Thursday, May 1, 2008

Ike foreshadowed

President Eisenhower's notorious reference to the desirability of "a deeply felt religious faith and I don't care what it is" supposedly appeared in the New York Times of 23 December 1952, but I am too cheap to check. This reductio ad absurdum of Protestantism has a longer pedigree than I had imagined. The following comes from A.T. Andreas's History of Chicago, volume 2, page 439, about the First Unitarian Church founded in 1857. BTW, this was no fringe outfit; one of it stalwarts was early railroad executive William M. Larrabee:

"Early in its history this Church attempted to formulate a creed, but found its belief too inclusive, and so abandoned the attempt. The only article of faith upon which all could unite was, that each member might entertain his own belief."

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