Oct 27, 2008

The Great Thing About Obama...

No, I'm not voting for him. But you wondered for a second didn't you?

Growing up, my parents were registered in different political parties, as were my mom's parents. It was never a big deal that I can remember...no heated discussions over holiday dinners or anything. Well, no heated political discussions, anyway. Gravy and green bean casserole are enough to set some of us off; no need to go anywhere near the government.

It wasn't until I was older that I learned how many people make the assumption that Christian = Republican.

I've always been one to challenge that assumption, but frankly over the years, and despite being registered Independent, I've always voted along Republican lines. It's only in this election that I've seen people actually considering both candidates and actually crossing party lines in their votes. It's madness, I tell you. It's refreshing to see something other than the same old boring political discussions, and same old approaches to the same old issues.

What's not refreshing is finding how badly folks can behave when they're not used to having their views challenged, and suddenly their friend goes & votes for the "other guy." No, sadly this is the same ol' same ol' when it comes to people not understanding how to disagree respectfully. And no matter how right you feel, "You're voting for who?!? But I thought you were a Christian" is not very respectful.

But you know what? I'm glad it's being brought up. I'm glad people are having to really explore why they think the way they do, and why they react the way they do, and how they handle disagreements. Where the candidates can sling mud all day long, suddenly things change a little bit when you're talking with a close friend. Who you know is perfectly intelligent, and thinks things through, and also loves Jesus. I think it makes us take a step back & try to understand the other side, rather than quickly dismissing it because it's all a bunch of right/left, liberal/conservative, Republican/Democrat hooey. It might well be, but better to know why we think it's hooey.

So anyway...I have a theory about becoming the president. I think that the president knows things the rest of us don't. I think they are things the rest of us don't want to know; things we are more than happy to live in total ignorance of. Secret things, dangerous things, scary things. I think no matter how experienced and knowledgeable a person is, it doesn't prepare them for the gravity of the office of president because of how much they suddenly become privy to. I think that whoever we elect will step into office, and as he gains a more complete perspective of these things that only he and a select few know about, he will go "Oh." And it will become clear to him why he cannot act a certain way with this issue, or he must do that over there, or he will understand why a decision was made that seemed completely idiotic at the time. Or maybe he'll understand that yes, it was in fact idiotic; who knows.

In that regard I'm not afraid for Obama to win. I'm not voting for him because he favors more government control in most everything, while I prefer less government control in general. While I don't think he'll turn the US into a socialist nation in 4 years, I do think that under him we will pay more taxes and there will be little snippets of socialism popping up. Which could lead to increasing socialistic patterns, which in some ways sounds really good, but in the end I don't think it's the right path for the US.

But like I said, I think anyone's claims are tempered when they get the full view. Plus if you're really a Christian, you probably believe that God is fully aware of what's going on and is in fact sovereign, and knows what needs to happen in this election to further his purposes everywhere. Whatever they may be.

Just do me a favor, and don't go around questioning people's Christianity based on their political views. Maybe ask them why they think the way they do...their answers might surprise you. And if, once the new president takes office, you find stuff happening that you don't like, write to your congresspeople. You can email them these days, even.

Give 'em what for...


linda t said...

Great post. I agree. Totally.

And yes, this is what I say to myself when I see and hear the horrible things these candidates are saying and doing.

"God is still on the throne, no matter what happens. He can do anything. I can trust that He is in control, even when it looks like everything is so OUT of control."

Thanks for your thoughts. I love and appreciate your writing.

TulipGirl said...

"You're voting for who?!? But I thought you were a Christian" is not very respectful."

I have a LOT of friends voting for Obama this year. I've never questioned their Christianity, though I know they have said others have. I just don't get that. . .

But I am shaking my head in befuddlement by some of the reasonings for voting for Obama. One friend says she thinks it will bring unity. What?! Obama has been so divisive. . . his careless remarks have disenfranchised so many.

Another friend's main issue is caring for the poor. And I'm boggled, because there are already gov't safety nets and the MORE money that the gov't takes from individuals, the HARDER it is for individuals to give in their own communities and really care for the poor up-close-and-personal. That, and I think private charities are MUCH more efficient than gov't bureaucracies for caring for the poor. That, and our family gave more GROSS to the poor than the Obama family itemized on their tax returns in the early '00s -- even though their income was multiple times what ours was. Even now, our giving is a higher percentage. It seems like mere rhetoric about caring for the poor, when the candidate himself doesn't put his money where his mouth is.

Another friend wants to end the war, and is voting for Obama for that reason. Regardless of whether we should be in Iraq and Afghanistan, we ARE there. And we need to end it WELL, not just end it. That can take time, and I do fear the consequences for Iraqis and Afghanis -- not just the US -- if we pull out prematurely.

So. . . I hear and read all these reasonings of WHY people are voting for Obama this year, and I'm left scratching my head. . . Because, yes, I see their motives and appreciate their motives. But what they want and what Obama says I think are a far cry from the results they really do want. . .

Skerrib said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Skerrib said...

All fantastic points TG...right there with you.