Feel the love: theocratic dust-up at the Austin corral (or: Public Reason comes to Texas)

It takes a lot to make me proud to be from New Jersey, but after watching this video, all I can say is that I’m glad I’m not from Texas:

Here’s a companion piece. The gist:

AUSTIN–Rep. Molly White, R-Belton, directed her staffers to ask Muslim visitors–in town for Texas Muslim Capitol Day–to pledge allegiance to the U.S.

“I did leave an Israeli flag on the reception desk in my office with instructions to staff to ask representatives from the Muslim community to renounce Islamic terrorist groups and publicly announce allegiance to America and our laws,” she said on Facebook. “We will see how long they stay in my office.”

The Texas chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations on Thursday hosted the annual Texas Muslim Capitol Day as “an opportunity for community members to learn about the democratic political process and how to be an advocate for important issues.”

One obvious puzzle here: why would a state legislator put an Israeli flag on her desk, and demand respect for it from American citizens?

Second puzzle, less obvious: why do Muslims need a special designated day to visit the state’s capitol? And why must they visit as Muslims, in specifically sectarian guise? Doesn’t that suggest that they intend to vote strategically, as a bloc–i.e., that they’re lobbying? Of course, the presence of the Israeli flag on Molly White’s desk suggests that they have company.

Third (set of) puzzle(s): Is there a Texas Jewish Capitol Day? A Christian one? A Buddhist one? How about an atheist one, or one for Marxists, Aristotelians, or Petit-influenced small-r republicans? And if not, why not?

Fourth puzzle, yet subtler: how long before the Republican Party implodes under the influence of people like Molly White and Co.?

Fifth puzzle, the subtlest of all: what would Rawls say?

(ht: Minaret of Freedom blog)

One thought on “Feel the love: theocratic dust-up at the Austin corral (or: Public Reason comes to Texas)

  1. Pingback: Nagel on sexual perversion (part 1 of 2): the argument | Policy of Truth

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