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The nonbeliever vote


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#1 elder

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:08 PM

According to some survey somewhere 16% of the voting public identify as nonbelievers. As in not believing in "God".

So as the Dems have now put "God" back in their message, and knowing how far-right Christian yada yada the Republicans like to side with, well. where does that leave us nonbelievers?

Are nonbelievers inherently limited to being 3rd party voters, which means we are basically ignored?

What happened to separation of church and govt? Or was it all/ is it all a ruse?

Who do I vote for? Do I even have a party to align myself with?

What's the use?

#2 SunshineDrummer

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:21 PM

What happened to separation of church and govt? Or was it all/ is it all a ruse?


No, its still alive and well in the US. Separation of Church & state means not having a theocratic government, which we don't.

What do you base your vote on? Who you think will do the best job running the country? Or what a person's religious beliefs or non-beliefs are? IMHO, the latter is irrelevant, its the former that counts. I would have no problem voting for an athiest if I thought that person would do the best job, Why should you feel differently about voting for someone who believes in God?

#3 elder

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:27 PM

No, its still alive and well in the US. Separation of Church & state means not having a theocratic government, which we don't.

What do you base your vote on? Who you think will do the best job running the country? Or what a person's religious beliefs or non-beliefs are? IMHO, the latter is irrelevant, its the former that counts. I would have no problem voting for an athiest if I thought that person would do the best job, Why should you feel differently about voting for someone who believes in God?


Personally, I wouldn't vote for or against someone based on religious beliefs...unless. Unless they tried to shove said beliefs down my throat.

I was just wondering thats all. I mean if it was that important to make sure the omitted "god" talk was put back into the speech, then they must feel that a majority of voters WILL take into account religious beliefs.

Which made me think about nonbelievers.

#4 hoagie

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:35 PM

Personally, I wouldn't vote for or against someone based on religious beliefs...unless. Unless they tried to shove said beliefs down my throat.

I was just wondering thats all. I mean if it was that important to make sure the omitted "god" talk was put back into the speech, then they must feel that a majority of voters WILL take into account religious beliefs.

Which made me think about nonbelievers.


Do you say "God bless you" when your children sneeze?

Just curious...

#5 SunshineDrummer

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:35 PM

Personally, I wouldn't vote for or against someone based on religious beliefs...unless. Unless they tried to shove said beliefs down my throat.

I was just wondering thats all. I mean if it was that important to make sure the omitted "god" talk was put back into the speech, then they must feel that a majority of voters WILL take into account religious beliefs.

Which made me think about nonbelievers.


I understand where you're coming from and agree that some will take a candidate's religion into account. But I think the majority of us can separate one from the other.

I also believe that a politician will say whatever they think will get them elected so IMHO, its all moot.

#6 elder

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:38 PM

Do you say "God bless you" when your children sneeze?

Just curious...


sometimes, out of habit
if they cover though, I say "good catch"

#7 hoagie

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:41 PM

sometimes, out of habit


so there ya go, you dont believe in God, but invoke his name "out of habit". food for thought.

#8 elder

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:41 PM

I understand where you're coming from and agree that some will take a candidate's religion into account. But I think the majority of us can separate one from the other.

I also believe that a politician will say whatever they think will get them elected so IMHO, its all moot.


We are in agreement there, except I think its the minority, not the majority that can separate one from the other. Even though they say they can.

#9 Again and Again

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:42 PM

Hijack:

Why do religious groups insist on forcing their beliefs on others? For example - Abortion. If your religion is against it, then don't get one. But why does it have to be illegal? My religion dictates against eating pork. It would be absurd for all members of my religion to push our government to make bacon illegal.

#10 hoagie

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:45 PM

Hijack:

Why do religious groups insist on forcing their beliefs on others? For example - Abortion. If your religion is against it, then don't get one. But why does it have to be illegal? My religion dictates against eating pork. It would be absurd for all members of my religion to push our government to make bacon illegal.


Christianity is an evangelical religion,. always has been.

#11 elder

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:45 PM

so there ya go, you dont believe in God, but invoke his name "out of habit". food for thought.


Notice, I said sometimes, and out of habit. Not that I believed someone sneezing needs blessings and good wishes.
I also do not require my kids to say it.

#12 hoagie

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:47 PM

Notice, I said sometimes, and out of habit. Not that I believed someone sneezing needs blessings and good wishes.
I also do not require my kids to say it.


my point was only that you are your own example of someone saying words they do not believe. Same could be true for any politician.

#13 SunshineDrummer

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:51 PM

Hijack:

Why do religious groups insist on forcing their beliefs on others? For example - Abortion. If your religion is against it, then don't get one. But why does it have to be illegal? My religion dictates against eating pork. It would be absurd for all members of my religion to push our government to make bacon illegal.


My religion teaches that murder is wrong. Also stealing. Is it wrong for those to be illegal?

Its not always religion that dictates a person's feelings. Many times it boils down to one's moral compass or simply right vs. wrong, regardless of faith.

#14 elder

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:52 PM

my point was only that you are your own example of someone saying words they do not believe. Same could be true for any politician.


I don't know. Comparing Bless you's after sneezing to mentioning god in a candidates speech is kind of a stretch in my opinion.
There are a lot of habitual sayings with religious undertones that do not mean what they used to. "Knock on wood" is another I use for example.

#15 hoagie

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:56 PM

"Comparing Bless you's after sneezing to mentioning god in a candidates speech is kind of a stretch in my opinion."
.
I understand what you're saying. I think it is weird to be an atheist yet use "God Bless You" out of habit. But does it really matter, is my point

#16 gregoir

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 02:57 PM

I beleive in equal rights for all. Therefore I will support the Dems regardless of the use of the word God

#17 hoagie

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:01 PM

I beleive in equal rights for all. Therefore I will support the Dems regardless of the use of the word God


you just like the black wang...admit it :lol:

#18 Again and Again

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:01 PM

My religion teaches that murder is wrong. Also stealing. Is it wrong for those to be illegal?

Its not always religion that dictates a person's feelings. Many times it boils down to one's moral compass or simply right vs. wrong, regardless of faith.


Fair enough. Can I switch my example to contraception?

#19 hoagie

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:03 PM

Hijack:

Why do religious groups insist on forcing their beliefs on others? For example - Abortion. If your religion is against it, then don't get one. But why does it have to be illegal? My religion dictates against eating pork. It would be absurd for all members of my religion to push our government to make bacon illegal.


This is a great point.

#20 Ravn

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:03 PM

Hijack:

My religion dictates against eating pork. It would be absurd for all members of my religion to push our government to make bacon illegal.



anybody does anything to make bacon illegal, and I'mma hunt you down and tighten up your circumcision, k?

#21 gregoir

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:04 PM

you just like the black wang...admit it :lol:


Nope I am a fan of the Irish myself :pimp:

#22 hoagie

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:05 PM

Nope I am a fan of the Irish myself :gregoir:


Oh, your a McNugget guy!

#23 SunshineDrummer

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:06 PM

Fair enough. Can I switch my example to contraception?


Sure, why not?

#24 elder

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:06 PM

Oh, your a McNugget guy!


:lol:

#25 PeaceFrog

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:08 PM

Democrats seem to be very spiritually minded in general... all different religions.

I'd rather have a spiritually minded President... but not necessarily religious. I like knowing the President feels accountable to something greater than him (or her)self.

#26 KrisNYG

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:10 PM

so there ya go, you dont believe in God, but invoke his name "out of habit". food for thought.

my point was only that you are your own example of someone saying words they do not believe. Same could be true for any politician.


I do not see the correlation between these two statements. Saying something out of habit vs a well thought out, critiqued and rehearsed speech are two completely different things, imo.

I don't know. Comparing Bless you's after sneezing to mentioning god in a candidates speech is kind of a stretch in my opinion.
There are a lot of habitual sayings with religious undertones that do not mean what they used to. "Knock on wood" is another I use for example.


:thup:

#27 hoagie

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:13 PM

Like I said, i do understand I am making a stretch, but understand that for me it seems weird to know someone does not believe in any God ata ll, but uses that term out of habit. If one can be so unconcious of it that they use it, they should also be able to acept that others may use it out of habit, or because others are used to it.

I might be having trouble putting my thoughts on this into words here...

#28 KrisNYG

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:18 PM

Like I said, i do understand I am making a stretch, but understand that for me it seems weird to know someone does not believe in any God ata ll, but uses that term out of habit. If one can be so unconcious of it that they use it, they should also be able to acept that others may use it out of habit, or because others are used to it.

I might be having trouble putting my thoughts on this into words here...


I try to turn the lights on during power outages out of habit, same can be said for ingrained statements and cliches during certain dialogues. Does not mean I believe there is no outage or every word in such statements? No, it does not.

I think we've said the word "Habit" enough. He'll prolly show up on the boards now. :lol:

#29 elder

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:18 PM

Like I said, i do understand I am making a stretch, but understand that for me it seems weird to know someone does not believe in any God ata ll, but uses that term out of habit. If one can be so unconcious of it that they use it, they should also be able to acept that others may use it out of habit, or because others are used to it.

I might be having trouble putting my thoughts on this into words here...


yes I think you are too :)

habitual sayings are things you say without thinking about what you are saying. religious or not.
political speeches are completely scripted and rehearsed.

#30 elder

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:22 PM

Democrats seem to be very spiritually minded in general... all different religions.

I'd rather have a spiritually minded President... but not necessarily religious. I like knowing the President feels accountable to something greater than him (or her)self.


Case in point.....what you are saying then is that you would have a hard time voting for a nonbeliever. Correct?

#31 hoagie

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 03:56 PM

good talking/thinking point. Hard to answer without coming off self-righteous

#32 Jersey Thug

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 04:32 PM

Like I said, i do understand I am making a stretch, but understand that for me it seems weird to know someone does not believe in any God ata ll, but uses that term out of habit. If one can be so unconcious of it that they use it, they should also be able to acept that others may use it out of habit, or because others are used to it.


i can only speak for myself. i know for me, religious dogma was so thoroughly ingrained in my brain that even after 20+ years of nonbelief, on those occasions when i find myself in a church the responses and prayers come to my lips with absolutely no thought. even the long ones that took me forever to commit to memory in the first place. i have to consciously stop myself from speaking/kneeling/etc. i spent a LOT of time in church, bible study, CCD, etc as a kid and they trained me well.

"God bless you" is the same programmed response for me. also, there might be some wish to offer the other person a platitude THEY would appreciate. personally, i prefer "gesundheit" or the ever-popular "you're soooooooo good looking" upon sneezing. but i see no issue with offering a "God bless you" if that is something the other person would appreciate.

the difference between these programmed responses and what we're talking about (political platform strategy) is the forethought required to alter the latter, then change it back when it's determined that it isn't politically expedient. i don't care much for that, or other political posturing, but i get that it's mostly for show.

regardless, i'll always vote for the (major) party that least impinges upon my right to live my life how i see fit, based on what is most important to me. Elder, i completely understand your question, and think you just have to reflect upon what's most important to you (that politicians have a say in, or could have a say in) and follow your heart/gut/beliefs.

#33 Jwheelz

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 04:35 PM

wait a second... is this a civil debate on the vibes boards? what is going on here? :panic:

#34 Jwheelz

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 04:37 PM

i can only speak for myself. i know for me, religious dogma was so thoroughly ingrained in my brain that even after 20+ years of nonbelief, on those occasions when i find myself in a church the responses and prayers come to my lips with absolutely no thought. even the long ones that took me forever to commit to memory in the first place. i have to consciously stop myself from speaking/kneeling/etc. i spent a LOT of time in church, bible study, CCD, etc as a kid and they trained me well.

"God bless you" is the same programmed response for me. also, there might be some wish to offer the other person a platitude THEY would appreciate. personally, i prefer "gesundheit" or the ever-popular "you're soooooooo good looking" upon sneezing. but i see no issue with offering a "God bless you" if that is something the other person would appreciate.

the difference between these programmed responses and what we're talking about (political platform strategy) is the forethought required to alter the latter, then change it back when it's determined that it isn't politically expedient. i don't care much for that, or other political posturing, but i get that it's mostly for show.

regardless, i'll always vote for the (major) party that least impinges upon my right to live my life how i see fit, based on what is most important to me. Elder, i completely understand your question, and think you just have to reflect upon what's most important to you (that politicians have a say in, or could have a say in) and follow your heart/gut/beliefs.


Aside from the experience with indoctrination, this very well illustrates my own feelings on the subject.

#35 PeaceFrog

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 05:37 PM

Case in point.....what you are saying then is that you would have a hard time voting for a nonbeliever. Correct?


It's not a simple question to answer that easily because a person who professes to be a believer may not actually be a believer.

On the other hand, a person may outright say they are an athiest, but in reality they are spiritual and do believe in something else, and therefore do have a conscience... it just isn't a God that anyone has ever described to them before.

So, basically, I would have a hard time voting for anyone who seems as though they have no conscience that guides them... to me a conscience is a type of belief, or spirituality.

I want to vote for a person who feels empathy for others, and has the ability to put themselves in another person's shoes... to me that is also a spiritual quality in the same vane of conscienciousness.

#36 Jwheelz

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 05:40 PM

I'm an atheist, so I don't have a conscience?

(Note: I'm not upset by your statement I'm just trying to clarify)

#37 Julius

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 05:44 PM

A small sneeze deserves no acknowledgement. A big impressive sneeze deserves a "Godzilla."

That's what's really important here.

#38 TakeAStepBack

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 05:44 PM

Unfortunately, elder. Our vote, adn voice doesn't really count regardless. It's all abotu the leviathon super administrative good government will. As seen in both the two parties this last cycle. The gap is slowly closing for any of it to even appear to be that we make decisions in a democratically elected way.

#39 TEO

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 05:53 PM

Fair warning, this will be relocated. For any questions refer to thread on moving threads.

#40 PeaceFrog

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 05:54 PM

I'm an atheist, so I don't have a conscience?

(Note: I'm not upset by your statement I'm just trying to clarify)


no... what I said might not be that clear so thanks for giving me the opportunity to clarify. You may say that you are an athiest, but if you have a conscience, which I assume you do... it seems to be what you are implying, then in my opinion you are a spiritual person.

This is a case where someone proclaims athiesm, yet really isn't in my opinion.

On the other hand there are people who proclaim to serve God, yet by their actions it really doesn't appear they have a conscience.

#41 Jwheelz

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 05:54 PM

thanks for the warning TEO :biggrin:

#42 Jwheelz

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 06:00 PM

no... what I said might not be that clear so thanks for giving me the opportunity to clarify. You may say that you are an athiest, but if you have a conscience, which I assume you do... it seems to be what you are implying, then in my opinion you are a spiritual person.

This is a case where someone proclaims athiesm, yet really isn't in my opinion.

On the other hand there are people who proclaim to serve God, yet by their actions it really doesn't appear they have a conscience.


I guess the question then is how do you define being a spiritual person?

I mean I believe that each person matters to the world in their own way, but I don't necessarily believe in some kind of collective consciousness or greater spiritual realm. I see the way people are interconnected in the world even just as far as social contact goes, and I see the way that people working together towards common goals oftentimes brings about better results than individuals acting alone. My sense of right and wrong is derived from my experiences in life and my own feelings when I've had negative things happen to me.

#43 PeaceFrog

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 06:25 PM

there isn't going to be one right answer as to "what is spirituality" but "what is spirituality to me" is all I can answer, and you sound spiritual, or enlightened if you will, to me... you don't believe in killing everyone else so that you and your family can get ahead... When you attain success, you freely help others to attain it to rather than closing the door behind you so no one else can get through.

#44 In A Silent Way

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 06:26 PM

"God" can eat a bag of dicks.

#45 In A Silent Way

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 06:27 PM

Posted Image

#46 elder

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 06:28 PM

I like to think of myself then as Secular spiritual....

Secular spirituality emphasizes humanistic qualities such as love, compassion, patience, tolerance, forgiveness, contentment, responsibility, harmony and a concern for others.[2]:22 Aspects of life and human experience which go beyond a purely materialist view of the world, without necessarily accepting belief in a supernatural reality or divine being. Spiritual practices such as mindfulness and meditation can be experienced as beneficial or even necessary for human fulfillment without any supernatural interpretation or explanation. Spirituality in this context may be a matter of nurturing thoughts, emotions, words and actions that are in harmony with a belief that everything in the universe is mutually dependent.

#47 PeaceFrog

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 06:33 PM

in a nutshell: altruism

but I don't claim that I myself am 100% altruistic

I believe in some balance... 50/50 or whatever works for you.

#48 elder

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 06:34 PM

For the record, in 30 something years "serving" the catholic church, "habitually" going to mass on Sundays (unless there was something better to do on Sunday, then it was good to go Saturday night), and I never once felt true spirituality.

It wasn't until many years later, out on my own, asking my own questions, seeking my own truth, making my own decisions and LEAVING the church, that I felt spiritual.

Now everyone's different. We all get by in our own ways, but please be careful when you call us nonbelievers NON spiritual, or ask us about how we maintain morals and ethics without religion.

#49 elder

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 06:36 PM

Ugh, this is not where I wanted this thread to go .... :undecided:

#50 Jwheelz

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Posted 07 September 2012 - 06:59 PM

I like to think of myself then as Secular spiritual....

Secular spirituality emphasizes humanistic qualities such as love, compassion, patience, tolerance, forgiveness, contentment, responsibility, harmony and a concern for others.[2]:22 Aspects of life and human experience which go beyond a purely materialist view of the world, without necessarily accepting belief in a supernatural reality or divine being. Spiritual practices such as mindfulness and meditation can be experienced as beneficial or even necessary for human fulfillment without any supernatural interpretation or explanation. Spirituality in this context may be a matter of nurturing thoughts, emotions, words and actions that are in harmony with a belief that everything in the universe is mutually dependent.


by that definition I'm definitely a spiritual person, and it took rejecting the traditional monotheistic views of God and existence before I was able to awaken that part of myself in a different way...

Ugh, this is not where I wanted this thread to go .... :undecided:


Back to the original question, it does make me uncomfortable that there is so much biblical and religious subtext to a lot of the things that both parties have been saying. To my mind at least the Democratic side was mostly embracing the parts of Christian teachings I actually agree with and respect but I wish that it wouldn't have such a prominent place in the speeches and rhetoric. That's not going to prevent me from voting that way necessarily but it certainly gives me pause. I believe in a very firm separation of church and state, but I also begrudgingly admit that we live in a country full of a lot of religious people. I think over the last 12 years or so the Democratic Party has been less willing to for lack of a better word pander to the more religious set, and I think they are trying to appeal more to religious voters again, but to some extent I think it's also just trying to communicate with believers in their own language. Ultimately I see what is borne out in the policies different candidates advocate and that's really much more what drives my decisions. I don't agree with either side on every issue, but I force myself to look past this one at the moment basically. I can understand not everyone who has beliefs similar to mine is able to do that, and it's unfortunate that embracing one group, however unintentionally can alienate another one.