Religion has become a major front in the American culture war. On one hand, believers champion their assertion that the U.S. is a republic founded on Christian values. But the growing ranks of non believers contend that religion has caused as much harm as good over the course of history. These polarized positions have made common ground harder to come by. Author Jacques Berlinerblau’s new book, How to Be Secular: A Call to Arms for Religious Freedom, makes a case for secularism in modern America. The book illustrates a common sense approach to bridging the gap and debunking the belief of the faithful that secularism is a bad word at the same time that it throws some water on the dogmatic atheists’ movement that can be militant about non-belief. Berlinerblau writes that there is room for everyone at the table and that we all stand to benefit by respectfully keeping church and state separate. How is it possible to govern without faith and still allow for it? What is the correct mixture of church and state in America?
Jacques Berlinerblau, author of “How to Be Secular: A Call to Arms for Religious Freedom” (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt); professor at Georgetown University’s School of Foreign Services and frequent contributor to the Washington Post’s “On Faith” column
Dr. Mel Robeck, Professor of Church History and Ecumenics at Fuller Seminary