Friday, September 12, 2008

another sad day to be a white christian

I mean seriously? (HT: Brian McLaren) Torture and evangelicals, not a good combination...and white evangelicals at that. Uh.

So I alluded to this quote in a comment in my previous post, but in Shey and I talking about politics, specifically McCain's decision to pick Palin as his running mate, Shey made a brilliant yet extremely sad point about why she thought Palin was chosen, basically Shey said: "McCain chose Palin because he was banking on voters being more racist than sexist in this election." I might add to this statement, white evangelical voters. So while I think a lot of conservative, women-can't-be-leaders evangelicals are in some sort of conundrum with Palin possibly being the #2 of the U.S. gov't, I couldn't agree with Shey more about the racist tendencies in the U.S. political arena. It is interesting that we have heard a lot about Obama's relationship to Jeremiah Wright and Wright's liberation theology and questions about racist tendencies in government and history in the U.S....but we aren't hearing nearly as much about Palin's church and their interesting record of political perspectives, not to mention some interesting theology. Greg over at the parish highlights some of the problems evangelicals might/should have with Palin's supposed family values and christian perspectives.

I have to remind the students I work with that my own parents (who are right now 52 and 51) both lived and experienced the integration of schools while in high school. That Virginia, the state I live in, was one of the worst in the formal integration of schools, as massive resistance took place in many counties around the state, some lasting years before integration was allowed. And we need not look hard at current events to see how race continues to be an important underlying issue around our country.

Again, I don't have any false hopes the Obama and Biden duo are Jesus come again, or that they are going to actually accomplish all the change they talk about...not because I think that they are bad people (nor do I think McCain and Palin are "bad") but I am really struggling with some of the perspectives on war, terrorism, healthcare, the military-industrial complex, crossing of theology/political ideology, posturing, racist tendencies, and poverty issues amongst other issues, and I honestly was scared after watching Guliani the other night, and after seeing a painting on the door to the republican headquarters on Main Street in Warrenton where Palin is decked out in furs, looking happy while holding a huge gun...I just am kind of sad with the rhetoric/tone of Republicans right now. And sometimes, I'm just ashamed of being white with the tone of people (like the first link to the recent perspectives on torture) or the ignorance of white folks in their willingness to dismiss the significance of a little ol' African-American community organizer making a difference in such a way that he might become president of the U.S. i have another post on race and voting in the works...but got to get some more work done. until then...hope folks are well.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

a little vomit in my mouth

Let me say first and foremost that I am not a Republican nor a Democrat. I have voted for both parties in different elections, except for president, which unfortunately I can say I voted for Bush W. both times that I have been old enough to vote. To all who thought they knew me, I'm sorry. Feel free to stone me, or laugh, or pat me on the back if need be. I've begun over the last 5 years listening to my little conscience (or Spirit?) that has helped me to see the world in some very different ways...theologically, philosophically, politically, etc. i did struggle with whether or not to vote for bush w. on round two, but ultimately voted for who i thought at the time was the lesser of two evils. This is an interesting election on many levels, but mostly I've grimaced and become disheartened over the political process in general, and wanted to join my Anabaptist brothers and sisters on most days while watching the conventions.

That being said, I don't think either of the presidential candidates and their running mates are spawns of satan. but honestly, i don't think that i have seen as many disgruntled, angry white people in one room together as i have tonight watching the former mayor of NYC Rudy Guliani's speech tonight at the republican national convention. i mean seriously. they made fun of obama being a community organizer...they literally stopped and laughed at him. it sure is something to laugh at, you know, a young black guy trying to make a difference in his neighborhood and city. they showed the faces of young white men my age who scowled with what seemed like hatred in response to Guliani's cadences. where does the anger come from? honestly, i felt like i had a little vomit in my mouth each time Guliani smiled and used terms like "energy exploration" to describe the continued vain dependence on oil through drilling in alaska and wildlife areas rather than "exploring" renewable energy. or take when Guliani emphasized McCain's willingness to go to the ends of the earth to eradicate any enemy of the US with military power, and then pointing to Palin's religion as a sign of God's affiliation with the republican party.

now i will be honest, i didn't watch all of the DNC and i haven't watched all of the RNC. i saw plenty of crap come through the DNC (which up to this point i have watched more of the DNC than the RNC), and i have been watching the RNC mostly b/c i want to try my best to hear from both sides. so, i'm not going to act like this is a balanced perspective...this is simply my reaction as i watched the RNC tonight, and i will finish watching palin's speech tomorrow (shey wanted to go to sleep so i will finish watching it tomorrow), and so far I didn't hate what she had to say for the first like 2 minutes (after the long applause introduction).

but the RNC seemed venemous. i felt dirty watching it, and while i didn't feel good watching the DNC, i didn't feel like i need to take a shower, or feel my chest tighten and cheeks become red as i did tonight watching the political drama of the RNC. there are a couple political posts brewing in my mind and have been for some time now that i'd like to work on in the coming days. i think i might tackle my views on a couple of issues and then maybe point to some others who i think are offering some interesting perspectives currently.

anybody else have some thoughts on the conventions thus far? who are you thinking about voting for...why? and please, let's be civil if any comments do come up....much love.