Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Thoughts on Politics

I have been watching this presidential nomination process very closely. I find myself nervous at times, and dare I say emotional as I listen to speeches that speak to me and allow me to dream about future possibilities. I go online as soon as the polls are expected to close to see what the results are, I watch CNN and MSNBC while I work out at the gym, I read the newspaper and online news constantly.

Last night I was reading Gregg's Gabmles post on Presidential Politics. I loved his post, and have felt the same as I've heard both Michelle and Barack Obama speak. I too, find myself saying YES! to my computer screen as I watch speeches. And truthfully, I tried to keep an open mind about Hillary. I didn't read her book, as I did Obama's, but I tried to read about her policies and be open to what she may have to say. But try as I might, lately she has repulsed me. I've read and seen videos showing how manipulative and power-hungry she is, heard testimonies of some of her closest advisers, and I just cringe.

I read the comments following Gregg's post, and had mixed feelings. One person compared the Obama fever with the 1960s and the way Americans flocked to JFK after an old timer like Eisenhower. I see similarities in this, as I studied a lot of American history to receive my history degree, but I think there is a difference here. JFK had political connections we can't even imagine because of his name, there was a long history of corruption (he received winning votes from people who weren't alive, for example), and in some ways was in the right place at the right time. True, in many ways he proved ill-equipped to handle the nation's problems. Obama, on the other hand, is competing heavily with another politician who has "experience," and thus if Obama wins it's not because no viable candidate ran against him. Many argue that Obama is all talk and no show, but listening, truly listening to his words, one can come to realize that this is no ordinary politician. Sure, he's forced to play the game, (he acknowledges in his book that unfortunately this is how our country runs its politics), but he has hope that this can change. More importantly, he is aware of the need for it to change.

This same commenter also said, "his stand on the value of human life scares me," to which another commenter responded well, saying "we have plenty of already LIVING human beings dying." To which I say, "That friend speaks my mind!"

This gets into one of the first issues I ever blogged about, why I started this blog in the first place. Why are so many Christians so focused on one or two issues (abortion and homosexuality) that they are willing to overlook so many other issues?? How can Republicans (and many Christians) be so Pro-Life yet be Pro-military and Pro-kill-all-enemies-of-America-because-God's-on-our-side? How many more millions of people have died in war than from abortion? Believe me, I am against abortion, but why do so many support life before birth, to virtually ignore issues of poverty and injustice once these babies are born?

I may not fully support Obama's Pro-Choice stance on abortion, but to me, his stance on poverty, education, ending the war, and many other issues seems much more "Pro-Life" than any other candidate running for the Presidential nomination in any party.

Thanks Gregg, for the thoughts!


Gregg Koskela said...

Oooh! Great post, Melissa! I'm glad you wrote this, because you went more in depth than I did.

I'm still waiting (probably always will) for a candidate who is "holistically" pro-life: anti-capital punishment, anti-euthanasia, anti-war, anti-abortion.

Krista said...

I would have to mostly agree with you (funny how getting married can make you change about things) although I think you need to check your numbers about war vs. abortion. Maybe if you count wars for a few hundred years you'll get the same number of casualties as the number of abortions there have been in the past 30 years. Mostly what we need on that count I think is better education.

Laurie Kruczek said...

I applaud your post. Thanks for taking what is often an unpopular stand in Christian communities. It is admirable.

In The Light,

Bill Samuel said...

Obama is not only pro-death on abortion, but also on war and the death penalty. He has waffled on Iraq, initially saying he opposed it but later saying he doesn't know how he would have voted on authorizing it, campaigned that he would vote against Iraq War funding but once the got into the Senate voted for it, now talks like a critic of the War but says he may keep troops there throughout his term in office. Note also that even in his initial statement against the Iraq War he vigorously denied being for peace.

He has voted consistently for the bloated military budget, and his official campaign position is for an even larger military budget and increasing the size of the armed forces.

He admits the death penalty is ineffective, yet says he supports it because we need vengeance.

I can't see how good people can support him. Don't policies make any difference? Does it only matter how well a person speaks/

There is a consistent life ethic candidate - Joe Schriner or on Facebook.

Stand for good. Oppose evil.