This is a follow-up observation to my point on Tuesday that radical monotheists are not inclined toward democracy.

First, I want to clarify that this blanket statement is by no means limited to Muslims. There are plenty of radical Christians in this country and more than a few radical Jews in Israel who make me nervous because of their willingness to oppress (or even persecute) people who are different, and to my knowledge are almost always organized behind a single powerful leader. Bill Maher said that we should stop focusing on regulating drugs and think about regulating religion as it’s far more dangerous. Now to be fair, religion, as practiced by most people, is not dangerous and may even be beneficial. Curiously, the same thing could be said for drugs (especially if you include all pharmaceuticals). It does make you think.

Anyway, the observation which occurred to me yesterday was that the principles of democracy arose in ancient Greece – a place rife with gods and godesses. The Roman Empire (also pretty rich in the number of deities) was the most prominate practice of democracy in the ancient world. Could it be that polytheism (or at least not monotheism) was prerequisite to the conception of a democratic form of government? And would it then follow that monotheism and democracy are naturally at odds with one another? Perhaps this was recognized by our founding fathers and that was the reason the legal separation of church and state was instituted in the USA.

I haven’t thought this all the way through yet, but I wanted to toss it out and see if anyone wanted to contribute their thoughts. I welcome them.

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