Thursday, June 26, 2008

Winning Hearts and Minds? - Amended

The other day, I wrote a post about James Dobson and Barack Obama, "Wheel...Of...Theology." Obama's camp has been trying to woo Evangelical Christians, youth in particular, including starting a "Jericho Generation" group or some such thing...

Okay - let's just stop right there. I hate to digress, but what does it say that the people he pursues the MOST are young, inexperienced people? I mean, really - the part of the brain that helps make good decisions isn't even fully set until one is into adulthood. I'm not kidding! (Here is but one article on the topic of Decision-Making - there are TONS available online.) That is why, so often, you will hear someone exclaim, "I can't believe SO-and-So drank and drove (or lied, or stole, whatever) - this seems so out of character for him/her," and they are in their late teens or twenties. It is that part of the brain that isn't fully formed that allows the Straight A, straight-laced student to go joy-riding, out of the clear blue sky, for example. Or to support a candidate because he seems "cool," not paying attention to what he actually says, or has done. I think you know what I mean. Anyway, it is VERY telling that he constantly pursues YOUNG people. Just sayin'.*

Anywho - to get back to the topic, Obama is trying to woo Evangelical Christians. James Dobson, of Focus on the Family, had some criticims of Obama, particularly his biblical interpretation. Dobson said (quote from the article mentioned below), "I think he's deliberately distorting the traditional understanding of the Bible to fit his own worldview, his own confused theology," Dobson said."

I think we all know how well Obama deals with criticism. Ahem. He is not fond of it, and tends to lash out. Bear in mind that Dobson's responses to him are based on a speech Obama gave in which he said, "that people of faith, like himself, "try to translate some of our concerns in a universal language so that we can have an open and vigorous debate rather than having religion divide us." Hang on a moment - I am so busy having my head explode at OBAMA talking about not having religion "divide us," that I can't type...Whew. OK. I think I am better. Can I just say, Obama attends a church that is INCREDIBLY DIVISIVE and he has the "audacity" to say this?! After attending TUCC, the Nation of Islam supporting church for TWENTY years, he says this??? Wow. Just freakin' wow. He added in his speech, "People aren't reading their Bibles."

Well, sure enough, he had THIS to say on Tuesday about Dobson's criticism in an AP article, "Obama Dismisses Dobson Criticism About Bible": ""I think you'll see that he was just making stuff up, maybe for his own purposes." Dobson is "making stuff up"? Gosh, he really IS eloquent, isn't he?!? And this: "Asked about Dobson's assessment, Obama said "somebody would be pretty hard-pressed to make that argument" that he was distorting the Bible." Way to go about winning the hearts and minds of the Evangelical Christians, Obama! Insult one of their foremost leaders! That oughta do the trick! (And may I say - again - I have absolutely NO love lost for Dobson, and completely disagree with HIS interpretation of the Bible, but I am not trying to get any of his people to vote for me, either! Just to be clear - not a fan of Dobson's.)

Honestly, I think Obama is unclear on the concept of bringing people into the fold, or has really internalized the hype about himself. He does seem to think he can say whatever derogatory comments he wants about leaders who represent millions of people, then get their people to fall in line behind him. That sure takes some nerve. Or something like that. Fill in your own word (hubris? Delusion?). I suppose this should come as no surprise to Hillary supporters, though - he pretty much reamed her time and time again, disparaging her character, making ad hominem attacks constantly, demeaning her, and women in general, with his sexist remarks, and overall responding with great arrogance - why WOULDN'T we just jump on board?!? Now he is trying it with James Dobson and Evangelical Christians! Let's just see how well this works out for him, even with the help of people like The Reverend Kirbyjon Caldwell, a former Bush supporter. I daresay, more people have heard of Dobson...Like I said, this Obama sure has a unique way to try and win the hearts and minds...

Oh, wait! Speaking of Obama's incredibly divisive church, and his claim that religions shouldn't divide us, Father Michael Pfleger said on "Good Morning America" that he stands by the message he preached against Senator Clinton, her whole "entitlement" thing, as he is now calling it. As if Senator Clinton EVER claimed she was entitled to anything, especially in the racist way he depicted. That was ALL Pfleger, and near as I can tell, he broke one of the Big Ten by "bearing false witness against his neighbor" with that one. Here's the link, in case you want to read it for yourself: Priest Who Mocked Clinton... What a piece of work, and how unfortunate that ABC is giving him any air time at all...Sheesh.

* And this is the problem with people like McCaskill and Caroline Kennedy, among others, allowing thier CHILDREN to convince them to vote for Obama! Their children's reasoning facilities are not yet physically or neuroogically set, and they are listening to THEM?? That is problematic on all sorts of levels, like why adults are acquiescing to their kids, for starters. I think we can all look back on our youth and remember how we were CERTAIN we were SO right about everything, and adults didn't know anything. We knew so much more, were so much more with it, and our arguments were better. As we look back, we realize we didn't know squat, cerainly not on the level we do now. And now there is scientific evidence that at least as far as reasoning is concerned, adults have better ability neuorlogically. So, yes, Claire and Caroline, by all means - let your KIDS tell you who to support! That's the most reasonable thing to do - not.


Amarissa said...

Another great post, RR! Obama has no respect for religion or the human race! He is the most egocentric and elitist candidate in history! His only ambition is POWER and that explains his constant change of direction on issues.If he didn't have the naive youth's admiration for his rhetorical messages of change and hope, he would be "NADA"!

Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy said...

Hey, thanks! I appreciate that! I am going to make an addendum - that the problem with these "leaders" allowing thier CHILDREN to convince them to vote for Obama is that the children's reasoning facilities are not yet set!! I think that's a problem, don't you??

Mary Ellen said...

Rev. Amy, you are amazing! This is a great post.

Yeah..Obama is talking about how others are misinterpreting the Bible, and yet his own Pastor and mentor, the not-so Reverend Wright's interpretation isn't exactly on target. Remember that garbage he was spewing from the pulpit about how Jesus was crucified by "garlic nose Italians" because he was Now, I may not be a religious scholar, but that's not the way I understood the Bible.

And don't get me started on that Phleger! If the Catholic Church can't reign that psychopath in, they are going to find themselves losing a large group of their followers. I'm Catholic, and I'm so fed up with him and the way the Church is defending him (our Pastor actually wrote a letter in the bulletin last week defending that asshole and compared his activism to Mother Therese and other Saints!) I promptly tore up my envelope and will not send in another one until they shape up. If he had said this from the pulpit, I would have walked out. This is a new pastor, and young...he has a lot to learn.

Anyway...the hypocrisy of Obama is never-ending and he has no clue as to how to put this party back together again.

Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy said...

Thanks so much, Mary Ellen! I really appreciate that!

I know - can you believe Obama prattling on abt biblical interpretation given what's been going on at TUCC for so many years? I mean, really - Wright has said SO Many offensive things abt so many different kind of people, it is staggering - and yet people still go to that church!

Like with Pfleger - the people in his congregation were going NUTS for him! HOW CAN THIS BE?!?! I mean, the guy is CLEARLY nuts, and on a MASSIVE ego trip. You would think with all of the other issues with which the RCC has been dealing, they sure wouldn't want THIS guy getting a bunch of press. Yikes!

And pretty sad abt your pastor - I appreciate that he is young and everything, but the things Pfleger said abt Clinton were just flat-out offensive, and people of good will would not condone such behavior, IMHO. Is Pfleger supposed to be COOL or something?!?).

Hey, ME - you KNOW your my RC contact!! Especially since you are in the Chicago area -I figure you know all KINDS of stuff like that! Hmmm - perhaps you should write abt this? Like the letter your pastor sent out was be a GREAT jumping off point! You know you are always welcome to Guest Post here!

Thanks again for the kind words!

Mary Ellen said...

Thank you, Amy! I'd love to do a guest post. I'll see what I could put together this weekend.

What I really would like to do is find out how it is that Phleger is able to stay for so many years in one Parish. The rules of most Diocese is that they are only allowed to stay for five years at the most, and then they have to be transferred. What he is doing goes beyond the pale of the vows of Obedience and Humility. The only thing I could figure out is that he is bringing in so much money to the Diocese, and they are just looking the other way. It wouldn't be the first time there was scandalous activity going on in our church...especially in Chicago.

I'm thinking of writing a letter to Cardinal George. I doubt if I'll get an answer, but it's worth a try. I also want to get in touch with my Pastor to find out if I had misinterpreted what he was trying to say in that letter in the church bulletin. I was very upset when I read it.

Rabble Rouser Reverend Amy said...

Hey, Mary Ellen -

Sorry for the delay in responding...That would be great if you wanted to put something together! Cool!

I would LOVE to know what the justifications are for keeping Flegler there (and I didn't know there were those types of limits - I know the Methodists do something similar - move the ministers every few years or so).

Here's the thing that I am still trying to wrap my mind around - WHAT is the story with the people who GO to his church (and TUCC, for that matter)?? They seemed all too happy to have him back there! They did that whole Muhammad Ali thing for hm when he returned! I am really stymied by that, though I guess it is not unlike any kind of cult - that's the feel I get from him and his followers, like a cult.

Curious. Well, let me know what you find out!