Tuesday, September 10, 2019

Ryan T. Anderson thinks he is quite a bit smarter than he really is

Ryan T. Anderson
Ryan T. Anderson has spent the better part of a decade maligning LGBTQ people on behalf of the Catholic Church. Now he wants to be taken seriously as a scholar.
via YouTube
Ryan T. Anderson cannot help himself. Writing at Witherspoon's pseudo-intellectual blog Anderson conflates conservatism with conservative Catholicism. True conservatives respect the separation of church and state as envisioned by our framers. They respect the Establishment Clause within the First Amendment.

That does not describe Mr. Anderson:
What can and should be done now to prevent the next administration from issuing another Dear Colleague Letter imposing a transgender bathroom policy on every school in the nation? (Answer: The Civil Rights Uniformity Act, clarifying that the word “sex” in our nation’s civil rights laws does not mean “gender identity.”) What can and should be done now to prevent the next administration from shutting down Catholic adoption agencies or revoking the nonprofit tax status of evangelical colleges that don’t endorse same-sex marriage? (Answer: A more robust version of the First Amendment Defense Act.)
What Anderson is seeking is for Congress to make laws that recognize the catechism of the Catholic Church. The Church does not believe that there is such a thing as gender identity as a separate construct from natal sex and neither does

Anderson. Anderson believes that states and municipalities should be forced by Congress to allow Catholic adoption agencies to discriminate while doing the work of the state with taxpayer dollars. I do not know of any evangelical college that lost its tax-exempt status due to anything having to do with same-sex marriage and no one seeks their endorsement.

The purpose of the First Amendment Defense Act was to a) license discrimination by conservative Christians and; b) dilute the Establishment Clause to the benefit of conservative Christianity. It died when its sponsors realized that they would have to include same-sex marriage as a protected class and they were unwilling to do that.

Later on Anderson offers some pseudo-intellectual BS. He considers himself a scholar:
To become a scholar, one submits to an apprenticeship in learning. One follows certain procedures in terms of curriculum, language requirements, examinations, and original research—all of which are meant to help develop a certain disposition and temperament to love truth more than opinion or personality, and to actually acquire certain knowledge of truth and the skills to continue acquiring such knowledge for a lifetime. These virtues and procedures apply not just to students but to professors, too. If you want an academy to be more than an indoctrination camp, you need scholars who have the requisite knowledge and a breadth and depth of wisdom that goes beyond narrow specialization.
True scholarship is achieved by nurturing intellectual curiosity. That is how the truth that Anderson writes about is discovered. Intellectually curious critical thinkers cannot be religious literalists who substitute dogma for empirical truth. Scholars understand truth through evidence.

I cannot be certain but strongly suspect that Mr. Anderson defines truth as the teachings of the Catholic Church. Anderson would approve indoctrination camps if the indoctrination was consistent with his religious beliefs. That is not the purpose for “the academy.”

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