Religious politicians.

Amy Davidson thinks shying away from Mitt because of his Mormonism is frivolous:

There are so many reasons to distrust Romney, or to consider him strange. One can suspect he is a robot from another planet—or a reasonable facsimile thereof—or decide that if he can’t talk without mentioning his money he’ll never be able to relate to anyone, and turn away from him for that. It is perfectly sensible not to vote for him because of practical political positions that one disagrees with, regardless of whether he was led too them by his faith. But the faith alone is no good reason at all.

I’m torn. In a sense I strongly disagree. In the same way I am unsure if I could ever have a strong friendship with anyone who thinks my soul is destined to hell merely because I lack faith in God, and who feels the need to pray for me behind my back, I can’t help shake off the feeling that it is relevant what one’s elected officials believe theologically speaking. And even if it has no tangible effects on his policy proposals, Romney’s background belief that Jesus will one day return to Missouri, and his belief that caffeine is a mind-clouding evil, is bizarre enough to warrant severe skepticism about him as a character. I just wouldn’t want such a whacky person to represent me.

But then as a matter of consistency, I should probably feel equally skeptical about less radically religious politicians. Ron Paul, for instance, is obviously Christian, but he has a remarkable ability to keep it out of his politics and no alarm bells ring for me. The same goes for Cameron and Obama. Yet I know deep down that I don’t find Protestantism or Catholicism any less senile than Mormonism. So I should probably either commit to supporting atheists and agnostics only, or I should accept religious belief is fine so long as it is kept at the door. Admittedly, it’s the latter that feels more reasonable, and suggests the Mormon-bashing is unfair.

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