Re: Religious freedom, what is your opinion?
We generally believe that governments have the power to condone the good and punish the bad, and it can wield the sword (use violence) to do so. Now this presupposes that the government actually know the difference between good and bad doesn't it? In the US and most developed countries the notion of good and bad has developed over centuries based on Judeo-Christian values.
Islamic notions of good and bad are very different and completely incompatible with these developed countries. Let me give some examples:
- In Sharia Law, homosexuals can be stoned or imprisoned, as happens in some Muslim countries.
- In Iraq, teenagers are being stoned to death because of their hairstyle, which is incompatible with Sharia Law. This is being done with the countenance of the government.
- In Saudi Arabia, women are not allowed to drive because according to Sharia Law, women should rarely venture outside of the home.
- In the 3rd video Santorum points out that Sharia Law is not just a religious law but is the law of the land. In an Islamic country run with Sharia Law, the equivalent of a Supreme Court is actually a body of religious clerics. Criticism of Sharia Law is criticism of Islam and considered apostasy. In mainstream Islam, apostasy is punishable by imprisonment or death. In a country run by sharia Law, criticism of the law is criticism of Islam. Something like the first amendment guaranteeing freedom of speech would not extend to criticism of the government.
Santorum says there are both secular laws and concepts of religious morality that are separate. They really aren't. The secular laws are based on centuries of religious values. Other religions may have value systems that are completely opposed to our value system. What we think is right and wrong is not at all self-evident to everyone else.
I think Santorum is not questioning religious freedom so much as he is asking: do we really want Sharia Law to take hold in America? Where do we draw the line?
To preserve the government we must also preserve morals. Morality rests on religion; if you destroy the foundation, the superstructure must fall. When the public mind becomes vitiated and corrupt, laws are a nullity and constitutions are waste paper. Daniel Webster, 4th of July, 1800, Oration at Hanover, N.H.