There is a glimmer of hope in the Middle East. In a recent large-scale protest, citizens rose up in a rare public demonstration to get religion out of politics. Sunday’s Secular Pride March shows that there are many people in countries like Lebanon who are want a separation of church and state — and are willing to risk their lives to fight for secular government. In the meantime, people in the United States like Sarah Palin are trying to take this country in the opposite direction by taking down the wall of separation, here.
At a recent rally, Palin told her supporters “Lest anyone try to convince you that God should be separated from the state, our founding fathers, they were believers.” In Lebanon, citizens are fighting for precisely that separation, chanting “What’s your sect? None of your business!”
It is a promising development in a region, where even Israel mixes religion with government in a rejection of secular government. Lebanon was long the most progressive nation in the region before being ripped apart by the Israeli invasion and militant Islamic groups. Obviously, this is not good for groups like Hezbullah, which may want to pay Palin for one of those $100,000 speeches to speak against separation of mosque and state.
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