One Nation Under God?
IN THE immediate wake of September 11 and the rise of Islamic terrorism as America’s deadliest foe, some commentators predicted a retreat from expressions of religiosity here in the United States, if not a rollback in our steadily increasing accom- modation of religious concerns in the public square. The reasoning went something like this: just as, several years ago, the bombings of federal buildings in Oklahoma City by Washington-hating fanatics had put a stop to the anti-big-government movement led by Newt Gingrich’s congressional Republicans, so the assault on America by the forces of radical fundamentalist Islam would tar- nish, by association, the movement to inject reli- gion-based values into our own institutions and our public discourse. Whatever else September 11 showed, wrote Frank Rich in the New York Times, it also provided evidence of the “Taliban-like” po- tential of “America’s own homegrown mixture of fundamentalism and politics.”
About the Author
Adam Wolfson is editor of the Public Interest