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March 5, 2021
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ATHEIST
(2007-03-14)
(wgvu) - EARLIER THIS WEEK, A LONG SERVING MEMBER OF THE U.S. CONGRESS MADE HISTORY WITH A SURPRISING ANNOUNCEMENT. REPRESENTATIVE PETE STARK (D-CA) REVEALED HE WAS AN ATHEIST. STARK, A 34-YEAR VETERAN OF CONGRESS AND SENIOR MEMBER OF THE POWERFUL WAYS AND MEANS COMMITTEE, WENT PUBLIC WITH HIS DISCLOSURE IN RESPONSE TO AN INQUIRY BY THE SECULAR COALITION FOR AMERICA.
WHILE THE U-S CONSTITUTION SPECIFICALLY FORBIDS ANY KIND OF RELIGIOUS TEST OR QUALIFICATION FOR PUBLIC OFFICE, CANDIDATES OFTEN TEND TO GO OUT OF THEIR WAY TO LET VOTERS KNOW THAT THEY DO HAVE SOME KIND OF BELIEF OR FAITH.
STARK STANDS ALONE ON THE HILL AMONG HIS 534 COLLEAGUES AS PUBLICALLY ADMITTING TO BEING A NON-BELIEVER. JEFF SEAVER IS EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR OF THE FREETHOUGHT ASSOCIATION OF WEST MICHIGAN. HE'S BETTING THERE ARE OTHERS ON CAPITAL HILL STILL HIDING IN THE ATHEIST CLOSET, AND THAT STARK'S REVELATION MAY PROMPT SOME OF THEM TO GO PUBLIC.
ONE THING SEEMS FAIRLY CERTAIN THOUGH---AMERICANS WANT THEIR PRESIDENTS TO HAVE SOME KIND OF RELIGION. SURVEYS SUGGEST THE MAJORITY OF US WOULD REFUSE TO VOTE FOR AN ATHEIST FOR PRESIDENT EVEN IF HE OR SHE WERE THE MOST QUALIFIED FOR THE OFFICE.
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