Debate and discussion: Christians and comrades

Submitted by Anon on 20 April, 2005 - 2:16

I sometimes think that Maria Exall and I are the only Christians who support AWL. The valid points made in the article (Solidarity 3/70) headed “Keep religion out of politics!” were undermined by the headline, which could have come from the Daily Mail.

All religions are bound to be political, especially when they claim not to be — “non-political Christians” invariably turn out to be conservatives, and support the status quo.

Churches are often attacked for not taking political issues seriously, and then attacked again when they do. The key issue is exactly how religion and politics connect.

You know as well as I do that much work for justice in the world has been due to Christian action, often way ahead of the secular left as well as of current governments.

This does not mean that all religious involvement in the political arena is desirable. The term “political theology” was coined by Carl Schmitt who prepared the way for Nazism. Against this we have to place the anti-slavery movement, the work of Michael Scott, Trevor Huddleston, Desmond Tutu and others in South Africa, Romero in El Salvador, anti-racist work in Britain, and many others.

Secular leftists do have a problem with religion, as the African American Marxist Christian Cornel West has often pointed out, and so mistake their allies for their enemies. “An injury to one is an injury to all” applies to your religious comrades too.

Ken Leach, Salford

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