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Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Texas Faith: Is religion playing a shrinking role in this election?

Why do you think religion has played less of a role? And is that a healthy phenomenon? If not, please make the case for why you think religion still has played a major role. And explain whether you think that has been a positive or negative contribution to the campaign.

MIKE GHOUSE, President, Foundation for Pluralism, Dallas

 Indeed, it is a relief to see the diminishing role of religion in the general elections. Religion should not be a source of harassment, apprehension or discomfort between fellow Citizens.

 Religion has been used, abused and misused by the self appointed protectors of religions. It’s a gift from God for all humanity, and no one should privatize and impose their version on others. Let God and religion remain public properties to be had by anyone who wanted, and choose whichever piece of the pie that appeals to them.

Mormon, Muslim and Gay Americans are relieved; and all other Americans have welcomed this healthy change. We have come a long way in accepting each new tradition with suspicion; we still have ways to go with race, but go, we will.

Women Americans are still apprehensive. The evangelibans, as I call them, are bent on controlling women as to what they can do with abortion in extreme cases, and candidate Romney wishes to appoint judges who can repeal Roe V. Wade. As Americans we need to stand with women to keep government out of their right to live without fear.

The religious right played havoc in the primaries, they ganged up on Romney, and some even called his religion a cult, Mormonism was not Christian enough to them. Finally the moderate majority rejected other candidates for their extremist views and accepted Romney and Mormonism. 

 Muslim Americans were hounded in the primaries; one candidate said he will not even hire them in his administration. The Sharia attackers did not have a clue of what they were attacking, for Muslim Americans, it is a an alternate means of resolving dispute between two parties, just as the Jewish Halaqa, pastoral counseling or even mediation. A Sharia conference was in the making in Dallas with nations two of the most virulent opponents and scholars, but was canceled. Not enough Christians, Jews, Hindus or Muslims were willing to sponsor this educational program, they were afraid of putting their name with the word Sharia.  Finally, as an alternative, a website was created to dispel the myths of its role in America; www.ShariaLaws.com. Thank God the rhetoric dissipated after the primaries and Muslim Americans are somewhat relieved.

The Gay and Lesbian were apprehensive about living their lives, thanks to Shepherd Obama, for taking the bold step by revoking the don’t ask don’t tell policy, and accepting the GLBT community as any other group of people, and delivering peace of mind to fellow Americans.
Religion is one of the most beautiful gifts from the creator to his creation; it is an expression of God’s love for his creation to live in peace and harmony with itself and with others through many beautiful pathways. Let the bad guys be the villains, and spare different versions God and religion.

Note: This is the original version in 390 words, this one is enhanced to 470 words.
Twelve panelists have contributes to this Texas Faith Panel at Dallas Morning News to view the full comments please visit -  http://religionblog.dallasnews.com/2012/10/texas-faith-is-religion-playing-a-shrinking-role-in-this-election.html/

The Texas Faith blog is a discussion among formal and informal religious leaders whose faith traditions express a belief in a transcendent power – or the possibility of one. While all readers are invited to participate in this blog, by responding in the comments section, discussion leaders are those whose religion involves belief in a divine higher power or those who may not believe in a transcendent power but leave room for the possibility of one. Within this framework, moderators William McKenzie and Wayne Slater seek to bring a diversity of thinkers onto the Texas Faith panels.
MikeGhouse is professional speaker, thinker and a writer on pluralism, politics, foreign policy, Islam, interfaith and peaceful societies. He is committed to building a Cohesive America and offers pluralistic solutions on issues of the day at www.TheGhousediary.com. Mike has a strong national and local presence in TV, Radio and Print Media, and is a frequent guest on Sean Hannity show on Fox TV, and a commentator on national radio networks, he contributes weekly to the Texas Faith Column at Dallas Morning News, fortnightly at Huffington post, and several other periodicals across the world. His personal site www.MikeGhouse.net indexes everything you want to know about him.

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