I have a lot in common with this man. We both have a white parent, and society treats both of us as if that fact were irrelevant with respect to our "race." We both have connections to a school in IL famed for conservative thought. We've both edited professional magazines, and worked with South Side communities in issues relating to the intersection of faith, politics, race and class. We both like politics. So I hope you'll forgive me but I have no choice: Blow it out your ass, Brother. You just lost me for good:
By DAVID ESPO
The Associated Press
Wednesday, June 28, 2006; 8:34 AM
WASHINGTON -- Sen. Barack Obama chastised fellow Democrats on Wednesday for failing to "acknowledge the power of faith in the lives of the American people," and said the party must compete for the support of evangelicals and other churchgoing Americans.
"Not every mention of God in public is a breach to the wall of separation. Context matters," the Illinois Democrat said in remarks prepared for delivery to a conference of Call to Renewal, a faith-based movement to overcome poverty.
"It is doubtful that children reciting the Pledge of Allegiance feel oppressed or brainwashed as a consequence of muttering the phrase `under God,'" he said. "Having voluntary student prayer groups using school property to meet should not be a threat, any more than its use by the High School Republicans should threaten Democrats."
Obama, the only black in the Senate, drew national notice even before arriving in Congress last year, and has occasionally used his visibility to scold members of his own party. Widely sought as a fundraiser for other Democrats, Obama responded with a noncommittal laugh this spring when asked whether he wants a spot on the national ticket in 2008.
His speech included unusually personal references to religion, the type of remarks that usually come more readily from Republicans than Democrats.
"Kneeling beneath that cross on the South Side of Chicago, I felt I heard God's spirit beckoning me," he said of his walk down the aisle of the Trinity United Church of Christ. "I submitted myself to his will and dedicated myself to discovering his truth."
Obama said millions of Christians, Muslims and Jews have traveled similar religious paths, and that is why "we cannot abandon the field of religious discourse. ... In other words, if we don't reach out to evangelical Christians and other religious Americans and tell them what we stand for, Jerry Falwells and Pat Robertsons will continue to hold sway."
Obama coupled his advice with a warning. "Nothing is more transparent than inauthentic expressions of faith: the politicians who shows up at a black church around election time and claps _ off rhythm _ to the gospel choir."
At the same time, he said, "Secularists are wrong when they ask believers to leave their religion at the door before entering the public square."
As a result, "I think we make a mistake when we fail to acknowledge the power of faith in the lives of the American people and join a serious debate about how to reconcile faith with our modern, pluralistic democracy."
Obama mentioned leaders of the religious right briefly, saying they must "accept some ground rules for collaboration" and recognize the importance of the separation of church and state.
I've never asked for people to "leave their faith out of the public square," whatever that's supposed to mean. I have asked for people to keep their faith our of our government, an idea that I'm pretty sure the Founders shared with me.
This is pre-presidential run pandering, plain and simple. The last thing we need is more evangelical Christianity in the political process. Perhaps even more importantly, it's ridiculous to think that evangelicals are ever going to vote for a Democratic candidate. Yo, Barak- look a little closer at the numbers. Who is the strongest, most reliable, most regular Republican voter group today? Evangelicals, you fool. If you think they're going to vote for your black ass just because you make a speech or two about "protecting" religious expression, you're way more stupid than I thought. You can give speeches like this till the cows come home; what you say to the press has absolutely no weight when compared to what they are told by their ministers. And you know what that is? Vote Republican.
I've argued in the past that we need a progressive caucus and more activism in general to counter the evangelical movement. But that's a long term project. In the meantime, the much more important project is taking evangelical "thought" out of the political process. Evangelicals are technically a minority in this country, and I'm not even going to bother documenting what a tremendous overrepresentation they have in our media, political sphere, etc. It's beyond obvious, and the results are appalling to anyone who cares about science, the separation of church and state, gay rights, etc.
I'm sorry, but someone has to call you one this. You and your wife are very nice people in person, but if you keep this up, I'll make it my personal crusade to humiliate you. If you keep spouting this kind of trash, you'll just make my job easier.