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Even then you are wrong: there are attempts to use religion (in this case Islamic religion) arguing different political points. It is lazy to claim all these points were the same and it is lazy not to argue the political points but the religious angle advancing them.

I spend most of my time here and elsewhere arguing the political points.

But when you insist that "because my faith says so" is a valid argument, I'll point out that you are peddling authoritarian identity politics. Attempting to hitch progressive policies to authoritarian identity politics has a distinctly mixed track record.

There are of course many ways to make above point, not only the theological one, but I don't think any of these ways is dishonest. Are you sure that you object to politicising the pulpit in general, or is it certain political aims you object to?

I object to politicizing the pulpit in general, for the same reason I object to tame journalists and fake research: They all depend for their effect on mechanisms which are anathema to informed democratic debate.

Of course, like tame journalists and fake research, I'm not going to go out of my way to criticize people who use them to advance policies I agree with. That should not be construed as approval in principle, merely a cynical cost-benefit analysis.

[snip a long paean to the virtues of identity politics]

Identity politics is bullshit. It never has worked and it never will work.

Where racism is a problem, fight for emancipation. When you have an unemployed underclass on the labor market, fight for full employment. When you have an overbearing political police, fight for democratic accountability. When you have a hate crime problem, fight against discrimination.

But don't pretend that promoting the customs, class markers and idiosyncrasies of the victims of discrimination into a "separate but equal" minority culture does jack shit for any of that. Separate but equal never is.

And in particular, don't pretend that promoting unmerited respect for religious bullshit does jack shit to promote social and political emancipation. If you want people to accord respect to beliefs that have done nothing to deserve respect, then that's your prerogative. But don't pretend that you're fighting some sort of class war - at least not as anything but a useful idiot for the bad guys.

- Jake

Friends come and go. Enemies accumulate.

by JakeS (JangoSierra 'at' gmail 'dot' com) on Thu Jan 3rd, 2013 at 08:17:34 PM EST
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