The Moose suggests that the religious right's victim act doesn't cut it anymore.
The Moose has rejected the view of some on the left who are preoccupied with the "separation of the church and the state." Religious conservatives have made a valid point that there should be a place in the public square for faith. There is nothing particularly objectionable with the display of the ten commandments in a public building or a Christmas creche in the town square.
And it is also true that religious conservative have often been unfairly stereotyped in the mainstream media.
When the religious conservative movement was in the opposition, it could thrive as an "outsider" force. Now that it has access to power it operates as any other secular special interest group. As is evident in the Schiavo case and the current fight over the judiciary, the religious right can over-reach with the fervor and passion of any paternalistic liberal interest group.
It no longer rings true that "people of faith" are not welcome in the public debate. Heck, the most extreme elements are the puppet masters for the Republican Party. Spare us the victimization act.
Although the religious right is influential, it is far from controlling our institutions. But what would America look like if its power increased significantly? The recent reports of proselytizing and outright religious persecution at the Air Force Academy provides a ominous perspective on the power of the religious right. In Friday's Los Angeles Times, Jonathan Chait made a critical point,
"But although the religious right doesn't have the capacity to impose its views on the rest of the country, it certainly has the intent to do so. Conservatives may dismiss fears of a Christian theocracy as liberal hysteria. Theocracy, though, is not an inaccurate description of life at the Air Force Academy."
The culture of the Academy is evidently heavily influenced by James Dobson's Focus on the family which is a nearby neighbor. Dobson has become the most powerful outside influence on the Republican Party, dictating the terms of the debate on all matters cultural and social. The doctor that is in charge of the Senate is not Frist, but Dobson. That makes the "Air Force Academy" experience even more significant.
There, you can see Dobson's choice for America. --