Republican Party

GOP Platform Committee Embraces A Purely Puritanical Agenda

* The following is an opinion column by R Muse *

Republicans have, over eight long years, made no secret their only goal in governing is, besides abolishing the government, “taking their country back.” The “country” they yearn for never existed, at least not as the United States of America, but they want to “go back” far from 21st Century America. They likely mean they want to take the country back to the Dark Ages, or more recently, the pre-colonial Puritanical age. If that is the case, then the current conservatives developing the official Party platform are on pace to make the official GOP goal taking nation back to pre-Declaration of Independence and U.S. Constitution era.

So far this week Republicans have worked religiously to adopt a staunchly neo-conservative theocratic platform that embraces a strict, Puritanical view of the family and children, bans military women from serving in combat, defines coal as America’s preferred clean energy source, replaces the Constitution with the Christian bible, and in keeping with the Puritanical agenda, declares pornography a “public health crisis.”

First, declaring “porn” as a public health crisis is really cover for the reality that porn is “a serious problem and health crisis” among the Christian community, particularly the Christian male, porn addicted, community. The evangelicals running the platform writing committee claim “Pornography, with its harmful effects, especially on children, has become a public health crisis that is destroying the life of millions. We encourage states to continue to fight this public menace and pledge our commitment to children’s safety and well-being.”

It sounds as if Republicans and evangelicals have a serious “traditional Christian family” parenting problem if they can’t keep their young religious perverts off of porn sites they’re not allowed to legally visit. Their horrid, traditional family parenting, or devastating porn addiction epidemic, doesn’t mean they can start down a path to abolish free speech, or free Internet porn, for the rest of the population because they have porn-addiction issues. And, it belies their contention that they hate government intruding into Americans’ private lives, unless it comports with the Puritanical leanings of the religious right: then government tyranny and intrusions for religion’s sake is admirably godly.

Despite a year-old SCOTUS ruling that same-sex marriage is a constitutional right, and the party’s first openly-gay platform committee member participating in the debate, the RNC rejected an amendment to have a “thoughtful conversation” on same-sex marriage. The amendment didn’t demand a full embrace of marriage equality, that would be too much to ask; just that the Party “have a thoughtful conversation” on marriage equality.

The openly gay delegate from Washington D.C., Rachel Hoff, said during the debate and while fighting back tears, “We are your daughters, we are your friends. All I ask today is that you include me and people like me.” About 30 delegates agreed with Ms. Hoff, but these were religious Republicans and most of the committee agreed with religious malcontent Tony Perkins not to remove traditional marriage language from the platform; social conservatives will not embrace, much less talk about marriage equality. It really leads one to wonder why an openly gay person would be a Republican delegate, much less ever vote for one of the hate-mongers.

Never straying too far afield from the conversation on the imagined threats of same-sex marriage, religious Republicans inserted language claiming that children raised by “traditional” families are superior to those raised by same-sex couples. The official wording reads,

Children raised in a traditional two-parent household tend to be physically and emotionally healthier, less likely to use drugs and alcohol, engage in crime, or become pregnant outside of marriage.”

Except that is patently false and yet another typical religious Republican lie. According to myriad studies, and specifically a very recent UCLA study:

There is no difference in the outcomes for same-sex couple’s children, including their general health, emotional difficulties, coping behavior, or learning behavior.”

It doesn’t matter what real scientific studies say, religious Republicans had their archaic bibles and moved swiftly to work out the scriptural language “specifying that children have a natural right to be raised in an intact biological family” as defined by bible-thumping Republicans.

The inclusion of the Family Research Council’s president, Tony Perkins, as a driving force in writing the platform lead the committee to include a demand that lawmakers use Christianity as their guide when legislating; specifically stipulating “that man-made law must be consistent with God-given, natural rights.” In keeping with “the bible is the Constitution and god runs America theme,” the religious Republican platform wantsteaching of the Bible in public schools; because a good understanding of its contents is indispensable for the development of an educated citizenry.”

Honest to dog, they actually put that in the official Party platform delegates will vote on next week despite the idea is inherently unconstitutional. It, the bible, is also not an historical text with any relevance to 21st Century human beings or how America as a nation operates or came into being. If believing the bible is “indispensable” for “an educated citizenry” doesn’t clarify precisely why religious Republicans are inherently stupid, monumentally superstitious, and reject empirical data, science and reality, nothing will.

As the New York Times writer Jeremy W. Peters opined, “What Republicans will probably end up with when they formally vote next week to ratify the platform is a text that can seem almost Victorian in its moralizing and deeply critical of how the modern American family has evolved.”

Sadly, it appears that the entire drafting and amending of the official Party platform was significantly influenced by religious conservatives, and it is yet unknown what atrocities they have in store for American women. Still, the religious were successful, particularly with FRC’s Perkins in charge, in “almost all of their efforts” to add language that pushed the Republican Party even more toward the Puritanical right. Puritans, remember, demanded and sought to enforce individual and public conformity to their interpretation of the Christian bible, especially the so-called Old Testament. That conformity meant that the Puritan’s idea of moral purity was pursued down to the tiniest detail, as well as demanded ecclesiastical purity to the highest level, from believers and non-believers alike.

Now it is glaringly apparent that like the Puritans, the Republican Party officially believes that Americans exist solely for the glory of god and that the population’s only concern in life is to do god’s will as defined by religious Republicans. If any American still believes Republicans will not enact an evangelical version of Sharia Law if they gain control of the government, they are indeed blind, deaf and dumb. They also have no idea of what life in Puritanical America entailed, but they may get a chance to live it firsthand if the GOP prevails in November.


Audio engineer and instructor for SAE. Writes op/ed commentary supporting Secular Humanist causes, and exposing suppression of women, the poor, and minorities. An advocate for freedom of religion and particularly, freedom of NO religion. Born in the South, raised in the Mid-West and California for a well-rounded view of America; it doesn't look good. Former minister, lifelong musician, Mahayana Zen-Buddhist.

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