No guts, no glory

Matt Yglesias comments on one of Amy Sullivan’s usual complaints about “secular liberal intolerance” in the most cynical, hypocritical way possible:

Now Amy’s right. It would be useful, for the purposes of electoral politics, for liberals in the media to avoid expressing the view that the belief — adhered to by millions of Americans — that failure to accept Jesus Christ as your personal savior will result in eternal damnation is daft. On the other hand, the evangelical view of this matter is, in fact, completely absurd.

What prompted this was Sullivan getting her back up because a writer called Pat Robertson insane for believing that the Jews were going to burn in hell—to Sullivan, that’s not insane, that’s just an ordinary article of faith for millions of Christians, and not to be questioned. And she’s right?

Look, this is a simple issue. Doing a little dance and trying to pretend you don’t believe what you believe because you think it’s good tactics, especially when you readily admit that you are doing some political maneuvering, is stupid. What’s far better is to simply be what you are: be sincere and honest and go ahead and state your mind. No one is fooled by the act.

Sweet Jesus, Pat Robertson is insane. Wouldn’t the whole country be immensely better off if crazy grandpas like Robertson were left to just putter about in their gardens instead of peddling voting blocs and being sucked up to by people who ought to know better? The only way we’re going to get to that much-desired situation is if more people speak up against lunacy. And I count moderates who accommodate insanity, like Amy Sullivan, as part of the problem.

(via Atrios. Am I damned for citing one A-lister citing another A-lister?)


  1. #1 David Marjanović
    October 31, 2006

    Oh, you Americans…

    Most European Catholics (at least) don’t believe anyone particular will go to hell. Many believe hell is in fact empty. My Religious Instruction teacher in school (an ordinary public school) told us that his personal view is you only go to hell if you consciously want to be separated from God, and so on.

    I’m (still) surprised every time I read some American fundie is certain they’ll go to heaven. WTF? How can they know? Isn’t it blasphemy (like, claiming to know God’s will)? This, too, is not the kind of Christianity I’m used to.

  2. #2 Sastra
    October 31, 2006

    Pat Robertson is not really “crazy.” He’s far more mainstream than most of us, and his views make sense within his religious framework. If religious “nuts” were really nuts, they would be unable to hold jobs, love their families, have friends, and so on. That’s what’s so bothersome. It’s the disconnect between viewpoints which ought to be considered nonsense or at least clearly mistaken, coupled with the often thoughtful, surprisingly intelligent, generally likeable and perfectly normal people who hold them.

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