I have lived in Massachusetts. I have worked in Massachusetts. The result of the election for Ted Kennedy’s Senate seat is not a surprise to me. Massachusetts is a working class state with a separate, and articulate, intelligentsia. I think the ratio of those folks has been clearly demonstrated by the results of the recent Senate race.
That is not to say there are not intelligent, educated republicans. Though I might like to think otherwise, it isn’t just about stupid. It is about something else which I can’t understand. At some place in the lives of people who are personally compassionate and inquiring a decision is made to not use those traits in making political choices. I blame Christianity, the Catholic Church specifically, since that religion dominates in Massachusetts.
Dogma requires unquestioning acceptance of rules which, in the case of the Abrahamic religions, go counter to a person’s natural instincts. The link between religious zealots and right wing politics is undeniable. My assumption is this; once a person has been conditioned to accept something blindly - original sin for example - it is only another step to shift that capacity to supporting baseless political positions. Christianity is the perfect training ground for accepting rhetoric without facts.
I realize I am speaking counter to 76% of the people in this country. That is the percentage of people who admit to being Christians in this country. But something is making us do things as a country that most of us don’t like. I think investigating and mitigating any causes of our war-mongering, violent, fearful, sexually repressed culture might be helpful.
©angela magara 2010