Beaucaire
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Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 7:33 am

It's a serious question and nothing to do with Republicans or Democrates-but could a declared Atheist play any meaningful role in American politics ?

When questioned by an atheist journalist in 1987,GWB made following statements :

" Sherman: What will you do to win the votes of the Americans who are atheists?

Bush: I guess I'm pretty weak in the atheist community. Faith in God is important to me.

Sherman: Surely you recognize the equal citizenship and patriotism of Americans who are atheists?

Bush: No, I don't know that atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered patriots. This is one nation under God.

Sherman (somewhat taken aback): Do you support as a sound constitutional principle the separation of state and church?

Bush: Yes, I support the separation of church and state. I'm just not very high on atheist..."

If one considers that the third president of the United States,Thomas Jefferson ,was a declared Atheist and barely could be considered as "non-patriotic",the exclusion of those not believing in God from political responsibility seems absurd.
Faith in a specific religion has nothing to do with not supporting a counties constitution or defending that countries rights.
Washington,Lincoln,Franklin,John Adams,Grant...all non-patriotic ???
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Superfly
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 7:38 am

We already have one.
Congressman Pete Stark who represents a district in the East Bay, about 20 SE of San Francisco.
Pate Stark is Airliners.net member Confucius Congressman.
Pete Stark is a wonderful Congressman that routinely wins re-election in landslides.
He is certainly an asset to Congress.
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Beaucaire
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 7:54 am

Thanks Superfly for the indication- so Stark seems the one and only declared Atheist politician of any US assembly of importance ..
Considering the rather strong non-religious roots in the American presidential history,that makes a pretty small remaining representation .
I read his remarks about the financial-funding of the Irak-war and find them quite appropriate !
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LAXintl
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:04 am

Only on the fringes of America.

Religion plays a central theme in most peoples core beliefs and values systems.

We dont pledge as "One Nation under God", swear oath on a bible in court, currency states "In God we Trust" and have sayings as "God and Country", for no reason.

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David L
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:21 am



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 3):
Religion plays a central theme in most peoples core beliefs and values systems.

I'll just have to take people's word for that but I find it hard to believe. A very significant proportion of the Americans I've known have either been atheist or didn't care much about religion - only slightly less than is the case over here.
 
Beaucaire
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:28 am

Would an American soldier have to pronounce an oath on God when entering service ?
What if that soldier is non-religious ?
Would it not be more appropriate to make an oath on the constitution rather than on the bible ?

German soldiers make an oath exclusively based on the nation and declare to defend the values of the Federal Republic of Germany..

"...Ich schwöre der Bundesrepublik Deutschland treu zu dienen und das Recht und die Freiheit des deutschen Volkes tapfer zu verteidigen...."
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Kiwirob
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:36 am



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 3):
swear oath on a bible in court

But you don't have to swear an oath on a bible in court, if you are a non believer the bible isn't used.
 
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DocLightning
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:50 am



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 3):
We dont pledge as "One Nation under God", swear oath on a bible in court, currency states "In God we Trust" and have sayings as "God and Country", for no reason.

There is a VERY clear reason, in fact. That reason is Joseph McCarthy. That is why "under God" was added to the Pledge. I think he was also responsible for the "In God we Trust" on the money.

Strange that you would support his agenda. It wasn't a good idea then and it is less so a good idea now.
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LAXintl
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:57 am

Yes, the oaths of enlistment for the United States Armed Forces state:

Non Officers;
"I, _____, do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; and that I will obey the orders of the President of the United States and the orders of the officers appointed over me, according to regulations and the Uniform Code of Military Justice. [/b]So help me God."[/b]

Officers:
"I, _____ (SSAN), having been appointed an officer in the Army of the United States, as indicated above in the grade of _____ do solemnly swear (or affirm) that I will support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign or domestic, that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I take this obligation freely, without any mental reservations or purpose of evasion; and that I will well and faithfully discharge the duties of the office upon which I am about to enter; So help me God."



Even the oath of citizenship mentions God.

I hereby declare, on oath, that I absolutely and entirely renounce and abjure all allegiance and fidelity to any foreign prince, potentate, state, or sovereignty of whom or which I have heretofore been a subject or citizen; that I will support and defend the Constitution and laws of the United States of America against all enemies, foreign and domestic; that I will bear true faith and allegiance to the same; that I will bear arms on behalf of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform noncombatant service in the Armed Forces of the United States when required by the law; that I will perform work of national importance under civilian direction when required by the law; and that I take this obligation freely without any mental reservation or purpose of evasion; so help me God.

[Edited 2008-09-05 02:00:34]
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LAXintl
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 9:04 am



Quoting DocLightning (Reply 8):
I think he was also responsible for the "In God we Trust" on the money.

First appeared on US coin in 1864, however was officially designated as the U.S. national motto by Congress in 1956.
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HowSwedeitis
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 9:32 am



Quoting Beaucaire (Thread starter):
No, I don't know that atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered patriots. This is one nation under God.

If this is a true statement, this is a very troubling thing to say...

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 3):
We dont pledge as "One Nation under God", swear oath on a bible in court, currency states "In God we Trust" and have sayings as "God and Country", for no reason.

Actually the pledge goes like this:

Quote:
"I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands: one Nation indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all."

Also, "In God We Trust" did not become the official U.S. national motto until after the passage of an Act of Congress in 1956. As for money, I do like this stamp... http://upload.wikimedia.org/wikipedia/en/d/dd/Igwtcontro.jpg


The fact of the matter is, atheists and agnostics (which I am) are some of the most discriminated groups in America.

-HSII
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LAXintl
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 9:50 am

Use of God is far from a 1950s era McCarthy things.

God has been refered to going back to the founding of America and it very much intertwined in its history.

Just some brief quotes,

"We have staked the whole future of American civilization, not upon the power of government, far from it. We've staked the future of all our political institutions upon our capacity...to sustain ourselves according to the Ten Commandments of God]."
James Madison, 1778 to the General Assembly of the State of Virginia

"The Law given from Sinai [The Ten Commandments] was a civil and municipal as well as a moral and religious code."
John Quincy Adams.

" The general principles upon which the Fathers achieved independence were the general principals of Christianity... I will avow that I believed and now believe that those general principles of Christianity are as eternal and immutable as the existence and attributes of God."
John Adams

"We have no government armed with power capable of contending with human passions unbridled by morality and religion. Avarice, ambition, revenge, or gallantry, would break the strongest cords of our Constitution as a whale goes through a net. Our Constitution was made only for a moral and religious people. It is wholly inadequate to the government of any other."
Thomas Jefferson

"In the beginning of the contest with Britain, when we were sensible of danger, we had daily prayers in this room for Divine protection. Our prayers, Sir, were heard, and they were graciously answered... do we imagine we no longer need His assistance?"
Benjamin Franklin at the Constitutional Convention

"It cannot be emphasized too clearly and too often that this nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religion, but on the gospel of Jesus Christ. For this very reason, peoples of other faiths have been afforded asylum, prosperity, and freedom of worship here."
Patrick Henry


Even Lincoln for instance in his historic Gettysburg Address refered to it.

But, in a larger sense, we can not dedicate—we can not consecrate—we can not hallow—this ground. The brave men, living and dead, who struggled here, have consecrated it, far above our poor power to add or detract. The world will little note, nor long remember what we say here, but it can never forget what they did here. It is for us the living, rather, to be dedicated here to the unfinished work which they who fought here have thus far so nobly advanced. It is rather for us to be here dedicated to the great task remaining before us—that from these honored dead we take increased devotion to that cause for which they gave the last full measure of devotion—that we here highly resolve that these dead shall not have died in vain—that this nation, under God, shall have a new birth of freedom—and that government of the people, by the people, for the people, shall not perish from the earth.

Quoting HowSwedeitis (Reply 11):
Actually the pledge goes like this:

To you it might be -- however the legal offical pledge is.
"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."

Someone did challenge the God part of the pledge and it ended up in the Supreme Court, which in an unprecedented 8-0 ruling found that the Plaintiff could not challenge the wording.
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Kiwirob
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 10:01 am



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 12):
To you it might be -- however the legal offical pledge is.
"I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America, and to the republic for which it stands, one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all."

Well some right wing religious nut added under god in 1954. The history of the pledge as follows.

1892
“I pledge allegiance to my Flag and the Republic for which it stands: one Nation indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all.”

1892 to 1923
"I pledge allegiance to my Flag and to the Republic for which it stands: one Nation indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all."

1923 to 1954
"I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands: one Nation indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all."

1954 to Present
"I pledge allegiance to the Flag of the United States of America, and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with Liberty and Justice for all."

Personally I believe most politians only pay lip service to god, it helps them get elected, nothing more.
 
ltbewr
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 10:59 am

Simple answer: No.

We prefer our Presidents to be persons of faith, mainly Protestant, not Catholic or Jewish. In the 1950's the importance of proclaiming faith by politicans at all levels grew in reaction to the growth of 'godless communism' in various parts of the world. The preference of a faith belief gained in the 1960's in reaction to banning the saying of 'official' prayers in public schools, the legalization of Abortion, the new birth control pills, the rise of urban riots and so on. Then politicians, mainly Republicans started to see support of religious persons to get votes taking conservative social views.

While many of the founders and influences of our country were actively religious, others like writer Thomas Paine were practical Atheist, others were Agnostics, some were not regular attendees at religious services. In our founding, we made it clear that there should be freedom from religion as well as agreeing to the practice of any faith and no 'official' faith, breaking away from European practice of millenniums. Even some of those who were actively religious were really not in a true sense with owning slaves, womanizing and other immoral behaviors.
 
Beaucaire
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 11:20 am



Quoting LTBEWR (Reply 14):
Simple answer: No.

We prefer our Presidents to be persons of faith, mainly Protestant, not Catholic or Jewish. In the 1950's the importance of proclaiming faith by politicans at all levels grew in reaction to the growth of 'godless communism' in various parts of the world. The preference of a faith belief gained in the 1960's in reaction to banning the saying of 'official' prayers in public schools, the legalization of Abortion, the new birth control pills, the rise of urban riots and so on. Then politicians, mainly Republicans started to see support of religious persons to get votes taking conservative social views.

While many of the founders and influences of our country were actively religious, others like writer Thomas Paine were practical Atheist, others were Agnostics, some were not regular attendees at religious services. In our founding, we made it clear that there should be freedom from religion as well as agreeing to the practice of any faith and no 'official' faith, breaking away from European practice of millenniums. Even some of those who were actively religious were really not in a true sense with owning slaves, womanizing and other immoral behaviors.

Thanks for the answer - it's not that I distrust any Christian,Jew ,Buddhist or Muslim more than an Agnostic- but based on history, there is a clear relationship between religion and armed conflicts .So if one would try to really separate executive powers from any religious
lobbying or influence-at least it would eliminate the pressure to obey one God-inspired group rather than another.
I'd like this thread to be confined to the US,since obviously in other parts of the world religion and politics do create mass-killings ,injustice and disaster.But what strikes me is the obvious dropping of once solidly entrenched values that are dis-associated from any religious values.I also don't think it is purely based on free-masonic influence of some of the previous presidents,since not all Agnostics or Atheists are adepts of free-masonry.Actually many Agnostics have a thorough understanding of various religious practice,since they tend to study the subject before their change in philosophy.They probably know more and in a more unbiased view about the bible than most Christians who became Christians without their consent,since they were to young to understand what happened to them.
Political conventions under the name of God to me are as condemnable as hate-talks in some mosques or Buddhist brain-wash to most uneducated Tibetans.
The public pressure to obey by the "rules" has become so strong that many who -deep in their hearts-don't really have any attachment to a particuler religion,just do what everybody imposes on them.
If a Colister in a Republican or Democratic party convention would stand up and say: " ..I'm an Agnostic and don't believe in Jesus.." it most likely would end his career.ANd that's what is frightening me ! The land of freedom and liberties does not grant equal rights to the ones who don't believe..
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Kiwirob
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 1:15 pm



Quoting LTBEWR (Reply 14):
We prefer our Presidents to be persons of faith, mainly Protestant, not Catholic or Jewish.

I suspect you'll end up with a lot of Catholic Presidents towards the end of this centuary when the Latinos take over from the WASPS as the majority population. I wonder how that will go down with middle America.
 
TheSonntag
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 1:20 pm



Quoting Beaucaire (Reply 5):
German soldiers make an oath exclusively based on the nation and declare to defend the values of the Federal Republic of Germany..

Do not underestimate the importance of religion in Germany, though. The oath before court (very rare nowadays) still should be said with the additional phrase "So wahr mir Gott helfe" , as can the oath to serve the state as a minisiter, chancellor or the president be said with the words "so wahr mir Gott helfe" (as God shall help me).

You can freely elect to state the oath without the religious phrase, as Chancellor Schröder did in 1998. This actually caused huge criticism form the Churches.

While this might be a smaller note, the influece of the Churches in Germany on politics is quite high, as many social institutions are driven by them, and the Reichskonkordat allows them to draw taxes.
 
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 1:28 pm

` Yeaah! Baade 152! Trabi of the Sky! '
 
mdsh00
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 2:04 pm



Quoting HowSwedeitis (Reply 11):

The fact of the matter is, atheists and agnostics (which I am) are some of the most discriminated groups in America.

I wouldn't go that far and say that. Nobody discriminates against them, and especially not in the more progressive regions of the US. I'm talking about the Northeast, IL, MN, WI, MI, and the Pacific States.

What is true however, is that religion does hold an important place in the American psyche, whether it be Christianity, or not. Although a politician might become elected on a smaller level and still declare s/he is an atheist, good luck on trying to gain an office on a higher level.

I feel like the same goes for any non-Christian as well. They hold offices on the Congressional level but I think we will see a Black and Female president before we even see a non-Christian take an executive or senatorial position, let alone the presidency. If Bobby Jindal we're still a Hindu, nobody in Louisiana would have given him the time of day.
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daedaeg
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 2:53 pm

As a person of faith, it would be hard for me to vote for an atheist for President. For local and county offices I'd probably could do it. I mean who really cares if the local coroner or county clerk is atheist. But for national office I prefer someone who is accountable to someone greater than man. Just my beliefs.
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voodoo
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 2:53 pm

Britain is somewhat ahead here:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/commentisf.../21/davidmiliband.labourleadership

[Edited 2008-09-05 07:55:25]
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LAXintl
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 4:44 pm



Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 13):
Personally I believe most politians only pay lip service to god, it helps them get elected, nothing more.

They maybe do. However it shows that religion pays an important part in the hearts and subsequent decision process of the electorate.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 16):
I suspect you'll end up with a lot of Catholic Presidents towards the end of this centuary when the Latinos take over from the WASPS as the majority population. I wonder how that will go down with middle America

At the end of the day as America's demographics shift yes Catholics will gain even more offices and I suspect they will be accepted just fine by the majority of the population.

I suspect the masses will openly embrace a Catholic person of faith much easier then a non-Christion person or certainly over an atheist.

Quoting Voodoo (Reply 21):
Britain is somewhat ahead here:

Ahead? -- I would hardly use that term. UK and Europe might be less religions then their cousin here in the US, but to infer this as being better or more advanced is offensive.

One could very well argue that its the lack of faith and religious participation is what leads to many of societies ills. Who is to say which view is right?
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Beaucaire
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In Americ

Fri Sep 05, 2008 4:52 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 22):

One could very well argue that its the lack of faith and religious participation is what leads to many of societies ills. Who is to say which view is right?

Well explain that logic to the North-Irish who have been blown to pieces by opposing "Christian" fractions or to Sunni Muslims killed by opposing Shi'ia gangs.
Explain that "lack of faith" to the fanatics in Indonesia or India,killing and devastating lives of non-members of their faith. They all lived under the impression the fervent believe in a given God or religion would help them to overcome daily problems.The actual opposite is true...
I don't say American Catholics or Baptists are alike-but on a global scale Religion is the reason for more misery and death than most other reasons..

[Edited 2008-09-05 10:19:34]
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DocLightning
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 5:07 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 9):
First appeared on US coin in 1864, however was officially designated as the U.S. national motto by Congress in 1956.

I knew he had something to do with it.

You have to remember that God during the 1700's was a given. Atheism hadn't really developed as a philosophy yet. And so he was mentioned in every single speech and quote from that time.

Yet there are just as many quotes from that time to show how important the Founding Fathers felt that religion stay out of government.
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LAXintl
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 5:11 pm



Quoting Beaucaire (Reply 22):
on a global scale Religion is the reason for more misery and death than most other reasons..

Maybe true, but I know many today that would point to the lack of faith and religious convictions as being part of the break down of families, inner city issues including crime and youth, and general loosening of morals and society values.

So whom is to say that stronger religious conviction's do not help keep youth on a straighter track, hold families together and help societies live more lawfully?
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voodoo
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 5:16 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 21):
Quoting Voodoo (Reply 21):
Britain is somewhat ahead here:

Ahead? -- I would hardly use that term. UK and Europe might be less religions then their cousin here in the US, but to infer this as being better or more advanced is offensive.

Adults who believe in the tooth fairy are normally considered as less advanced than those who do not. 'Offense' has nothing to do with it. Are you a rational person or are you superstitious. Simple as that.
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redflyer
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 5:24 pm



Quoting Beaucaire (Thread starter):
It's a serious question and nothing to do with Republicans or Democrates-but could a declared Atheist play any meaningful role in American politics ?

A meaningful role? Yes. But if you mean could one become President, possible, but unlikely in the current political environment. Which is to say it would probably become a major campaign issue. The fact of the matter is we (meaning people in any free and democratic society) elect leaders that represent our common views. In the U.S., polls have consistently shown that on the order of roughly ~85% or more of Americans believe in a higher power. So an Atheist would essentially be indicating that 85% of Americans are delusional and consequently would have a hard time selling him/herself to the American public. At least that is how it would be spun in the political arena. It kind of reminds me of the movie 'Contact' with Jody Foster. Her character was disqualified (initially) from making the first trip to an alien world because the selection committee wanted someone that would be representative of the human race and all of their foibles. The committee members said they didn't want to send someone who would represent to the alien race that most of the human race is delusional with regards to their belief in God.

Quoting Beaucaire (Reply 15):
it's not that I distrust any Christian,Jew ,Buddhist or Muslim more than an Agnostic- but based on history, there is a clear relationship between religion and armed conflicts

Very true. Europeans subjugated and wiped out millions in the name of God, from their Middle Age Crusades up to the last century.

By the way, Beaucaire, do you have a reference to that article on GWB? I'd really be interested in reading it.
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Beaucaire
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 5:33 pm



Quoting RedFlyer (Reply 26):
By the way, Beaucaire, do you have a reference to that article on GWB? I'd really be interested in reading it.

http://www.positiveatheism.org/writ/ghwbush.htm
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cytz_pilot
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 5:34 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 21):
One could very well argue that its the lack of faith and religious participation is what leads to many of societies ills. Who is to say which view is right?

That argument I believe would be based on the opinion that without religion, a person cannot form a moral and ethical base. People of faith see this base as being formed within religion, so where would someone without religion get it? That kind of question would go through their minds and for that reason, an atheist politician would have severe limitations on how far they can go, and where they can get elected because of these pre-conceptions.

I always thought it would be fun to put together an online "Chance of Presidency Calculator," which would adjust your odds of becoming President some day based on factors such as this.
 
LAXintl
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 5:40 pm



Quoting Voodoo (Reply 25):
Adults who believe in the tooth fairy are normally considered as less advanced than those who do not.

Wow ...

You feel the billions of global religion followers equate to tooth fairy believers and are less advanced because of their beliefs.  Yeah sure

Now that is offensive.  redflag 
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N1120A
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 5:41 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 3):
swear oath on a bible in court

I am a lawyer and have never seen someone swear in on a bible, in court or otherwise.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 3):

We dont pledge as "One Nation under God"

And that is wrong.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 3):
Only on the fringes of America.

Fringes? There are lots of mainstream Americans who have no time for religion or a deity.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 21):

Stop forcing religion on the rest of us.
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LAXintl
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 5:50 pm



Quoting Cytz_pilot (Reply 28):
I always thought it would be fun to put together an online "Chance of Presidency Calculator," which would adjust your odds of becoming President some day based on factors such as this.

You know I actually saw something such as that on one of the large US news sights early in the primaries.

One could assign points to candidates based on a host of factors from their economic views, to their religious and resultant social views. The board was updated each week with the results of all the readers. It was quite interesting to see how the Republicans stacked up particularly how Mitt Romney a Mormon and Tom Ridge did compared Mike Huckabee or even Ron Paul. Religious beliefs clearly played a part in peoples scores.
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LAXintl
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 6:01 pm



Quoting N1120A (Reply 30):
I am a lawyer and have never seen someone swear in on a bible, in court or otherwise.

True - not in California, but still carried out in many jurisdictions across this country as part of making an affirmation to tell the truth as to the best of their knowledge.

Also government officials (esp Federal) take their oaths of office upon a Bible and use the term "so help me God"

Quoting N1120A (Reply 30):
Stop forcing religion on the rest of us.

You dont even know what my religion is nor what my religious convictions are.

The OP'er asked a question as to the success of atheist in higher office. That is what we are discussing here and my points have been that such is an unlikely event as the United States is a nation where religion does play a role in life and politics and the actions of its citizenry.
From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
 
N1120A
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 6:03 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 32):

Also government officials (esp Federal) take their oaths of office upon a Bible and use the term "so help me God"

And they can refuse both.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 32):

You dont even know what my religion is nor what my religious convictions are.

I didn't say your religion, I said religion generally. To say it is somehow un-American to not believe in god is ridiculous
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HapppyLandings
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 6:09 pm

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 29):
You feel the billions of global religion followers equate to tooth fairy believers and are less advanced because of their beliefs.

Now that is offensive.

The majority of people have always been sheep and always will be sheep, I believe the bible makes plenty of reference to followers as being a 'Flock'.


So yes, there is a very good possibility that the majority of people are wrong. It would not be the first time.

*Earth is Flat
*Sun revolves around the earth
*Etc....

[Edited 2008-09-05 11:11:51]
 
redflyer
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 6:26 pm



Quoting Beaucaire (Reply 27):
Quoting RedFlyer (Reply 26):
By the way, Beaucaire, do you have a reference to that article on GWB? I'd really be interested in reading it.

http://www.positiveatheism.org/writ/...h.htm

An article by Madalyn Murray O'Hare? For a moment there I thought it was a respectable publication.

By the way, it was Bush 41, not 43, that purportedly made those comments.
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san747
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 6:59 pm



Quoting HapppyLandings (Reply 34):

So yes, there is a very good possibility that the majority of people are wrong. It would not be the first time.

Actually, here's what's interesting-

ALL religions believe that non-believers are incorrect in their interpretation of the "truth" and will go to some type of hell in the afterlife. There are thousands of religions in the world.

Therefore, ANY and ALL persons of religious belief will be going to hell, because if you're a Christian, a Muslim or Shinto believes you will go to Hell and vice versa.

Therefore, it's all pretty pointless, isn't it?
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Superfly
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:23 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 31):
It was quite interesting to see how the Republicans stacked up particularly how Mitt Romney a Mormon and Tom Ridge did compared Mike Huckabee or even Ron Paul. Religious beliefs clearly played a part in peoples scores.

Shouldn't that read; Religion plays a part with a lot of Republican voters?
Notice, Democrats don't vote based on whether a candidate is a Protestant, Catholic, Jewish, etc..


I certainly wouldn't mind voting for an Atheist.
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David L
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In Americ

Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:29 pm



Quoting LAXintl (Reply 21):
Ahead? -- I would hardly use that term. UK and Europe might be less religions then their cousin here in the US, but to infer this as being better or more advanced is offensive

The point is that it's much more difficult for UK politicians to credit/blame God for their own actions/mistakes. Any that do are open to criticism. "God guided me to do it" doesn't cut it here.

Quoting LAXintl (Reply 21):
One could very well argue that its the lack of faith and religious participation is what leads to many of societies ills. Who is to say which view is right?

And yet, over here, many of those who rue the decline of family values and social standards are atheists. We don't have the same correlation between political views and religious views that you seem to have over there.
 
PPVRA
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:46 pm

Out of curiosity, are there any President/PMs/Whatever in this world that are proclaimed atheists?

Merkel of Germany is lutheran, Sarkozy is Catholic. . . maybe in Asia, but I don't know about anyone in the west.
"If goods do not cross borders, soldiers will" - Frederic Bastiat
 
Beaucaire
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 8:54 pm



Quoting PPVRA (Reply 39):
Out of curiosity, are there any President/PMs/Whatever in this world that are proclaimed atheists?

Merkel of Germany is lutheran, Sarkozy is Catholic. . . maybe in Asia, but I don't know about anyone in the west.

http://www.positiveatheism.org/mail/eml9527.htm
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David L
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 9:08 pm



Quoting PPVRA (Reply 39):
Out of curiosity, are there any President/PMs/Whatever in this world that are proclaimed atheists?

I've no idea but there are many places where the subject just doesn't come up.
 
PPVRA
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 9:11 pm

Quoting Beaucaire (Reply 40):

Not really, though he didn't elaborate further.

edit: David L, I agree, as it shouldn't come up. Religion is a private matter.

[Edited 2008-09-05 14:12:21]
"If goods do not cross borders, soldiers will" - Frederic Bastiat
 
Blackbird
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 9:14 pm

Sure, why not?

Blackbird
 
LAXintl
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 9:37 pm



Quoting Cytz_pilot (Reply 28):
I always thought it would be fun to put together an online "Chance of Presidency Calculator," which would adjust your odds of becoming President some day based on factors such as this.

Check this out -- You can adjust demographic scenarios such as race and religion and see how the electoral college plays out.

http://www.boston.com/news/politics/2008/specials/demographic_map/

Quoting Superfly (Reply 37):
Notice, Democrats don't vote based on whether a candidate is a Protestant, Catholic, Jewish, etc..

Well certain religions groups will vote democratic much more pervasively then others.

Here are some charts from the Pew Research Forum.

Breakdown of 2004 Presidential vote by religion.



Democrat vote by religion


Kerry drew strong support from religiously unaffiliated voters and other groups including black Protestants and Latino Catholics and the Jewish vote.
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Kiwirob
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 9:40 pm



Quoting PPVRA (Reply 39):
Out of curiosity, are there any President/PMs/Whatever in this world that are proclaimed atheists?

Merkel of Germany is lutheran, Sarkozy is Catholic. . . maybe in Asia, but I don't know about anyone in the west.

Helen Clark the PM of New Zealand is a declared agnostic.
 
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DocLightning
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Fri Sep 05, 2008 10:53 pm



Quoting Daedaeg (Reply 19):
As a person of faith, it would be hard for me to vote for an atheist for President. For local and county offices I'd probably could do it. I mean who really cares if the local coroner or county clerk is atheist. But for national office I prefer someone who is accountable to someone greater than man. Just my beliefs

The problem with gods is that their wishes often mirror those of their believers.

Tell me, what if your man of faith worships a different god than you? You may believe that it's all one god, but what if his god's rules differ from yours?
-Doc Lightning-

"The sky calls to us. If we do not destroy ourselves, we will one day venture to the stars."
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HowSwedeitis
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Sat Sep 06, 2008 2:21 am



Quoting San747 (Reply 36):
There are thousands of religions in the world.

Therefore, ANY and ALL persons of religious belief will be going to hell, because if you're a Christian, a Muslim or Shinto believes you will go to Hell and vice versa.

Therefore, it's all pretty pointless, isn't it?

 checkmark  Hence, why I am an agnostic.

What I find truly remarkable is the hatred seen in many religions towards other religions... Quite often Christians find Muslims to be ignorant, evil people. (While many do not out right say this, I believe many feel this way.) And, vice versa Muslims find Christians to be the same. Christians will deem Islam to be a dreadful religion that practices hate, and only wants to cut people's heads off... While scriptures in Leviticus and others read:

Quote:
2:18 Slaves, submit yourselves to your masters with all respect, not only to those who are good and considerate, but also to those who are harsh.
Leviticus 25:44-45
Your male and female slaves are to come from the nations around you; from them you may buy slaves. You may also buy some of the temporary residents living among you and members of their clans born in your country, and they will become your property.
Leviticus 20:9
If anyone curses his father or mother, he must be put to death.
20:10 If a man commits adultery with another man's wife---with the wife of his neighbor---both the adulterer and the adulteress must be put to death.
20:13 If a man lies with a man as one lies with a woman, both of them have done what is detestable. They must be put to death.
Deuteronomy 22:20-1 If, however, the charge is true and no proof of the girl's virginity can be found, she shall be brought to the door of her father's house and there the men of her town shall stone her to death. She has done a disgraceful thing in Israel by being promiscuous while still in her father's house.
Exodus 35:2
For six days, work is to be done, but the seventh day shall be your holy day, a Sabbath of rest to the LORD. Whoever does any work on it must be put to death.

Not everything is as it seems...

-HSII
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redflyer
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Sat Sep 06, 2008 3:09 am



Quoting HowSwedeitis (Reply 47):
Quite often Christians find Muslims to be ignorant, evil people.

Unfortunately, I have to agree with what you say. And the same applies to Muslims' perceptions of Christians. And to any religion's view of another religion. Or, for that matter, an atheist's view of any religion. The problem is people tend to cloak themselves in their beliefs. And, consequently, others will see not the person, but their cloak and then assume all birds of the same feather are like-minded. I cringe when I see people advertise their religious or non-religious beliefs first and foremost above other aspects of their lives because all that does is to make others judge them in contrast to their religious or non-religious beliefs and nothing else. And that, in my opinion, does far more damage than good to the person and the belief they are trying to promote.
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miamix707
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RE: Could An Atheist Become A Politician In America?

Sat Sep 06, 2008 4:49 am



Quoting N1120A (Reply 30):

Stop forcing religion on the rest of us.

You have the option not to live here as well, to be fair  Smile where does this country forces any religious beliefs on anyone?

However, this country was founded as a Christian nation, not atheist, not muslim or anything else.

The real reason you don't see many prominent Atheists in US politics has more to do with their usual "angry" attitudes towards those who believe. Atheist are the ones trying to do away with anything God-related such as trying to force the Louisiana judge to do away with the 10 commandments and these type of things.

Those who believe in God should also demand creationism be allowed in schools, since the evolution theory is shoved down student throats as well, right? If anything, Americans who believe God should be the ones complaining

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