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Matthew Bowman


According to the Pew Forum on Religion in American Life, about two-thirds of Mormons consider themselves conservative, and another eight percent upon that Republican. Unfortunately, for both the Mormons themselves and Americans in total, Mormons in America appear to fit the prevailing stereotype about religious people in politics: Today, too often, “religious” means simply a particularly virulent form of the slightly more numerous species of “intolerant social conservative” or “Republican.” This is the fault both of the political mobilization of the Moral Majority and the Christian Coalition, in which religious people eagerly tried to cram God into the cramped box of American partisan politics, and of liberals who have come to see Christianity as primarily a political opponent and thus sneeringly dismiss centuries of profound truths about human nature and society. The term has been drained of the transcendent imagination which animated the Puritans and the civil rights movement alike….