Are Christians from Mars and Left Wing Progressives from Venus? I watch the news, and as a liberal (atheist) progressive I become convinced that all religious people are dogmatic, paranoid, hateful, judging nut jobs. I go home for the holidays and many of my family and their friends are religious and they are not – none of them – dogmatic, paranoid, hateful, judging nut jobs.
So what’s going on here? Do all religious people hate gays, minorities, poor people and people with different or no religion? I don’t think so. It doesn’t fit my personal experience, either in person or in the blogosphere. In fact, I have been really pleasantly surprised that in the few instances I have chosen to engage with religious people while blogging, they are surprisingly reasonable. I blog on issues that are tough for the religious/progressive divide – sex, politics, relationships. These are things that should bring us to blows, yet I have been surprised that when you get past the headlines, there is a surprising amount of agreement.
So, over the next few weeks I am going to unpack this a bit. I am going to choose political, sexual and relationship issues and try to figure out where there can be common ground between the religious right and the progressive left. We really need this discussion.
As a self declared left wing progressive, I very often find myself angry with religious people… at least religious people as they are portrayed in the media.