Monday, June 06, 2005

Another sign of "God's Own Party"

Texas Governor Rick Parry signed two bills yesterday; a parental consent abortion bill and one that would allow a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. It's not that surprising that he signed the bill; Texas Republicans are among the most right wing; but what is interesting is where he signed the bills. He signed them at a Christian School. The Governor's spokesman responded to criticism about the place of signing by saying that no one would protest if he the governor signed a bill at business or a hospital. He then adds a whopper by saying:

"It's not a political event. It's a bill-signing."

Can somebody please tell me when bill signings were apolitical? Of course this is political. He signing it at a Christian School, which is probably a very conservative school. Parry knows he can't sign it at a church (at least, not yet) but he can sign it at a place where fundementalist Christians would still see as a religious setting. It would show them that the GOP in Texas is committed to their values. The governor says as much:

"A church is an appropriate place to come together and celebrate a victory for the values of the people of Texas."

But whose values? Does he think all Christians think the same way? What about Jews? What about Muslims?

This is yet another sign of the GOPs increasing slide towards theocratic thinking. Conservatives should respect religion and I do like that the GOP tries to do that. But it should not get involved in religion, and it shouldn't pick sides. Sadly the party is showing that it caters to only one base, the far right. Parry's move will win him votes next year as he runs for governor, but will the party survive if it pushes itself so far out of the mainstream? The past few year have been good to the GOP, partially because of 9/11. But as 9/11 fades, and as people look to government to deal with social issues, will the center put up with the GOP's daliances with thecons.

Time will tell.


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