Date & Time: Jun 19 2012 - 7:00pm
Location: THE STONE CREEK BAR - 140 EAST 27th Street (Bet. 3rd & Lex)
Host: MICHAEL DORIAN
Subject: Should the American Voter Be Influenced By a Candidate’s Religion? -Yes, Says NYC Atheists Discussion Leader Dorian
Q:We live in a free nation that was created from all kinds of religions, races and ethnicities and prides itself on allowing freedom of religion. How can we say that we should judge a political candidate on his or her religious beliefs when we find it repugnant to judge candidates on the basis of race, gender, ethnicity, sexual preference or color?
A. Smart Voter: The candidate is not going to be controlled by his or her race, gender, ethnicity, sexual preference or color! But religion imposes values and restrictions on the decisions of the office holders because it influences their thinking and values.
Q: But isn’t it just as true that all of us cannot help but be influenced by the fact that we are White or Black, male or female, Italian or Irish, gay or straight?
Q: But wouldn’t a gay office holder tend to vote for things to benefit gays, a
Michael Dorian, leader of NYCA’s popular and volatile Tuesday Night Discussion Group at the Stone Creek, feels that it is valid and even necessary to judge a candidate on the basis of his or her religious beliefs.
Dorian claims, “It’s okay to judge them on their religion because while nobody chooses to be gay or straight, white or Black or Jewish or Italian, people do choose their religious beliefs by the time they’ve reached adulthood.”
Moreover, Dorian adds, “the choice people make about their religious beliefs can, and should, be considered a keen insight into their worldview, which in turn affects their political stands on significant issues.”
Aren’t We Really Profiling?
Is Dorian correct? Should we judge candidates by their religious faith? Isn’t that like profiling--which means, in effect, stereotyping?
Isn’t it possible for our elected representatives to rise above their religion and vote for what their constituents want? Couldn’t a Catholic congressman vote in favor of pro-choice if his constituents demanded that he do so?
And if we judge a candidate by his/her faith, isn’t that discrimination on the basis of religion? Do we really believe in “freedom of religion” or must a candidate hide his religion (or lack of religion) in order to get elected?
Decisions Based on Magic?
Should we care about the Mormon belief in magic underwear that allegedly protects them from harm or can we trust Mitt Romney, if elected, to provide, for our troops in Afghanistan, the necessary armor? Can a president’s decisions be based on things as ridiculously faith-based as his skivvies?
Come on Tuesday, June 19, to hear the impassioned Dorian argue the case for judging candidates by their religion.
Be prepared, if you feel our democratic values are threatened by this viewpoint, to do some fancy verbal dueling. Mormons, wear your magic underwear!
Cost: FREE. But eat up and drink up to compensate Stone Creek for putting up with our hollering for free. The reasonably priced knoshies are better than in most bars. We are fond of the Baked Brie served with crackers.