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Tuesday, January 24, 2006

Voting Your Religion--or Not?

RCP blog discusses Mitt Romney's 37% problem. That is, in a recent poll by the LA Times (for what it's worth) 37% of Americans said they would not vote for a Mormon.

So I'll ask you:
Is there a religion that, if a politician openly professed, would cause you to not vote for them (check all that apply).
No. Religion isn't an issue.
Yes. Christianity.
Yes. Judaism.
Yes. Islam
Yes. Atheists.
Yes. Agnostics.
Yes. Cults.
Yes. Jehovah's Witnesses
Yes. Mormonism.
Yes. Other.
Free polls from Pollhost.com

UPDATE: The radio conversation now makes sense in light of this story at JackLewis.net about Mormon Governor of Mass. Mitt Romney.
Romney says his Mormon Religion is plus in this article.
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Thoughtful Readers Speak:
I chose other, since religion has no place in politics. I don't care about the faith or personal lives of politicians; I simply ask that they do their jobs and follow the law.
Hmm...So option 1 didn't satisfy your thoughts?
Erica's answer seems to fit someone who has no strong loyalties to what she believes. How sad.
Number 1 could also work, I suppose. Being religious and supporting a secular government are not mutually exclusive.

Of course I don't have any strong loyalties to what I believe. When you get right down to it, beliefs aren't worth much. I don't have any particular agenda or set of dogmatic beliefs that require absolute loyalty. You should try it sometime; it's quite liberating.
I also agree with Erica's answer. There is a large difference between saying, "No, someone's religious preference wont affect me" and "Yes, Other." The other signifies the concept that it would dissuade you from voting for anyone of any religion that came forth with it.

And, I, too, do not have any strong loyalties to what I believe, mainly, because I tend not to dabble much in beliefs. Now, I realize, many people are going to see this as illogical and absurd, but I believe there is a way to have a solid Nihilistic frameset that is not counterintuitive. I don't really want to get into that; I am merely pointing out that:

1) Yes, there is a difference between those two options, and 2) No, it's really not sad to not be loyal to a specific belief, what's sad is being so stuck on one belief that you can't function outside of it, that you can't experience anything except through your one, narrow position...I feel that's like limiting yourself to one sense.
It's interesting to note that atheists are only slightly less hated than Muslims and cultists. Sure, Muslims have won the Most Hated Group of the Era Prize and cultists are always a bit kooky. But atheists? I didn't realize we were monsters.
The problem (okay, not problem...the reason) is that a very large percentage (I have no idea what percent it is) of people believe in a god. Or, at least, they say they do. Whether they are practicing a religion or merely stating that if it really came down to it, they think there is something else out there, who knows. I tend to think that a lot of people only believe in a god because they feel something has to be out there. But someone who says, definately, there is nothing out there...I think a lot of people have a hard time identifying with that.

Me, I just don't believe in the concept of a god in the first place. It's seems all very ad hoc to me. I don't expect things to be explained by any concept (science, faith, etc.). I don't really hold to any principles whatsoever. So, am I absolutely agnostic. No, because saying "I don't know," puts worth on knowing, and I just don't really hold epistemology in very high regards.

JR, I think you should have added a "nihilist" category.
Atheism isn't a religion. It's the absence of religion.

Simple logic dictates that the absence of something cannot be that something; A /= ~A. (Does everyone follow symbolic logic?)
Scientologists - no way. Not ever.

Which falls under cults or other.

I mean, if someone is just super wacky, could you trust them with your government?

Well, other than the people in Mass and WV that vote for Kennedy and Byrd, and most of bay area California.
Rick "Sleeping with a dead fetus" Santorum, KJ? Hello?
See, to me super wacky means you have an invisible friend that you think beams messages directly into your brain.
Many theists think that being an atheist means that I:

A) Have no concept of morality

B) Have no meaning in my life

C) Actually do believe in a god, but hate him/her/it

D) Cannot really experience love because I do not first love Deity X

E) Need pity/conversion/help/etc

F) Can't really be a person

G) Atheism is an organized religion

Frankly, it's annoying.
so, athiests can know what christians think but christians can't know what athiests think?

frankly, that's an annoying fallacy.

or, maybe you're just assuming you know when you really don't?
No, she was merely commenting on the general misconceptions that people have about atheism. If you'd like, you can write your own list of the misconceptions people have about Christianity.

Like, here's one: Many atheists think that theists get overly defensive when reading the opinions of an atheist.
" so, athiests can know what christians think but christians can't know what athiests think?"

I made a list of things that theists have said to me in the past. It is simply an observation of misconceptions I have experienced and wish to avoid in the future. You will also notice that I used the term theist and not Christian, as these attitudes are not confined to Christians.
jr, she's has a point about using the term theist
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