My husband and I are current watching The Ides of March. That I am staying awake during a movie that stars the bovine George Clooney, the insipid Ryan Gosling, the obscenity-spouting Phillip Seymour Hoffman, and the “I don’t get why he’s famous” Paul Giamatti and that, forty minutes into the movie, still has no discernible plot, testifies to my ovarian fortitude in the face of great mental suffering. (I toyed with the idea of saying “testicular fortitude,” but decided it just didn’t work.)
Actually, there is a reason I’m struggling through this so-far pointless, plotless movie about a Democratic primary in Ohio. I’m quote-gathering. The very first lines in the movie piqued my interest. Ryan Gosling speaks them, presumably while standing in for his employer and candidate, George Clooney, who later repeats those same words during a debate in which the opposing primary candidate challenges his religious beliefs:
I’m not a Christian. I’m not an Atheist. I’m not Jewish. I’m not Muslim. My religion, what I believe in is called the Constitution of United States of America.
If the above quotation sounds familiar to you, it should. Although it’s not identical to a speech in the movie The Contender, it’s certainly similar in content. In that movie, a Democrat Vice Presidential candidate who has been grossly slimed and maligned by evil Republicans, defends herself thusly:
And, Mr. Chairman, I stand for the separation of Church and State, and the reason that I stand for that is the same reason that I believe our forefathers did. It is not there to protect religion from the grasp of government but to protect our government from the grasp of religious fanaticism. Now, I may be an atheist, but that does not mean I do not go to church. I do go to church. The church I go to is the one that emancipated the slaves, that gave women the right to vote, that gave us every freedom that we hold dear. My church is this very Chapel of Democracy that we sit in together, and I do not need God to tell me what are my moral absolutes. I need my heart, my brain, and this church.
It sounds as if both those movies are saying “My religion is a Constitutional democracy,” but that’s not true. If that were true, the Progressives writing, producing, and acting in these movies would be strict constructionists and, quite possibly, libertarians.
Instead, those quotations boil down to “My religion is government.” Progressives’ faith in this religion is unswerving, and their doctrinal attitude as rigid as any that Torquemada supported. The Church of Progressive Government requires unswerving fealty to abortion, welfare, open borders, redistribution of wealth (except for that wealth held by those Progressives who have already obtained great wealth and power), racial categorizations every bit as rigid as those practiced in the Old South, and continuous American obeisance to the other nations of the world. Deviate from this doctrine and, even if you’re not stretched on a rack a la the Spanish Inquisition, as Corey Booker just learned, you are dead.
Religion is a harsh taskmaster, especially for those foolish enough to cross the true believers.