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Rosa Brooks at the L.A. Times wrote a good OP/ED piece discussing why the conservative evangelical churches have become such a force to be reckoned with. In some ways, churches are doing what they are supposed to do: They're helping many people in their day-to-day lives as Brooks points out with things like jobs, daycare, etc. In the mean time, they're getting votes. She compares this to Tammany Hall.
She also say faith is only part of the issue. As Cynicus has often commented, in the old days, before reform, people actually got something tangible for their vote. It may be just $5 and pint of whiskey, but it was something. These churches, while not providing booze, do provide resources, which many people need. She comments the Democrats need to be able to provide similar resources, one way or the other.
She even mentions the 16,000 member Southeast Christian Church in Louisville that provides all these services. Then they advocate certain things in the independent newspaper. The reality is they are helping people who need to meet those needs.
In so doing, the Republicans have shifted the role somewhat away from the government on the surface. Combine this with the president's proposal for faith-based initiative and public funding of those initiative, it would allow the government and religion work together, steal the Democratic issues from them and begin social re-engineering into a much more religious, conservative nation than we already are.
Effective, brilliant, frightening.
posted by Stithmeister @ 10:27 AM
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I'm currently working in the telecomm industry but one of my passions is still politics.
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