Identity Politics & the Christian-American Conundrum

Can a Christian be a Democrat? Does a Christian have to be a Republican? The answer is...

I get a certain plebeian amusement from observing the desperation of candidates pounding the pavement willing to say or do almost anything for a vote. More recently, when a Democrat hoping to run for City Treasurer stopped by to request my signature on a petition that would put his name on the ballot, I wanted support the American democratic process by showing him the ropes, old school style. 

Up front, I managed his expectations by revealing the presence of a MAGA hat in my home as well as three blends of Donald Trump coffee – gifts from friends during the 2016 election cycle that would not be thrown in the trash nor set ablaze on social media in protest of the patriarchy. With some understandable confusion in his eyes, the candidate-hopeful hastily flipped through his paperwork and noted that I am registered as “Independent”. In response, I demanded answers about his stance on abortion, gun ownership, the SAFE Act, raising taxes, illegal immigration and the Wall. 

Rallying quickly, the man (still admiringly persistent to stay in the game for my signature) reminded me that he was running for the position of City Treasurer and noted that these issues were not really in his wheelhouse. “That doesn’t change my questions,” was my stony reply. Then, I stood quietly on my porch and allowed the ensuing awkward silence to do its work while he stammered out answers that he hoped reached across the aisle far enough. I grew up without a television, so this is how I get my laughs, pray for me.

Food for thought: Can a Christian be a Democrat? Does a Christian have to be a Republican? When I was a kid, I once asked a pastor friend this question: Can a Christian be demon possessed? You know what he said??? A Christian can do whatever he wants. Sigh. Therein lies the rub.

I often think of life in Forrest Gump terms: Christian is as Christian does.

Identity Politics Identify Nothing

And there you have it. At the end of the day, it’s not about who is right, it’s about what is right. That includes how we vote. For a Christian, a follower of Jesus Christ, our guiding principles are found in the Bible, but you have to actually read it, learn it, and understand it.

Anyone can flip to a page in the Bible and condemn homosexuals to hell or demand a stoning for someone for carrying a sack of grain on the Sabbath. Anyone can also flip to a page in Gray’s Anatomy and rattle off how to remove a gall bladder, but am I letting them near me with a scalpel? N.o.p.e.

It is true that the traditional, foundational moorings of the Democrat party are, largely, in diametric opposition to Scriptural principals, and that the leftist ideologies have overtaken the party like cannibal ants on a cow carcass, but can a Christian still be registered as a Democrat and look themselves in the face honestly each day say they’re a true Christian? or a true Democrat?

People who are ignorant of the Bible will say silly things like “Don’t judge” to shoo away skiddish Christians who don’t read their Bibles when, in reality, the Bible teaches the discernment to judge rightly, according to the entirety of the Bible. Can you really call yourself a Bills fan if all you own is Patriots gear? Can you honestly say you follow the tenants of the Bible while existing in a political party that dismembers unborn children and uses their bodies to keep the lights on in Baltimore?

A Blue Day

The City Treasurer hopeful gave it the old college try and I had to admire how determined he was to remain as politically neutral as possible and answer my questions in a way he felt I would accept, rather than just telling me the truth about his actual stances on things. (Not that they ever mattered for obtaining my signature. I just wanted to support him having the full experience of good, old fashioned, American front porch, whistle-stop campaigning.) 

I did eventually smile and tell him I was kidding (…ish) and that I would put my name on his Democratic ballot list because I am an American, and I believe that every American deserves a fair shot in the game of thrones. Also, my non-party signature invalidated his sheet, so it was a mutual win. We both had a slightly uncomfortable laugh across the aisle and he left trying not to look like he was running. God Bless America.

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