We have lost the understanding that in a democracy, we have a mutual obligation to one another — that we cannot measure the greatness of our society by the strongest and richest of us, but we have to measure our greatness by the least of these. That we have to compromise and sacrifice for one another in order to get things done. That is why I am here, because Barack Obama is the only person in this who understands that. That before we can work on the problems, we have to fix our souls. Our souls are broken in this nation.
When Mike Huckabee made the statement that the Constitution should be amended to reflect the word of God, the media made sure to cover the "threat of theocracy". Much was made of Mitt Romney's Mormon faith as well. However, when overt and audacious statements like this one are made...its a different picture.The Seattle PI notices:
IT'S TELLING THAT we've heard so much about the religious faith of Mike Huckabee and Mitt Romney, and so little about the faith and religion of Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama.Huckabee's Southern Baptist commitment and belonging have been made much of, as was former candidate Romney's Mormon faith. Article upon article, news show and radio broadcast have debated and dissected the faith of these two Republicans. How many articles or op-eds do you remember exploring Clinton's Methodism or Obama's active participation in the United Church of Christ? I can only remember one, on Obama, and I wrote it.When it comes to religion, the media and the conversation that dominate the public square operate from a script that prefers to see all religion as conservative, right wing and slightly retrograde.
Perhaps this script is why we the media are taking little notice to statements like the one Michelle Obama made, and we are once again left with the blogs to put things into perspective.Ed Morrisey responds and tells us of the coming Obama theocracy:
But it's the notion that only Barack Obama can save our souls that is the most offensive part of the speech, by far. Government doesn't exist to save souls; it exists to ensure domestic tranquility and provide for the common defense. If I feel my soul needs saving, the very last place I'd look (in the US) for a savior would be Washington DC or Capitol Hill. I'll trust God and Jesus Christ with my soul, and I'm not going to mistake Barack Obama for either one.This, though, is the religion of statism distilled to its essence. Only a government can rescue people from the consequences of their own decisions. Only government programs can provide for your every need, and only government can use your money wisely enough to ensure that your needs get covered. Individuals cannot possibly manage to help their neighbors through their churches or community organizations, let alone encourage people to do for themselves.And all you need to enter the statist Utopia is to sell your soul. So that it can be fixed.No, thank you.
When Republicans talk about broken souls in the context of civil society, the nutroots start screaming about the obliteration of the church-state line.When the Obama campaign uses the same rhetoric to get him elected to the White House, everyone swoons.
Indeed, Huckabee and Romney both got their fair share of criticism and mockery over their religious backgrounds, and neither were anywhere near this kind of overtness. About the closest thing was when Huckabee mentioned changing the Constitution to come in line with the word of God, which even I criticized. However, no other candidate has tried to claim the power to fix souls. I know that the other side will argue that this rhetoric was meant symbolically and not literally. However, our souls are the most personal things individuals have, and government shouldn't even be attempting to enter that area symbolically. Further more the media should approach this with the same scrutiny they would for a Republican.Sundries Shack:
I wonder how the ninnies who squeal about “Christianists” and the “American Taliban” will twist their brains to justify this outright call for a statist Theocracy.
Just like they always do. They will say we are overreacting, and that it wasn't meant literally, and of course the ultimate fallback is that the candidate didn't say it. See? It was an "oblique reference."Its important to clarify that while we mention theocracy, that isn't the biggest qualm. It has to do with the audacity of a statement claiming such ridiculous and offensive religious overtones that are complete falsehoods, or as Bill Clinton would say, "fairy tales." It is also important to disqualify the excuse that was his wife, and not him that said this. Sister Toldjah does a good job on this.
For anyone on the fence about whether or not to support Barack Obama, this speech should throw up red flags and have the alarm bells ringing. But, some might say, this is his wife speaking, not him. Bzzt: With all due respect, get a clue - as I noted earlier she’s saying the same thing Barack Obama does when he speaks, only he does it in platitudes and pretty words, all the while also promising to “heal this nation.” This is something our eventual nominee, John McCain, understands:
Indeed, lets keep government out of the arena of souls…please. Expect the media to completely ignore this. Regardless of what intentions the media interpret behind the statement they should be treating it as a gaffe that requires clarification. They won't.