Kevin Drum points to a survey today that's kind of scary:
From a telephone sampling of more than 2,000 households, university researchers found that Americans rate atheists below Muslims, recent immigrants, gays and lesbians and other minority groups in “sharing their vision of American society.” Atheists are also the minority group most Americans are least willing to allow their children to marry.What if it's a gay marriage?
Seriously, are Americans really this afraid of people who have looked around and concluded that this is all a happy accident rather than the result of divine providence? Apparently they are, if we can judge by the president's father, who (I should have known this) was interviewed on the topic prior to his election:
Robert Sherman: Surely you recognize the equal citizenship and patriotism of Americans who are atheists?That's some serious stuff. If I don't believe in the Constitution, OK, maybe I'm not an American--and certainly not a patriot. (I'm not talking about agreeing for the most part but wanting to amend it a bit--dissent is part our tradition. Not believing in freedom of dissent? Now you're sounding like a non-believer.) But if I don't believe in God?
George H.W. Bush: No, I don't know that atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered patriots. This is one nation under God.
Something tells me the son would say very much the same thing. Someone should ask him.