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Topic: Does your religion influence your voting?

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Subject: Does your religion influence your voting?
Date Posted: 10/14/2007 7:34 PM ET
Member Since: 5/7/2006
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Just curious.

Date Posted: 10/14/2007 8:33 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2006
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Since I have no religion - no it doesn't.  But it do know people whose religion influences their voting.  And there are churches leaders who tell their congregation who they should vote for.

 

Date Posted: 10/14/2007 8:38 PM ET
Member Since: 9/16/2007
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Sure.  I know I have an obligation to vote for people who will stand up for the poor and less fortunate, who will support affordable housing and health insurance and educate all our children, who follow the commandment to honor the strangers (immigrants) among us, and who know that God isn't a rich white American male.  If a politician doesn't understand that a budget - be it national, state or city - is a moral document, and isn't willing to fight for justice and equality, they don't get my vote.

 

Date Posted: 10/14/2007 9:32 PM ET
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Last Edited on: 2/6/10 10:52 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/14/2007 9:45 PM ET
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Hmmm, guess there are two way to read the topic line.  I took it as "religious beliefs," in which case it's no different then your moral/ethical beliefs, whether they come from a religion or not.

On the other hand, there are the folks who let their Religion influence their vote, ie, voting for or against whoever their religious leaders tell them to. 

Big difference.

Date Posted: 10/14/2007 11:26 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2006
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My husband and I were just discussing this very thing: religious beliefs vs. moral beliefs.  We both find it sad that so many people seem to think that in order to do good things and be a good person that you have to be religious.

Date Posted: 10/15/2007 4:00 PM ET
Member Since: 5/23/2005
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My religion isn't affiliated with any "church", it's just mine, so of course no type of church leader could influence my voting.  Not that any at the church I go to would try.  That being said, of course my religion would affect how I vote.  It's part of my life and who I am, and to vote independantly of my beliefs would be silly.  

  

L. G. (L)
Date Posted: 10/15/2007 7:53 PM ET
Member Since: 9/5/2005
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No. 

The influence the candidate allows his or her religion to affect his or her poitics does, however.

I don't care what one's religious beliefs are - just keep religious law out of federal, state and local law.

 

 

Date Posted: 10/15/2007 9:58 PM ET
Member Since: 7/11/2007
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just keep religious law out of federal, state and local law.

 

That's kind of hard to do seeing that the American Constitution borrowed heavily from the Ten Commandments and other parts of the Bible.

But, my moral beliefs are largely due to my religious experiences in Christ.  I try my best to vote for people who I think lean more towards stances that line up with God's word. 

Date Posted: 10/15/2007 10:49 PM ET
Member Since: 5/7/2006
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I guess I hadn't noticed that before Chris. (Amercian Consitution and Ten Commandments)

L. G. (L)
Date Posted: 10/15/2007 11:47 PM ET
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It's not hard to do at all.  You (generic) recognize that not all Americans share the same religious beliefs, that the separation of church and state is essential to the survival of the country, and you respect that when making laws.  Plenty of politicians understand this concept and practice it.

 

 

Date Posted: 10/16/2007 2:10 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2006
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That's kind of hard to do seeing that the American Constitution borrowed heavily from the Ten Commandments and other parts of the Bible.

I wasn't aware that the American Constitution borrowed from the Ten Commandments and the Bible.  Which parts specifically?

 

L. G. (L)
Date Posted: 10/16/2007 6:25 PM ET
Member Since: 9/5/2005
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Considering it's probably one of the most irreligious documents in US Federal law, I have a hard time swallowing that premise as well.

http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/data/constitution/articles.html

 

Date Posted: 10/16/2007 8:39 PM ET
Member Since: 4/20/2006
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I will not vote for a leader who feels that the country's decisions should be based on religious grounds.  I think they should be based on ethics, morality, and science, amongst other things.  Religion and politics should not be mixed, and we should not be forced to endure religious practices and teachings or use our tax dollars to sponsor them.  However, I would not vote against someone based on their religion, or lack thereof. 

Date Posted: 10/17/2007 1:46 AM ET
Member Since: 5/23/2005
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I think they should be based on ethics, morality, and science, amongst other things.

But who decides which ethics and morals to go by?  Some people think abortion (for example) is morally and ethically wrong, and some don't.  Now, I'm not trying to get into a debate about abortion or anything (I do not want to go there), but I think ethics and morality are tied up with beliefs.  Whether or not a person calls themselves religious or not.  I don't think religion necessarily has to be tied-to church going.  To me, religion equates a set of beliefs, and in that case, even atheism is a religion. 

I don't mean to get the conversation off track, but I think a lot of times people hear religion and immediately think church-goers.  To me religion=your personal set of beliefs (and church going may be part of that set of beliefs or not), in which case I would think most people vote on a candidate based on their (the voter, not the candidates) religion.

I'm not saying the original poster had this in mind, or even that's what everyone should think of when they think religion, but I'm just explaining the thought process for my answer to the original question. :)



Last Edited on: 10/17/07 1:47 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
L. G. (L)
Date Posted: 10/17/2007 3:31 AM ET
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The religion line is crossed when "God" is mentioned as an impetus.  Keep God out of it, and you (egenric) can use whatever premise you want to make decisions or to take a stand.

 

Date Posted: 10/17/2007 9:20 AM ET
Member Since: 4/20/2006
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For something like abortion, you look first at science and medical ethics.  Religion comes into play when people claim that the embryo has a soul.  Is that scientific?  If you take the religious aspects out of the abortion debate, it's a lot easier to look at it objectively.  I simplified my argument before, but abortion is a good example of how difficult it is to come up with a set of standards in which to go by.  Certainly religion has played a major influence on our society and our morals, which is not completely a bad thing, but I doubt that in the absense of religion that we would all be killing each other and running rampant with crime.  The countries with the strictest religious laws happen to have the worst crime, wars, and breed terrorism.   There is a lot to be explored when you think of religion and it's effects on society and politics.

As far as atheism goes, atheism is not a religion, it's actually a lack of belief in any god or deity.  I consider myself a non-believer, but it's only because of religion that I have to define myself at all.  I don't have a set of beliefs that has a definition, I just don't believe in any sort of religion.  I would rather not be defined as anything other than a normal human being with no religious affiliation.   To say that atheism is a belief is kind of like saying if you don't have a membership in a club, you must be a member of a no-name club.  Who ever said that you had to belong to something?  I think our mentality in this country is we must have some set of beliefs that we abide by that fits some profile.  I just believe I was born, I want to live a good productive life in which I help other people, and then one day I'm going to die.  The end.

That's my take on it anyway.

Date Posted: 10/17/2007 11:57 AM ET
Member Since: 5/23/2005
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I really wasn't trying to start an argument. :)  I think you missed the point of what I was saying, though.  I wasn't saying that everyone had to be put in a group.  I was saying that for me religion is defined as a personal set of beliefs.  Everyone has beliefs.  Whether it's just a belief that people are inherently good,  or a belief that even if there were no organized religion that the world wouldn't fall apart.  Do you see what I'm saying?  I'm not trying to define religion for everyone, just saying what it is to me, especially in regards to the answer of this question.  I do understand that most other people probably define religion as a more organized thing, which would put people into groups, and I think it can be defined that way as well.  

Like I said, I wasn't trying to be argumentative.  I guess my main point was, there could be many different answers to the original question posted, depending upon how you define religion, or if the question is talking about your religion or the candidates religion, etc.   

Date Posted: 10/17/2007 1:58 PM ET
Member Since: 5/7/2006
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Maybe I need to make a clarification. I was just curious because I heard some extremely  hard core christians (everything by the book-no other interpretations of the bible- KJV) tell me that they hope Guiliani (may be not spelled correctly) does not get the republican nomination  because of his relaxed views on abortion.  To me, there are so many different topics to look at that I think its hard to base your vote in any party based on only these type subjects.

Date Posted: 10/17/2007 2:12 PM ET
Member Since: 4/20/2006
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It's okay Brenda, I didn't take offense at any of your comments (and I hope you didn't take any at my reply).  If so, I apologize!  It's a very deep, philisophical topic that could go on forever!

Shannon, I often question the way people vote, especially when it's just for one reason.  I suppose if (abortion, gay marriage, the war, etc.) were your #1 concern, I could understand it better, but if the rest of what the candidate is doing makes no sense to you.........  It annoyed me to no end that people saw Joe Lieberman as "the Jewish guy", and now they see Mitt Romney as "the Mormon guy".  I suppose I am naive in thinking this should not be a big deal to Americans, but it is a freaking big deal when you read the polls.  And when you consider that the President does not hold all the power....we do have a Congress, a Supreme Court, a House of Representatives.....well, it just makes me wonder.  I know people who have voted for very random reasons, including because someone in their family called them up and told them to.  I think if you don't even know what or who you are voting for, you should stay home.

Date Posted: 10/17/2007 3:06 PM ET
Member Since: 5/23/2005
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Nope, definitely didn't take offense at your reply, Amanda!  I'm pretty hard to offend--I usually assume that people aren't meaning to give offense, so I don't ever take it that way.  :)

Date Posted: 10/18/2007 2:11 PM ET
Member Since: 9/24/2007
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I really believe that the candidate that should be elected is someone who will stand for what Jesus stands for.  And to find out what he stands for one must READ the Bible.  God is the one who ultimately will put some one in power to do his purposes.  But my responsibility is to look into the character of the candidate.  Does that mean a candidate will be perfect?  No, because the only one who is perfect is Jesus.  But he or she must exhibit or rather live out a life devoted to Christ and his purposes.. Love your enemies, do good to those who persecute you.  Speak up for those who can't speak for themselves, do not shed innocent blood.  Feed those who are hungry, clothe the poor, give shelter to the homeless.  These are just a few of the things Jesus says we as his followers must do.  Jesus said the greatest commandment was to love the Lord God with all our hearts, souls, mind and strength.  The 2nd greatest was to love others.  In these 2 we would be fulfilling all the commandments.  Yes, my faith should and does influence who I will vote for.  I hope yours does too.

Date Posted: 10/18/2007 4:38 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2006
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Not everyone in this country believes in Jesus.  And I believe it was Jesus who said "Render unto Caesar what is Caesar's and render unto God what is his" or something along those lines.  That seems to me that Jesus wanted to keep religion and govt. separate.  And if the government is run according to what is found in a holy book - I believe that is called a Theocracy.

 

Date Posted: 10/18/2007 9:47 PM ET
Member Since: 9/11/2007
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Yes my religion effects who I vote for.  My religion is a part of my life. It is just as deep as many conservative christians. 

 

I have to stand up for the deeply religious christians on this.  People portray that pastors tell their people who to vote for.  I'm sorry I doubt that is the case.  They may stand up on the pulpit and talk about why one or another candidate is better, but they do not tell who to vote for.  I believe such a statement is disengenous and creates an image of a dumb fundy christian and I feel that is disrespectful. 

 

Being a republic doesn't mean you keep you religion out of everything.  That is a sterilised community and I think we as Americans would be lessoned by it.  No not everyone believes in Jesus, so what, then don't go to his church.  Not everyone likes Santa Clause either.  There is no doctrine that I'm aware of, even in the more deeply religious parts of America's past that said we had to believe in Jesus.  Our Country didn't go to heck in a handbasket when leaders were more open on their religion and I doubt it will today either.  This rediculous war of seperation of church and state(which has been taken to the extreme) is in my opinion rather disturbing.  It is not reality to expect leaders to not have religion and faith effect their thinking.  Having a leader actually acknowledge his or her faith does not make this country a theocracy either. 

 

IN many cases in the christian community, being a christian does mean trying to live up to Jesus teaching and to be a moral person.  Does that mean that everyone who professes to be christian is a moral person, no.  It also doens't mean that Atheists per se will be ammoral.  However, looking at the teachings, there is a lot of good in them, and I fail to see why they are so down graded. 

 

We have more important things to focus on.  It's high time we as a country get our collective heads out of our collective arses and realise that UNITED WE STAND AND DIVIDE WE FALL.  This means we need to show some respect to each other and deal with the fact were not ALL GOING TO GET OUR WAY ALL THE TIME.  ANd that people with differing viewpoints, even if they are fundy christians, are not teh ebil. 

 

Sincerely

A conservative Pagan, with many close Christian(fundy for some) friends.

Date Posted: 10/19/2007 3:24 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2006
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With all due respect - my mother's pastor told his congregation who to vote for.   So there is one case that I'm personally aware of.    And it is reality to expect leaders who have religion to keep it out of their jobs in the government.    I don't care if a leader believes in Jesus, Mohammed, Buddha, Apollo, Vishnu, or any one of a number of gods, or believes in several gods.   Keep your personal religion out of government.  

 

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