Tuesday, September 19, 2006

John Kerry eyes the Christian vote

John Kerry visited my alma mater recently to deliver a speech to the faithful. At least one Christian blog sees it as an attempt to snag a few Christians in the Democratic party net - a deliberate strategy to draw Christians voters away from the Republican party. Pepperdine University is a Church of Christ (no drinking, no dancing, etc) run school that takes its religion seriously. Pepperdine is also a bastion of conservative Republican power in California. A democrat has about as much chance of influencing these people as I did in avoiding their benevolent form of moral activism and emphasis on Christian values. Kerry's message may have fell on deaf ears.

One of my favorite passages from scripture, a familiar story from the Gospel According to Mark 10:35-45, sheds a lot of light for me on how to translate my faith into action. The Apostles James and John ask their teacher Jesus if they can sit, one at his right hand and one at his left hand, and bask in his glory. They want to be seen as first among the disciples. And Jesus tells them, while they can drink from his cup and share in the baptism, the special position they want isn’t his to grant—it’s only for those who are up to the task. When the other ten disciples heard about James and John’s request, they were angry. And so Jesus gathered them all together and said to them, “You know that among the Gentiles those whom they recognize as their rulers lord it over them. But it is not so among you; but whoever wishes to be first among you must be servant of all. For the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.”

Kerry's speech reads like a sermon, however, once he gets past quoting bible passages, he lays out his plan to bring Christians back to the Democratic fold. The speech is worth reading, it portends a election cycle steeped in religious symbolism. Atheist might feel left out. Of course, Kerry made a gesture towards all faiths too.

We are more than just Christians, Jews, Buddhists, Muslims or atheists: we are human beings. We are more than the sum of our differences — we share a moral obligation to treat one another with dignity and respect—and the rest is commentary. Nowhere does this obligation arise more unavoidably than in when and how to resort to war.

The one think to keep in mind regarding the new democratic strategy is that it was delivered by John Kerry. A few months down the road he will be singing a different tune. What was his nickname? Flipper?

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1 comment:

beepbeepitsme said...

At least he doesn't mind atheists. Unlike Bush Snr.

"No, I don't know that atheists should be considered as citizens, nor should they be considered as patriots. This is one nation under God."