Steve Ahlquist writes, “With 113 seats in the General assembly, there is not one legislator that publicly identifies as atheist or Humanist.” That gets me wondering–what other religious minorities are represented in the General Assembly?
My religion does have some representation. There are two Jews in the Senate, Gayle Goldin and Josh Miller. (Interestingly, they are also the only two Senators on record supporting the full range of basic Democratic Party policy positions–a woman’s right to choose, marriage equality, an assault weapons ban, a repeal of voter ID, and a repeal of the tax cuts for the rich.) In the House, the only Jew is Mia Ackerman, a Democrat representing Lincoln and Cumberland.
But that’s just for my religion. As far as I know, the whole rest of the legislature is Christian.
Rhode Island is a majority-Christian state, but we do have substantial numbers of Jews, Muslims, Hindus, Shintos, Buddhists, Atheists, and members of other religious minorities. But far and away the largest religious minority in Rhode Island is the “nones”–spiritual people who reject organized religion. Nones are not atheists–they do wholly reject a higher power–but they do not adhere to an organized religion. Probably the most prominent none politician in America is Congresswoman Kyrsten Sinema (D-Arizona). Many nones are not vocal about their religious beliefs. Perhaps some legislators do not identify with a religion. Are there any representatives of our state’s largest religious minority in the General Assembly?
If I’m missing someone, please let me know in the comments.