Mitt Romney, the former Governor of Massachusetts, gave a speech in which he equated religion to freedom. "Freedom requires religion just as religion requires freedom. Freedom opens the windows of the soul so that man can discover his most profound beliefs and commune with God. Freedom and religion endure together, or perish alone."
Freedom requires religion? Since when? What do my religious beliefs, or lack thereof, have to do with my freedom? Does this mean that all atheists and agnostics shouldn't be free? Believe me, I am just as committed to freedom as anyone, be they religious or not. I don't think the fact that I am not religious should have anything to do with my freedom. Putting those two things together, as though they are required, makes me nervous.
He also said, "Religion is seen as merely a private affair with no place in public life. It's as if they are intent on establishing a new religion in America — the religion of secularism. They are wrong."
I don't think I could disagree more. Religion is a private affair. If you choose to live your life based on one set of religious beliefs, that's fine, but for a presidential candidate to say that religion should be a public matter is absurd. It would inevitably set one faith over another if a president were to live his religion publicly. It would put that particular religion's beliefs over that of other faiths and over those who are not of any religion.
There were things that Romney said that I agreed with: "Religious tolerance would be a shallow principle indeed if it were reserved only for faiths with which we agree." Indeed. I heartily concur. But what about those of us with no faith? Who don't hold any religious beliefs? Is there tolerance for us in there? Or would a Romney presidency exclude those of us who doubt or just plain old don't believe in anything? Again, this concerns me. It should concern anyone who believes that religious freedom doesn't just apply to those of faith, but to all people, regardless of faith.
The thing that scared me the most in the Romney speech was this: "Our greatness would not long endure without judges who respect the foundation of faith upon which our constitution rests."
Yeah. If that doesn't make you stop and think, you need to wake up and smell the agenda.