Archive | Politics

The Difference between Christianity and Politics

Adam Nagourney reports for the New York Times that the same-sex “marriage” issue has become a hindrance to the Republican Party. More and more voters are simply disinterested in fighting over this issue. Nagourney writes:

“In the latest New York Times/CBS News poll, released on Monday, 31 percent of respondents over the age of 40 said they supported gay marriage. By contrast, 57 percent under age 40 said they supported it, a 26-point difference. Among the older respondents, 35 percent said they opposed any legal recognition of same-sex couples, be it marriage or civil unions. Among the younger crowd, just 19 percent held that view.

“Steve Schmidt, who was the senior strategist to Senator John McCain of Arizona during his presidential campaign, said in a speech and an interview that Republicans were in danger of losing these younger voters unless the party comes to appreciate how issues like gay marriage resonate, or do not resonate, with them.”

Think carefully about this last remark from Steve Schmidt. Essentially, he is saying that because the electorate is changing the Republican message on marriage needs to change as well.

Herein is one of the chief differences between faithful, biblical Christianity and democratic politics. On the one hand, political parties survive by changing their messages in order to accommodate the shifting mores and opinions of the culture. On the other hand, Christianity survives and flourishes by conserving its message and by never accommodating to cultural mores and opinions that are opposed to it. Christians have an allegiance to Jesus that trumps every other allegiance, and that means that our commitment to Jesus’ unchanging message must not be compromised for any reason. To miss that is to miss Christianity altogether.

In practical terms, that means that as the culture grows more and more accepting of same-sex “marriage,” faithful Christians will necessarily be pushed more and more to the cultural margins. But this shouldn’t frighten or surprise anyone. Christ’s followers have often found themselves in such a position, and Jesus told his disciples that we should expect it to be so (John 15:18-27). It’s just one more reminder that “here we do not have a lasting city, but we are seeking the city which is to come” (Hebrew 13:14).

Another Outrage from Planned Parenthood

Lila Rose is a 20-year old college student at UCLA. She has the voice of a 14-year old, but she has an ingenious plan to expose Planned Parenthood’s serial abuse of vulnerable young girls who are pregnant. Rose produces undercover videos in which she poses as an underage teen seeking an abortion from Planned Parenthood. Recently, she was featured in a front-page story in the LA Times. Watch the video, and read the article. Unbelievable.

A Clarification about Plan B

The FDA announced this week that it will allow “Plan B” contraceptive pills to be sold without a prescription to girls as young as 17 years old. You can read the announcement here.

Earlier this morning I read the New York Times‘s editorial about the decision and was miffed that the editors implied that there were no human life concerns when it comes to the use of the Plan B pills. The editors say that Plan B merely “blocks” or “prevents” pregnancies. Such language might appear to some to be saying that human life is not endangered by the use of this drug. But nothing could be further from the truth. Continue Reading →

Vermont Legalizes Same-Sex “Marriage”

Vermont has just become the fourth state to legalize same-sex “marriage” (read here). This is significant not just because the state has redefined “marriage,” but also because of how it was done. The other three states that have legalized these unions (Massachusetts, Connecticut and Iowa) have done so through the courts. And in each of those cases, same-sex “marriage” opponents can argue that judicial activism rather than democracy produced the result. This is not the case in Vermont. The elected representatives of the people of Vermont overwhelmingly voted to override the governor’s veto to make this happen.

It’s also important to note this. Not only are we seeing marriage redefined, but we are also witnessing the emergence of a new protected class in our country—one that is based upon sexual preference. In other words, just as discrimination based on race, class, and gender is prohibited in law, so now discrimination based on sexual preference is increasingly being prohibited in law. This is a radical change not least because the new protected status cannot logically be limited to homosexually oriented persons. There are a wide variety of sexual preferences in our culture (polygamy, pederasty, polyamory, etc.). The arguments that are being used now in the same-sex “marriage” debate will be applied to these other kinds sexual preferences as well. Make no mistake. The polygamists will be next in line for recognition.

This is a good opportunity for Christians to reflect on where things are going in our culture and what our place in it will be. It appears that the culture is drifting toward a radical redefinition of marriage—one that faithful Christians will not be able to agree with. This gradual redefinition of marriage will have many effects (some anticipated and some not) that we will have to reckon with. Come what may, we need to be ready to stand with integrity for the truth, even if it becomes costly to us.

More later.

Iowa Court Legalizes Gay ‘Marriage’

From the Associated Press:

The Iowa Supreme Court says the state’s same-sex marriage ban violates the constitutional rights of gay and lesbian couples, making it the third state where gay marriage is legal. . .

During oral arguments before the Supreme Court in December, Des Moines lawyer Dennis Johnson argued the ban violated his clients’ due process and equal protection rights.

“We are suggesting that everybody be able to participate equally in an institution that has existed since the beginning of this state,” Johnson said during arguments.’

The problem with this logic is clear. The “institution” of marriage in Iowa has been recognized as the union of one male and one female “since the beginning of this state.” In that light, the court is acting subversively. This court has preempted the Iowa state legislature and has invented out of whole cloth a new definition of marriage—a definition that the people of Iowa through their elected representatives would likely reject.

The times, they are a-changing . . .

One of the big stories this weekend was that the chairman and CEO of General Motors is resigning his position. What is even bigger news is that he is doing so at the behest of the Obama administration. What is even bigger news than that is that General Motors says the Obama administration is working to “restructure” the auto industry. You read that correctly. The government is going to restructure an entire industry. This does indeed signal a “tectonic” change in the way that business relates to government (see story).

Here’s how the New York Times is reporting it:

“The White House on Sunday pushed out the chairman of General Motors and instructed Chrysler to form a partnership with the Italian automaker Fiat within 30 days as conditions for receiving another much-needed round of government aid.

“The decision to ask G.M.’s chairman and chief executive, Rick Wagoner, to resign caught Detroit and Washington by surprise, and it underscored the Obama administration’s determination to keep a tight rein on the companies it is bailing out — a level of government involvement in business perhaps not seen since the Great Depression.”

The times, they are a-changing. That’s for sure.

The scourge of the post-60s liberals

Robert George has a fascinating account of how Fr. Richard John Neuhaus went from being a celebrated liberal to a despised conservative. George calls him “the scourge of the post-60s liberals.” It’s a brilliant little essay, and you need to read it. Here are the first two paragraphs:

‘In the early 1970s, Lutheran pastor Richard John Neuhaus was poised to become the nation’s next great liberal public intellectual—the Reinhold Niebuhr of his generation. He had going for him everything he needed to be not merely accepted but lionized by the liberal establishment. Continue Reading →

A Faux Compromise on Same-sex ‘Marriage’

kmiecA couple of weeks ago, two law professors from Pepperdine University (Douglas W. Kmiec and Shelley Ross Saxer) asked the California State Supreme Court to consider a compromise position on the issue of gay marriage (read the article here). The court was reviewing the recent passage of Proposition 8 in California, and Kmiec and Saxer came up with an idea that they thought would please all sides. Essentially, their idea comes down to this. Continue Reading →

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