Controlled Debates – In Politics and Religion

I would rather take in another off-Broadway production of Les Miserables than another Presidential debate, hands down. One is excellent theater, the other not so much.

Marty Duren writes an Open Letter to the Commission On Presidential Debates. After I read it I thought of the old saying, “Show your skirt.” The euphemism is another way of saying stop hiding behind neutrality. There is no such thing. Attempts to play such a role insults our collective intelligence. Maybe that is the intention.

Then, Mike Morrell posted a link on Facebook I saw via Greg Horton describing the Leaked Documents containing the Memorandum of Agreement between the two major party candidates locking down the format and number of the debates. The piece described the agreement as creating a monopoly. Since the difference between the candidates is only slight, why exclude other voices unless we do not really want to see real differences.

I may yet return to my posture of conscientiously objecting from voting to exercise the franchise, to borrow from my friend Rick Davis. He who will be voting early and often in Texas.

Critics will excoriate me suggesting soldiers died for my right to vote. Marty heard the same and reminded his conversation partners that soldiers died to protect the Constitution, not my right to vote. Remember, originally, the governing document did not privilege all citizens to vote.

One of the few regular podcasts I listened to contained this little tidbit. It seems a politico writer from a major U.S newspaper believes the polling data is being selectively chosen to portray a tight race. If there is some sort of collusion in the debate process, maybe the design is to show the two candidates locked in a battle not only in terms of potential voters, but in the varied reactions to the first two debates. Romney won. Biden smirked. Obama won. Throwing out the smirks and figuring in Monday’s debate, my guess we will have something akin to a draw.

Referenced writer contends the aim of the rouse is to help the media maintain some sense of neutrality so that when President Obama wins by collecting at least 300 Electoral College votes, the blowout cannot be traced to the media. We live in the Land of Oz.

All of this brings me to consider the way in which debates, conversations, take place among those with different Christian positions. The Left and the Right borrow from their wider cultural counterparts. Christians must do better. In fact, maybe we should determined that our aim in the world is as N.T. Wright suggests, to bring the realities of the Kingdom to bear in our particular locales. While many may contend they are doing so through political process, I have in mind more of what it would look like to “love our neighbors,” and work for their good as God’s good representatives in the world.

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About the Author
Husband to Patty. Daddy to Kimberly and Tommie. Grandpa Doc to Cohen, Max, Fox, and Marlee. Pastor to Snow Hill Baptist Church. Graduate of Oklahoma Baptist University and Southwestern Baptist Theological Seminary. Reading. Photography. Golf. Colorado. Jeeping. Friend. The views and opinions expressed here are my own and should not be construed as representing the corporate views of the church I pastor.