As President Bush begins his second term in office, he is coming under attack by Christian bashers. Catholic League president William Donohue addressed this issue today:
“Most Americans appreciate and admire President George W. Bush for his strong religious convictions. But there are some activists and commentators who hate him precisely because he is so religious.
“Over the weekend, an ‘emergency summit’ of professional Christian haters took place in Washington. According to the Washington Times, ‘humanists, atheists, nontheists, secular Jews and ethical culturalists’ met to discuss how they could counter the president’s faith-based initiatives, etc. Representatives from Americans United for Separation of Church and State were there, as were officials from the ACLU, NOW, the Freedom from Religion Foundation and the Internet Infidels. No doubt all of these groups sided with Michael Newdow in his failed attempt to ban the inaugural prayer. American Atheists surely did, coming to the remarkable conclusion that the prayer ‘puts the government in the position of telling Americans that they must pray, how they must pray, and when they must pray.’
“If the activists are trembling, the pundits are exploding. For example, professor David Domke is fond of counting the number of times Bush has invoked God in his speeches, and is now worried that the president sees himself as ‘a prophetic spokesman for God.’ Similarly, Ellis Henican ofNewsday believes ‘The Party of God is now fully in charge,’ contending that Bush ‘considers himself as God’s own prophet.’ Boston University professor Stephen Prothero is hyperventilating over his hunch that we now have ‘a Jesus lover in the Oval Office.’ Professor William Cook at the University of La Verne says Bush’s supporters believe they have a ‘divinely anointed Emperor’ in charge. And author Abid Ullah Jan goes one better, saying that Bush ‘has assumed the role of the first in the new line of corrupt popes.’
“For these folks, God talk is their idea of obscene speech (especially if Jesus is invoked). And they think Bush is a zealot!”