In his essay “If God is Dead”, Pat Buchanan wrote: “A people’s religion, their faith, creates their culture, and their culture creates their civilization. And when faith dies, the culture dies, the civilization dies, and the people begin to die.” That’s simply not true. Religion is not about commerce which is what a successful culture requires to be successful. At best religion as religion is about the life after this life but culture is about this life, not the next one. Buchanan is wrong again to place religion at the apex of a culture.
The success of a culture depends on it’s values, not it’s religions.
Pat also left out the middle steps. All cultures including the non-religious ones call certain actions criminal. Fraud, theft, murder, rape and so on. The actions of a culture are directed by the values, the total or the set of which are called: “the moral code” of the group. Pat and a great many others call the moral code their religion but that’s incorrect even though it’s common to do so. A set of values is still about the values in the set but religious values aren’t about a culture at all, they are about the particular religion at issue which for Buchanan is Roman Catholicism which is part of Christianity although the Roman Catholics with their Pope are different than other parts of Christianity.
When Buchanan writes about religion and God it’s about the Roman Catholic religion, the Roman Catholic Gods and the Roman Catholic values which Buchanan should understand are not identical to the values of Christianity although many parts of the different sets of values are identical. The total are different enough to keep them from being joined together.
Somehow Pat goes from the death of faith to the death of people but people with and without faith die. Everyone dies but not everyone has faith and even if their faith is different than Buchanan’s Roman Catholicism they still die so the connection between faith and death is freighted with differences and in the end it’s a false claim meant to move Buchanan’s faith arguments forward. Nevertheless, the connection is wrong.
Buchanan drifts into the ether asking: “Is God Dead” which presumes he lived. That’s another logic problem for Buchanan. Non-believers say something which wasn’t alive cannot die. Doubters would ask the existence be proved before the death is admitted. Buchanan is wrong again.
Buchanan doesn’t end while he’s not so far behind. He continues his presumption that those who cease to believe in God do not then believe in nothing, they believe in anything. But,…… if they believe in anything they prompter hoc believe in God which is the argument Buchanan just destroyed. The further he goes the behinder he gets.