Thursday, June 14, 2007

A Matter of Pride, Not Principle

As we near the end of George W. Bush's second term in the White House it is clear to most Americans that the status quo is much worse than when he first took office in 2000. Multiple polls have confirmed this view as the current opinion in America among citizens of both political parties. This is a sign of how bad things truly are: Bush has lost the support of his army of admirers, his true-blue believers, his faithful followers. And despite the loss of support, the smear of scandals, and the exhaustively futile effots in Iraq, Bush has remained unchallenged by a substantial group of his faithful followers: the Church.
The Christian Church has consistently been one of the most outspoken bodies in America on issues of morality in society and government. However, over the last eight years American Christians have displayed nothing but blind loyalty to man whose walk doesn't come even close to his talk. And only now, as current trends illustrate, are Christians - who voted twice for this man - beginning to withdraw their support for Bush and his policies. Still, this recant of support is often unspoken and hidden in order to preserve the appearance of being without fault.
As years pass and situations in the world worsen I am disheartened to see so many Christians who would rather not talk about the shortcomings of America's leadership than to renounce their patronage. I am sickened to see the Church as a living body "affirm by their silence the most un-Christian policies of government" (from 'The Church Jesus Builds;' edited by Joseph Coleson). It is a fantastic dream in which Christians are living to presume that being correct has more to do with who you voted for than how you live! This lifestyle is the model for so many Christians because it's EASY!
I encounter Christians on a daily basis. They are good people with good hearts full of love and belief for God. Yet unfortunately I run into a dead end 90% of the time when I attempt discussing the dire need for change in America's leadership. I can often see the fear or embarrassment on their face. It is this reason that I have come to the sad conclusion that American Christians would rather hold on to their pride than actually live like Jesus.


  1. While you speak of a point that is very true - that support for our current president has been exhibited, sometimes blindly, from certain groups of Christians - your reflection leaves me with a few concerns.

    That is, you make a broad generalization about "Christians" and "The Church." Throughout current history, certain sects of Christianity tend to refer to their own church as "the church," whether those persons be Wesleyan, Episcopalian, Pentecostal, Catholic, etc. Thus, in a posting such as yours, the expression "the church" lacks clarity. Who do you claim would "rather hold on to their pride than actually live like Jesus?" Which church are you referring to when you say "the church?"

    I would argue that there are hundreds of groups in America, all of whom would identify themselves as Christian or which are strongly motivated by Christian principles, who are indeed fighting the fight against tyranny and injustice that reigns down from G.W. Bush. Additionally, thousands of Christians join secular anti-war movements, recognizing the strength, conviction and action that can be conveyed when religiously diverse populations come together around the same issue. If you're curious who I am reffering to - just google "Christian anti-war" and peruse your findings. They are pletherous.

  2. Indeed you're correct that I have been generic in my accusations of the "church." I guess the only way for me to specify would be to point a proverbial finger toward the fundamental, right-wing Christian demographic that has consistently voted for Republican candidates. But you see now I've run into another generalization. There are no doubt many fundamental, right-wingers who did not vote for Bush and are fighting against his policies. Perhaps this is the condundrum of pointing blame. There will always be exceptions.

    I agree with you that there are many anti-Bushies who also proclaim their Christian faith. This post is merely a reflection on the state of my surrounding community of believers; as well as my feelings toward it.

    ( Plethoric ) ;)

  3. Well, darn, I can't even argue because apparently I have invented a word. "Plethourous" does not exist it seems.

    This has pissed me off and therefore I feel that I do not want to respond, but I simply can't resist.

    Perhaps, in the future, you might consider pointing to "certain Christian groups and individuals" rather than pointing at the whole group or a certain "fundamental, right-wing Christian demographic." Labeling is often the downfall of an argument. In the moment that you "label" a group or a person you are forced to create what are often untrue sterotypes and generalizations. Thus, if you're trying to get a point across, just say "some people" or whatever seems appropriate for the point you are making.

    Might I also suggest you move to Buffalo and find yourself some communities that align with a vision of the world that parallels more closely your own? Justice-seeking Christians who base their everyday actions in a perpetual attempt to align their own life with the life and teachings of Jesus are out there. And, for that matter, persons whom are Buddhist, Atheist, Muslim, etc. also live lives in search of peace and social justice.

    SO, the moral of the story: move to Buffalo. Volunteer.