Jonathan D. Fitzgerald comments on the continuing debate over the role of religion in politics:
It feels progressive to say that we should’t mix religion and politics, because it feels like by saying so we are upholding the dream of our founders, but when citizens allow their politics to be informed by religious convictions, they are not leading our country down a slippery slope toward theocracy, they are being fully engaged citizens. This requires dialogue and compromise, give and take; it is not the easiest way forward, but, really, it’s the only way.
Consistent with that perspective, yesterday a group of Madison-area clergy held a press conference in which they expressed concern with the recently-passed budget. Their arguments used religious language and came out of the scriptural traditions of Judaism and Christianity. Several clergy stressed the importance that their religious perspectives be part of the public debate, when so often, the only religious voices being heard or receiving notice come from the Religious Right. The full document produced by the group, Concerned Religious Leaders of Wisconsin, is here.