Progressives like to portray themselves as champions of tolerance and diversity, and a few of them truly are.
But for most progressives, diversity and tolerance are only acceptable when they involve things like sexual behavior, gender identity or skin color. Their “I’m okay, you’re okay” philosophy does not extend to the realm of ideas and opinions; in those areas, leftists demand conformity.
Atheist writer CJ Werleman is a typical progressive, as the title of his just-published book, “Atheists Can’t Be Republicans,” makes clear.
The nub of Werleman’s argument goes something like this: Individuals become atheists because they refuse to believe in things that can’t be measured, tested, or proven. Therefore, since Republicans’ entire political platform is based on myths and debunked theories, rational-thinkers simply cannot belong to the Grand Old Party.
Werleman explains his, ahem, logic in a recent Alternet article:
Atheists can’t be Republicans because the economic and social policies of the Republican Party have been proven abjectly false and dangerous. Much in the same way religion is false and dangerous. In other words, atheists who cling onto modern U.S. conservative ideology are hanging onto ideas that have either been proven mythical at worse or remain unproven at best. If atheists applied the same litmus test to their political ideology as they do to theology, then clearly an atheist cannot be a Republican.
The Grand Old Party (GOP) is not only a theocratic sponsor, it’s a party that has been proven wrong on just about everything in the past three decades or more: from evolution to climate change, trickle-down economics, that the Iraqis would greet us as liberators, that the Bush tax cuts would lead to jobs. It didn’t. It added $3 trillion to the debt.
They were wrong when they said the stimulus would trigger inflation, that austerity stimulates an economy in recession and that universal healthcare is worse than slavery, and they continue to prescribe debunked policies. That is when they aren’t carrying out a reenactment of the American Civil War in the chambers of the U.S. Congress i.e. obstruction, nullification, and disruption.
(Obviously, Werleman likes to paint with a broad brush, and has little use for a serious analysis of the issues he lists in rapid-fire style.)