Sunday, May 10, 2009

'Joe the Plumber' on the Christian Right, Gerson on why it needs to back off

The Everyman of the 2008 presidential campaign talks with Christianity Today about same sex marriage, the appeal of the Republican Party, his love of James Dobson, and his future in politics.
'Joe the Plumber' (aka Samuel Wurzelbacher), hopes "our leaders actually check with God before he does stuff" and feels that the Republican party needs to work with God more:
Does the Republican Party reach out to evangelicals enough?

No. None of them stand up for anything. They use God as a punch line. They use God to invoke sympathy or invoke righteousness, but they don't stay the course. That's why I think that all needs to be taken out of the federal level and give it back to the states. We've lost our American history. Every state has "In God we trust" or "With God's help" in their constitution. God is recognized as, if you will, America's religion.

In related news, Michael Gerson writes that a large segment of the non-religiously affiliated twenty-somethings would join a community if the religious right hadn't turned them off. Gerson quotes Robert Putnam (of "Bowling Alone" fame), who together with David Campbell, is working on a new book on the subject:
"They are not in church, but they might be if a church weren't like the religious right. . . . There are almost certain to be religious entrepreneurs to fill that niche with a moderate evangelical religion, without political overtones."

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