I have no idea how this will play out, and as the non-Mormon on this blog to some extent it is none of my business, but last week one of the Mormon elders “apologized” to some pro-gays in Oakland:
There was sobbing. There were tears. Elder Jensen also shed tears as he listened and took notes to share with other General Authorities back in Salt Lake City. At the conclusion of the hour, he apologized for the pain he was witnessing.
According to attendee Carol Lynn Pearson, a Mormon author and long-time advocate of LGBT concerns, Elder Jensen said, “To the full extent of my capacity, I say that I am sorry . . . I know that many very good people have been deeply hurt, and I know that the Lord expects better of us.”
It is made clear by every one I have read on this that it is NOT and apology for Prop 8 or for Mormon doctrine on homosexuality, but rather an apology for the pain felt. Said Mark Silk, with whom I rarely agree:
The Battle of The ‘Flyover” States
Well of course he could, he is from right next door! But it set me to thinking. There are going to be some regional battles this time. You will have Thune and Pawlenty scrapping over Iowa since both are neighbors there. Thune has been making a lot of news lately doing big time interviews that have everybody talking. Then there is the battle for the Hoosier state between Mike Pence and Mitch Daniels. David Brooks talked about the later in a throw away comment this week that drew all sorts of reaction. First see the link on Daniels name and then see this ‘First Thoughts’ take down.
All four of these men – Thune, Pawlenty, Daniels and Pence have made significant contributions on the national scene, but they are primarily regional figures. Everyone I know in the old home state of Indiana is talking about Daniels and Pence. But the same myopathy that we often accuse coastal folks of having when it comes to the so-called flyover states applies to midwesterners as well. They often just cannot see that what plays in Indiana or Iowa or Minnesota or South Dakota simply will not play in California or New York or Florida.
But what is really going on here is the press wanting to set up social issues as the driver for an election that must be run on first economic issues and secondly national security. The buzz on these guys is largely on social issues which will begin and end in Iowa this cycle. Daniels handling of the Indiana budget gives him some fiscal edge and Thune’s unseating of Daschle makes him a shrewd political operator. But only time will tell if they have what it takes to break out of the midwest and make real national impact here. In the meantime just remember that everything you are reading and hearing in the MSM wants to create the appearance of a knockdown drag out in the Republican party – a gap through which Obama can run. Not very likely given the shambles to which he has driven this nation in two short years.
The President’s Faith…
Obama says he is a “Christian by choice.” Some question his sincerity, some the politics. The latter wonders at his religious literacy given that the nation as a whole, while Christian is pretty religiously illiterate.
The whole thing, which happened in an “innocent” Q&A, strikes me as having been set-up to allow his majesty, er…President Obama, to respond to the “he’s a Muslim” rumors.
I pray for the man daily, but I would remind all of us that Christianity is not merely a set of ideas to which we grant ascent – it is a relationship with the living God, who seeks to place us back into His image in which we were originally created but from which we have fallen.
And old Bush hand said this this week in an interesting piece on religion in the 2010 midterms:
Today, we find evangelical Protestants as the core religious group supporting the Republican Party, joined by their Mormon allies, while a heterogeneous coalition of highly religious blacks and Hispanics, Jews, and an increasingly vocal group of seculars make up the Democrat camp.
There’s an alliance I would like to see strengthened! The problem last time was we were allied against the enemy, but not internally – we battled for power inside the party. This time we really need to set that aside and get the job done – there is too much at risk.
Both Christianity and Islam are animated by the conviction that their truths are universal. Both want to realize this universality in and through evangelization, which involves the transformation of culture. Both face the temptation to conscript the power of the modern state to achieve this goal. A commitment to religious freedom blocks this temptation. It redirects the ambitions of the evangelist toward their proper object: the heart and mind of the human person, and fittingly so, for it is the place where culture percolates.
I’d say that applies to Evangelicals and Mormons as well.