Monday, July 11, 2005

Faking Religion

Commenting on Howard Dean can be dangerous. While many blogs regularly bash Kerry, generally based upon distorted reports of his statements, questioning Dean's ability to walk on water can bring a flood of protests. Personally I don't see having a "pro-Dean" or "anti-Dean" position as very meaningful, especially considering we are not at a point where being a Presidential candidate is a current consideration. I've had posts favorable to Dean when I've liked what he has said, and unfavorable posts when I haven't. I've also distinguished between supporting Dean's positions while still being able to express concern for his propensity for gaffes.

One topic where I received a number of unfavorable responses from Deaniacs was in criticizing Dean on religion. I have no problem with Dean's beliefs on the subject. Personally I'm even closer to Dean than Kerry in secularism. I just felt that whenever Dean speaks about religion he sounds phoney, and this will do more harm than good.

While Deaniacs have attacked me for stating this in the past, I see that I have company in this view from someone who knows far more than I do about talking about religion, Jim Wallis. From Washington Whispers:

Preacher to Dean: You Can't Fake It
As if mouthy Howard Dean didn't have enough troubles, now comes a left-leaning evangelical, much in demand by the Democratic Party, telling the party boss to shut up about religion. "Dean doesn't understand religion very much," says Jim Wallis, who has advised many Democratic leaders. He meets with Dean this week as part of the chairman's effort to woo the churchgoing crowd. Now promoting his book God's Politics: Why the Right Gets It Wrong and the Left Doesn't Get It, Wallis says he'll tell Dean not to fake it on religion. "The worst thing people could do is be inauthentic," he says.


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