Sunday, May 17, 2009

Nice Christians?

This is a comment to an excellent, thought-provoking blog post by a dear friend of mine.

@Dean - I'm reading UNChristian by David Kinnaman (excellent book) and I was thinking the same thing. "Yep. That's us. We seem to be against everything and for nothing."

@Shawn - Well, that cuts both ways. Conservative (and Christian!) media paint all liberals as godless, amoral, baby-killing, America-hating communists.

I don't like either side's stereotyping. And I'm frustrated by the fact that humans so eagerly grasp at caricatures of those who are different. Think about it honestly: If your opponent's perception of you is flawed, couldn't your perception of them be flawed as well?

From the day I accepted Christ, I understood that you grew as a Christian by studying the Bible, praying, going to church, and becoming a Republican. Only later did I discover that the last one wasn't required. And frankly, I think I used it as a mask to cover for not always doing the first three very well. It was easy to repeat rhetoric I heard on talk radio, make sarcastic remarks about Bill Clinton, and sign a few petitions - then pat myself on the back for "fighting for righteousness." As with head knowledge of theology, I believed the right (?) things but I didn't have to DO anything. It's easy to take potshots at politicians and root for your "team." It's a lot harder to directly affect the community around us face-to-face.

Also, to set up one political party or ideology as the only true one is idolatry (and illogic) of the first order. Each side has legitimate points and the best solutions to many problems. But not all problems. They are earthly institutions and philosophies, born both of noble intentions and selfish interests. That's why we need each to keep the other in check.

But I don't think politics is the point of Jan's post. As I already pointed out, it's easier to avoid introspection and self-evaluation - the purpose she expressed - and just launch into well-rehearsed arguments about politics. And, let's face it, when "teammates" do that amongst themselves they are just preaching to the choir, flashing their "True Believer" badges at each other. Is this good use of our time? Or, rather, God's time?

Let's find out where we have contributed to the often accurate perception that we are mindless sheep bent on making everyone follow our rules, with not much care for their real lives and legitimate questions. I hope Jan's acquaintance came away with an understanding that that's not what we're about. At least not deep down. And I hope that we have the humility to learn that we do have wisdom to glean from liberals, too. I think I read somewhere *cough*Proverbs*cough* that safety is in a multitude of counsel, not in a gaggle of folks who already agree with you.

Friday, October 10, 2008

My Endorsements

Starting this weekend, I will be announcing my endorsements for statewide, local, and national office. I will announce one per post.

I'm pretty excited about it and I'm having fun researching the candidates. I hope you enjoy it and - more importantly - find it useful.

Stay tuned.

Monday, September 15, 2008

Friday, September 05, 2008

Sarah Palin's address to the RNC

Transcript from NPR

Note: We later learned that (like a certain other person is accused of frequently) she is great with a teleprompter. Without, not so much. I can hardly listen to her when she speaks extemporaneously. Having said that, this is still a great speech and she did a flawless job. It will be the apex of her political career.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Palin is FFL member

I have long touted Feminists for Life as the model for pro-life activism. It is focused just as much on providing alternatives and practical support for women as it is on opposing abortion. It is led primarily by women and seeks their equality and empowerment while also giving voice to the unborn. I have long lamented the pro-life movement's fixation on elimination of the procedure itself with little regard to the circumstances that lead women to choose it. FFL addresses both ends of the situation.

Here is their statement on Palin's candidacy.

"Sarah Palin, governor of Alaska, has been selected by Republican presidential nominee Senator John McCain as his running mate.

"According to The Anchorage Daily News published August 6, 2006, "Palin said last month that no woman should have to choose between her career, education and her child." The article went onto say that "she's a member of a pro-woman but anti-abortion group called Feminists for Life." "I believe in the strength and the power of women, and the potential of every human life,' she said."

"Feminists for Life's policy is that all memberships are confidential. However, since Governor Palin has been public about her membership, we can confirm that Palin became a member in 2006.

"Earlier this week Feminists for Life reacted to the inclusion of woman-centered solutions in the Democratic Party platform, and the inclusion of FFL's trademarked message, "Women deserve better® than abortion,©" in the Republican Party platform.
FFL President Serrin Foster said "It is unprecedented to see the platforms of both major U.S. political parties incorporate key pieces of FFL's unique message."

"Of course there is a certain excitement about the recent movement toward FFL's woman-centered solutions and message by the parties, and now the selection of a pro-life feminist as the Vice Presidential nominee. But as a nonpartisan organization, we cannot endorse any candidates," Foster said.

“FFL members represent a broad political as well as religious spectrum, and we remain both nonpartisan and nonsectarian. There are many issues outside Feminists for Life’s mission. Feminists for Life is dedicated to systematically eliminating the root causes that drive women to abortion—primarily lack of practical resources and support—through holistic, woman-centered solutions. We recognize that abortion is a reflection that our society has failed to meet the needs of women and that too often women have settled for less. Women deserve better than abortion,” said Foster.

"As each party takes steps to acknowledge and meet the needs of women, Feminists for Life is prepared to work with our elected leaders on behalf of girls and women who deserve far better than abortion. FFL has a long track record of working with both sides of the political aisle on major legislation such as the Violence Against Women Act, Child Support Enforcement Act, and much more. Many members of Congress have already stepped forward to cosponsor the FFL-inspired bill with bipartisan support, the Elizabeth Cady Stanton Pregnant and Parenting Student Services Act.

"We invite all parties, all public servants, and all people to join us on the bridge of woman-centered solutions," Foster said.

Sarah Palin pretty much, well ... rocks

Just finished listening to Sarah Palin's announcement speech.

One thing's for certain: She will go toe-to-toe with Joe Biden in the debates and not bat an eye. She's not a blow-dried policy wonk like Romney. She's not an oily car salesman type like many of the other GOP veep hopefuls. She's impassioned, forceful, and (according to her record) not afraid of anyone - even the Republican Party itself.

She's also a devout Christian and fervently pro-life but is not a Wall Street Republican (which anyone who's read a few post here knows I really don't like). She and her husband are union members and she has ruthlessly rooted out corruption in Alaska - and inside her own party! - since she was first elected to public office.

Sounds like a certain president I love. She was even a public service commissioner just like TR.

She's also willing to compromise on many fronts. She opposes gay marriage but she passed medical benefits and visitation rights for life partners. And, like Joe Biden, she has a son on active duty in the Army and her military advice will be extremely well-considered before it is given.

Based only on what i've seen and read so far, I wish SHE were running for president rather than McCain!

And on that tack, even if McCain loses she now has national name recognition for 2012. And she's only 44. It's win/win for her.