Note: I wrote this column in 2008, but President Obama’s comments call for an update. When he lit the 2011 national Christmas tree, Obama proclaimed himself a Christian and said, “So long as the gifts and the parties are happening, it’s important for us to keep in mind the central message of this season, and keep Christ’s words not only in our thoughts, but also in our deeds.” We hope and pray you’ll keep your own words this time, Mr. President.
These days, many Christians in America are downhearted. No wonder! In addition to economic distress and news of terrorism, the presidential election revealed more about our countrymen and women than it did about Barack Hussein Obama. To complicate matters, certain “conservative” pundits are preaching that anyone who cares about human rights ought to just shut-up and despair.
However, stay with me here because not all is lost. During this beautiful season of Advent, let us rejoice that the Divine Persons of the Holy Trinity bestowed us with the utmost dignity, since we are created in God’s image with intellect and free will. Yes, Jesus Christ Almighty elevated human nature by coming into this world as a vulnerable infant and a Christmas carol by poor American slaves sets the tone:
Sweet little Jesus boy
Born long time ago
Sweet little holy child
We didn’t know who You was
Didn’t know You’d come to save us LORD
To take our sins away
Our eyes was blind, we couldn’t see
We didn’t know Who You was.
The purity of that song makes me wonder what its humble composers would think of their descendants’ politics. According to Politico, 96% of black Americans voted for Obama. Usually I am skeptical of exit polls, but considering what I witnessed close to home, that figure is probably accurate. Minorities are the majority in my Virginia neighborhood – where no one displayed campaign signs until this year – and they were all for Obama. In fact, one of our leading black seniors had never voted, but he finally registered specifically for Obama. Yet none of the Obama fans who spoke with me had investigated the candidate’s policies.
My Baptist neighbor and friend Lisa is an amazing mom who strives to raise her sons on truth. Nevertheless, one evening Lisa said, “Anita, I love you, but I hate Sarah Palin.” Lisa faithfully listens to radio host Michael Baisden, whose lowbrow campaigning for Obama included absurd attacks on Gov. Palin. For example, I heard him mocking Palin’s latest pregnancy and conducting a poll on whether conservatives would tolerate her unwed pregnant daughter if she was black. I explained to Lisa that Baisden’s ploys were racist and insulting, especially since some conservatives are black. I told her that my primary reason to vote against Sen. Obama was his extreme abortion agenda. But Baisden won her over – at least temporarily. Lisa put an Obama bumper sticker on her car and a campaign sign in her front yard.
To the contrary, on Election Day, one of my dearest friends proclaimed that he had “voted Republican straight down the ticket.” Like Lisa, B.B. is black. When we first met at work 10 years ago, B.B. was an irreligious “pro-choice” liberal.
Five years later, we became close friends when a series of tragedies began to strike his family. First, his beloved mother, the classy matriarch, died. Later, B.B. invited me to the home of his bedridden father, where we all discussed the meaning of life and eternity. Soon thereafter, B.B. lost his job, then his father. Then again, as God would have it, B.B.’s next boss was Ken: a noble Christian, husband and father of a child with Down syndrome.
Meanwhile, one of B.B.’s nephews was born with serious disabilities; then the children’s father died. Thus, B.B. lives with his sister and nephews, and works three jobs producing Christian radio in order to raise the two boys as his own. Of course, this honorable man inspires me.
Thankfully, I know many champions for the downtrodden. Last year, I introduced both Lisa and B.B. to the legacy of stem cell scientist James Sherley, a Baptist who suffered racism and further discrimination for defending embryonic persons, regardless of race.
Why did B.B. vote against Obama? For starters, now he is Christian. He was impressed with Sarah Palin’s credentials, her faith and her joyful witness as the mother of a sweet baby son with Down’s. B.B. also said, “Ken had a great effect on me. I decided that his child with Down syndrome deserves to live. I decided that my disabled nephew deserves to live. I researched stem cell science and read Dr. Sherley’s article True Liberty and Justice for All Ages.” Bottom line, B.B. declared, “I decided that I am pro-life.”
Just before Thanksgiving on a cold day, one of my favorite cashiers was wearing an Obama campaign fleece jacket as she rang up my merchandise. Therefore, I quietly asked her, “My dear friend, do you know what Obama stands for?” As I expected, she did not know his abortion record or his plans. To my surprise, she wanted more info. “Charity” is this black woman’s name and I like to think that it’s more fitting than the Obama fleece that she wore. After all, charity is the love that unites us to God.
I mentioned Charity’s request to Day Gardner, president of the National Black Pro-Life Union, who recommended her own article “Someone Has to Say It … Christians Who Voted for Obama Voted Against the Word of God.” After Charity read two Gardner editorials and my interviews with Latino star Eduardo Verastegui on his pro-life witness and videos about Obama, she said, “We have to talk.”
Pastor Clenard Childress, founder of BlackGenocide.org, said, “Barack Obama’s longstanding relationship with [the abortion chain] Planned Parenthood is easily documented and now can’t be clouded by media bias, economy woes and the notoriety of America’s first black president. The election is over. We now have a face to put on black genocide in America.
“During the general election cycle to deceive voters, primarily evangelicals, Obama’s campaign set up a website ‘Matthew 25 Network.’ On this site Barack Obama claims to be pro-life. Nothing could be further from the truth.”
Childress described abortionists treating their victims like trash, thereby demonstrating the hypocrisy of Obama luring Christians with Matthew 25. In that chapter of the Bible, Jesus, the Lord of Lords and Kings of Kings, warns us about His final judgment on all nations and every soul: “Amen I say to you, as long as you did it to one of these my least brethren, you did it to me. Then he [the Lord and King] shall say to them also that shall be on his left hand: Depart from me, you cursed, into everlasting fire, which was prepared for the devil and his angels.” (Douay-Rheims Bible)
In His love letter of John 14, Christ tells Judas, “If any one love me, he will keep my word.” He also commands us, “Let not your heart be troubled: nor let it be afraid … Amen, amen, I say to you, he that believeth in me, the works that I do, he also shall do: and greater than these shall he do.”
Although few of us are as meek as the slaves who composed “Sweet Little Jesus Boy,” we can sing their hymn, pray for mercy and help our neighbors to understand that duty calls. As the song goes:
You done told us how
We’s a tryin’
Master, You done showed us how
Even when You’s dyin’
Just seems like we can’t do right
Look how we treated You
But please, Sir, forgive us Lord
We didn’t know it was You.
Barack Obama’s official U.S. Senate photo 2005.