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August 29, 2008

The view from the floor

Ted and Collin made astute observations about Barack Obama's acceptance speech and the benediction tonight.

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I'm honestly wiped out.

Invesco Field was packed with Obama supporters, stomping their feet and yelling the "Yes we can" slogan.

It felt like a football game, thanks to long lines for drinks and the fallen nachos crunching under my feet.

The fireworks set to cheesy music were pretty grand, but then finding my way out and getting around Denver has been a little nightmarish this entire week.

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Here are a few photos to give you a better picture of tonight's event. If you look very, very closely at the second one, that's Barack Obama.

During 'the traditional values' portion of Obama's speech, the crowd seemed to get the most excited about his last part about same-sex marriage.

"We may not agree on abortion, but surely we can agree on reducing the number of unwanted pregnancies in this country. The reality of gun ownership may be different for hunters in rural Ohio than for those plagued by gang-violence in Cleveland, but don’t tell me we can’t uphold the Second Amendment while keeping AK-47s out of the hands of criminals. I know there are differences on same-sex marriage, but surely we can agree that our gay and lesbian brothers and sisters deserve to visit the person they love in the hospital and to live lives free of discrimination."


Photos by Sarah Pulliam for Christianity Today.

Comments

As a British political observer (and, for the record, theologically "conservative", i.e., yes, homosexuality is a sin, yes, abortion is murder, etc, etc) - are we hearing the same speech?

I understand the focal point of the blog is to pick up "Christian" themes at the DNC this year, particularly with a view to assess Barack Obama as a potential President, but I think we have different ideas on "Christian" themes. See, for me, Obama hit it on the head Re: tax programs, health care, etc, in terms of a Biblical view. "Act justly, love mercy, walk humbly with your God". For me, Obama is the better candidate on a Biblical measure, because of his love of mercy and justice. Yes, he is a flawed candidate. But economic promises, with the corrct, Biblical view that we must look after the poor, that we can't expect wealth to "trickle down" to the lower classes, and to be a global peacemaker - this, to me, is more the heart of the gospel, than a Republican agenda.

While i do - ademaantly - disagree with Obama on abortion, homosexuality, etc, etc, in terms of "looking for God" at the DNC, these are the wrong places to spend all your time looking. What is Obama saying about justice? What is Obama saying about the poor? What is Obama doing to bring mercy? What does Obama plan for America's role as peacemaker, not warmaker?

I would like to see the same criteria met for McCain - because I don't believe they're there. I'm sure he can press all the right buttons to get the fundamentalists wooping - "abortion is bad! homosexuality is bad!" - and get America on His side. But, I do not trust probably the moat prominent leadership role in the world with a man who has worrying foreign policy, someone who ignores the needy around him, who denies the economic problems crippling most of what is now the West, or someone who calls his wife a c***. I would like to see a sceptical "looking for God in the GOP 08", with more Biblical criteria than just homosexuality and abortion. Yes, these are important to the heart of God. But so is the call to love your neighbor.

Just my thoughts.
x

Sarah,

Thanks for your excellent reporting. I enjoyed reading. It is disappointing that Obama's faith does not make clear distinction between scriptural mandate for a holiness (that God, who does not tolerate sin in any form, expects to live out and has made provision for salvation through Jesus Christ) and the compassion the Lord Jesus has for fallen man. It is clear that what has been painted by the Democrats party is a humanity that is good at the core, when the scriptures clearly teaches that man's salvation hope is by recognizing that sin is man's problem and if not dealt with will cause the problem that this party so beautifully describes exist in this country and in the world. I as an African American celebrate the achievement of Obama and the black race in this mile-stone time since Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s speech 45 years ago. However, I cannot vote for Obama on the basis of policies that perpetuate the destruction of the African American and the values that motivated the framers of the Constitution. Thank you Sarah for your thoughts, I look forward to more.

Regards,

Guy Camara

Absolutely agree with the previous comment -- and I'm a liberal democrat! While I have a different view on homosexuality and am pro-choice, I definitely am tired of the "hot" buttons that are used to stir up the masses and camoflage any real Christian, social concerns.

. . . gay and lesbian brothers and sisters deserve to visit the person they love in the hospital . . .
-----------------

Could someone please help me understand how or why gays and lesbians cannot visit patients in hospital?
How can a hospital screen out such a visitor?

This is the first I've heard of this and I'd appreciate someone to explain it, if possible.

The reason gays and lesbians have been banned from visitiing their loved ones in hospitals come from rules that "family only" can be in the rooms of certain patients--ICU or cadiac care, for instance.

Hey x, those other issues are important, but one really does trump the others. Killing babies in the womb is still killing babies in the womb. No matter how reprehensible other governmental failures are, the failure to protect little humans in the womb is the greatest human rights issue of our day. The others are important, but abortion is not just another moral issue. As for Obama's notion straw man that homosexuals should be able to visit partners in the hospital, who's against that? I know of no one who objects, even among those nasty Republicans.Nice straw man, Barack.

Hey x, those other issues are important, but one really does trump the others. Killing babies in the womb is still killing babies in the womb. No matter how reprehensible other governmental failures are, the failure to protect little humans in the womb is the greatest human rights issue of our day. The others are important, but abortion is not just another moral issue. As for Obama's notion straw man that homosexuals should be able to visit partners in the hospital, who's against that? I know of no one who objects to that, even among those nasty Republicans Nice one, Barack. You're my hero, infant death protection act 'no' vote and all.

I agree with the first argument that nothing gets close to the heart of God than justice and mercy. Our bible teaches us that when we take care of the poor, the Lord takes care of us. There are so many reminders from the word that tells us how the least among us is very important to the Lord. Yes I hate abortion, but I hate it even more when we don't care or rather support programs that will care for little children as republicans. One should not base their presidential decisions on one criteria alone. It's wise to pray and purge our minds from what some politicians that are seeking the christian votes are telling us. Remember, it's all about power. Once they get to washington, they actually do the opposite. It will be satisfying to me that common issues like poverty are dealt with first before we start fighting against things that will require strong bipartisanship from both sides. We have been fighting abortion for a long time now, and constantly ignoring the main issues. Guess what people of God, we really cannot police the world and all they believe. Our intention is to spread the message of Christ just like He himself did; Not acting like the scribes and pharisees, but bearing witness to the truth. Let's face it, whether we like it or not, people will keep doing abortion, if not here, overseas. We need to get the heart of people first and then the understanding of morality follows. To crown it all, I believe that I'm resonating with the Obama's speech and campaign -- Quite interesting

Obama's line on abortion is appealing to any person. It is like a generic statement that covers anyone's thoughtful heart. However, it is not the point. Ending a life in the womb is still ending a life. As for all the complicated details and arguments for an abortion that may be "legitimate", there are very few. We do not need a sweeping evil law that says the LIE, that a woman has a Right to end the life in the womb. This is just an unacceptable and baseless idea that has been perpetuated as a choice. The killing of a baby in the womb affects all of us in the worst way. What ONE person does causes loss for all of us, and if our society continues to buy into the lie, then we will all have failed God miserably. We will never be closer to the Kingdom if we allow abortion. I will add about healthcare later as this is a good issue with very bad ideas so far of how to address it. Again people need to think through this and not jump into a poor thought plan in the name of "compassion", or God. Right now with the government plan of medicare 1/3 (ONE THIRD) of the PAY-OUTS are fraudulent claims.
This is a big problem and can you imagine all the gov't jobs that are being held to perpetuate this mess, and no one doing anything about it? Why would we want the gov't in healthcare? There are ways, but there needs to be some real serious thought with the facts clear.

In Crystal's comments above...THERE IS NO RELATION BETWEEN THE SCRIBES AND PHARACEES AND PEOPLE being against ABORTION!
DO YOU want the TRUTH? Then study more of your Bible and stop listening to the nonsense of the "progressive churchianity going on in this country, and the secularist and even atheists! The message is getting closer to the same! God's Word is unrecognizable. It is not in the "hearts" of the progressive "fixer uppers". Loving God is still an action of turning from our evil choices ways, repenting, and finding guidance in HIM, to do the righteous thing. Jesus did not 'heal' people from pregnancy. Helping the poor means loving one in their circumstances and standing with them in Jesus' way. I do not think HE ever intended that we kill unborn children...how insane! THIS IS THE MOST IMPORTANT ISSUE.