Religion Dispatches on Trump’s Picks and New Leader of America's Bishops

Religion Dispatches is published the Annenberg School of USC (University of Southern California). They just published “Meet the New Christian Right, Same as the Old Christian Right” by Patricia Miller, documenting the strong ties between the Trump administration and the religious right. It is highly recommended. The media have largely avoided the subject.

Ms. Miller claims, “the commander-in-chief of today’s Christian right is Vice President-elect Mike Pence,” and supports it with facts I had not known. For example, when President George W. Bush passed a large bill to address the AIDS epidemic in Africa, Congressman Pence tried to assure that 1/3 of the funds went to abstinence education – a favorite of the religious right even though it has repeatedly proven ineffective. (In fact, teenagers taking such courses generally have higher rates of out-of-wedlock pregnancies, since they avoid birth control.) She reports on many others chosen by Trump.

Also, she reports that USCCB, the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, just elected Cardinal Daniel DiNardo as its president. Ms. Miller says he “is a straight-up reproductive rights culture warrior,” who actually claims that contraceptives increase women’s chances of getting AIDS, and what’s more, that they are ineffective – unlike the rhythm method. He probably would not have been elected without Vatican support.

There is lots more.