Something I posted on my Facebook, partially as a response to the increasingly political discussions on that site, as well as discussions I've had in person or heard about through others.
Forgive the formatting. Somehow the transition from Facebook to here will not allow me to delete that extra "2":For those of you who find religion to be abhorrent in every (or nearly every) way, I would like to suggest that political belief is almost the same. Here are a few parallels that I've noticed:
1) Many of you were raised to believe what you do. Your parents/guardians taught you many of the things that you hold fast to, and it's possible you've never evaluated many of the beliefs you hold dear.
2) For those that don't subscribe to number 1, you likely changed your beliefs radically when you went to college (=church) or went to some political event (=revival). Suddenly you feel enlightened because you took a course (=heard a sermon) or two that made you think differently and now you unabashedly preach that new gospel. Nonetheless, many of you haven't evaluated these new beliefs you adhere to either. They just have the ring of Truth.
3) You have your priests (=politicians/political ideologues) that you trust unwaveringly. No matter what they say or do, you look past the bad and always focus on the good.
4) You're an evangelist. People who couldn't care less about what you believe will hear you share about how you've seen the Light of your political ideology. You don't care if they're not interested because it's your duty to share the Gospel of Truth with them. If they reject it they'll receive Hell, but if they accept it they'll receive Heaven, so you have to preach whenever possible to at least save a few.
5) The other side is controlled by Satan. Not only does the other side want the worst for this country, but they have never done anything good...ever. Their priests are deceiving them with lies straight from Hell. Discussing political issues with the other side is a waste of breath. They're all demon-possessed and wouldn't understand the Truth.
6) You possess many beliefs that are not founded on evidence but simply "make sense". Despite the lack of evidential support, you want to enforce these beliefs upon others who do not share them. In the end, it's for their "good", so they'll thank you later.
7) When someone challenges your beliefs, you feel threatened. Sometime this leads to withdrawal from the person, other times it results in hostility. Either way, it makes you uncomfortable.
Clearly I'm not singling anyone out. These are just characteristics that I've noticed in perhaps all of us, at least at one time or another (including myself).
Are all of these necessarily bad? I'd say there are contexts where the answer is no. But if you despise religions for doing any of these things, it would be hypocritical if you didn't despise them in politics (or any other ideology) as well.