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Why would being brainwashed into supporting the war in Iraq be bad?

Just kidding ...

Hmmmm... So what do you think the effect will be on Bloggernacle traffic if Romney keeps gaining steam? What are the odds all of us suddenly getting a ton more traffic and scrutiny through Mormon blogging suddenly hitting the national radar? It's a slightly disconcerting thought, actually...

The Article VI blog made an interesting point on this. They asked if it's really the religious predjudices of the Evangelicals we need to worry about here. They suggested that, by and large, the Evangelicals aren't going to make even half as big a deal about this as the media is saying they will.

They said that the REAL predjudice and hate-speech against Romney will come, not from the Right, but from the Left. From anti-religions leftists who lump in Mormonism with female repression and polygamy, not to mention all those conservative views on social politics (which would simply tend to antagonize good leftists).

They're suggestion is that it's not Evangelical counter-cultists Romney needs to be worrying about. It's John Krakauer-style left wingers.

We'll see.

Thanks for the note, Seth. Article VI has been putting up a lot of good commentary on "the Mormon Question" lately, including this post that got linked by Hugh Hewitt. Their post for today (8-22) links to the same Get Religion post that I do in this post ... although I provide a lot more commentary.

why should the religious label be such a big deal?

It is if you're mainstream, and your proponent is not. Although I cannot explain it very well in a reply post, to many mainline Christians, it does matter. For them, political decisions often derive from one's "orthodoxy," in which case we Mormons are not.

Yes, unfortunately you may be right about attacks from the Left. The Left often calls itself the party of inclusion, and often excludes for things like religious beleif. I would have to say however that the Left has embraced Harry Reid pretty close and they don't seem to have a problem with his religious convictions.

It will be something interesting to watch though. I am not familiar enough with Romney's policies to make a decision on way or another yet.

Dave asks: Why is the religious label such a negative for Evangelicals despite the obvious fact that his Mormon religion is a big positive for Romney himself and that it therefore contributes to what most people seem to like about him?

It's the same near-sightedness that caused the same Evangelicals to vote for George Bush in 2000 and 2004, besides many obvious shortcomings ... the same near-sightedness that caused Evangelicals to freak out over Lewinsky-Gate, despite Clinton's many accomplishments ... the same near-sightedness Mormons show when they encounter Church History written by non-Apologetic Mormons ...

We naturally embrace sameness and fear otherness. However, this natural inclination is exacerbated ten-fold when we are taught by our leaders to fear specific kinds of otherness. Hence, Evangelicals' unreasonable fear of a Mormon like Mitt Romney or Evolution being taught in classrooms, and Mormons' unreasonable fear of non-correlated Church History or Same Sex Marriage. We see such myopia/unreasonableness plain as day in other groups, but fail to recognize it in ourselves.

Matt, excellent insights!

DMI,

you're making a lot of assumptions about evangelicals here. You might be right, but I'm waiting for more evidence before I rip into them.

So how is it that folks can admire Romney's integrity and morality but not make the connection linking his character to his also being a practicing Mormon? Why is the religious label such a negative for Evangelicals despite the obvious fact that his Mormon religion is a big positive for Romney himself and that it therefore contributes to what most people seem to like about him? If he passes the character test with flying colors (and Evangelicals seem to feel that way), why should the religious label be such a big deal?

How dare you! There are plenty of people out there that are not religious or out of the religious mainstream that are more moral than so-called religious people. Religion does NOT make you moral that comes from many areas! Look at Mark Hoffman, he was a Mormon, was HE moral? I think not!

Me, I think you're missing the point. Painting all believers as "so-called religious people" suggests you think all religious people are hypocrites, which is at least as flawed an approach as the Evangelicals who find it so convenient to suggest that Romney's character, values, and political ability (all of which they like) are somehow poisoned by his religious beliefs. My whole point is that people who are "out of the religious mainstream," as you put it, deserve to be evaluated on their merits and their record, not on religious labels.

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