All over my social media feeds, people are shaking their heads even breaking down in tears over what is happening in our country. In particular are my liberal Christian friends (and yes, there are many who are liberal and faithfully Christian) who cannot believe the support fundamentalists and evangelicals have given to political candidates like Donald Trump and Roy Moore. My liberal friends see this as a complete abandonment of any Christian moral values, and despair that the America they loved is gone for good.
“Truth, justice, …” (as Superman used to say) is no longer the “American way.”
“How could they?!?” they ask. How could people who claim to follow Jesus Christ vote for people who sexually abuse women and children? How could they vote for pedophiles? How could they justify supporting candidates amidst such heinous allegations, while calling for the heads of Democrats like Al Franken to roll?
Pastor Earl Wise (in justifying Moore’s actions) told the Boston Globe “there are some 14-year-olds, who, the way they look, could pass for 20.”
Sarah Rumpf in an article in Red State hits the nail on the head. It’s about abortion. For nearly 4 decades “Evangelicals” have been hearing sermon after sermon, and had “Thou Shalt Not Kill” linked exclusively to abortion. In their minds it is a spiritual issue and they will pay any price to make abortion illegal. They will allow their children to be sexually abused, molested, and raped if that will bring about an end to legalized abortion in this country.
NOTHING ELSE MATTERS!
For liberals to have a sense of how they feel, they want to end abortion even more passionately than liberals want gun control. And those defending a woman’s right to choose are as intransigent as the NRA is on gun control. It is a case of an Immovable Object vs. an Unstoppable Force. In between are a majority of Americans who yearn for a common sense approach to both issues.
The take-away, as long as those on both extremes are completely unwilling to give an inch, we remain at a stalemate; and those who are willing to do anything: lie, cheat, steal, deceive, etc. will take advantage of those in the middle blown to and fro by the winds of moral indignation.
Two very interesting facts that seem to be lost on the anti-abortion:
- In the first year of the Trump administration, with Republican majorities in both House and Senate. Nothing has been done to address the issue of abortion, other than confirm Neal Gorsuch to the Supreme Court. Anti-Abortion activists believe this will result in the overturning of Roe v. Wade.
- Overturning Roe v. Wade will not in any way make abortion illegal.Citation. Roe v. Wade, 410 U.S. 113, 93 S. Ct. 705, 35 L. Ed. 2d 147, 1973 U.S. LEXIS 159 (U.S. Jan. 22, 1973)
Brief Fact Summary. Appellant Jane Roe, a pregnant mother who wished to obtain an abortion, sued on behalf of all woman similarly situated in an effort to prevent the enforcement of Texas statutes criminalizing all abortions except those performed to save the life of the mother.
Synopsis of Rule of Law. Statutes that make criminal all abortions except when medically advised for the purpose of saving the life of the mother are an unconstitutional invasion of privacy. Case Briefs
For religious conservatives the answer is encapsulated in the Ten Commandments. This is why they fight tooth and nail to protect the display of the 10 C’s in courtrooms and public buildings for which Roy Moore is the white knight on the white horse. He defended the 10 C’s to the point of losing his job. He can be forgiven for any lesser crime.
For religious liberals, the will of God is defined by “Love the Lord your God with all your heart, and all your strength, and all your soul, and all your mind; and your neighbor as yourself.” The law of love or better known as the Great Commandment. Combine that with Jesus parable in Matthew 25 “Whatever you do to the least of these you do unto me.”
Religious conservatives oppose abortion “Thou shalt not kill,” yet support the death penalty for murderers justifying it by citing “Thou shalt not kill.” Murderers deserve the death penalty. In this case the 10 C’s seem to apply to others but not themselves: Others shouldn’t kill, but if we determine someone to be deserving of death then it is OK. “Children inutero should not be killed because WE judge them to be innocent, and therefore undeserving of death (and yes this is simplistic in the extreme, but captures the essence of the argument). While murderers should be killed because WE judge them to be guilty, and therefore deserving of death.”
The other factor in all of this is Objectivism. My recent blogpost The Handbasket In Which We Find Ourselves begins to explain the effect of Objectivism on the current situation. The key difference between Objectivism and Christianity is this in Objectivism selfishness and greed are ultimately good and moral; in Christianity selfishness and greed are evil.
The current struggle is not a moral one, but a Spiritual one. And it revolves around the question “What is the will of God?” An Objectivist believes “God wants me to be rich, as rich as I can be. Because by me being rich you will benefit. And if you don’t that’s your problem not mine.”
A Christian believes “God has gifted and blessed me not for my sake, but for the sake others. Therefore, I will do all I can for the sake my sisters and brothers in the human race.”
SOME LIBERAL CHRISTIAN REFERENCES
From Martin Luther’s Small Catechism:
Galatians 5:13-15 For you were called to freedom, brothers and sisters; only do not use your freedom as an opportunity for self-indulgence, but through love become slaves to one another. For the whole law is summed up in a single commandment, ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself.’ If, however, you bite and devour one another, take care that you are not consumed by one another.
1 Corinthians 12:4-7 Now there are varieties of gifts, but the same Spirit; and there are varieties of services, but the same Lord; and there are varieties of activities, but it is the same God who activates all of them in everyone. To each is given the manifestation of the Spirit for the common good.
And, in case you missed it, this idea is written into the Preamble of the Constitution:
We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.
OK, I will stop rambling now.