Gingrich on Radical Secularism

I only have time for quick blogging today, but we ought to tak a quick look this account, from The Washington Post, about Newt Gingrich's speech to the graduates at Liberty University:

Former House Speaker Newt Gingrich decried a “growing culture of radical secularism” Saturday morning as he hailed the life of Liberty University's late founder, the Rev. Jerry Falwell, in an address to the school's 2007 graduating class.

In a speech heavy with religious allusions but devoid of hints about his presidential ambitions, Gingrich drew applause from the graduates and their families in the school's 12,000-seat football stadium when he demanded: “This anti-religious bias must end.”

“In hostility to American history, the radical secularists insist that religious belief is inherently divisive,” Gingrich said, deriding what he called the “contorted logic” and “false principles” of advocates of secularism in American society.

Of course, by religious belief Gingrich means Christian religious belief.

Well, clearly Gingrich has a point here. I mean, you'd have to be some sort of fool to think that a religion that separates people in to the saved and the hellbound, or that talks shamelessly about the kingdom of heaven on the one side vs. the kingdom of the cults on the other, could be divisive. I suppose Gingrich thinks this is a force for unification.

“Basic fairness demands that religious beliefs deserve a chance to be heard,” he said during his 26-minute speech. &dquo;It is wrong to single out those who believe in God for discrimination. Yet, today, it is impossible to miss the discrimination against religious believers.”

Preach it, brother. It's about time someone stood up for those poor, discirminated against religious believers.

Feel free to read the rest of the article, but you might want to turn off your irony meter before doing so. After all, the article describes how Gingrich wants to bring seriousness and dignity back to the presidential race.


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Hey, you think it sounds bad when you read it? I had to sit through the whole verdammt thing, surrounded by people agreeing that they were being discriminated against.

The things you do for family...

In hostility to American history, the radical secularists insist that religious belief is inherently divisive

Meanwhile, in totally unrelated news that I wouldn't try to link to Gingrich's statement in any way, A Liberty University student was discovered to have bombs in his car trunk, and may have been planning to use them on Fred Phelps and his Westboro Baptist Church, who had announced their intention to protest at Falwell's funeral because he wasn't bigoted and hateful enough for them.

By Tegumai Bopsul… (not verified) on 22 May 2007 #permalink

He gives newts a bad name.

By Bip Dinkley (not verified) on 22 May 2007 #permalink

Re: Tegumai's quote

You don't suppose there's a chance, no matter how small, that all the totally whacked-out fundies will do us all a favour and start some sort of inter-necine war? Maybe get a nice patch of desert, set up some grandstands and have at each other with sharpened crucifixes? May the strongest/craziest faith win? Which reminds me, check out the film End Of The Line for some gory fundie craziness...

It'd sure ease some of the problems in the US and have the positive result of cleansing the gene pool and providing entertainment.

Seems like the classic false dichotomy spread by religious demagogues: "Anything which doesn't explicitly endorse Christianity is ipso facto anti-Christian and oppressive".

Gingrich drew applause from the graduates and their families in the school's 12,000-seat football stadium when he demanded: �This anti-religious bias must end.�

Meanwhile, polls show that an open atheist could not be elected to high office in this country.

By Tegumai Bopsul… (not verified) on 23 May 2007 #permalink

Did he mention anything about adultery, or "till death do us part"?

It is truly amazing what an alternate universe otherwise intelligent people like Gingrich can inhabit. It's just another example of how some people's religious views are such an integral part of who they are and how they see the world that they cannot really grasp how it could be different. I'll bet Newt thinks atheists are "Mad at God" too.

Science Avenger, I think you give Gingrich far too much credit for sincerity in this. I'd say he's more likely just a disingenuous, manipulative politician (as well as a monstrous hypocrite) rather than simply a deluded fundie.

~David D.G.

By David D.G. (not verified) on 23 May 2007 #permalink

Perhaps David D.G., I do have that failing. I think it caters to too many bad intellectual habits to jump too quickly to the conclusion that someone is dishonest. I mean really, if I can take Michael Egnor and Ken Ham at their word, why not Gingrich?

Since he is officially retired from politics, at least at the moment, I'd say the data slightly favors me, since he's got no motive at this point, unless we are to claim that catering to loonies is just an old habit he can't shake. If he gets into the presidential race however, I may stand corrected.

What happened to all that stuff about tearing families apart, bringing a sword, etc. etc.?

By Caledonian (not verified) on 25 May 2007 #permalink