Generally refers to a branch of Christianity
whose beliefs combine evangelical fundamentalism
with conservative political activism
. Leaders of the Religious Right believe that Christian
values can best be implemented
and the election
of candidates sympathetic to their aims. This quote from Beverly LaHaye
of Concerned Women for America
nicely encapsulates this philosophy
"Yes, religion and politics do mix. America is a nation based on biblical principles. Christian values dominate our government. The test of those values is the Bible. Politicians who do not use the bible to guide their public and private lives do not belong in office."
Two major problems with this approach have arisen:
- It doesn't seem to work. Attempts at the moral engineering of American society through the passsage of laws have so far failed to make anyone fundamentally better or brought America closer to embracing a fundamentalist evangelical concept of Biblical morality.
- Two former members of the Religious Right say in their book Blinded By Might that while mixing Christianity and politics has failed to reform politics, it has succeeded to a great degree in corrupting the Church. It turns the Gospel into a political platform, leads many to equate "real" Christianity with membership in the Republican party, and causes the Church to adopt the attack strategies of an electoral campaign while forsaking the example of Jesus.
"Religious Right" organizations include: