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I am a high school English teacher in an urban high school in Oklahoma City. I am a member of the American Federation of Teachers, Local 2309. I am a Democrat, a union activist and a worker for social justice. I also am a Christian (Congregationalist). I play chess and coach our school chess team.

Friday, January 06, 2006

My Faith is Being Restored

News Item from MSNBC:

WASHINGTON - In an ominous election-year sign for Republicans, Americans are leaning sharply toward giving Democrats control of Congress, an AP-Ipsos poll finds. Democrats are favored 49 percent to 36 percent.

The poll was taken this week as Republican lobbyist Jack Abramoff pleaded guilty to tax evasion, fraud and corruption charges and agreed to aid a federal investigation of members of Congress and other government officials.

President Bush’s job approval remains low — 40 percent in the AP-Ipsos poll. About as many approve of his handling of Iraq, where violence against Iraqis and U.S. troops has surged.

(If you want to read the full article go to : http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/10740963/)

I have always held to the faith that the American people are much smarter than the politicians, pundits, consultants, and spinmeisters give them credit. As with all faith, my faith in the American body politic has been tested from time to time. Perhaps my faith is due for a renewal.

In 1994, the Republicans were swept into power by a brillant political maneuver: The Contract With America. In it, the GOP promised "To restore accountability to Congress. To end its cycle of scandal and disgrace. To make us all proud again of the way free people govern themselves."

Now, with the Republican Party mired in scandal, all it can do is claim that they are no worse than the Democrats. In Oklahoma, Rep. Ernest Istook who has declared himself a candidate for governor, is frantically trying to clean himself by donating some of the money he got from Abramhoff's PAC. Sorry, Ernie, that horse has already left the barn, especially since you already did the dirty work asked of you.

I hope that the good, Christian people of Oklahoma are starting to notice this:

My brothers and sisters in Christ, you have been betrayed by the people who took your faith for granted and have taken you to the cleaners. The Christian Right is not Christian in its actions, nor is it right in its morals.

Joe Conason in an editorial on Salon.com provides this example:

"Rarely has the contrast between the rhetoric of the religious right and the behavior of its leaders been so starkly exposed as in the Abramoff scandal. The most obvious example was the manipulation of Christian activists in Louisiana and Texas by Reed, former executive director of the Christian Coalition, who said he was helping them fight gambling when he was actually using them to promote Indian casinos (and to make a few million bucks for himself)."

Please remember brothers and sisters that Jesus while on earth was most bitterly opposed by the Fundamentalists of his day: the Pharisees. He was arrested by those in power in Judea where church authority and state power were one in the same. The man we follow said more about the abuses visited on the poor and weak by the rich and powerful than he said about nearly any subject including sexual behavior and proper religious observance.

My father taught me many things, but two things I particularly learned from him were:

1. Don't fight on the side of Goliath. Dare to be a David.
2. Don't worship like a Pharisee. Doing beats being. Faith is function, not form.

That's probably why I am a Democrat.

4 comments:

Kerry said...

here, here! great post mr. lynn green! and thank you for your recent visit to my blog. your words are powerful and motivating to read!

kerry

Kerry said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Kerry said...

ps--may i link your blog to mine? your so sweet! also, thank you for signing my guestbook. *smiles*

RkBall said...

I think, with his "jot and tittle", and "Scripture cannot be broken" comments, Jesus himself must be viewed as a fundamentalist. Certainly his view of Scripture is far higher than that of any liberal I have ever heard.

He may have spoken about human sexuality infrequently, but when he did, he intensified the mosaic law, rather than relaxing it. And, while liberals may wish to distance themselves from OT morality, Jesus both affirmed the Mosaic law, and honored Moses (at the mount of transfiguration).

Also, he apparently spoke of hell more frequently than heaven, so you have to be careful making an argument based on the number of times Jesus spoke about something.

Oklahoma - Braum's!