By The Book

Congress is now in session. I'm so relieved. A conservative columnist raised a fuss because Keith Ellison, the first Muslim elected to Congress, decided he was going to take the oath of office while placing his hand on a Koran. Many echoed the columnist's objections saying that this was a Christian nation and the oath was a slap to the face of our country's history. Actually, representatives don't place their hands on anything during the oath; they do it en mass, so it's much ado . . .

Ellision planned on taking the oath today while holding in his hand a copy of the Koran . . . a copy straight from Thomas Jefferson's library. Oh, snap. BUT if you're familiar with Islam you know that an English copy of the Koran is not authorized and is considered as "holy" as a Porky Pig comic book. That's why the irony is thrilling.

TJefferson, founding father who penned the Declaration of Independence [oh, and was President and is on the nickle], was a deist who played salad bar with the gospels to form his own kind of moral code. Yet two hundred years later we want to believe that these guys who led the rebellion against England were choir boys. And then we use that revisionist history to spout out ridiculous ideas like we're a theocracy.

Sidenote: I also find it interesting that we do the same thing with Scripture: we think the point of the Bible is to elevate and emulate the characters to hero status when there's really only one hero found in the pages [extra credit if you can figure out who].

Not sure what you want to do with all this, but if you're not ready for the new role of religion in American politics, get ready. The next two years will most likely redefine the past twenty-five years of faith's influence on our democracy.