05 Nov Voting Pro-life While Managing to Care for the Poor
As a mother of nine kids, and a defender of the traditional family, I’d like to think that few things ruffle my feathers. I can handle a lot of noise, big messes, daily elementary school homework, as well as being called hateful and bigoted for supporting traditional marriage. However, one thing really ruffles my feathers. I am bothered when someone tells me that I am not a “true Christian” if I do not agree with his or her politics.
A Facebook friend posted an article she said was, “interesting with some valid points,” in regards to the upcoming U.S. presidential election. I curiously started reading. Almost immediately, I could tell this was indeed what ruffles my feathers. And it did. In fact, it did so thoroughly, that I went through it point by point to refute all of the arguments.
The author, Jim Wallis, makes three common arguments against voting pro-life and pro-traditional marriage. He states:
With more than 2,000 verses in the Bible about poverty — and with freeing the poor and oppressed as central components of the Gospel’s “good news” — shouldn’t we consider how the election will affect the poor and oppressed?
What he means is: If the candidate you are voting for is pro-life and pro-traditional marriage and doesn’t plan to over tax the wealthy to pay for government programs for the poor, then maybe you aren’t taking your religion seriously.
A study done in the year 2000 found that religious people (those who attend church services at least once a week) were 25 percentage points more likely to give charitably than “secularists” (those who attend less than a few times per year, or have no religion). And that is not all. This same religious group of people in dollar amount gave four times more in a single donation than secularists. And religious people were 23 percentage points more likely to volunteer their time. It sounds like Christians actually are “freeing the poor and oppressed as central components of” their faith, and they are doing it independent of taxes.
The second point Jim Wallis makes is:
Many of us Christians are “pro-life,” but aren’t the nearly 20,000 children around the world who die every day of utterly preventable hunger and disease just as much a “sanctity-of-life” issue as the approximately 3,000 abortions that occurred in our country today. A very prominent conservative Catholic lamented to me last week how his side mostly cares about children before they are born and the liberals care more about kids afterward. Where is the consistency here.
What he means is: If you vote for a pro-life candidate that doesn’t plan to super tax the wealthy, then you are responsible for the deaths of poor children in poor nations.
First, by defending the lives of unborn babies, one does not automatically discount the lives of born children. The argument that conservatives care for children before they are born and liberals care for children after they are born is a very poor and absolutely inaccurate argument. A better argument would be that if one cares for unborn children then he or she is more likely to care for the children after they are born. The argument, however, like the argument above can be refuted with the same statistics. Religious people are 25 percent more likely to give aid in the form of money and give four times more than the amounts donated by secularists. And religious people are 23 percent more likely to give aid in the form of time and physical service – and that includes time, money and service to children. What one does says more than what one says.
The final argument of Jim Wallis’s that I want to refute is:
And does the Bible only talk about sex and marriage or also about social justice?
What he means: Social Justice means legalized gay marriage. If you do not believe gay marriage should be legalized then you are not following the teachings in the Bible.
According an article in Wikipedia, “Social justice as a secular concept, distinct from religious teachings, emerged mainly in the late twentieth century, influenced primarily by philosopher John Rawls. Some tenets of social justice have been adopted by those on the left of the political spectrum.”
Social Justice is not the same as “justice” that is found in the Bible. Is it “just” for one couple’s sexuality to trample on the religious beliefs and parental rights of another couple? Is it “just” to deny children either a mother or a father because of the choices of the adults? If equality is to be considered in society, shouldn’t the needs of children be at least equal to the desires of the adults?
In this election and all future elections, do not allow someone to use Christianity to try and persuade you to vote for the candidate that promotes abortions and gay marriage. One can care for the poor and promote life and family by voting pro-life and pro-family.
And it sure seems to me that if you vote pro-abortion and pro-gay marriage that you’ve missed the whole point on caring for children and the whole point on “justice” – “social” or otherwise.