Wednesday, January 03, 2007

Who Created a Sensation?

"Honoring Rome's gods and goddesses was considered a civic obligation and, at times, a law."

When I heard that Keith Ellison was going to use a Quran during a swearing-in ceremony, my reaction was "Well, duh!" In a secular democratic state, with religious tolerance enshrined in its Constitution that elected officials must swear to defend, what other sacred text would a Muslim choose to swear on (except maybe the Hadith)?

So why on ATC tonight does Michele Norris say, "Newly elected Keith Ellison created a sensation last month when he announced that he planned to take the oath of office on the Quran." Ellison didn't "create" the sensation; a bigoted rightwing columnist and an ignorant, racist representative created the sensation. Media Matters early on pointed out how misleading it is when the media attributes the controversy to Ellison and not to the bigots who want to make worship of the Judeo-Christian Bible a litmus test for holding office (and even citizenship in the case of Goode). How is this firestorm of bigotry described by Norris? She says "His decision to use the Muslim holy book...drew criticism."

That is kind.

3 comments:

Porter Melmoth said...

NPR chooses to buy into these purported 'controversies', thus their bonafide superfluity in posturing as 'thinking' media. Even their middlebrow aspirations in contemporary analyses of current events come up short. Very, very short.

Kevan said...

What do atheists swear on? The Humanist Manifesto vols. I, II and III stacked together? Just wondering.

jules said...

Kevan, using the Bible/Koran/Whatever is not part of the official swearing in ceremony, which is secular in nature and involves swearing an oath the Constitution.

The religious swearing in ceremonies are something they may opt for afterwards, but are not official.