems to be due to the perception that Tocqueville was praising America. All of the places were Tocqueville was critical - and especially the second book, which is especially pessimistic - are ignored.

Future of a Second Bush Presidency: Questions about Church and State
Many people are excited at the prospect of a second Bush presidency. There are, however, quite a few questions about what a second term would mean for people, especially when it comes to issues like the separation of church and state. Unfortunately, the outlook for separation and religious liberty under a second Bush presidency is very poor.

Democratic Presidential Candidates on Church & State
For most atheists, an important issue when it comes to the presidential election is the candidates' position on the separation of church and state. It's not the only issue, that is true, but it is very important. Here you can learn more about where the various Democratic candidates for the presidency have stood on the separation of church and state as well as related matters.

Blame is Not a Game - It's Part of Democracy
Apologists for the Bush administration have criticized efforts to blame people in the federal government for their negligent response to hurricane Katrina. According to them, we should wait until there is an official investigation before we assign blame - but is that really legitimate? Assigning blame isn't a game, it's a part of the democratic process.

Legislating Morality
There are a lot of people who say that we shouldn't legislate morality - but how justified is that, really? Just about every law you can point to has some moral purpose in the background, even if it's simply to protect human life. If there are laws without a moral purpose, we should wonder what their purpose really is.

Journalism, Legitimation, and Control
The news media exercises powerful influence over culture and society - far more than most people probably realize. The very manner in which the media report on events and people serves to legitimize individuals, offices, and institutions. For better and for worse, the media is part of the very system it reports on.

Atheists Should Vote Strategically and With Specific Goals
If atheists are going to vote, they should vote for politicians who actually deserve our votes - politicians who will defend atheists' equality, who will oppose any sort of religious privilege, who will promote secularism, and who will protect church/state separation. Whatever other policies or values a politician may have, failure to uphold...

Atheists & Agnostics in America Tend to be Politically Liberal
A 2007 survey of political and social beliefs reveals that atheists and agnostics are more liberal than the general popular on a range of issues.

Why Do Atheists and Agnostics Tend to be Liberal in America?
Atheists and agnostics in America probably are as liberal as many assume. Are there reasons why more atheists should be more conservative?

Why Are Atheists More Liberal than Christians, Especially Evangelical...
The liberalism of atheists in America stands in stark contrast to the conservatism of Christians, and of evangelical Christians in particular. What do you think about this?

Why Are Non-Religious Americans More Pro-Choice Than Everyone Else?
Only self-described 'liberals' are bigger supporters of abortion rights than non-religious Americans. But why? What explains the overwhelming support of abortion rights among those who aren't religious?

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