The Wacky Emerging Church, Reason #92
April 2, 2008, 8:14 am
Filed under: blogging, emerging church, globalization, politics

This post is part of a continuing series. You may want to read my list of disclaimers and intro remarks here, if you haven’t done so already.

Reason #92: Voting for a Democrat for the first time in your life doesn’t mean you’re subversive

This being a presidential election year, it’s definitely been interesting to watch the emerging church blogosphere get whipped up into a frenzy over candidates.  I think people are a bit more caught up in the personalities of the candidates than they are in the policy issues the candidates represent, but I could be wrong on that.  Some amount of focus on the campaigns is probably a good thing, because it does represent an important aspect of our culture, that we are supposed to care about engaging.  It also presents us with an opportunity to speak to issues of justice and morality (note that I’m using that word very broadly here . . . I’m referring to torture and poverty as much as sexual ethics of politicians).

Barack Obama.  There.  I said it.  Everybody loves Barack.  It’s like freaking Beattlemania. 

You want to vote for the guy, vote for him.  I might just join you in that, but I haven’t decided yet.  But geez, people!  Do you really think he’s our ticket to better, brighter days??  Do you really think that 9/11 wouldn’t have happened if he were in the White House?  Do you really think that peace and good will are going to reign supreme if he gets elected?  Will Iran suddenly hate us less if he gets in?  Will Hugo Chavez start liking us?  Will gas prices go down and television ratings go up?  Will pizza be less fattening and more nutritious? 

He may be better than what we’ve got now.  Things may improve.  But let’s keep one thing squarely in mind, shall we?  Whether it’s Obama, Clinton, or McCain sitting in the Oval Office one year from now, it will still be nothing more and nothing less than the figure head of an empire.  That empire is not where our hope lies.  That empire is more concerned with wealth and security and “progress” and indulgence, with precious little regard to whose paying the price for these things.  That empire sets itself up as a beacon of hope to the masses, but it has no power to do what this planet needs most.  That empire wants our allegiance above all else, and is willing to manipulate and coerce us into giving it up.

I’m not an anarchist.  I kinda think governments are inevitable.  Oh, and they’re actually useful – I think it’s a good idea for water to come out of my faucets and fire trucks to come to my house when it catches fire.  I think it’s important for good, hopeful, genuine, smart, charismatic, energetic, and maybe even godly people to occupy government positions.

I haven’t read Shane Claiborne and Chris Haw’s new book yet . . . it’s on my shelf, (nonviolently) waiting for its turn.  Some of this stuff is probably redundant to that.  It isn’t “new,” by any stretch.  But the Obama-mania I’ve been seeing makes me wonder if the message is really getting through to the emerging church.  He represents a lot of what is good and right about us as people, as USAmericans.  But let’s remember, where our citizenship truly lies.


3 Comments so far
Leave a comment

Good stuff. I think the definition of “subversive” that emerging folk use is pretty tame. As I’ve studied the radicalist impulse in history, I’m pretty sure that even the most subversive among us (myself included) would still be seen as gigantic sympathizers and tools of the empire.

Comment by markvans

if we’re being honest, this is exactly what I’m experiencing right now with Obama. I was telling someone the other day that his rhetoric is fantastic, I’m just not sure about his policies, etc. Probably more important that he knows what he’s doing rather than how to get a crowd going.

Comment by dockin80

Well said!

Comment by rexhamilton

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: