Religion & Politics

CNN is running a story about the increased importance of religion in the politics of both parties, but particularly the Democrats, for 2008.

I think this is okay:

Jim thinking to himself, “I’m a Christian, and as a Christian I support the poor, I support equality for all people, I support peace . . . Candidates X, Y, & Z and ballot measures 1, 2, & 3 will further those causes.” Not only is it okay, it is essential.

I think this is okay (although it is certainly not a reality at this time):

Chalice Christian Church believes in equality for GLBT community, in humane treatment of the poor, in peace and in caring for the Environment. We ask Legislator A, B, & C to further these causes.

I don’t think it is okay for me to say, “Candidate X is not a Christian, I wont vote for him.” I don’t think it is okay for Chalice Christian Church to say, “Members, vote for candidate X.”

Is this a legitimate distinction?

3 thoughts on “Religion & Politics”

  1. I think it’s a fine distinction at the level you draw it here. Unfortunately as you dig more deeply and specifically into every decision, you end up in fuzzy territory.

    Not appropos of the above, you said, “‘I’m a Christian, and as a Christian I support the poor…'”

    This necessarily draws me to ask, if it is your Christianity that drives you to suppor the poor, how could you assume the non-Christian would also do it?

  2. I think the distinction is pretty dramatic. Particularly for the individual. I agree the action of the church is more tricky.

    For an individual you have someone who would be 100% willing to vote for an atheist or Buddhist who would promote peace, fight poverty, and protect equality.

  3. Not appropos of the above, you said, “‘I’m a Christian, and as a Christian I support the poor…'”

    This necessarily draws me to ask, if it is your Christianity that drives you to suppor the poor, how could you assume the non-Christian would also do it?

    I’m an American, and as an American I support free speech. Many people who are not American also support free speech.

    I would assume that non-Christians can either care for the poor because of 1) an independent source of developing this virture or 2) because they are influenced by this aspect of Christianity, but not by others, such as believing in a unique role of Jesus.

    I think there are cases of both in the world and in America.

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