zrs70
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Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 9:50 am

With the relgious right gaining such a strong voice in the US, why is it that the relgious left has been so silent?
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nosedive
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 9:56 am

I don't think they're silent so much as they're ignored or scoffed aside...

[Edited 2005-03-25 01:58:21]
 
Jean Leloup
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 10:01 am

I'm on the religious left!

But I'm in the wrong country, so I'm afraid I can't help ya.

I would suggest that there are a whooole lot of religious people in the US who are centrist or a little to the left. Unfortunately it's the rabid, shallow, extremist side of the religious right that gets all the attention. I've noticed with some sadness that this leads on this website to a generalization of all Christians (Or Muslims, or Jews, for that matter) as being right-wing extremists.
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Superfly
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 10:08 am

There are plenty of religious left and centrist.
Jessie Jackson
Al Sharpton
Jimmy Carter
just to name a few.
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theCoz
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 10:19 am

Quoting Jean Leloup (Reply 2):
rabid, shallow, extremist side of the religious right that gets all the attention

I agree with you on that one. We're all so fascinated by watching the religious right shove their heads further up their own *sses, that we fail to pay attention to anything else.
 
zrs70
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 10:35 am

Here's what burns me. IMAX theatres in this country are getting flack for showing films that mention evolution. The religious right has been on a mission to remove evolution from science and replace it with "intelligent design." Even here in southern California, some theatres are refusing to show great films because of the threat of boycott.

I am a reform Jewish rabbi, and I SO angered by what is going on.
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pilottj
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 10:40 am

Yeah it is sad to see other religions either get ignored or portrayed incorrectly by the rabid Bible thumpers. And it is quite ignorant to assume that there are no political divisions in other countries. You better believe there are conservative and liberal viewpoints and many in between in other places. So I think it is important for we as Americans to not let the mainstream news hacks to label a whole country as one viewpoint. Which brings me to a question I have for our conservative friends on here. If you were a diplomat, who would you rather deal with, a foreign politician who is liberal or conservative?

TJ
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lehpron
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 11:24 am

Quoting Zrs70 (Thread starter):
With the relgious right gaining such a strong voice in the US, why is it that the relgious left has been so silent?

I didn't know there was such a thing, but if exists then it makes sense; it also makes me wonder how some atheists can scapegoat religion for their problems and not be a religious left with a common cause or 'enemy'...?

Quoting Zrs70 (Reply 5):
IMAX theatres in this country are getting flack for showing films that mention evolution. The religious right has been on a mission to remove evolution from science and replace it with "intelligent design." Even here in southern California, some theatres are refusing to show great films because of the threat of boycott.

That is just so wrong...

These people must be consistent -- science and evolution are interwoven in modern society to a degree that is beyond both of them, one must remove both if they wish not to see the other. However, since every aspect of human life has some sort of 'evolution' in it -- as I say, they must be consistent. If not they are full of she-ot. I do not have to agree with it but I will respect consistency to the point of supporting the cause -- the inherent problem is that those who disagree with evolution are NEVER consistent, they will allow some but not all.
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AC320
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 11:35 am

Religious lefty checking-in. I suppose we seem silent because we're not spending every waking moment shoving our views down other people's throats. I'm content to offer an individual insight into how I think or where I stand should they ask, and if they don't agree with me I'll be on my merry way. I respect other people's opinions if they present supported argument and am more than happy to incorporate their views into my own and further develop my opinions. I doubt G-d would want us to spend every waking moment trying to get into "heaven" at the expense of the actual world around them is being self-serving.

The religious right is just as bad as the extreme left nutjobs in the hell you raise if you do not agree with them. Some have attempted to exclude me from political and social debates as a "christ-killer", or I'll be dismissed as a communist/socialist with a mention of national health care. Heck, one of the state reps from a district just south of here threatened the university's state funding because we created an administrative post to deal homosexual issues and discrimination. My goodness. The bible might be a good starting point for some people but you cannot compress all the possibilites of the world into a single book, and it seems far too many keep their view of the world between the covers. Scary.
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LAS757300
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 11:45 am

People with left-wing views, my self included, tend to be less religious than those on the right. Additionally, religious liberals tend to be secular. For instance, I live in an area where Democrats are numbers almost 2-1 by republicans and it happens to be a very religious area - there are churchs everywhere.
KMSP
 
ltbewr
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 12:25 pm

There are many Christians, Jews and those of other faiths, that while object - or not - to Gay Marriage, Abortion and Euthnasia, are 'left' as to the human condition.
They believe in 'social justice', and are more concerned as to important issues as to the welfare of the public, without requiring holding to their faith to get that help.
These are the people whom are concerned with helping the poor, the disabled, the sick and others whom need help.
They believe government must be involved in making sure all get needed health care, affordable housing, jobs that pay a living wage, object to the continuing pollution of our enviroment or weaking laws on the enviroment.
Some support efforts to reduce the violence in society.
Some of the 'religious left' object and protest against Bush and many of his policies and protest our actions in Iraq.
Many want progressive and higher taxation on the better off in society, not making massive cuts to the rich and destroy programs that help the lower and middle classes.
They want good public schools, properly funded.
I think that may expain where they are.
 
nycflyer
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 12:32 pm

Lutherans from Minnesota and Wisconsin form the bedrock of the white protestant religious left. They use Christianity for purposes of inclusiveness and public charity. I hope they get their voices heard in time for 2008, before the wacko right completely hijacks Christianity for their ideological and hypocritical agenda.
 
Jean Leloup
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 12:35 pm

LAS757300,

I'm confused. What do you mean when you say that "religious liberals tend to be secular"? Generally speaking, 'religious' and 'secular' are usually opposed to each other, so I don't quite grasp your meaning.

I'd just like to point out that there are conservatives and liberals in all religions. It's not as though Christianity is a more "conservative" religion than any other. That's more a matter of an individual's personality.

I am pretty much a flat-out social liberal, but I am also a very seriously devout Christian. I'm not saying that makes me better than anyone else, just pointing out that such people DO exist!
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MD11Engineer
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 1:01 pm

Jean,

Maybe he means that the religious liberals rather consider religion to be a personal matter, not something to be forcibly made into public law.

Jan
Je Suis Charlie et je suis Ahmet aussi
 
misbeehavin
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 1:55 pm

Quoting Zrs70 (Thread starter):
With the relgious right gaining such a strong voice in the US, why is it that the relgious left has been so silent?

It's not just in the US though. Some other countries have the misfortune of having a vocal religious right too. India, for example. Funny how these two are amongst those countries that have, on paper at least, a clear separation of religion and state.

And it's good the left keeps shut about these matters. Even if that just furthers the rightists' conviction that we are a bunch of godless, soulless, freeloading pinko-commie perverts.
 
LAS757300
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 2:11 pm

What Jan said, Jean.

I know very liberal people who happen to be religious, just not that many. Conservatives, otoh, seem to be more closely aligned with organized religion, at least it's that way in the US.
KMSP
 
Jean Leloup
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 2:31 pm

Fair enough, although I would argue that a larger than apparent number of liberals are religious; they're just not arrogant about it. There are some really great centre-left clergy in the mainline denominations in the US, for instance, but they're not the ones who end up on tv.

Just my two cents!
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lehpron
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 2:55 pm

Quoting AC320 (Reply 8):
Religious lefty checking-in.

I don't mean to offend but why have you so eagerly identified yourself with this group?
The meaning of life is curiosity; we were put on this planet to explore opportunities.
 
Jean Leloup
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Fri Mar 25, 2005 3:19 pm

Well Lehpron, the thread title is "WHERE is the religious left?"

So a couple of us felt like weighing in by directly answering the question, and saying "Here we are", etc...
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lehpron
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Tue Mar 29, 2005 11:20 am

No, I meant that there are actual definitions of things, what society thinks, what a media outlet thinks and thus will portray to their audience as such, what you and I may think, etc; it goes on.

So what are you attaching yourself to? If you believe in something and someone else does not; technically, to hell with them. But how on earth do you expect to communicate your views to them without some kind of point of reference, an agreement if you will?

Say you believe in something that nobody believes in? Are you going to become odd-man-out and eventually coerce yourself into the majority, conceding your views? Or you going to stand your ground even if no one thinks like you -- which results in little communication of your views because no one understands or even wants to?
The meaning of life is curiosity; we were put on this planet to explore opportunities.
 
Jean Leloup
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Tue Mar 29, 2005 11:33 am

Ahh, I see what you mean (I think?).

Well, in my case, when I say this I am not 'attaching' myself very specifically to any particular militant group or even necessarily to any specific body of beliefs (religious, political, or otherwise).

I simply mean that I am a religious person who tends to identify more with the 'left' in many issues that pop up, whereas there is a perception that most religious people (at least in the US) are very conservative. If anything, I 'attach' myself to the 'religious left' specifically to distance myself from the 'religious right', with whom I am growing more disgusted by the day lately. (Especially in relation to the Terri Schiavo case.)
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StarCruiser
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Wed Mar 30, 2005 3:28 am

I can only speak for myself, but as a religious left person, I am bored out of my mind listening to members of the religious right bloviating on topics about which they know nothing or very little. It really gets annoying especially as they increase their volume the more I try to ignore them. I also resent their arrogant assumption that I know nothing about G-d or faith and need their help.

My elderly mother had a great comeback recently when one of those self appointed evangelists asked her, "Are you saved?" She responded, "From what?"

I was raised to respect all religions and allow people to worship or not worship however they saw fit. Why others have this felt need to harass everyone else is beyond me. I think next time I encounter one of these folks I am just going to say, "Oh yeah, well why don't you not tell me about it?"
 
cwapilot
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Wed Mar 30, 2005 4:11 am

Are you kidding? The Left acts upon their political beliefs as though they are religious edicts, and they attempt to push them on the rest of the population with as much religious zeal and assumed monopoly on the truth as their right wing cousins. When these edicts are not followed to the letter, the violator sees first hand just how judgemental and sanctimonious they can be...and how willing to interfere in their private lives they are. They are, in fact, no different than their right wing counterparts...just as pushy, with a different set of rules.

If you meant, where are the religious people who are left leaning, have you ever been to a progressive Catholic Church? The campus parish at my alma mater was known as a bastion for these people...they left their normal parishes for this place, knowing they could easily get put into leadership positions. Listening to the announcements at the end of Mass was like listening to a catalog of Leftist interest groups and their activities. There are parishes like this everywhere, and a large number of clergy and especially nuns to back them up.
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Boeing7E7
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Wed Mar 30, 2005 4:19 am

Quoting Zrs70 (Thread starter):
WitwWhy is it that the relgious left has been so silent?

Because they've given in to the notion that being Liberal is more important than being religious. There are separations in nearly every religion in the US along these political lines. Perhaps God simply silences those who are wrong about what he teaches. Ever consider that? Sounds a bit crazy, yes, but it's rather interesting don't ya think?
 
daedaeg
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Wed Mar 30, 2005 4:23 am

Religious Left? I didn't know there was such a thing. Persons of Faith on the left should speak up more and not be ashamed of their values, morals or faith. They consistently allow themselves to be outshined by the immoral left and extreme right. How unfortunate.
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david b.
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Wed Mar 30, 2005 4:24 am

Perhaps some people don't give a shit about religion. Ever consider that?
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lehpron
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Wed Mar 30, 2005 9:16 am

Quoting Boeing7E7 (Reply 23):
Perhaps God simply silences those who are wrong about what he teaches.

Either God doesn't exist or he (she, it, they, us, we) is indiscriminate. It is ridiculous to dump all of people's actions or lack of as credit to God. Nobody is free of responsibility, but nobody is to say who is responsible of what or when or where, etc. That authority is God's alone, a vast majority of his (her's, ours, theirs, its) believers cannot accept that.

Consider this:

Quoting Lehpron (Reply 26):
Perhaps society simply silences those who are precieved wrong about what those of whom can control think should be taught.


The above is reality; simply: some people think they know better than others enough to give them a better idea of what to think, i.e. what they think. In the end, coercion takes over. The resilent get tired of fighting when they loose faith in themselves.

Quoting Srbmod (Reply 27):
"Religious Left"? I thought Communists were Atheists........

From what I gather in this thread, those who embrace the idea simply do not put God ahead at all times. BTW, atheists only gets capitalized if you recognize them, I don't for example. Respect is different, they have mine to an extent. Do you know exactly what communism is?

Quoting Daedaeg (Reply 24):
Persons of Faith on the left should speak up more and not be ashamed of their values, morals or faith.

I do not think that is what they would be ashamed of. They could be part of the supposed resilent bunch explained above.

[Edited 2005-03-30 01:33:49]
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srbmod
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Wed Mar 30, 2005 9:23 am

"Religious Left"? I thought Communists were Atheists........
 
SRQCrosscheck
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Thu Mar 31, 2005 10:35 am

Quoting Cwapilot (Reply 22):
If you meant, where are the religious people who are left leaning, have you ever been to a progressive Catholic Church? The campus parish at my alma mater was known as a bastion for these people...they left their normal parishes for this place, knowing they could easily get put into leadership positions. Listening to the announcements at the end of Mass was like listening to a catalog of Leftist interest groups and their activities. There are parishes like this everywhere, and a large number of clergy and especially nuns to back them up.

Read LTBEWR's post about concern for "social justice."

Are you familiar with the positions of the Catholic Church on fair treatment of laborers, fair (read: minimum) wages for laborers, globalization, environmentalism (St. Francis of Assisi, anyone?), the death penalty, charity, the role of the wealthy/privileged in society ("It is easier for a camel to pass through the eye of a needle than for a rich man to enter the kingdom of God." Mt. 19:24), etc.? If you review the teachings of the Church, you'd find that they are progressive in terms of social and economic justice.

I come from a Republican household, but I'm a registered Democrat because I find the Republican party/American conservative movement almost completely inconsistent with the Christian worldview.

I think it's interesting that religious Republicans chided John Kerry for straying from Church teachings on reproductive issues, yet Republicans tend to abandon issues of social and economic justice important to Christian teaching.

[Edited 2005-03-31 02:37:40]
 
SRQCrosscheck
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Thu Mar 31, 2005 10:43 am

Quoting Srbmod (Reply 27):
"Religious Left"? I thought Communists were Atheists........

Did you know that there are some historians that consider Jesus one of the first communists? Don't flame me, I don't have names; I'm just passing along something my European History teacher from high school told us.
 
lehpron
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Thu Mar 31, 2005 12:41 pm

Quoting SRQCrosscheck (Reply 29):
I'm just passing along something my European History teacher from high school told us.

Do you believe in the theory of shifting blame? If not, why did you include what I boldfaced for clairification? Big grin
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flybyguy
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Thu Mar 31, 2005 12:55 pm

I feel that the religious left are Christians in denial. They proclaim to be religious, but it never shows. In fact I know so many leftist Catholics who egregiously sin every week only to absolve themselves every other Sunday through the Eucharist some only go to mass twice a year (Easter and Christmas). I think the right have the right idea when it comes to religious fervor, but the absolute wrong idea when it comes to social justice and compassion for the poor.

I am very upset with the left wingers of my Church who blast the right, but who do not raise the bar of Holy reverence in their own lives.
"Are you a pretender... or a thoroughbred?!" - Professor Matt Miller
 
SRQCrosscheck
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RE: Where Is The Religious Left?

Thu Mar 31, 2005 3:27 pm

Quoting Flybyguy (Reply 31):
I am very upset with the left wingers of my Church who blast the right, but who do not raise the bar of Holy reverence in their own lives.

We are only responsible for our own conscience, so it's not for anyone to judge except one's self if one is "religious," or is in a good state spiritually, or if anyone is right or wrong.

Which I guess means I should recant part of my statement above about Republicans and the Christian worldview. According to my conscience, I vote and think politically as I think is responsible based on my faith. I would have to say the same for the Christian right.

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