What did the Religious Right Believe?

Considering that the Religious Right was composed of many different independent Christian and conservative factions, what shared values held the group together? On what issues did they usually tend to agree? And what sort of goals did they generally hope to achieve?

The chart below breaks down several core beliefs of the Religious Right. It distinguishes between those ideas which were based primarily on religious thought (usually that of evangelical Christianity) and those based on conservative ideology. It also places these values in conversation with Laura Mallory’s actions, statements, and motivations during the Harry Potter case.

Individuals in the Religious Right related to each of these values differently according to their own individual circumstances, often accepting certain values while dismissing others. At the same time, these beliefs often overlapped, and sometimes reinforced one another. A belief in the importance of “the family,” for instance, might have also encouraged one to focus more intently on morality in an effort to protect their children.

While reading, pay close attention to the ideas of “biblical literalism” and the “end-times,” marked on the chart below with an exclamation point. These values were based on a belief in the supernatural, which resembled some Wiccans’ belief in magic.

Works cited:

Clyde Wilcox and Carin Robinson, Onward Christian Soldiers? The Religious Right in American Politics. Boulder: Westview Press, 2011.