Only in America. And Iran. Few countries in the world would entertain the idea of founding their constitution on a religious standard. Sadly, I live in one.
It's astounding. A leading contender for the presidency of the United States, Mike Huckabee, says:
I have opponents in this race who do not want to change the Constitution. But I believe it's a lot easier to change the Constitution than it would be to change the word of the living god. And that's what we need to do -- to amend the Constitution so it's in God's standards rather than try to change God's standards so it lines up with some contemporary view.
If ever there was a reason to embrace churchlessness, here it is.
Huckabee is an engaging guy with a good sense of humor (I enjoyed his recent repartee with Stephen Colbert), but he's also deeply troubling.
I prefer Christian crazies like Pat Robertson, who are so obviously loony that few take them seriously. Huckabee appeals to the Christian faithful, but his likable personal style has the potential of reeling in unsuspecting moderate voters.
Hopefully they'll notice his talk about bringing the Constitution in line with "God's standards" and realize that this is horribly un-American.
But wonderfully Iranian. In the early 1980s Ayatollah Khomeini revised the Iranian constitution along the lines Mike Huckabee salivates over.
The Islamic Republic is a system based on belief in:
1. The One God (as stated in the phrase "There is no god except Allah"), His exclusive sovereignty and the right to legislate, and the necessity of submission to His commands;
2. Divine revelation and its fundamental role in setting forth the laws;
3. The return to God in the Hereafter, and the constructive role of this belief in the course of man's ascent towards God;
4. The justice of God in creation and legislation . . .
So before we amend the Constitution, this country needs to debate which God gets to set the standards. Christian? Jewish? Muslim? Sikh?
And if we add some quotation marks, "God" includes the divinity of Taoism, Buddhism, Hinduism, and lots of other "ism's."
It's going to be tough deciding which religion has the best connection with God, and so can be trusted to guide our Constitution revision efforts.
Naturally I favor the Religion of Me. Which has a significant advantage over Huckabee's Christianity: I'm not trying to impose my faith on anybody else.