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I recently listened to Onkar Ghate's lecture about the Separation of Church and State, and then heard about Mississippi's lawmaker Andy Gipson, who was called out for citing homophobic bible verses on his facebook page -- when asked to apologize, he said that he "cannot and will not apologize for the inspired truth of God’s Word."

Gipson is just one example of a sincere religionist who just also happens to be a lawmaker. I've heard it argued that Gipson hasn't initiated force against anyone per se.. But I sincerely doubt that his religious beliefs aren't influencing his government position. So where should the line be drawn between an individual's religious beliefs and his involvement in government?

asked Oct 04 '12 at 15:30

mdegges's gravatar image


edited Oct 04 '12 at 16:28

Greg%20Perkins's gravatar image

Greg Perkins ♦♦

People have the right to believe whatever fantasies or vile nonsense they wish, they do not however have the right to practice those beliefs. The line is the same as for anything else, the violation of individual rights. Politicians should not be fired for merely having religious beliefs, but those that can be shown to be putting the violation of rights into action should be fired and even prosecuted.

The best example of this is Barack Obama, in his own words, we are our "brothers' keepers", "we are better when we spread the wealth around", people need to pay "their fair share" etc. He actively works to put such policy and belief into effect, and the only way to achieve those Marxist ideals is through the violation of rights of the the men of ability and wealth.

answered Oct 05 '12 at 10:11

la_phil's gravatar image

la_phil ♦

Well the quotes Gipson cited say that gays should 'be put to death' and that 'their blood will be on their own heads.' When his statements backfired, he said he 'never publicly or privately called for the killing of any people.' (Although that's obviously how the quote was interpreted!) Is voicing those violent 'commands from God' not a violation of the separation of church and state?

(Oct 05 '12 at 22:27) mdegges mdegges's gravatar image

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Asked: Oct 04 '12 at 15:30

Seen: 1,004 times

Last updated: Oct 05 '12 at 22:28