How Dare the President! [Part 1 of 2]
Although most of my conversations here are usually regarding faith, current events come up from time to time (but just so you know, I don’t go into them in my book). I am frequently fixated on the idea of whether my worldview is affecting my faith or if my faith is affecting my worldview.
This all comes together as I consider the world that my children live in and will inherit.
I am a person that gets tired of pretense and hidden agendas. As I read the news, there is a cautioning in my heart. It seems to detect things below the surface of what’s being reported. Sometimes it’s just plain obvious, though. I don’t need to detect anything.
That’s what happened about a week ago and it’s been chewing at me ever since. I couldn’t just keep quiet.
Recently, President Obama spoke with more than 1,000 religious leaders in two conference calls regarding his healthcare agenda. He was hoping to promote said agenda to their congregations, by default. In the conversation the President called his agenda a “moral imperative.”
Furthermore, he also said expanding healthcare fulfills a “core moral and ethical obligation that we look out for one another …that I am my brother’s keeper, my sister’s keeper,” and “We are partners with God in matters of life and death.” Al Gore and former President Bill Clinton (who didn’t want to endorse my book for some reason) just came out with similar sentiments. This is what I like to call invoking “the popular Jesus”:
“We all know the popular Jesus—the one who said so many generous, patient, tolerant, and graceful things. Everyone loves the popular Jesus. Everyone likes to quote him in speeches to support personal causes. At Easter and Christmas, the popular Jesus helps sell merchandise and fill churches. Many forward-thinking people quote the popular Jesus to resolve problems. World leaders tackle current events relying on the words of the popular Jesus.” (see chapter 8 of my book)
What the President said really made me angry for three reasons.
First, the tactic implies that if I don’t wholeheartedly subscribe to the President’s agenda, I am, by default, immoral—or at least not moral enough in my thinking on this issue.
That’s what I like to call a cheap shot. To vilify the opposition is what people do when they are on the ropes and/or can’t deal with the content of opposing ideas presented in the overall discussion. Strong-arm tactics also make me suspicious, like there is some type of hidden agenda they are trying to distract people from. Plus, it also smacks of pretense. As if I shouldn’t question him or his ideas because of who he is, how smart he is, or how moral he presents himself to be.
Is this the type of open and civil debate this self-proclaimed unifier promised during the campaign? Where is the openness? Where are the C-SPAN discussions for us to voice our concerns? Where are the informational websites to post our comments and questions? Or is this just guilt, fear, and manipulation repackaged as reform as politicians are so fond of doing? Wasn’t this supposed to be the most transparent administration in history?
Secondly, why is it that Democrats can interject God into their political conversations and no one says word one? The TV news, papers, and bloggers are all silent. Do you know what happens when anyone else does this? Say, a more conservative candidate that is not a Democrat and is white? They get pounced on for weeks in the news cycles for trying to shatter the “wall between church and state” or trying to create a theocracy.
So where are my media peeps on this?
Thirdly, and most importantly, what about abortion!
I am unapologetically pro-life. That’s right. I said it. It doesn’t mean I hate people who aren’t. But don’t lecture me about morality or that I am my brother’s keeper, Mr. President (or Clinton or Gore, to a lesser degree), when you’ve voted on several occasions to protect late-term abortions, partial-birth abortions, and, even worse, not protecting born-alive failed abortions (when the abortion goes wrong and the baby actually survives, the doctor can kill the baby). I am physically sick even writing that last one.
Plus, what about the Hippocratic Oath? Is it, “Sorry fetus. You’re not legally a ‘person’ yet, so we’ll be just fine disposing of you. You are a ‘being.’ But that’s not good enough. And even though most physicians, biologists, and scientist agree that life begins at conception, apparently that’s not good enough either. You are a mistake.”
If it’s not a baby, then you’re not pregnant, right? Sounds absurd, doesn’t it?
A baby is truly helpless and innocent. This is shameful. It is also a violation of the Constitution (The principles laid out in the Declaration of Independence, specifically. You know, the whole life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness we are all endowed with?), if you ask me.
At the core of my being is that life is sacred. In fact, I believe that every society, nation, and culture is defined by how they view and treat life at its early stages and the twilight years.
Out of curiosity, how has this administration treated the elderly so far?
Last week they also revealed Social Security recipients will not receive the automatic cost of living increases for the next two years.
Really? We can’t cut the bike paths or sidewalk projects from the ‘Stimulus Plan’ tucked away in there to make up the $8 billion? Besides, bike paths and sidewalks don’t stimulate anything (except heart-rates). I think we can make the sacrifice and redirect some pork in the Stimulus Plan toward the elderly, can’t we? Especially considering only 10% of it has been spent so far.
As a follower of Jesus, I am all for healthcare reform. So tomorrow I will talk more about that. But for today, how dare the President talk moral imperatives when he won’t protect the truly innocent.
With all due respect, I am outraged. And it makes me very suspicious of this legislation.