You never hear about the rise of politically middle-of-the-road talk radio. Nobody has ever been called a "bleeding heart moderate." There's the religious right; but nobody speaks of the religious nonpartisan.
Fundamentalism is a problem regardless of the religion to which it pertains, since it brings with it a highly conservative mentality that only benefits a few. Gateway fundamentalism is the slow and steady encroachment of religion through once-secular government and democratic processes.
There is a hunger for connections. We want to live in communities and societies where we feel safe, accepted, and affirmed, and where the structures promote the highest aspirations of the human being for love and fulfillment.
Candace Gorham, a licensed counselor and member of The Clergy Project, said she was ordained as a prophetess and evangelist at 18 years old in a store-front Pentecostal church that she described as extreme.
Such zealots believe they are taking commands directly from God, which makes it impossible to compromise. After all, if God is on your side and then you strike a deal, aren't you betraying the Lord? Such attitudes have made governing at home nearly impossible.
Having been refugees once already, my parents dreaded the possibilities and began to scratch their heads, wondering if it was time to head north to the part of the Punjabi hinterland which was still left in India... They chose Canada.
The culture war in Uganda over LGBT rights is a double-binded problem: a struggle over the hegemony of fundamentalism and a fog behind which a power grab for the nation's oil reserves and natural wealth can take place.
For the better part of the last 10 years, many Muslims in America have been searching for ways to change the image of Islam. But every time there is a terrorist attack committed by a Muslim, it sets back years of work by activists and decades of Muslim integration into American society.
Aside from remarks here and there, I had never directly taken up this issue with my mother. I had never had the provocation to do so until just last month, when a gay relative contacted my sibling to share that my mother had written him with a heavy-handed dose of spiritual advice.
I'd been warned if we posted our MIT Survey on Science, Religion and Origins, I'd get inundated with hate-mail from religious fundamentalists.But most of them didn't come from religious people, but from angry atheists!
The thing I find most troubling about fundamentalism, whether in politics or in religion, is the war fundamentalists declare and then wage on almost anyone whose opinion or understanding of truth is different from theirs.
As the American presidential campaign swings into high gear, recent events in the fabled city of Timbuktu remind us of the very real social and cultural costs of religious and political fundamentalism.