The truth is, ALL law is ultimately based on someone’s morality. And everyone wants their particular morality to have some sort of legislative enforcement. Even atheists and secular humanists do. In fact, they push their worldviews and morality on us all the time, even suing people and taking religious folks to court, and so on. If someone is a gung-ho pro-abort, guess what? They will work day and night to make sure that society in general and the law in particular push their beliefs on others. That’s what law does: it binds everyone to a particular morality or view of what society should be like.
There is a lot of foolish thinking out there when it comes to religion, worldviews, and ultimate truth. Plenty of folks deny absolute truth altogether. Many simply believe that all truths are equal, and none should be favoured over any other. And plenty of people are steeped in relativism, and think we all should just chill when it comes to firmly held beliefs.
Yet all these folks who routinely complain about religious types – especially Christians – “imposing their morality on others” are the very first ones to do exactly the same. They expect that their worldview and their morality SHOULD be the law of the land – figuratively if not actually.
Let me offer a clear cut example of this which recently appeared on the social media. One friend has posted a tweet by the American conservative and Christian commentator Allie Beth Stuckey: “Neutrality is a myth. Those who claim to fear Christian theocracy actually just want to implement their own. They want Christians to check their worldview at the door, so they can make sure they can control you with theirs.” The friend said this: “I’ve observed this is true. It is never easy-going c’est la vie types who try to shut Christians down, only budding tyrants.”
But one person came along and replied: “I have no problem with people practicing their religion. Nor do the vast majority of leftists. We object to all religions that insist that everyone follows their beliefs, which they encode into laws. This applies to Buddhists, Hindus, Muslims, Jews, Christians and those who practice every other religion as well. If you believe in ‘live and let live’ (not identical to c’est la vie), then this should be no problem for you.”
Oh dear. There are a number of substantial problems with this sort of remark. Three main points come to mind: how faith commitments work; the matter of pushing one’s beliefs and morals on others; and the nature of truth. As to faith commitments, those who are serious will know that this cannot mean just embracing every other view in town.
A committed atheist or secular humanist does NOT accept the claims of Jews, Christians and other religious groups. Judging by what this gal has said, it seems clear that she has her own faith commitments. Yet she seems to want everyone to just happily get along in terms of their beliefs while at the same time she fiercely clings to her own.
What such folks really want is for no one to take their beliefs seriously – except themselves. But genuine faith commitments do not work that way. The point of being commited to a worldview or a religion is to take it seriously – otherwise it is no faith commitment at all.
As to pushing one’s views onto others, this gal was doing just that as she challenged the other person. Everyone who is serious about their beliefs want them promoted far and wide – and yes, even want some legal recognition of them.