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The New York Times > Washington > Movement in the Pews Tries to Jolt Ohio:
The conservatives point to the governor's race as an example of what they consider wrong with the state Republican Party. Of the three Republican candidates, only Mr. Blackwell has the solid support of religious conservatives. Jim Petro, the attorney general, opposed the same-sex marriage amendment on the grounds that it would invite litigation against companies that provided domestic partner benefits. Betty D. Montgomery, the state auditor, has supported some abortion rights.
If you balk at relegating gays to second class citizens, or you think it might be a really bad idea to ban abortions, then the religious conservatives have zero tolerance for you. Onward Christian Nation, and anyone that stands in their way must be pushed aside.
"'We're very confused that you have a Republican Party platform, and yet people running for higher office pay no attention to it,' said Phil Burress, the leader of the Issue 1 campaign, who is also helping organize the Restoration Project. 'Why don't they just become Democrats?' he asked."
"They understand what happens when 100,000 people committed to our views are on the same page," Pastor Johnson said. "In their little political gatherings and cocktail meetings at the country club, they can't build that kind of loyalty. They can't spend millions to buy what our people will give for free."
In other words, the fat cats that think they own the Republican party better watch out. The uneasy alliance between the corporate cronies and the religious whackjobs might be coming to an ugly end. We shall see which is mightier, the cross or the dollar. I think Pastor Johnson is in for a bit of a surprise when he discovers that the real religion in America has nothing to do with Jesus. The rich are happy to get the votes that religiously motivated people can bring them, but they don't share their values. They feel insulated from the culture war with their money but they have gay friends and they like the culture that liberalism has created. What good is it being rich if you can't enjoy it?
The wealthy also recognize that in the long run, if the religious conservatives get what they want, it will be horrible for business. Its one thing to bitch and moan about the evils of Hollywood, but its another to shut it down. Hollywood makes a lot of people very rich. Porn, violent video games and crass sitcoms provide a steady source of revenue for some of America's most respected corporations.
Wasn't it Fox that brought us "Who Wants to Marry a Millionaire?" and "My Big Fat Obnoxious Fiance"?
Consumer culture can be pretty ugly, with all its appeal to our base fears and desires. But I seriously doubt that we'd be willing to give that up to put the American Taliban in charge.
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