I’ll quote some passages from Romney’s recent speech, interspersed with my own comments:
"There are some for whom these commitments are not enough. They would prefer it if I would simply distance myself from my religion, say that it is more a tradition than my personal conviction, or disavow one or another of its precepts. That I will not do. I believe in my Mormon faith and I endeavor to live by it. My faith is the faith of my fathers - I will be true to them and to my beliefs.”
Well, that’s the problem, isn’t it? He’s making religious identity a question of social loyalty rather than allegiance to the truth. He’d rather be true to his Mormon ancestors than be true to the true God.
This reflects poorly, not only on his spiritual priorities, but on his intellectual discernment. Mormonism is not a difficult religion to falsify. He lacks judgment.
"There is one fundamental question about which I often am asked. What do I believe about Jesus Christ? I believe that Jesus Christ is the Son of God and the Savior of mankind.”
Of course, Mormonism apes Christian terminology, but uses that terminology as code language to launder a heretical belief-system. Mormon Christology bears no resemblance to Biblical Christology.
“My church's beliefs about Christ may not all be the same as those of other faiths. Each religion has its own unique doctrines and history. These are not bases for criticism but rather a test of our tolerance. Religious tolerance would be a shallow principle indeed if it were reserved only for faiths with which we agree.”
But Mormonism isn’t tolerant of other faiths. Mormonism was founded on religious intolerance. On the presupposition that Christendom was apostate, and it was necessary for Joseph Smith to restore the long lost Gospel.
Romney himself, like all observant Mormon males, was a Mormon missionary. Missionaries aren’t tolerant. They are promoting their own faith, at the expense of the opposing faith.
And I don’t have a problem with that. I do have a problem with Romney’s duplicity.
"There are some who would have a presidential candidate describe and explain his church's distinctive doctrines. To do so would enable the very religious test the founders prohibited in the Constitution. No candidate should become the spokesman for his faith.”
I believe that Romney is twisting this clause of the Constitution. In England, at that time, you had to be an Anglican to hold elective office. You had to pay lip-serve to the 39 Articles.
And some of the 13 colonies had the same sort of policy—which would have been divisive at the Federal level.
So, as I understand it, this clause prohibits a religious oath of office. If you’re a duly elected candidate, you cannot be disbarred from assuming office on religious grounds.
But this in no way prevents a voter from taking a candidate’s religious identity into consideration. A voter is entitled to treat that as his sole criterion if he wants to. He can vote for or against him on religious grounds.
By Romney’s logic, if a jihadist ran for president, promising—as a matter of solemn religious duty—to use his top-level security clearance to leak all our classified military secrets to the enemy, the electorate would have no right to discriminate against that candidate on religious grounds.
"I believe that every faith I have encountered draws its adherents closer to God.”
Does that include Bin Laden?
BTW, which God is he referring to? Mormonism has a pantheon, not a God.
"We separate church and state affairs in this country, and for good reason. No religion should dictate to the state nor should the state interfere with the free practice of religion.”
I think that overstates the scope of the Establishment clause. It forbids a national church. It doesn’t forbid Federal patronage of Christianity in general, and it doesn’t forbid the states from establishing sectarian churches.
"We believe that every single human being is a child of God - we are all part of the human family.”
Which God? He talks like a monotheist, but he’s a polytheist.
“The lives of hundreds of thousands of America's sons and daughters were laid down during the last century to preserve freedom, for us and for freedom loving people throughout the world.”
Thousands of American women died in combat in the 20C?