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Archive for December, 2010

Preaching to Choirs

One of my old youth group buddies spurned an interesting discussion on her facebook status. Basically, she was upset with the extended tax cuts for the uber-2%-richest Americans. Not really news to disagree with on my own FB side of things, or in the blue town I live in. But, she’s a staunch and unfaltering Christian. and Democrat. In North Texas. In fact, she’s been a Christian Democrat for as long as I’ve known her (25 years now?!). And she got a little heat for her comment. Because, in her community, Christian Democrats are as rare as gay republicans or hippie conservatives or Intelligent Palins or ‘real housewives of…’ (you get the point). A few of her Christian FB friends, and family, were setting up some thoughtful (yet predictable) arguments; one was a little meaner, but overall, it was a good discussion. Nobody’s minds were changed, but it was kind of nice to observe. I don’t see Christians fussing with each other often (usually most lean right and republican in north Texas so preach to their own choir), so I was curious. I naturally put in my 2 cents, basically agreeing with her sentiments, and maybe got a little of the heat too, but it wasn’t as bad as I expected – because I’ve spent the last many years assuming all Christian Republicans Hate Me And My Kind (this is what Fox taught me). Dumb, right?

So, I thought I’d share my final thoughts that I posted on her FB wall conversation. Yes, long-winded and took up too much of her space, but I felt like Jane Goodall! I had to write my field observations to them.

“*sigh* I miss the Roosevelts.

But seriously folks, Steph, thank you for starting this conversation! I have enjoyed reading your friend’s thoughtful responses. For real, I mean, on FB and here in blue insular hippie Austin, I say some politico-social-leftie-sciencey stuff, but am kind of preaching to the choir with my friends (bleeding hearts, gays, lefties, straights, non-believers, scientists, believers but progressives, alt families, trad families, smarty pants, people who wear plaid, etc etc.), ya know? and so I build up this unwarranted anti-trust and anger and head-scratchiness to the ‘other’ side: “the big bad hard-right Christian repubs.”

What I’m saying is, I don’t see/hear the right-leaning ‘everyday’ believers anymore who are not in the media, (i.e., extremist, non-logical-right-wingy-tea-baggy-Palin-Becky, haters) so forget that the average (in a normal bell curve kind of sense) church folks out there are still nice, thinking people who do have valid input about their life choices and are not necessary out to get the democrats, or gays, or scientists, or who they assume are non-believers or evil-doers or something crazy like that. I mean, duh, right? And that’s on me: to stop and hear the other side occasionally, but not the side from Fox news pundits – they are just louder and more obnoxious and incite fear/hate daily; I want to hear from the side that used to sit in the pews with me on sundays or are my red-state neighbors that I shared a lab table with in college. we may be different with how we live our lives day-to-day, but that doesn’t mean we gotta fear/hate/be suspicious of each other.

But these days, it seems people are so very, very divided, that democratic Christians like Steph get spewed at by her own. Back in the day (remember pastor Mahaffey? and all that love and stuff and support for all of humanity said in church?), we actually had dems and repubs in the pews, and in fact, we didn’t even know who voted for who, and it seemed so non-divisive. Like, gasp, you could be religious AND political on either side. now, it’s so dichotomized, or, lobotomized, that Stephanie’s breed seems rare (oxymorons, not spectrums. I love spectrums. rainbows to be exact – spectrums of humans make things interesting in life).

Anyway, my point, and I may have had one (thanks Ellen), I like this discussion. Especially the ones who say their piece thoughtfully, and then say, ‘even though we disagree on this issue, I love you!’ That’s the old school Christian (and humanist mind you) values I like to see!

And, um, I’m still waiting on evidence of how the upper 2% richies have “helped” our economy in the last 7 years; enough so to be rewarded with extended tax breaks for the next 2 years….uh oh, no I di’int!

the end.
-amo

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