Like many people, I've been saddened and appalled by the rhetoric that has been occurring at various McCain and Palin rallies. It does not just show the lack of information some people are continuing to propagate, it is also demonstrating an alarming reality - the propagation of hate. Here is a timely reaction by John Lewis, who is one of the "three wise men" McCain said this summer he would call on for advise if elected president:
"As public figures with the power to influence and persuade, Sen.
McCain and Gov. Palin are playing with fire, and if they are not
careful, that fire will consume us all. They are
playing a very dangerous game that disregards the value of the
political process and cheapens our entire democracy. We can do better.
The American people deserve better." - civil rights icon John Lewis on the rhetoric being stoked at McCain-Palin rallies.
Indeed the American people deserve better. We should be striving for something so much better, so much more dignified than what has been occurring of late. It is truly sad.
To read the rest of Lewis' thoughts, as well as reaction by McCain and Obama here.
This was the invocation at a McCain rally today in Davenport, Iowa:
“I would also pray, Lord, that your reputation is involved in all that happens between now and November, because there are millions of people around this world praying to their god—whether it’s Hindu, Buddha,
Allah—that his opponent wins, for a variety of reasons,” said the minister [Pastor Conrad] delivering it. “And Lord, I pray that you will guard your own
reputation, because they’re going to think that their God is bigger
than you, if that happens. So I pray that you will step forward and
honor your own name with all that happens between now and election day.”
Is it just me, or does anyone else find this kind of ideology unsettling? It is as if the one true God is only on one side of the political spectrum. When the Jews spoke of "taking God's name in vain" what they took offense to was applying or using God's name "out of context" for what God would want his name attached to. It was about how the name was used and what purpose it was invoked for.
[HT: Zach, where you can listen to the audio, and Andrew.]
I've been thinking about this quote for a few days now...
It's extraordinary to me that the United States can find $700 billion to save Wall Street and the entire G8 can't find $25 billion dollars to save 25,000 children who die every day from preventable diseases. [Bono, rock star and anti-poverty activist.]
I've watched just about every clip I can from this interview and honestly I've come away with the same reaction every time...
Here's the transcript of the question and Palin's answer:
COURIC: Why isn’t it better, Governor Palin, to spend
$700 billion helping middle-class families who are struggling with
health care, housing, gas and groceries? Allow them to spend more, and
put more money into the economy, instead of helping these big financial
institutions that played a role in creating this mess?
PALIN: That’s why I say I, like every American I’m speaking
with, we're ill about this position that we have been put in. Where it
is the taxpayers looking to bail out. But ultimately, what the bailout
does is help those who are concerned about the health care reform that
is needed to help shore up our economy. Um, helping, oh, it’s got to be
about job creation, too. Shoring up our economy, and putting it back on
the right track. So health care reform and reducing taxes and reining
in spending has got to accompany tax reductions, and tax relief for
Americans, and trade — we have got to see trade as opportunity, not as,
uh, competitive, um, scary thing, but one in five jobs created in the
trade sector today. We’ve got to look at that as more opportunity. All
of those things under the umbrella of job creation.
The bailout helps those concerned with health care? "So health care reform and reducing taxes and reining
in spending has got to accompany tax reductions, and tax relief for
Just in case you missed it, Don Miller was invite to offer a benediction at the Democratic National Convention this evening. I was quite impressed with the substance of his prayer, which was for unity and the seeking to be an expression of the kingdom here on earth.
If you missed it, here's what Miller had to say about the invite and the text of his prayer, posted on www.donaldmillerwords.com:
I was honored to deliver the closing prayer at the DNC on Monday
night. Evangelical voices have been scarce within this party, perhaps
since the Carter administration. But as strides are being made on key
issues of sanctity of life and social justice, as well as peaceful
solutions to world conflicts, more and more evangelicals are taking a
closer look at options certain members of the Democratic Party are
beginning to deliver. There is a long way to go, but sending a message
to Washington that no single party has the Christian community in their
pocket, thus causing each party to carefully consider the issues most
important to us, is, in my opinion, a positive evolution. I am glad
that, for the most part, the dialogue has been constructive and
positive. Will you join me in keeping the conversation thoughtful and
That said, I was honored to speak to, and especially pray with and for, the DNC. Here is the full text of the prayer:
This week, as the world looks on, help the leaders in this room create a civil dialogue about our future.
We need you, God, as individuals and also as a nation.
We need you to protect us from our enemies, but also from ourselves, because we are easily tempted toward apathy.
Give us a passion to advance opportunities for the least of these,
for widows and orphans, for single moms and children whose fathers have
Give us the eyes to see them, and the ears to hear them, and hands willing to serve them.
Help us serve people, not just causes. And stand up to specific injustices rather than vague notions.
Give those in this room who have power, along with those who will
meet next week, the courage to work together to finally provide health
care to those who don’t have any, and a living wage so families can
thrive rather than struggle.
Help us figure out how to pay teachers what they deserve and give children an equal opportunity to get a college education.
Help us figure out the balance between economic opportunity and corporate gluttony.
We have tried to solve these problems ourselves but they are still there. We need your help.
Father, will you restore our moral standing in the world.
A lot of people don’t like us but that’s because they don’t know the heart of the average American.
Will you give us favor and forgiveness, along with our allies around the world.
Help us be an example of humility and strength once again.
Lastly, father, unify us.
Even in our diversity help us see how much we have in common.
And unify us not just in our ideas and in our sentiments—but in our
actions, as we look around and figure out something we can do to help
create an America even greater than the one we have come to cherish.
God we know that you are good.
Thank you for blessing us in so many ways as Americans.
I make these requests in the name of your son, Jesus, who gave his own life against the forces of injustice.
The article is a great reminder of how things have turned for the worse for our country, as well as the immense issues that face our next president and the leadership of this country. When I reflect on where we are, we seem to have veered off course from what has made America the land of the free and the home of the brave.