Friday, November 6, 2020

Snapshots of Intersection of Religion and Politics, American Style, as Indicators Point to Biden Win

On this day when the worm may be turning (if at sloth's pace) in the US presidential election, when many folks are expressing baffled surprise that four years of that person in the White House have resulted in even more exultation of "religious" people in his rule over us, a few snapshots. These are who we are, and we need not to unsee what they show us.

Granted, this is not "a" snapshot or "the" snapshot of how religion and politics interact in American culture. Even so, it's a snapshot of some key moments that encapsulate for us what's happening right now, has been happening the last four years, happened in the lead-up to the last four years to make it possible. It's a snapshot of discrete moments crossing confessional boundary lines, to show us how wide the problem we now confront is — if we're only willing to see it.

Many "liberal" thinkers both in the world of religion and politics think it's impolite and transgressive to point to such snapshots. Many "liberal" thinkers want to pretend that religion is not that important to discuss as we discuss what's happening right now politically in the US — that it's not politic and is, in fact, rude, to ask to discuss these matters.

Meanwhile, there's this, and I think we'd be very foolish to forget and to try to unsee what these disturbing shapshots show us* (and see also **):

* Blogger changed its platform some weeks back, and no longer makes it easy to embed tweets. I find sketchy, incomprehensible guidelines here and there about embedding tweets in the new platform. But I have been unable to figure out what they are telling me.

So I'm now making snapshots of tweets I want to share and putting a link to the tweet underneath those snapshots. You will want to click on the links to these tweets found under each snapshot and see the original, since several of them have videos you should watch.

On another housekeeping point: I know that comments often do not load for you on this blog. That happens to me, too. I find that switching to another browser often allows me to see the comments — and when I've shared that tip with others, it usually seems to work for them. I apologize about this malfunction of the comments feature, which I have not been able to resolve.

** As my penultimate posting indicated, there's been confusion in social media quarters about whether the nuns displaying themselves in habits at several recent rallies for the man who now appears to be losing the election are bona fide Catholic nuns. Though I had thought that Peter Vroom proved conclusively that the nuns at the Cincinnati rally belong to a bona fide Catholic group called Children of Mary, only yesterday I saw people stating on social media that these were hired cosplayers.

When the Amish buggy parade hit social media on election day, I saw many people saying the same thing about that buggy parade — that the Amish would never behave this way, and these were hired actors. Snopes begs to differ.

We need to be much more honest about who we are, what we have made of ourselves — if we expect to find our way out of the huge hole we've now dug for American democracy.

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