Thumbs down for Obama’s “Christian” flier

I am biased. But I am also fair.

Nothing raises my blood pressure more than when politicians pander to religious groups – namely the evangelical right – in an attempt to gain votes. I was critical of Mike Huckabee’s not-very-subtle-at-all visual of the cross appearing behind him in his Christmas message, and I will be equally as critical when it’s my guy who’s the one doing the pandering.

The flier below – currently featured on The Drudge Report – shows Barack Obama behind a pulpit with the cross prominently displayed behind him on front, and his “I’m a Christian. Really. It’s safe to vote for me” message on back. It is allegedly being distributed by his campaign folks in Kentucky.

Now I get that he’s fighting an uphill battle with this whole “He’s a closet Muslim” thing, so I can understand his desire to get this message to voters in a state like Kentucky. However, as a Christian, I am deeply offended by any perceived attempt by politicians to exploit my faith in an attempt to gain my vote.

This doesn’t do much to change my opinion of him as a candidate. I still want him to be our next president and will likely volunteer my time to help his campaign in New York once he secures the nomination. However, if I were ever given this flier and asked to hand it out, I would refuse.

(Click on image to enlarge)


10 thoughts on “Thumbs down for Obama’s “Christian” flier

  1. dude i gotta say thumbs up simply b/c maybe now my ma, her ma and my grandfather will stop saying he’s a muslim!!!

    i just back from being at my parents in maine and during our mothers day dinner the conversation turned to politics (i always keep my mouth shut and play with my nephews) and i was expecting to hear the “n” word fly when obama came up, but was AMAZED that this stupid probably clinton-fueled lie about him being a muslim is accepted by my family! i quietly said “nanny, he’s not a muslim” and her response was “i read he is!” i didn’t know fox news had a newsletter 🙂

  2. I appreciate your feeelings, but think you’re being just a little naive about the whole process.You can’t be subtle with the masses.

  3. I’m not sure that understand just how I’m being naive.

    Care to elaborate?

    It’s not like I’m surprised that a politician would go this direction – or that Obama would “stoop” to that level himself. I know they do it, I know it’s a part of the process. It also makes me gnash my teeth. And I’m simply voicing my objection to the practice by citing the most recent example. And it’s my guy.

    I’ve been following politics far too long for any wide-eyed disillusionment. In what way am I being naive?

  4. So maybe naive is the wrong word. I wasn’t trying to be offensive really.

    Why does it make you gnash your teeth exactly?

    ‘Nothing raises my blood pressure more than when politicians pander to religious groups – namely the evangelical right – in an attempt to gain votes.”

    You’re using words like “pander”, “stoop” and “go this direction” as if he has a choice, & if it’s somehow morally wrong to engage or even woo a pretty powerful demographic. His job at the moment is to gain votes right? I mean if he wants to get the message out he’s a Christian and not Muslim, and he wants other “Christians” to know it, how else would he do it? Seems he’s already tried to just tell people. A picture is worth a thousand words they say.

    I’d think it would only bother you if you thought it was not genuine.

  5. I do find it to be disingenuous. Not that his faith isn’t genuine, I’ll have to take him at his word on that. From what I’ve read from him and heard him discuss, I have no reason to conclude that he is not Christian.

    The way in which I find it to be disingenuous is multi-faceted.

    First, it panders to the demands by some voters that a candidate’s proclamation of faith match their own set of criteria. But that whole mentality flies in the face of the Constitution. Article VI, Section 3 clearly states that, “no religious test shall ever be required as a qualification to any Office or public trust under the United States.” (See also: John F. Kennedy, Mitt Romney)

    Let’s face it, most candidates would rather not talk about their faith as a part of their campaign. And according to the Constitution they shouldn’t have to. But the public demands it, so they all roll out their Jesus platform at some point in time. It’s pandering, and in my opinion it’s unconstitutional. (I want a candidate with balls enough to stand up and say “no” to this nonsense for once. But I won’t be holding my breath.)

    But on a completely different level all together…

    Growing up in the church I have seen more than my fair share of “voter’s guides” supplied by the likes of the Christian Coalition, etc. These guides always “measured” candidates according to conservative hot button issues, and were completely skewed toward conservative candidates. They were always inserted into bulletins and distributed on Sundays at the worship service. Voting conservative became synonymous with “fighting the good fight.”

    Somewhere along the way I grew to hate political propaganda in the church.

    Then came Karl Rove.

    Frontline did this great documentary on George W. Bush called The Jesus Factor which explored Bush’s personal faith, and the role it played in the 2000 election. At one point in the documentary it talks about how Karl Rove realized that there were huge inroads to be gained in the evangelical church and basically changed their entire campaign strategy to paint him as The Evangelical Candidate. They used networks of pastors, churches, denominations, etc., to push their platform on Sundays and across Christian media outlets.

    This makes baby Jesus cry. (And adult Jesus turn over tables.)

    So yeah, this stuff drives me nuts. It makes me angry at the American public when they make a candidate “prove” his personal faith is worthy of their vote – despite what the Constitution says about it. It makes me angry when candidates use the church as a platform to spread their propaganda. It makes me angry when candidates use the church as a marketing tool.

    I know they all do it. I know it’s a part of the process. It doesn’t mean I have to like it. And if I’m going to scream and yell about the right’s blatant exploitation of the church, I’m going to be even harder on my guy when this type of nonsense seeps into his campaign as well. Even when it’s something as minute as this.

  6. I guess I understand your anger. I agree about using church buildingsettings to campaign, but then most churches have a flag right up there next to the cross “on stage”. The constitution is to this country like the scriptures are to the church-rarely used unless a point is being made at the moment.

    The “church” has become this deformed co-opted thing. They’ve exchanged their immunity for exemption and thereby become part of the government.

    I don’t think you can separate what a person believes from what you expect him to do. I don’t think you can take a person’s word for what they believe in the case of an elected official either. I think their record has to speak for them. But the process is so full of smoke, mirrors and compromise how are you really gonna know unless you see a track record-by their fruits and all.

    It’s all one fabric. You really can’t divide “church and state”, you can only try and keep the state from messing with the church, the church has to constantly be trying to influence the state. How it does this of course is the tricky bit and where all the factions come from.

    I think Jesus said his Kingdom was no part of this world, (and HE doesn’t have to be elected and HE won’t be impeached. I think the title is Lord of heaven and earth) I kinda drives ME nuts to try and make it work in my heart and head anymore. I’m responding from my own frustration really.

    I can see trying to have a say in a so-called democratic government, but the beast is flawed at best and isn’t going to get better. It seems if you’re going to play the game you are going to get your hands dirty.

    Just exchanging frustrations here-not trying to start a war.

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