The Two Biggies

** UPDATE 10/24: I need to rebut myself below somewhat. I wrote that Senators McCain and Obama were fairly close, if not in ideas than on outcomes, on the abortion issue. I think I’m wrong. Digging around again, I’m having to balance what I read/posted here with the much more pro-choice leaning postings on the Obama site. I admit that it’s a stretch for my both/and mindset, but it’s not impossible to still keep the hope for better in the midst of something worse. And I still think the choice for Obama is a better mandate for us as a country going forward.

Thought this was a good question to pop onto the main page. My buddy Steve asked something in the last post that is ginormous in the minds of Christian voters. I replied in the comments, and re-post here for further discussion, or just to stare ate the pretty font:

Steve: Lots of lofty ideals espoused, but bottom line, he’ll end up raising taxes. You discussed "Us vs. Them" in your last post. He’s just as guilty of it as you say McCain is. Obama’s "Us" is "the poor, downtrodded blue collar worker" and the "them" is the "rich." Class warfare.

Are you really voting Obama, or is this another one of your April Fool’s Day posts carried over to October? How do you get past the Abortion issue and the same-sex marriage issue?

Rick: How do I get past the two litmus test issues that let others judge whether I’m really a Christian or not? On abortion, they are different, but their outcomes are the same – if it’s overturned, go back to the states. If it’s not overturned, probably better as a state issue. They both seem to be politically federalist on that one, so it’s a wash. But throw in the social-economic stuff, and I honestly think Obama is more pro-whole-life than McCain.

On same-sex, they are almost exactly the same. The way I understand, both sides want same-sex partners to have the same legal rights as married couples, but they also both do not want to grant married status to that mix. This one hasn’t popped up in the attack ads from either side, so it’s another wash, I think.

Oh – and I’m not saying there is no Us vs Them. I’m saying that the separation isn’t the focus – it might be a part of the equation, but it doesn’t have to be the major factor going forward.

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8 thoughts on “The Two Biggies

  1. jeremy says:

    The problem with Steve’s question is it presupposes all Christians feel the exact same way about those two issues.
    The problem with your answer is that it allows the presupposition to continue by focusing on loopholes that Christians can use if they want to vote for Obama but do not want to address the actual issues themselves.
    The problem, then, isn’t policies of the candidates, rather the nature of how we handle presuppositions.

  2. Rick says:

    Thanks, Jeremy – that’s very profound. I’m not sure what the heck it means, but I’m sure it’s very profound :). Actually – that’s almost my point, I hope. Beyond the issues, how do they respond to things like their own presuppositions, the perspectives of others, etc.

  3. Caryn says:

    I’m really tired of people assuming Christians have to take huge POLITICAL stands on either issue. Why are these things so related to LEGISLATION?? I think abortion is abominable, but the battleground, to me, is person to person. And it’s a spiritual battleground. With same-sex marriage, all the more so. I just don’t care who Johnny sleeps with, nor who he marries. I’d rather see stable households than anything else. The bottom line is that lots of rational people disagree about those issues – not the Biblical mandates to individuals, but how the issues relate to GOVERNMENT. WHat we can all agree on is simple, that a person’s closest friend, be it husband or wife or partner, deserves certain legal connections in hospital/death scenarios. And that we need less abortions, more help for girls in crisis. So what’s so unChristian about supporting a candidate that supports those two compromises?

  4. Rick says:

    Using all CAPS to convey EMOTION is very much a part of the ONGOING discussion into WHAT IS WRONG with whatever it is we’re TALKING about 🙂 – thanks!

  5. Nicholi says:

    I agree, Caryn, and I get annoyed with people assuming Heaven is red or blue.
    About the gay marriage thing, I think both candidates are exactly the same, right? But honestly, I don’t really care who marries who.
    And about abortion, Jim Wallis says it better than I can
    [quote]I will choose candidates who have the best chance to pursue the practical and proven policies which could dramatically reduce the number of abortions in America and therefore save precious unborn lives, rather than those who simply repeat the polarized legal debates and “pro-choice” and “pro-life” mantras from either side.[/quote]
    I don’t believe a Christian has to vote one way or the other. But, I am voting Democrat because their values seems to be closer to my Christian values, the way I interpret them.
    The Jim Wallis quote above was from this post – http://www.sojo.net/blog/godspolitics/?p=3166

  6. Rick says:

    Heaven is plaid.
    And there’s a special area for Gamecock fans that’s garnet and black.

  7. Nicholi says:

    Wrong. Heaven is Cowboys blue.

  8. Rick says:

    Not even close, man. I’ll be praying for you.

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