As the left side of the blogosphere has been opining about Obama’s call to religion
, I’ve sat back and really thought about my feelings toward the subject. As an atheist, I realize I probably come with a different perspective than most, but there are a few problems with Obama’s statement that should transcend all religious lines.
First, there’s the whole evangelical comment. I’m very active in political and religious debate, and the one thing that I’ve realized over the years is that “evangelical” has less to do with religion than politics. Evangelicals, in my experience, are more a political than religious movement. They are the Christians who put politics before their religion, and are basically a movement and interest group that supports Republicans. To me, Obama’s call for Democrats to reach out to Evangelicals is the same as a call to reach out to the RNC - basically, the shit don’t make sense.
Secondly, I think it is important for Democrats to reach out to the religious, but this reaching shouldn’t compromise Democratic values. I honestly believe that the Christians who are not Democrats are not going to be Democrats. Their views on issues (abortion, gay marriage, separation of Church and State) are supported by Republicans, while Democrats often come out on the opposite side of their perspective. For social Conservatives, there is no chance of a party switch. Period.
Obama’s remarks also make it seem as though Democrats are not supported by Christians. Republicans often use this as a political tool, painting Democrats as anti-Christian in order to rally their Conservative base. Obama, though he probably means well, just added a few soundbites to that groupthink, thus hurting Democrats in the long run.
In the end, Democrats do get support from the religious, just not the far-right religious. And, I mean, come on - who really wants support from those nuts anyway?
Tags:Obama Religion Christianity Democrats Christians