Monday, November 03, 2008

Oh no. Here it comes...

Tomorrow.

History in the making.

Life-changing.

High passions. Huge decisions. Free Donuts.

Here's something that is frustrating to me. In talking with several friends over the past few weeks, I know it's not just in my head.

This is such a highly-charged election that everyone who IS decided is very strongly decided. And that's fine. I enjoy a debate with a friend who disagrees when we both know why we are making our choices. It's healthy and good.

However, a lot of the time, it seems as though it's just not ok for a Christian to be a Democrat. There, I said it.

If you're talking to someone else who agrees with you, it's fine. But, quite often if you voice your opinion in a mixed setting there will be anger and heated arguments.

The thing is, it just feels as though it's ok for Christians to be loud about being a Republican, but if you disagree, you have to be quiet about it. It just seems unbalanced.

Is it just me? I wouldn't even necessarily say I'm one or the other, but fall somewhere in between.

I don't want to start any arguments here. If you even want to comment anonymously, that's ok too.

That's all I've got to say. I'm not at all afraid to voice my opinion, but I don't like feeling as though I'm an idiot for having it. Frankly, both sides are right and both sides are wrong!

Regardless, make sure you punch your card. Pull the lever. Make your choice.

Let's just hope that this country will be able to find unity on Wednesday. Because regardless of who wins, I think that is what we really need around here. Take off your bumper stickers and let's move on together.

(climbs down from soapbox)

27 comments:

Jenn said...

Nice soapbox! In general I hate election years because everyone fights so much and the fights are often so petty but neither side can see that.

There are many Christians who are democrats, they just tend to be Christians of a different sort. And I don't think that being either Republican or Democrat (or neither for that matter) should have any bearing on a person's spiritual life. Politics and Religion are two different issues.

Jean said...

Very nice soapbox. I'm not a huge political person who does not enter into political conversations. Wednesday is surely going to be an interesting day.

Dawn said...

More important than the label is this...where does the Republican or Democrat stand on the issues in the light of God's WORD?
I am thankful that HE is in control of this election no matter what happens. The scripture is clear that He is the one who puts leaders in place or removes them.
That gives me peace.

Hillary said...

Did you see what Christine at "Welcome to my Brian" had to say about this? (my name is a link to her post) I think she's spot on when she says that WHOEVER is elected will do some great things and some not-so great things, and that yes, you CAN be a Christian and a democrat. (She's also got a really good post about "So WHAT if Obama was a muslim?" I think it's called 'Not that there's anything wrong with that').

Parties and religion are linked a little bit here in Canada, but not NEARLY as much as in the states, so it's interesting to hear from you (and many others!) that there's constant flack about "How can you be a Christian and still vote Democrat?!?" It just seems so strange to me. There are a handful of issues (like abortion) that seem to take over EVERYTHING in some people's minds, but there are so many more issues OUTSIDE of the ones with religious implications that have to be taken into consideration, too.

And yes, our relationship with Christ should be central to ALL things, not just "religious" matters, but still, why does a relationship with Christ have to dictate how we think a floundering economy is best dealt with, or the best approach to foreign policy, or the best way to take care of the sick or educate our children?

Bah! It's all so complex! It's unfortunate you feel like you have to clam up about what you believe around other Christians.

And yes, I agree with you about unity. Nearly everything about this campaign has been divisive and nasty. Here's hoping that once elected, people will settle in and work on what needs working on instead of continuing on such a divide path!

Woah! Look at me getting all political. There's just something about this election that is getting even politic-o-phobes like me interested!

Um, ok. Lest my comment becomes longer than your post, I'm gonna go now!

Happy Voting Day tomorrow!

Hillary said...

HA! Oh crap! It *IS* longer than your post! Yikes! I think that's a commenting no-no, isn't it?

Anyway, I was gonna say that Starbucks is also giving out free coffee if you go in and tell them you voted.

Free coffee and donuts on election day. God bless America! ;)

sarah cool said...

Oh, Anne. Yeah. I had just become a Christian during the 2000 election, and for the past 8 years, the meanest that people have EVER been to me were Christians who found out I was voting for Gore. 8 years later, I can still feel that hurt.

I'm not going to discuss politics in my comment, but I do want to say - my perceptions of people have changed through this election. I HATE it, and I don't know how to handle it. But people I thought I cared for have turned into raving lunatics, and I am having a hard time reconciling the person I thought I knew with the hate-filled, bigot-laden, non-Christ-like rhetoric-using people I see now. After the election... do I just go back to my "before" perceptions? How can you do that? This election has brought out the worst in a lot of people. (I guess all do, but in 2008, thanks to blogs and facebook, I'm seeing a larger scale)

Nate said...

This post reminds me of a conversation we had not too long ago... heh. Anyhow, good work for posting this -- basically my thoughts exactly.

anne said...

Thanks for all of your support and honesty! I hope you all got out to vote today...

Yeah, Nate, I had been pondering our conversation for a while and just needed to get it out!

Hillary said...

COnfession: I didn't vote today ;)

(hahaha! And also? Word verification is "wakho." How did it KNOW?)

anne said...

You're ridiculous.. :)

Stacey said...

Thank you!! I just want to make myself a T-shirt that says, "Yes, I am a Christian. Yes, I am voting Democrat. And, Yes, I am pretty sure I'm not going to hell."

Sally Brown said...

This post has bothered me. Not b/c Christians are Democrats, but because the Republican Christians have been mean. Friends should love you and respect your opinion, or they are not friends. And who thinks they have all the answers and cannot learn more? That's a very arrogant and dangerous attitude. In fact, I was more interested in learning about Democratic stuff when I found out Ann is one. I think you are smart and have a heart for other so of course I'd want to know your views. Just saying.

Luanne said...

Loved this post! I agree with you all the way. It can be frustrating! I am thrilled that Barack Obama won the election...but would not have been snarky about it if he hadn't. I don't like that either.

And free donuts?? I wish I would've read this earlier! Did you go get one?

I also heard that Starbucks was giving away free coffee too if you voted!

Melissa E. said...

Democrat vs. republican...it's not in the Bible. Doesn't matter. Issues do.

I can't vote for anyone who is pro-abortion. That is it. Plain and simple. Maybe you can be Christian and vote for someone who does. But I think it is sin. Sure, Christians can sin but they shouldn't be proud of it.

I am sad about the horrible deaths that the most innocent PEOPLE in the world die. There is absolutely no scientific question about when life begins. It begins at conception.

My soapbox.

Melissa E. said...

In response to your response to my response...
Pro-abortion does not mean that you think all babies should be aborted any more than Pro-euthanaisia means that you think all people should be euthanized:

Pro-abortion means that you allow for abortions: they are not wrong in your view; or worse: they are wrong and you allow for them anyway. "Pro-choice" is just a term that softens the horrible actuality and makes it sound less gruesome.

Now, while George Bush doesn't win too many stars with me, he did halt Partial birth abortions. (Suck the brains, Crush the skull and pull out the now-dead baby. There is no medical reason EVER to suck the brains from an infant.) Obama is pro-choice about that one--up to birth.

And, should any kind of abortion go awry and the child survives, that baby right now will be protected by law but Obama has repeatedly voted to let those babies be left to die.

The idea that abortion would move underground if outlawed is moot.
Should we allow murder because it will happen underground anyway, prostitution? heroin? Child sacrifice? Torture for entertainment purposes? slavery?

I am curious what your position would be if he were pro-choice about child sacrifice? Unity then?

Infanticide is a big deal. Genocide is bigger. The numbers are staggering. More children are killed in the womb each day than have been killed in this entire war. It either matters or it doesn't. There is no middle ground.

Anne, you say you are not pro-choice. Does this mean you are pro-life? Why? If it is even possibly a life, it can't be a choice left to teen mothers or emotional women. It can't even be not a big deal. Because it is a valuable human being made in the image of God. And I am pretty sure that He thinks that is a big deal.

Unity in Christ. I'll obey God first, country second. And the Bible says obey or be in subjection to those in authority over you--it does not use the word support. There is a huge difference there. Tell Shadrach, Meshack, and Abednego about unity. It isn't as simple as it sounds.

PS.
And for what it's worth, the information that abortions have gone up under Bush was found to be false.
http://www.factcheck.org/article330.html

Melissa E. said...

And you thought yours was long. ;-)

Warren said...

I think I might scream if I hear one more lamentation from a one-issue-joe (or jane, sister) that the Republican party is getting away from its conservative principles. The reason the Republican party is drifting off of its conservative principles is because a huge majority of conservatives will give to any pro-life candidate a free pass on every other issue as long as his opponent is pro-choice.

Go Anne! (Hi, btw)

In this country we do not burn books that promote atheism and we do not ban the teaching of Islam to children. Why? Isn't it worse that a child go to hell for all eternity than that it go to heaven too early? The reason for religious freedom is that it is patently obvious that Christians can't know that Muslims are wrong any more than vice-versa, so each must be allowed to choose.

I can respect that some believe that a tiny clump of cells following conception is a human life, but I respect much more the understanding that this is just a belief. Does a clump of cells have a soul? If so, then what about identical twins, is that two people with half-souls? What about a chimera, is that one person with two souls? This mathematics of souls doesn't really make sense because we can't test for a "soul" or know the where or when of souls.

In most cases, that clump of cells will eventually be recognized by the state as an entity with separate rights from its parent, but when? The current legal answer is: when it is physically outside its parent. Arguments can be made about whether that's appropriate, but why do we pretend to "know" and to speak for God?

If God speaks for himself, through the Bible, then conspicuously absent is clear text that says "Thou shalt not kill a child in its mothers womb." There is very clear text about not letting your meat touch your milk, but as for fetuses, all we have a verse by someone who says God knew him before he was born, and John the Baptist's fetus "leaping" - not exactly clear and not exactly "conception".

So when McCain, without thinking, answers the question about when life begins, "At conception" he's stating an opinion, (and being slightly disingenuous, considering his support of embryonic stem cell research). When Obama says, "that's above my pay grade" and "that's not a decision women take lightly," he's likely being honest. Just as we say that parents must have the liberty to bring up their children as atheists if they please, the supreme court has recognized that while inside a woman's body, the decision must be the woman's.

If you really believe that the clump of cells is as much a human life as a child, then pray about it. Surely God's vote is more powerful than yours. (God appears to have voted for Obama, btw. Quoting Dawn, "I am thankful that HE is in control of this election no matter what happens. The scripture is clear that He is the one who puts leaders in place or removes them." I agree with Dawn.)

And I agree with all the other commenters on here that point out how much nicer Democrat Christians are compared to Republican Christians as a whole. Thanks for the post, Anne.

Warren

Michelle said...

Which one of your children would you have been willing to give up when they were "just a clump of cells"? You need to read Ruth and I Samuel. God gives a woman conception. That to me means God just created that life.
I would encourage you to go to snopes.com look up Huntley Brown - Why I Can't Vote for Obama. There are a lot of issues to look at when putting someone in power; economy, human life, gay marriage. However, you also have to sort out which of those are more important than others. Should the economy (or what money is in your pocket is really what people are worried about) really be put at the top of our list?

Warren said...

Please. God allowing a conception doesn't mean "conception=soul" any more than God hardening Pharaoh's heart meant God wants people to disobey him, michelle.

Not choosing to abort my kids when they were clumps of cells (and for the record, I'm male) does not mean it should be illegal, anymore than should Catholicism be illegal just because I don't teach my kids that the wine literally becomes blood.

Are you literally certain God exists and that he wants you to enforce his laws for him? Why not the first commandment? Why not make all other religions illegal?

These arguments are ridiculous. Why do so many million people feel the need to be God's spokesmen for everyone else and belittle anyone who would so dare as to vote for Obama (whom God has put into place, incidentally).

More abortions are caused by financial hardship and poor education than any other cause. If Obama fixes either of these, he will have saved more fetuses than Bush.

anne said...

Whew is it getting hot in here or is it just me!? Just keep it friendly, folks.

Warren, Hi right back at you! I was so encouraged by your comment/posting and I love your well-thought arguments...not to mention it cracks me up that you started it in with your sister.

You seriously made my day. I love to read your wife's blog as well (sorry, I know I'm a lurker!) and your boys are adorable!

Luanne said...

Hmmm...maybe you should close out your comments before a riot breaks out :)

Lynn Falk said...

I confess, Anne, I have been lurking on your site for a while now. :)

anne said...

Hooray for lurkers! :)

Warren said...

for your enjoyment

anne said...

Love! it.

thediaperdiaries said...

The thing I hate about people being afraid to talk politics is that in then causes people to make assumptions about why people vote like they do. I did not hide the fact that I supported McCain, but I was troubled that poeple assumed it was because I was part of the "religious right". Actually while I have very strong opinions on abortion and gay marriage, I just have a hard time believing that anyone should vote solely on those issues.

The problem I saw amongst my Christian friends is that Republicans insisted that Dems were bad because of the abortion issue. Which is a wrong judgement in my opinion.

However, I found that in response, many of my Christian Dem friends (and I have a lot of them) were insinuating that only Obama cared about the poor and helping those who needed it. And Obama himself insinuated that those who didn't believe in his economic plans were selfish.

I love having an intelligent debate with someone who has formed an intelligent opinion. Not someone who is spitting out sound bites. Cause my association with the Republican party has very little to do with sound bites and rhetoric and much more to do with my belief about what the role of government should be.

And if anyone wants to have a discussion with me on those beliefs without name calling or stereotyping, I welcome it. Which has allowed me to have some GREAT conversations with my Christian friends on both sides of the aisle. And I don't think for a second they love Jesus any less than I do.

I am disappointed that McCain didn't win, but so excited for what Obama means for this country and a few very close friends who have never known a president who looks like them. So for that, I celebrate :)

anne said...

Thank you so much, Jill! I absolutely respect your opinion and wish we had had a chance to chat prior to the election. I'm sure it would have been a great rousing debate! :)