Further adventures in inclusivity

The logic of antidiscrimination law continues to work itself out: scholar proposes compulsory “tolerance” within churches. The argument’s no joke if you’ve thought through the implications of existing legal principles regarding equality of opportunity and access and the separation of religion from public discourse. Whatever the activity, you have to rearrange it to make things equal for members of the classes protected by equal opportunity laws, and it’s hard to see how religious considerations—which have no public standing—can overrule that basic principle of contemporary liberal justice.

7 thoughts on “Further adventures in inclusivity”

  1. Sadly, this lawyer’s project
    Sadly, this lawyer’s project has lots of allies within the theological establishment itself. Whereas in the early Christian church most theologians were bishops, and in the middle ages most were monks, now most theologians are university professors, usually at universities where “tolerance” and “non-discrimination” are enshrined into law.

  2. Where this is going
    It seems clear that we are heading to a situation in which we’ll have two different kinds of churches. Caesar’s churches will be the ones that are acceptable to liberal modernists and which offer no challenge to the liberal agenda and status quo. They will be small in numbers but large in power, rather like ECUSA today.

    Then there will be the churches who attempt to witness to the world and live out orthodoxy as they understand it. Membership in these churches will be a social and professional liability, but they will be the only place where the Water of Life is available.

    • Slam-Dunk, Mr. Williamson
      Indeed. We are headed towards an official state church in the US, despite what the first amendment states so clearly (that’s never stopped liberals before, why should it now?). The state churches already exist in the EU – funded with taxpayer revenue.

      The left is starting to realize that religion is yet another institution that can be easily grafted onto Gramsci’s model. Certain leftists have realized this for decades, and have accordingly taken over control of the “mainline” Protestant churches. The fight is well under way within Catholicism. Before too long, if one doesn’t attend the approved church – one like Barack Obama’s – one will be excluded from all sorts of jobs, government positions. etc. Barry Lynn and Abe Foxman will undoubtedly explain how this really isn’t the state endorsed reigion that they have been ostensibly fighting all these years (much in the same way the feminists told us that Lord Hee-Haw of Arkansas really wasn’t guilty of sexual harassment) – at least in the short term.

  3. John Rawls’s influence
    John Rawls’s Political Liberalism proposes the same thing as Sunder, except it is a hidden message. But look at a few passages:

    The principles of any reasonable political conception must impose restrictions on permissible comprehensive views and the basic institutions those principles require inevitably encourage some ways of life and discourage others. . . . The priority of right gives the principle of justice a strict precedence in citizens deliberation and limits their freedom to advance certain ways of life. (PL, 195, 209)

    If anyone’s interested in pusuing this further, I have written an article on the transforming effects (that have already happened) of Rawls’s theory on Catholicism in America. Just e-mail me and I’ll send it to you.


      • Who wrote the book linked in Mr. Kozinski’s addendum?
        Forgive me if it’s mentioned somewhere; I didn’t see where the author was named.

        • Name of Author
          His name is Tom Bridges. His website is http://www.civsoc.com, and there’s a good number of essays on it, in addition to his on-line book. His main idea is that all religions must dig deep into their own doctrinal resources to discover normative grounds for a “civic identity” with which to participate in “civic culture.”

          Oh yes, one can keep his precious religious identity, but only insofar as it permits this alternative identity with which to relate to citizens outside of one’s religious precinct. And it is this identity which is all important and publicly and politically authoritative. Religious identity is only valuable to society insofar as it can ground and nurture this civic identity.

          What makes this unique is Bridges argument that without what he calls “totalizing narratives” (religions), civic identity is impossible; it iself has no independent foundation. It is parasitical, he admits; yet, this parasitical identity grounded in no metaphysical, anthropological, or theological principle or narrative is the highpoint of political order and cultural development!

          The identity of the free and equal citizen liberated from his totalizing doctrine must coexist in the same person with the identity of a hierarchically ordered religious believer obedient and submissive to a totalizing and all-encompassing conception of the good. This is the summa bonum of both religion and political society for Bridges.

          Translation: It is necessary to keep one foot out of the door of Christ’s kingdom for the sake of the greater good of human autonomy. To me, this is the religion of the antichrist. You get to be an apostate and an orthodox believer at the same time. You get the Satanic pleasure of smirking at your “convictions”, knowing that at any moment you can repair to your liberated “civic identity”; yet, you can also feel secure that you are a true believer, because when dealing with others and yourself within your religious community, you are!

          Another ominous quote from Rawls’ Political Liberalism:

          There is no reason to deny freedom to the intolerant . . . [since] the liberties of the intolerant may persuade them to a belief in freedom. This persuasion works on the psychological principle that those whose liberties are protected by and who benefit from a just constitution will, other things equal, acquire an allegiance to it over a period of time.



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