Monday, January 6, 2014

'Strainer' things have happened

This an "odd" story, and I don't mean it in a bad way. I understand the premise behind what he did and why. I have on numerous occasions invoked the Flying Spaghetti Monster (FSM) myself in making a point concerning religious dogma. BUT, my criticism of this demonstration is why now? Why not while he was campaigning?

From the article, there is no way of telling whether his religious views and means of expressing them were public knowledge although it is stated that he was a minister with the Church of the Flying Spaghetti Monster. I personally do not get a sense of mockery or anti-religious sentiment, if anything it may open the door to better dialogue concerning church-state issues. That no matter what the religious beliefs of a lawmaker (local.state or federal), s/he can represent their constituents without interjecting religious dogma. In some small way I am reminded of famous speech given on September. 12, 1960, to the Greater Houston Ministerial Association:

These are the real issues which should decide this campaign. And they are not religious issues -- for war and hunger and ignorance and despair know no religious barriers.

But because I am a Catholic, and no Catholic has ever been elected president, the real issues in this campaign have been obscured -- perhaps deliberately, in some quarters less responsible than this. So it is apparently necessary for me to state once again not what kind of church I believe in -- for that should be important only to me -- but what kind of America I believe in,,,

"It's just a statement about religious freedom," he said. "It's a religion without any dogma."

"Most of us do not believe a religion - Christianity, Islam, Pastafarianism - requires literal belief in order to provide spiritual enlightenment," the church's website states. "That is, we can be part of a community without becoming indoctrinated. There are many levels of belief."

"Mostly, I'm just looking forward to making sure that the town is run smoothly and we meet the needs of all of our citizens," he said. "If anybody ever has any concerns or questions, I hope they contact me, because I want to make sure that everyone is represented."
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