Underpants Voters
John Sheirer printable version print page     Bookmark and Share
Fri Oct 19, 2012 at 07:46:04 AM EST
Reducing Christianity and American civic engagement to the things that happen in our underpants is terrible Christianity and even worse citizenship.

-----------------------------------------
Popular pastor Rick Warren recently said that American Christians should vote "for a Christian worldview which stands up for the sanctity of life, the sanctity of sex, and the sanctity of marriage." No offense to Pastor Warren, but reducing Christianity and American civic engagement to the things that happen in our underpants is terrible Christianity and even worse citizenship.

Warren's reductive marching orders to American Christians hit three hot social issues from this year's presidential campaign: abortion, birth control, and marriage equality. I've been told that I'm belittling Christianity with the term "underpants voters," but isn't presenting these sex-based issues as if they are the only things that should be important about Christianity in America simply an insult that belittles American Christians?

Conservatives too often equate "the sanctity of life" with making sure that government imposes a narrow set of religious beliefs on a woman's pregnancy, regardless of her own thoughts, feelings, or needs. People in America (including Christians) honestly disagree about the exact point at which the mass of living cells inside a pregnant woman becomes a human being. But there is no disagreement that an actual child is a human being. Shouldn't the "sanctity of life" continue once a baby is born? Welfare, social-service programs, and public education are designed primarily to benefit children, to keep them fed, clothed, protected, healthy, and smart. But Republicans rail against these programs. Where is the "sanctity of life" in claiming to protect fetuses while ignoring the needs of children?

The debate about access to birth control burst into the American political scene in ... well, sometime in the 19th Century. The issue was pretty much settled among most Americans about four decades ago. But the Republican Party, spurred on by the Christian right, brought the issue back this year. Why? Apparently because they consider birth control, in the words of far-right presidential candidate Rick Santorum, "a license to do things in the sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be. They're supposed to be within marriage." Santorum doesn't seem to understand that contraception is often used to treat medical conditions, and that most married women use birth control at one time or another, including most Christian women. Is sex really only "sanctified" when it results in a child? Do conservative Christians know that birth control is the main tool we have to prevent unwanted pregnancies and, consequently, abortions? Where is the "sanctity" in making laws that invade our bedrooms and increase the number of abortions?

On the subject of marriage equality, American public opinion has reversed in recent years. More people now endorse marriage equity than oppose it, and an increasing number of states have overturned legal restrictions on who we love, this most personal of human freedoms. President Obama himself has come out in favor of marriage equality, much to the scorn of conservatives Christians. They love to quote the Old Testament verses calling male-to-male homosexuality an abomination. At the same time, they conveniently ignore similar verses that condemn eating shellfish and pork, wearing poly-blend fabric, and planting different crops in the same field. Even worse, many also tend to ignore the countless biblical references to loving one another. Where is the "sanctity" in ignoring many Bible verses while obsessing about a few that support a desire to discriminate against people who love each other and want to express their love publicly and legally?

The Constitution of the United States doesn't mention God and only brings up religion to prevent the government from establishing theology into law. Of course, Jesus himself never said a word about abortion, birth control, or marriage equality. His teachings went far beyond what happens inside our underpants and focused on our minds, hearts, and souls. Maybe all Americans, Christian or not, should follow that example when we step into the voting booth.





Display:
Abortion, birth control, and marriage equality. Firstly thank you for stating your opinion on this topic, people often arent as honest as you. I agree people should not be using above 3 to make a voting decision but looking at whole picture. The question about Jesus' teaching and the old testeament, is really a matter for interpretation and people tend use the interpretation for their own bias. contact lenses

by JJ on Sat Dec 29, 2012 at 08:35:12 AM EST


WWW Talk To Action


Bitten By A Tiger: Huckabee Must Pay For Unauthorized Use Of Song
Former Arkansas governor and Religious Right favorite Mike Huckabee has not been having a good year.Huckabee won the Iowa GOP caucus in 2008 and......
By Rob Boston (0 comments)
Trump Meets Man Who Inspired 2011 Terror Attack Deadlier Than Orlando Shooting
"It appears that the shooter was inspired by various extremist information that was disseminated over the internet" -- President Barack Obama, June 13, 2016,......
By Bruce Wilson (2 comments)
Terrorism as a "Marketing Method"
On the same day in 2011 during which he single-handedly blew up and shot to death 77 Norwegian citizens (mostly teenagers) and injured an......
By Bruce Wilson (0 comments)
Let's Can the Name Calling about Islam
President Obama rose to the occasion in the wake of the horror in Orlando. The president made clear in a speech on June 14th......
By Frank Cocozzelli (3 comments)
50 Shades of Patriarchal Grey
In what must be one of the worst public relations disasters in university history, wealthy donors to Baylor University recently took out a full......
By wilkyjr (4 comments)
Pious Proclamation Panned: Iowa's Governor Goes Around The Bend With Bible-Touting Document
Some elected officials have a bad habit of releasing official proclamations lauding the Bible, Christianity or religion generally.We at Americans United find these proclamations......
By Rob Boston (0 comments)
Unreasonable Argument: Sometimes What Everyone Knows Just Isn't So
Over the weekend, a group of atheists, humanists, agnostics and others held a "Reason Rally" in front of the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C.Thousands......
By Rob Boston (4 comments)
Above The Law?: Ala. Chief Jurist Demands No Accountability
Alabama Chief Justice Roy Moore is in legal hot water again and has no one to blame but himself - but, as usual, he......
By Rob Boston (11 comments)
Thomas More Was No Patron Of Religious Freedom
The United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) is preparing to kick off its annual Fortnight for Freedom. This year the two weeks of......
By Frank Cocozzelli (3 comments)
Falling Starr
Reports from around the nation are reporting Ken Starr, President of Baylor University, has been fired as head of the Baptist school.  Other stories......
By wilkyjr (7 comments)
Bluegrass Bonanza: Ky. Theocrat Loses Grip On Statehouse Seat
Political news of late has been dominated by three people - Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders. They've certainly provided good copy, but......
By Rob Boston (3 comments)
Political Piety Panned: We Don't Need A 'God's Party'
Every few years, a political pundit comes along and proclaims that the Religious Right is dead or on the verge of dying. I started......
By Rob Boston (7 comments)
Trump Campaign Tied To 2nd White Nationalist Party Leader
Even as Donald Trump seeks to tack to the center, and leave behind his earlier, wildly controversial statements on Hispanics and Muslims, mounting evidence......
By Bruce Wilson (4 comments)
Religious Rightism in the Democratic Party has Consequences
Those of us who write about the Religious Right and related matters often find ourselves wishing that we were wrong. Back in 2011 we......
By Frederick Clarkson (9 comments)
No Moore, Please: Ala. Chief Justice May Be Removed From The Bench
Word broke late Friday night that Roy Moore, chief justice of the Alabama Supreme Court, may be on the verge of losing his job......
By Rob Boston (4 comments)

Alternate economy medical treatment
Dogemperor wrote several times about the alternate economy structure that dominionists have built.  Well, it's actually made the news.  Pretty good article, although it doesn't get into how bad people could be (have been)......
ArchaeoBob (1 comment)
Evidence violence is more common than believed
Think I've been making things up about experiencing Christian Terrorism or exaggerating, or that it was an isolated incident?  I suggest you read this article (linked below in body), which is about our great......
ArchaeoBob (6 comments)
Central Florida Sheriff Preached Sermon in Uniform
If anyone has been following the craziness in Polk County Florida, they know that some really strange and troubling things have happened here.  We've had multiple separation of church and state lawsuits going at......
ArchaeoBob (3 comments)
Demon Mammon?
An anthropologist from outer space might be forgiven for concluding that the god of this world is Mammon. (Or, rather, The Market, as depicted by John McMurtry in his book The Cancer Stage of......
daerie (4 comments)
Anti-Sharia Fever in Texas: This is How It Starts
The mayor of a mid-size Texan city has emerged in recent months as the newest face of Islamophobia. Aligning herself with extremists hostile to Islam, Mayor Beth Van Duyne of Irving, Texas has helped......
JSanford (9 comments)
Evangelicals Seduced By Ayn Rand Worship Crypto-Satanism, Suggest Scholars
[update: also see my closely related stories, "Crypto-Cultists" and "Cranks": The Video Paul Ryan Hoped Would Go Away, and The Paul Ryan/Ayn Rand/Satanism Connection Made Simple] "I give people Ayn Rand with trappings" -......
Bruce Wilson (10 comments)
Ted Cruz Anointed By Pastor Who Says Jesus Opposed Minimum Wage, and Constitution Based on the Bible
In the video below, from a July 19-20th, 2013 pastor's rally at a Marriott Hotel in Des Moines, Iowa, Tea Party potentate Ted Cruz is blessed by religious right leader David Barton, who claims......
Bruce Wilson (8 comments)
Galt and God: Ayn Randians and Christian Rightists Expand Ties
Ayn Rand's followers find themselves sharing a lot of common ground with the Christian Right these days. The Tea Party, with its stress on righteous liberty and a robust form of capitalism, has been......
JSanford (9 comments)
Witchhunts in Africa and the U.S.A.
Nigerian human rights activist Leo Igwe has recently written at least two blog posts about how some African Pentecostal churches are sending missionaries to Europe and the U.S.A. in an attempt to "re-evangelize the......
Diane Vera (5 comments)
Charles Taze Russell and John Hagee
No doubt exists that Texas mega-church Pastor John Hagee would be loathe to be associated with the theology of Pastor C.T. Russell (wrongly credited with founding the Jehovah's Witnesses) but their theological orbits, while......
COinMS (3 comments)
A death among the common people ... imagination.
Or maybe my title would better fit as “Laws, Books, where to find, and the people who trust them.”What a society we've become!The wise ones tell us over and over how the more things......
Arthur Ruger (14 comments)
Deconstructing the Dominionists, Part VI
This is part 6 of a series by guest front pager Mahanoy, originally dated November 15, 2007 which I had to delete and repost for technical reasons. It is referred to in this post,......
Frederick Clarkson (7 comments)
Republican infighting in Mississippi
After a bruising GOP runoff election for U.S. Senator, current MS Senator Thad Cochran has retained his position and will face Travis Childers (Democrat) in the next senate election. The MS GOP is fractured......
COinMS (8 comments)
America's Most Convenient Bank® refuses to serve Christians
Representatives of a well known faith-based charitable organization were refused a New Jersey bank’s notarization service by an atheist employee. After inquiring about the nature of the non-profit organization and the documents requiring......
Jody Lane (11 comments)
John Benefiel takes credit for GOP takeover of Oklahoma
Many of you know that Oklahoma has turned an unrecognizable shade of red in recent years.  Yesterday, one of the leading members of the New Apostolic Reformation all but declared that he was responsible......
Christian Dem in NC (7 comments)

More Diaries...




All trademarks and copyrights on this page are owned by their respective companies. Comments, posts, stories, and all other content are owned by the authors. Everything else 2005 Talk to Action, LLC.