Religion in politics is a touchy topic in the United States, but Americans have a legitimate right to know how a candidate’s religious views may affect public policy – on issues like population growth, anti-gay discrimination and Christian supremacy – says Rev. Howard Bess.
From the Archive: Over the centuries as Christianity bent to the interests of the rich and powerful, the story of Jesus’s fateful week in Jerusalem was reshaped to minimize perhaps its central event, his overturning of the money tables at the temple, a challenge to the merging of religious and political power, says Rev. Howard Bess.
For years there has been a debate over not only who Jesus was but whether he existed. Historians remain split on many Jesus-related questions – and the issue is fraught with religious overtones – but Rev. Howard Bess believes enough is now known about Jesus to put him in context for his (and our) times.
Some of our special stories in February explained how the U.S. public is getting misled to war on Iran, how key Republicans are waging war on women and the environment, how the Right has distorted the Founders and the U.S. Constitution, and more.
From the Archive: Ex-Sen. Rick Santorum’s accusation that President Obama follows a “phony theology,” one not “based on the Bible,” revives the right-wing notion that the United States must be a “Christian nation” and that “separation of church and state” is a “myth,” a topic that Baptist Minister Howard Bess addressed in 2011.
Some of our special stories in January, focusing on Election 2012, a possible new war with Iran, the economic degradation of America’s middle class, missteps on climate change and more.
The dispute over requiring church-run hospitals and schools to cover birth control for female employees has stirred up longstanding confusion over what the First Amendment does and doesn’t do. Some on the Christian Right insist that it means religious doctrine can trump secular law, but Rev. Howard Bess says that’s a misunderstanding.
Some of our special stories in December reflected on the end of a long war in Iraq and the potential for a new one in Iran; reported on developments in the Republican presidential race; warned of new encroachments on civil liberties; and notedthe truth-telling courage of Bradley Manning; and more.
Many Christian fundamentalists impose a literal interpretation on Biblical myth, thus missing the larger moral messages and rejecting later scientific discoveries, a mistake most apparent in their reading of the Genesis creation story, as the Rev. Howard Bess explains.
Republicans are fond of throwing the charge “class warfare” at anyone who seeks to reverse the rapid division of modern society into haves and have-nots. But the ancient story of Cain and Abel is a cautionary tale about the violence that class stratification inevitably brings, writes Rev. Howard Bess.