Wednesday, November 5, 2014


Part I

The Republican Party took back the Senate last night. This brings me back to the 1980s through the early 1990s, when I, as an evangelical, thought that society could be redeemed through the political process. I, like my evangelical peers, was a staunch Republican. It was so clear to all of us that the Republican party was God's party that it was assumed that to be a good Christian, you must also be a good Republican.

I was taken back in 1994 when I saw on my good Christian friend's Subaru a bumper sticker supporting Bill Clinton. How could that be?  I asked this question to myself and then to my friend directly. While he was on board with main evangelical social issues, anti-abortion, pro gun, anti-gay, prayer in schools and etc. he was a Democrat because of his view of issues of social justice.  As a Christian, he saw the government having the responsibility of supporting the poor, bringing them good health care and meals.  I became tolerant of this friend (doubting his "double standard" at the same time) while my other friends, true Rush Limbaugh Republicans, were brutal to him. I'm talking "middle school meanness" here.

Augustine wrote his City of God as the Roman Empire was falling and the hopes of the Christian for a earthly kingdom (assumed to be the post-Constantine Roman Empire) was being dashed on the stones of the fallen walls across Italy.  In his book, he attempted to reassure the Christian that the kingdom of God was not earthly, but heavenly and therefore the hope should be eternal.

So, I don't agree with either side anymore.  Augustine was a Platonic-Dualist (his words not mine) where he saw this material world as un-important so only the heavenly mattered. I don't agree with that. But I also don't agree that a political party will be our salvation here in the material world.

Back in the 1980s and early 1990s, we, evangelicals, were all hoodwinked. If you read Frank Schaeffer's books, such as Crazy for God, he describes how the Republican Party saw an opportunity to cash in on the rising evangelical majority (there was a brief revival going on during that time). He and his dad were sucked into the middle of this. To bring this large voting block into the Republican Party, they deliberately  included Christian, emotional language in their platform. It is the same way that political parties court any other social block, such as emigrants.  I'm not saying that none of the Republicans really believed in stopping abortions and etc. but many did it for personal political aspirations and no other reasons.  Politicians, as a group, are up there with TV evangelists, as people who are the most phonies (to borrow a term from Caulfield--Catcher in the Rye).

Imagine for a moment that Christians decided to create their own country called Christianistan. This is not so far fetched as this has been attempted many times in history, including the Jonestown disaster. Would I want to be part of it?  Hell no!!!  Now, in my idealism of the 1980s and definitely in my brainwashed psuedo-utopian world of the 1970s I would have said, absolutely!  So this change begs some interesting questions. Why would, in my opinion, a country run by evangelicals be so bad?  Okay, I have patients coming in the door and I have to go, so I will give this some more thought and be back with Part II.


Nestus Venter said...

I do not know if it will nessecary be bad, but Christianity and power do not mix. Somewhere, somehow, things will go wrong and when they do, you will have dark age mentalities prevailing.

Headless Unicorn Guy said...

Would I want to be part of it? Hell no!!! Now, in my idealism of the 1980s and definitely in my brainwashed psuedo-utopian world of the 1970s I would have said, absolutely!

As young Jihadi and Talibani say in the Islamic world today, and as Young Communists and Chairman's Red Guards and Hitlerjugend said in Europe and Asia in the last century.

Utopia -- like Citizen Robespierre's Republique of Perfect Virtue -- always beckons from the other side of the "regrettable but necessary" Reign of Terror. Because The Cause is so Righteous as to justify any atrocity to achieve The Goal.