My disappointment comes from the repeated mention in the media of "moral issues," and such issues were the reason for Bush's victory. Like I've pointed out many times before, isn't aligning yourself with the rich also a moral issue? What about having an ethos that doesn't respect life? Both candidates failed in that last question, but nonetheless I wish that "moral issues" weren't so narrowly defined. The media has singled out evangelical and other Christian voters in this election, because they tipped the scale. They felt a strong need to ban same-sex marriages and to elect a president that will take a stand against abortion (although, as a pro-life ethicist has shown, abortion rates have risen and will probably continue to rise under Bush's policies). That's great that they took a stand, but is anyone getting energetic about any other social issues? Of course not, because that would be hitting a little too close to home.
I'm going to quote Andrew Walls again, because he really gets to what I'm trying to say about this election, and maybe many conversative Christians' attitude in general:
"We can use the sense of Christian identity to legitimate some group's economic and social interests. That is civil religion--and it is an ever-present peril when Christianity is well established in any community. When we give way to this we draw the teeth of the Scriptures so that they will not bite us, while still hoping that they will bite other people."from The Missionary Movement in Christian History: Studies in the Transmission of Faith
One last thing: look at the way some perceive us Christians now, which is simply as identifiers with one camp, rather than thinking, non-politically-partisan believers in the Gospel. Here's a quote from Friedman's piece today in the NY Times:
"Mr. Bush held onto the same basic core of states that he won four years ago - as if nothing had happened. It seemed as if people were not voting on his performance. It seemed as if they were voting for what team they were on.
This was not an election. This was station identification. I'd bet anything that if the election ballots hadn't had the names Bush and Kerry on them but simply asked instead, "Do you watch Fox TV or read The New York Times?" the Electoral College would have broken the exact same way.My problem with the Christian fundamentalists supporting Mr. Bush is not their spiritual energy or the fact that I am of a different faith. It is the way in which he and they have used that religious energy to promote divisions and intolerance at home and abroad."