Opinion: Mixing religion and politics leads to a toxic brew

Franklin Graham, heir to father Billy’s evangelical empire, wants Christians to run for political office, to “get God’s voice back into politics.”

What Mr. Graham did not address is which voice.

Does he want the God of the Old Testament, who is vengeful and full of barbaric rules for punishment?

Does he want the God of the New Testament, who is more about love and inclusion?

Does he want the God who rails against worldly authority?  Or does he want the God who says to render unto Caesar what is Caesar’s? What about the God who orders that slaves must obey their masters?

People like Mr. Graham, who may have good intentions, ignore the time worn adage that the path to hell is paved with good intentions.

Combining religion with politics is a toxic brew that brings harm and chaos to believers and non-believers alike.  Has Mr. Graham forgotten about the Crusades?  Has he not heard that getting God’s voice back into politics is a major mantra for ISIS?

Getting God’s voice or voices back into politics is a sure recipe for disaster.  That’s why our First Amendment Freedom of Religion also includes freedom from religion.

When people like Franklin Graham tell us they want God’s voice back into politics, what they really mean is that they want their particular and limited understanding of God to be forced onto everyone else by the government.

That is not a prescription for freedom and liberty.  That is a prescription for theocracy and tyranny.

If Franklin Graham does not understand that, the adults in the room should, especially those adults who study history and carefully analyze current affairs.  Mixing religion with politics is a toxic brew.  At the end of the day, it is also profoundly un-American. 

Mr. Greco is a Scottsdale resident.

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