Rebirth of Reason


Moral War on Religious Dogma Needed
by Jack Gardner

From historic Islamic militarism, to Christian crusades, to Protestant-Catholic clashes, to Jewish-Moslem wars, organized religious establishments and dogmas have generated collectivist hatreds and conflicts. From Ireland, to the Balkans, to the Middle East, to southern Asia, today's religions are in violent conflict and spawning world wide terrorist organizations. It is time to denounce anti-freedom dogmas as immoral.

The world doesn't need a hopeless "war on drugs" or "war on poverty." Simple free market capitalism, rather than government management, can alleviate the cause of those problems for any country. What the world needs is a "moral war on religious dogma" -- where that dogma makes crimes out of violations of mystic beliefs, rather than violations of individual rights (life, liberty, property).

Western Civilization must gain the moral backbone and self-confidence to claim ethical legitimacy in support of individualism, not simply in opposition to particular leaders, before it can successfully confront the irrationalism and injustice that produces criminal governments.

Anti-freedom religious doctrines, as anti-freedom socialist doctrines, can only be fought on their own terms, by denouncing them as evil. Such denunciation is the psychological support and morale boost most vitally needed by those suffering under oppression.

While silence in the face of argument does not always imply condonation, silence by international political leaders and pundits in today's global landscape amounts to sanction of cultural evils. Pretending that those who initiate violence from avowed religious motivations are not truly religious is a dishonest evasion. Substantial elements of Christian, Islamic, Jewish, and Hindu religions have advocated such violence in the name of their versions of the religions. Some governments today institute violations of individual rights in the name of religion. All cultures have such violations in their history.

Common sense and history show that the United States does not win friends, respect, nor peace by refusing to see the evil aspects of religions and subcultures at home or abroad; much less by policies of appeasement from fear of offending the irrational. Blind support of all multiculturalism and diversity is killing us.

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