IS THERE A DISCONNECT HERE?
Hmmmm. How does this work for so many of our nation's born-again right wing Christian Republicans who view Reagan as a god?
Maybe before they clamor too much more about putting Reagan on Mount Rushmore, or putting him on the dime in place of Franklin D. Roosevelt, or naming more and more things after him... they should take a look at some of his quotes. Not only did he value a church-state separation, he also valued compromise (now a dirty word to most on the right).
Same thing goes with the way they espouse the philosophy of Ayn Rand, who happened to be an atheist. While they may not espouse her philosophy directly, they do espouse it through the way Rand has influenced American right wing politics. Why are those of faith so willing to flock to her when she said things like the following (from an interview in Playboy magazine):
Playboy: Has no religion, in your estimation, ever offered anything of constructive value to human life?
Ayn Rand: Qua religion, no - in the sense of blind belief, belief unsupported by, or contrary to, the facts of reality and the conclusions of reason. Faith, as such, is extremely detrimental to human life: it is the negation of reason. But you must remember that religion is an early form of philosophy, that the first attempts to explain the universe, to give a coherent frame of reference to man's life and a code of moral values, were made by religion, before men graduated or developed enough to have philosophy. And, as philosophies, some religions have very valuable moral points. They may have a good influence or proper principles to inculcate, but in a very contradictory context and, on a very - how should I say it? - dangerous or malevolent base: on the ground of faith.
The next one is from her novel "The Fountainhead":
"My philosophy, in essence, is the concept of man as a heroic being, with his own happiness as the moral purpose of his life, with productive achievement as his noblest activity, and reason as his only absolute."
Seems to me our nation's religious fundamentalists should be damning her, and viewing her philosophy as some sort of evil spawn of faithlessness. To say such things, she clearly must have been under Satan's influence. Yet she is becoming increasingly popular, and mostly among our political right wing. It must be very difficult to endure the squirming necessary for when they have to compromise her philosophy of objectivism with her lack of faith.
Ronald Reagan was not an atheist, as far as I know, but by the standards of many of today's American religious community, he might as well have been if he believed in a church-state separation.
Apparently the "religious right" (which is neither) needs to be more careful when it chooses its gods.