Wednesday, March 05, 2008


Last night, we had some family over for my birthday, and, naturally, politics came up.  When my mother found out how I voted, she got pretty upset.  I stand by my vote.  Until last night, I've been pretty reticent about whom I support (or at least, I haven't come right out and said it), and I'll continue to do that.  But I will take a stand on one thing: Barack Obama is (probably*) not the antichrist.  And I think it's a despicable, fear-mongering attack unworthy of even debunking.  But for those of you who question his commitment to "traditional" (whatever that means) American values, you should read this article from Christianity Today, in which Obama is quoted as encouraging people to read their Bibles.  This quote I particularly like:

If people find [my support for civil unions] controversial then I would just refer them to the Sermon on the Mount, which I think is, in my mind, for my faith, more central than an obscure passage in Romans.

And later, on the Bible and public policy:

Which passages of Scripture should guide our public policy? Should we go with Leviticus, which suggests slavery is ok and that eating shellfish is abomination? How about Deuteronomy, which suggests stoning your child if he strays from the faith? Or should we just stick to the Sermon on the Mount - a passage that is so radical that it's doubtful that our own Defense Department would survive its application? So before we get carried away, let's read our Bibles. Folks haven't been reading their Bibles

I'm not saying how I voted out of the real fear of retaliation (I have a summer job in the Department of Justice that I wouldn't mind turning into a post-graduation job).  If people had made the same attacks on Hillary Clinton or Bill Richardson or John Edwards or John McCain or Mitt Romney or Mike Huckabee or anybody else, I would respond the same way.  Fear-mongering should have no place in today's America; there's enough real fear to go around without adding illegitimate fears to it.  Besides, what else did Jesus say?

Don't worry about tomorrow. It will take care of itself. You have enough to worry about today.

Anybody who tries to keep somebody out of office by referring to him or her as the antichrist ought to be stoned, Deuteronomy-style.  Then again, I'm against content-based speech restrictions, so they can say whatever they want.  Make that stoning Dixie Chick-style.



*I say "probably" because my understanding is that nobody knows who the Antichrist is or if it's even one particular person.  And that's one bet I don't want to lose.


Anonymous said...

Mikearoni here,

happy belated birthday. On Obama as Anti-X. interesting, I hadn't really thought of it that way, but since you brought it up, yeah, I can see it.

One thing does confuse me a little, I am wondering to which part of the Sermon on the Mount Obama keeps referring in the quotes you gave. I suppose it's the part about if your eye offends you pluck it out, or Maybe it was the part where Jesus said, "Be perfect." I don't know. just some food for thought.

Jeremy Masten said...

I think he's talking about the whole blessed-are-the-peacemakers thing. How else can you explain his assertion that the Defense Department wouldn't survive?

Brett, Julz, and Emma said...

I read the speech about a month ago that the article quoted. It was a definite springboard moment for me. Not many people get the whole application of the SOM like he does. I was very impressed by that. I think this time around I am leaning towards voting (if they win the nomination) for a person that let's their faith influence their policy, but in a drastically different way. If it can go through maybe we can get someone in office that is influenced by their faith to care for the marginalized and not care about what the powerful weathly few care about?