Jeff Sessions Criticized for same Christian Beliefs as Ronald Reagan

I do believe that we are a nation that, without God, there is no truth, and it’s all about power, ideology, advancement, agenda, not doing the public service.

The quote above by President-elect Donald Trump’s Attorney General nominee Jeff Sessions is a statement of the obvious to millions of Christians, yet is being touted as proof Sessions is unqualified for government service.

In a widely distributed piece at The Daily Beast, author Jay Michaelson cites the above under the headline “Jeff Sessions Said ‘Secularists’ Are Unfit for Government,” and questioned Sessions’ fitness for the office:

[Sessions’] comments raise questions as to which set of “truths,” religious or secular, would motivate his Justice Department’s decisions on which laws to prosecute, which liberties to protect, and which interpretations of legal and constitutional texts to adopt.

That’s moronic for two reasons.

The first is the obvious “truth” that there is only one “set of truths.”

The second is the unnecessary hypothetical. Jeff Sessions has a fairly long public service career that should be able to confirm or deny Michaelson’s insinuations. That he cites not a single act by Jeff Sessions that legitimately raises questions about Sessions’ legal qualifications indicates Michaelson has issues with Sessions’ beliefs, not anything he has done or may reasonably do.

Michaelson’s proposition that Jeff Sessions is unfit for the office of Attorney General because of his religious beliefs is little more than his version of a “religious test” for public office. Naturally, he’s entitled to his prejudice, but were the government to act the same way, it would violate the US Constitution.

It would also be terribly ironic, given that just such a “test” is precisely what Michael “Mikey” Weinstein is implying Sessions would do. Citing the Daily Beast piece, Weinstein said

MRFF will continue to fight for the constitutionally guaranteed freedom of religion and non-religion for our U.S. military service members — no matter the desperate attempt to intertwine politics with Dominionist Christian ideals.

How does Weinstein know Jeff Sessions holds “Dominionist Christian ideals”? He doesn’t. Mikey Weinstein made it up, a hypocritical move given that Weinstein has threatened legal action against people who dared called him an atheist.

The villification of Christians isn’t terribly new, though its popularity and the lack of opposition to it in the general media is. For example, President Ronald Reagan famously intertwined — and supported the integration of — faith and politics, saying, among other things

Without God, there is no virtue, because there’s no prompting of the conscience. Without God, we’re mired in the material, that flat world that tells us only what the senses perceive. Without God, there is a coarsening of the society. And without God, democracy will not and cannot long endure. If we ever forget that we’re one nation under God, then we will be a nation gone under.

Not only is that true, that’s also the same thing Jeff Sessions said, yet no one today questions Ronald Reagan’s qualification to serve as President of the United States because of beliefs he expressed even while President.

For the most part, the bigoted views of Jay Michaelson and Mikey Weinstein aren’t carrying the day. And the easiest way to oppose such religious intolerance is simple: More Christians need to answer the call to serve in government office, and more Christians need to live their faith boldly even within those offices.

Whatever you do, do all to the glory of God.
1 Corinthians 10:31