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Caveman commentary

March 23, 2005

I’ve been a fan of BC by Johnny Hart ever since I learned to read so I hope he won’t mind if I say he’s missing a point or two here…

Hart is a fundamentalist Christian not known for subtlety, and he often puts overtly religious messages into his comics.  And that’s fine with me – the market obviously supports him just as it does Howard Stern and (shudder) Ashlee Simpson.  And after all these years he’s funny most of the time.

Anyway, “Church and State” seems to be a point of contention between fundamentalists and secularists (I fall into the latter camp).  Challenges to entanglement of religion and government are often interpreted as attacks on religion by the faithful. The ACLU is often accused of trying to push religion out of the public square, but they aren’t.  They just want the government to do what it’s supposed to do, which is keep “hands off.”  It’s the church’s job, not the government’s, to promote religion.

First of all, the separation between church and state is a good thing for religion.  Look at Europe where there are official state churches – very secular and getting more so every day.  Religion is not taken very seriously there.  Now look at the US – religious and seemingly getting more so.

Second, the separation does not prevent the practice of religion.  Kids can pray in school.  Stores can have all the religious expression they want.  There are almost no boundaries – the government even subsidizes religion with tax exemptions!  So you really don’t want the government getting any more involved.  Entanglements are a “be careful what you wish for” thing.

Finally, I believe the whole point of the scripture the bird is quoting here is that it makes no difference what anybody does – it simply isn’t possible to externally destroy the relationship between a believer and Christ.  Not that I believe there is such a thing but Johnny does.  So chill out, Johnny.  You’re covered.

Categories: News, Religion
  1. WeeDram
    March 23, 2005 at 22:09 | #1

    Interesting thought: the conservative right believes that the government’s hands on the citizenry’s money , “free” market operation, etc., is anathema… “get the the government off the back of the people.”  But when it comes to something FAR more personal, it’s becoming the opposite.  Doesn’t that seem, uh, strange?

  2. March 24, 2005 at 09:02 | #2

    Amen, DOF!  Sing it, brother!

  3. March 24, 2005 at 11:34 | #3

    When I saw the strip I thought it should go on someone’s blog.  Thanks DOF

  4. Lucas
    March 27, 2005 at 05:05 | #4

    WeeDram:  I don’t think it’s all that weird.  In countries with a more sensible democratic system, there are several parties which respresent different ideologies and interests.  In our system, there are two parties, so coalition government has to take place within each party (e.g. doesn’t it seem a bit hypocritical that the democratic party supports a right to privacy with abortions, but not drugs?).  So, the small-government people are republicans, and so are fundamentalists.  I.e., they both support the same candidates, and read many of the same publications.  This sort of ideological conformity leads to accepting things because other people do (a fiscally small government, though this would *not* benefit many Alabama republicans) since they agree with you on something else (a socially conservative agenda).

  5. March 28, 2005 at 18:11 | #5

    Isn’t it ironic that Johnny Hart is a fundamentalist Christian, yet his strip is about cavemen…which would pre-date the age of the world according to Bishop Ussher.

    Oh well—it’s only a comic strip.

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