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Southern Religion

Health Care for ‘…the least of these…’

Southern Baptist pastor Wade Burleson posts a thorough, well-researched letter “from a Christian man named ‘Chuck Brown.'”

He calls out to Christian Biblical heritage, writing:

Ultimately, health care reform is not about whether you are a Republican, Democrat, Libertarian, Constitutionalist, or whatever else. It is not about whether you are conservative, liberal, independent, or apolitical. It is not about whether you despise Barack Obama or like Barack Obama. Health care reform is about “…the least of these…” among us and our ability to make some changes that will help them.

Read the entire letter here.

August 19, 2009 Posted by | Health, Law, Politics, Religion | , , | Comments Off on Health Care for ‘…the least of these…’

God on our side, and health reform

British Baptist journalist Jonathan Langley writes for the Associated Baptist Press that:

… in a week when Americans opposed to a large role for government in health-care reform have been attacking the United Kingdom’s National Health Service, mistaking American rights for “Christian rights” highlights a tendency in some American Christian circles to mistake the United States for the Kingdom of God.

He goes from that right to the heart of the objection some have to health reform. We Americans tend to believe one and all that God is on our side. Thus anything we feel is somehow un-American must be evil:

This, I think, helps explain why there have been such vehement denunciations of the British health-care system in America in recent days. Socialism, to those still brainwashed by Sen. Joseph McCarthy’s legacy, is “un-American.” Why? Because, as an old colleague returning from a time in Chicago explained to me last week, the American dream is to work for yourself and your own betterment. And any attempt to make you pay even a little for someone else’s health care is a violation of that dream.

Yet as Christians, he writes, “Our duty is to remember that the God Jesus Christ proclaims requires his children to give freely, love selflessly and sacrifice readily for the well-being of others.”

Driven by that faith-based logic he concludes:

Let’s pray that our American brothers and sisters can free themselves of any heresies that would see them deny the less fortunate among them health care for the sake of any false dream.

August 19, 2009 Posted by | Health, Politics, Religion | , , , | 1 Comment

Huckabee and the fate of the Palestinians

The Jerusalem Post called Mike Huckabee’s rejection of a two-state Israel/Palestine solution as a challenge to “the policies of both Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and US President Barack Obama.”

Harvard’s Stephen M. Walt wrote in Foreign Policy:

Given that current demographic trends suggest that Arabs will be a majority in the lands currently controlled by Israel in the not-too-distant future, Huckabee is either endorsing ethnic cleansing or calling for the permanent denial of democratic rights to the Arab residents of the Occupied Territories, which is a form of apartheid. Either way, he is no friend of Israel, and the policies he’s endorsing will do great damage to US interests throughout the region.

Jay Bookman of the Atlanta Journal-Constitution offered demographic detail:

At current estimates, there are 2.3 million Arabs living in the occupied West Bank and 1.4 million Arabs in the Gaza Strip, in addition to 1.5 million Arabs living within Israel’s internationally recognized boundaries. In fact, there are probably more Arabs living in the “Jewish homeland” than there are Jews. To achieve the single-state, Jewish-state solution proposed by Huckabee, one of two things must happen. The Palestinians would have to either go or stay.

Go, or stay?

Huckabee’s hosts have a preference, it seems. Huckabee was was the guest of the Jewish Reclamation Project of Ateret Cohanim, a Zionist group.

Bob Allen of Ethics Daily wrote in an article published today:

Former presidential candidate and possible vice presidential nominee Mike Huckabee visited Israel as a guest of a right-wing Zionist group that is buying up property to move Jews into Jerusalem’s Muslim Quarter in hopes of replacing the Dome of the Rock and al-Aqsa Mosque with a reconstruction of Solomon’s Temple and ushering in the Messianic Age.

Although Richard Silverstein goes deeper in his probing of Huckabee’s hosts.

Huckabee’s stance is no surprise. A Southern Baptist Minister is to be expected to base his foreign policy views on his faith.

Huckabee is quite conservative. His views brought him and his hosts together and lead him toward the kinds of solutions which concern Walt and others. Views about which simple humanity may have reasonable concerns.

With no reference to Huckabee, Tony Cartledge wrote Monday in a blog based on Alex Awad’s book, Palestinian Memories: The Story of a Palestinian Mother and Her People:

I have a lot of sympathy for Israel and the Israelis — don’t get me wrong. But I also have a great deal of sympathy for the Palestinians who continue to be displaced and dominated in ways that are wrong in the sight of God and man. The West has perpetrated unspeakable crimes against the Jews through the years — but trying to balance the scales on the backs of the Palestinians just adds one great crime to another.

August 19, 2009 Posted by | History, Israel, Obama, Politics | , , | Comments Off on Huckabee and the fate of the Palestinians