web analytics
March 6, 2015 / 15 Adar , 5775
At a Glance
InDepth
Sponsored Post


Home » InDepth » Monitor »

That Old-Time Religion



If you’re a liberal who can’t stomach President Bush’s constant references to God; if you clench your fists every time the president refers to America’s religious heritage; if you fear the imminent imposition of a Christian theocracy whenever Mr. Bush speaks of how the country has been divinely blessed – if any or all of this describes you more or less to a tee, then you’re sure to have conniptions reading this passage from a certain wartime commander-in-chief’s Inaugural message:The Almighty God has blessed our land in many ways. He has given our people stout hearts and strong arms with which to strike mighty blows for freedom and truth. He has given our country a faith which has become the hope of all peoples in an anguished world.

So we pray to Him now for the vision to see our way clearly – to see the way that leads to a better life for ourselves and for all our fellow men – to the achievement of His will, to peace on earth.

“Strong arms with which to strike mighty blows for freedom”? How infuriatingly jingoistic! “A faith which has become the hope of all peoples”? What overbearing arrogance! “So we pray to Him now for the vision to see our way clearly…” Help! The wall between church and state has been breached, and those ignorant and intolerant red-state hoards are surely, at this very moment, putting up the Ten Commandments in classrooms all over the country.

Who, a blue-state secularist might ask, is this holy roller in the White House to presume to speak for America in such exclusivist and divisive terms? Well, you who go to sleep with images of New York Times editorials dancing sweetly in your heads, it’s not George W. Bush. No, the speaker guilty of imposing his religion in such a hubristic manner was none other than the greatest liberal icon of them all, Franklin Delano Roosevelt.

The passage, from FDR’s fourth and final Inauguration speech (delivered in January 1945) was noted by National Review Managing Editor Jay Nordlinger in his Jan. 13 “Impromptus” column at NationalReviewOnline.com. “Who can doubt,” Nordlinger writes, “that if FDR talked that way today, he would be branded a ‘theocrat’? A dangerous kook who knows nothing about the ‘separation of church and state.’ Who, indeed, hates the Constitution, and this country, really.”

Of course, the Monitor has no doubt that if FDR were still around, he would (in addition to being one of the medical marvels of all time) have “evolved” in his political thinking to the point where he’d be giving speeches to ACLU dinners on the dangers of religion in the public square.

If the Democratic Party could turn on a dime and go from the muscular military and foreign policies of Truman, Kennedy and Johnson to the milquetoast meowing of McGovern, Carter, Mondale and Dukakis; if Ted Kennedy, Jesse Jackson, Al Gore and countless other liberals could so easily drop their strong opposition to abortion as soon as it became politically incorrect to maintain that position; and if feminism and gay rights could be elevated from a state of non-existence on the liberal agenda to key doctrines of liberal orthodoxy in the space of two or three years in the early 1970′s, well, then, how difficult is it to conceive of Roosevelt doing a complete about-face on his unabashed referencing of God and faith and America’s divinely ordained destiny?

* * *

Note to Readers: The proliferation of blogs continues at a mind-numbing rate. It’s become impossible for any one individual to keep up with the sheer number, let alone know which ones are worth the time of day and which ones are exercises in foolishness and futility better left unread.

From time to time this column has featured listings of websites and weblogs recommended by both the Monitor and the Monitor’s readers. Invariably, as soon as each such list appears the e-mails begin pouring in with names of worthy sites the Monitor missed or for one reason or another neglected to mention. So there will be yet another list in the very near future, and we’ll try to make that one the most comprehensive yet. Start sending in your choices.

About the Author: Jason Maoz is the Senior Editor of The Jewish Press. He can be contacted at jmaoz@jewishpress.com.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “That Old-Time Religion”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu addresses a joint meeting of Congress on Capitol Hill in Washington D.C., the United States, calling for rejection of a bad nuclear deal with Iran, on March 03, 2015.
Post-Bibi Bipartisanship May Result in Congressional Ability to Review Iran Deal
Latest Indepth Stories
Ron Prosor

Values at the very heart of the UN are threatened by extremist ideologies targeting our way of life

Ayatollah Ali Khamenei

Anti-Semitism today focuses on Israel and the quest to delegitimize it.

Ballots for elections "made in Samaria."

Any Jew who ties his fate to Israel should be able to vote in Israel’s elections-even before aliyah

A young Moshe Meir Weiss introduces his mother, Mrs. Agnes Weiss Goldman, to Rav Moshe in 1979.

There were no airs about him. Rav Moshe was affectionately known as the Gaon of Normalcy.

Israel’s full sovereignty over a united Jerusalem is the only path for true peace in the region.

Just like Moses and Aaron, Mordechai decides to ruin the party…

The president has made clear – I can’t state this more firmly – the policy is Iran will not get a nuclear weapon.

Obama has an apparent inability to understand Islam in particular and Mid-East culture in general

Pesach is a Torah-based holiday whose fundamental observances are rooted in Torah law; Purim is a rabbinic holiday whose laws and customs are grounded in the rabbinic tradition.

In honor of Prime Minister Netanyahu’s successful speech before Congress.

Mr. Spock conveys a message with painfully stark relevance to our world today, especially in the context of PM Netanyahu’s speech to Congress.

Obama created the “partisan politics” by asking Dem. party members to avoid Bibi and his address

Enough is enough. The Jewish community has a big tent, but the NIF should have no place in it.

I vote for the right and get left-wing policy. Every. Frigging. Time.

More Articles from Jason Maoz
Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, both outspokenly critical of Netanyahu’s upcoming visit to Congress, were wowed by him in 2011.

Note also the response to the speech by the top Democrats in the House and Senate, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid, both of whom have been outspoken in their criticism of Netanyahu’s upcoming visit.

Comptroller DiNapoli celebrates Sukkot with Crown Heights Jewish community leaders at the sukkah of Rabbi Chanina Sperlin of the Crown Heights Jewish Community Council.

The New York State comptroller manages the state’s $180.7 billion pension fund, audits the spending practices of all state agencies and local governments, oversees the New York State and Local Retirement System, reviews the New York State and City budgets, and approves billions in State contracts and spending.

While not all criticism of Israel stemmed from anti-Semitism, Podhoretz contends the level of animosity towards Israel rises exponentially the farther left one moved along the spectrum.

When you grow up in a home where your parents went through what my parents went through, you realize that life has to be meaningful. You have to be there for other people.

“It’s a lousy column and a dishonest one,” Halberstam wrote. “So close it. Or you will end up just as shabby as Safire.”

Wye would be seen to have set the groundwork for the creation of a Palestinian state

These are not necessarily the best all-around biographies or studies of the individual presidents listed (though some rank right up there), but the strongest in terms of exploring presidential attitudes and policies toward Israel.

The Clintonan “engagement” liberals remember with such fondness did nothing but embolden Arafat and Hamas and Hizbullah as they witnessed Israel’s only real ally elevate process ahead of policy.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/indepth/media-monitor/that-old-time-religion/2005/01/19/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: