That NEW Adage

A pressure-relief valve about God, and just about everything else.

In the words of the great prophet, Rodney King…

Sweet Jesus y’all, can’t we all just get along this eeenin’?!?

Whether you fall on the conservative side of the issue or the liberal, can we all agree to be at least HUMAN in expressing displeasure? Does it take spitting on people, calling people racist names, and carrying loaded guns and signs about watering trees with blood?

And when somebody gets killed, it’ll be, as we used to say, a lot folk throwing rocks and hiding their doggone hands!

There are arguments to be made on both sides of the health care issue. I for one don’t want to be forced to buy something if I can’t afford it. Car insurance is bad enough, but I understand that. But I can’t be entirely angry about people unable to be made healthy now getting a chance to walk and breathe without pain.

I have been in the position of needing to go to a doctor and not being able. As a Christian, I cannot just be all up in arms about it. And I have heard too many times that that is the Church’s job, not the government. Miss me with that!!! The Church can do a lot about a lot and still sits idly in many ways! That is just a passing of the buck.

The government had to make Americans let slaves go, and a hundred years later, let them be FREE! While many Christians fought those fights, the majority — as today —  elected to show shameful selfishness instead: “I worked hard and got what I needed! Let them do the same!” (Regardless of the innate systematic inequities.)

Now, it appears that the REAL truth is blooming like turnips. Peoples’ lives are being threatened, and epithets are being hurled in Birminghamian waves. And what worse thing can you do than to spit on a man?!!? Spit on ME and I won’t be able to take Communion! One reason will be because of the pending charges! And all this from the “Party of God.”

I haven’t read the thousands of pages in the bill, and neither have you. We listen to Rush (is he gone yet?), Beck, Olbermann, Maddow, Boehner, and Clyburn and we believe the way we are inclined to believe, and we run out and pass it along.

Forgive me if I take it a LITTLE personal when I see the black first lady compared to a chimp, and when I see the first black President called all manner of animal and devil spawn. All this talk of “Taking America back…” from whom? From WHOM?!? Who took it? You mean black folk? Surely not! I know that Evangelical, Christian, God-fearin’ folk would not resort to such thinly veiled rhetoric…

But here we are. And believe me, I live right in the middle of a nest of white American conservatism! Across the street from me lives a (purportedly traumatized) Vietnam vet who claims Christ.

When it looked like Obama was going to get elected, he came to me in a hushed voice and asked if I had enough ammo, guns and fresh water, because an economic collapse and anarchy were in his words, “a mathematical certainty” based on what he had been reading and hearing on conservative talk radio. He has hundreds of gallons of water stored in his back yard. He has been driving around town for a little over a year with a beg tin sign hanging from his back bumper all about Obama and how he is going to bring about Armageddon or something. And he put four huge hooks in his roof and put a sign up there bigger than a taxi cab ad, saying, “OBAMA IS A SOCIALIST” Now, HE is the one I’m watching! Not the liberals! I would not be surprised to see him coming out his front door with a duffel bag full of mayhem. And I got a wife and three babies to protect, so…

His next door neighbor is not much different. He’s a perpetually angry little fella with a hair-trigger temper! I see it all up and down my street.

What about God? Isn’t He our portion? Our strength and refuge?

How can those so supposedly at odds with the government so fearful at the “loss” of it? Who scares me more, my own NEIGHBORS, or a bunch of folk who want to send the poor and the sick to a DOCTOR?!!?

And don’t give me that “Isolated Incident” junk! EVERY incident is isolated unless you back up to the doggone moon to get some freekin context!! (I laughed when I wrote that…)

Words are more than just words. To educate you Word of Faithers out there who misuse the quote, THIS is what was meant when God said that “the power of life and DEATH are in the tongue”!

I yield the balance of my time…

March 28, 2010 Posted by | Christian Life, Christianity, Christians, Conservatism, Conservatives, Democrats, Health Care, Politicians, Politics, Race, Rachel Maddow, Racism, Republicans, Rush Limbaugh | 2 Comments

Got a Brand New Funky PRESIDENT!*

Here we are. The world has not cracked in two. The stars have not refused to shine. Life is as it was. But…

NOW, as I shake off a headache from so much unexpected, hard crying, I feel that after two hundred and thirty two years the final missing piece has been found and placed into this American puzzle.

The long cracked foundation has been sealed. A black face is the face of America!

I had never felt fully part of the American family until now. I had always looked at history from the perspective of a mistreated child. I had always wondered how the words of that founding father, Patrick Henry:

         [ “It is in vain, sir, to extentuate the matter. Gentlemen may cry, Peace, Peace–but there is no peace. The war is actually begun! The next gale that sweeps from the north will bring to our ears the clash of resounding arms! Our brethren are already in the field! Why stand we here idle? What is it that gentlemen wish? What would they have? Is life so dear, or peace so sweet, as to be purchased at the price of chains and slavery? Forbid it, Almighty God! I know not what course others may take; but as for me, give me liberty or give me death!” ]

could be so hypocritically immortalized in light of the fact that these very men themselves owned human beings! I could never fully reconcile the brutal irony.

Tonight, though, it has been made manifest that no more American doors are locked to me and mine. As I held my son as he held me and asked what was wrong, I told him that I was happy. Happy that now for him greatness not only included intellectual achievement or financial success, but also the highest office in the most powerful nation on the earth.

I was happy that now his maternal great-grandmother, who fought the Klan for the right to vote, and who hid freedom riders in her home on “Number 8” in Jim Crow Mississippi, had not fought in vain. I was happy that his paternal great-grandfather, who genuflected and called eight year-old white boys, “sir,” and lived a life of menial servitude while raising seventeen kids to honorable adulthood, had finally won.

I was happy to know that the last time black people collectively cried this hard was when, forty years ago, a bullet burst open the face of the face of the search for equality, and that now his sowing bore African fruit.

African! An African name! After so many African names went unremembered and changed. An African man who came to America not in bondage to anything but hope. The way it should have been. The way it is. An African man willingly cleaved in a Godly manner to the hand of a white American woman and produced a descendant not steeped in the brew of oppression, and destined to caulk that fundamental crack. 

I did not know this would mean so much to me.

I care about the plight of the unborn, and about the tenuous religious freedoms we have. So, how can I be happy knowing that innocent babies will continue to die?

I can do so the same way I did it the last eight years when “immorality” and infanticide increased in the last eight years. I can do so by praying to God that He work through His body, the Church, to effect change in this culture a heart at a time.

Obama’s election does not for me signal the end of all hardship. His election does not mean that all problems will be Divinely washed away.

What it DOES is symbolize the fact that there is hope that in this country, with its keloid scars and twisted sinews, people of ALL races — primarily black and white — can grow past ingrained adversity and see each other as the same. But different!

We have loved and desired to be loved in return. We love those who love us. And those who don’t. We embrace the white guy who plays basketball like we do, or who dances like we do, or sings like we do, or swaggers like we do. All we wanted was to make it known that we are worthy of humanity, and the fact that so many NON-black people had to come together and lift this symbolic individual to the highest human height, means that we are getting it!

I remember when, in 1988, Doug Williams lead the Washington Redskins to the Superbowl championship.  was so proud to be black that day. His win meant that we could do it, whatever IT was. There have been a number of those moments, where door after door is knocked down, and this is the last one.

Some racists have said things like, “I’m scared if Obama wins, the BLACK gone take over!” I submit that this sentiment comes from those who know that they have not done right with the power they have had and are projecting their own unGodliness onto us.

Obama’s election does not mean that white folks have to stay out of the fast lanes on the highway, and give up their floor seats and fifty-yard-line spots in sporting events. We will not raid your country clubs with booming music, spinning rims, gold teeth, and chitlin’s. We have just been allowed an invitation to the American house party, and are glad to not have to any longer stare through the window.

So, rather than be defined by the thug image, the gang lifestyle, we have President Obama — cool, dignified, brilliant, clean-cut, erudite, straight, true to who he is, and in love with one dark-skinned, kinky-headed woman, and living in the same house with his kids.

50 Cent, you don’t define me! You never did, but I shake you off! P.Diddy, Pacman, T.O., O.J., Li’l Wayne and the whole Cash Money crew, Flava –Lord hammercy!- Flav! Snoop Dogg, American Gangster, drug dealer, dropout, deadbeat baby-daddy, you are not who I am. You never were, but you never will be.

Get off the stage! Put the mike down! Pick up a book!

My son will not emulate YOU. My daughter will not desire you!

‘Cause we got a brand new, funky, President!!* Gimme Five, America! On the Black hand side!

 

*James Brown

November 5, 2008 Posted by | Abortion, Barack Obama, Black Life, Conservatives, Culture, Current Events, Democrats, Elections, John McCain, Obama, Politicians, Politics, Race, Racial Reconciliation, Racism, Religion, Republicans, Sarah Palin | 10 Comments

“The Persecution Rests.”*

You know, when I hear John McCain demonstrate the nerve to get all indignant and hurt about being called out by Congressman John Lewis for the not-so-subtle racist rabble-rousing done by him and his people, I get a burning anger in my belly. We know code language when we hear it. Keep the game fair. Win on the ISSUES. That’s what I want.

When I hear caucasians downplay discrimination by saying blacks “play the ‘Race Card’,” I feel as though we have not really come as far as we think we have.

How dare a beneficiary of bias show such manufactured outrage at those who are hurt by it?!? All that is happening is that those with bigoted hearts are too cowardly to outwardly say what they really feel, but cloak it in semantics. I know how to do that.

“How dare that uppity so-and-so try to represent this great and Godly nation?!? KILL that TERRORIST! Off with his HEAD!!”

I submit into evidence Exhibit A-Z my entire case that Obama’s Democratic nomination and possible election does not cure that insidious infestation:

All the usual suspects are seen; Friiiied Chicken! Bobbecue Ribs! Redddd Kool-Aid! And that ol’ faithful standard —  Walla-mellon! Lawsy me! I’s jess a bubblin’ allll ova. I shole is! All on a food stamp! Cuz you knows that sweet ole Gub’mint print ’em all up jess fuh us Color folks! White folks is too good an’ too hard wekkin’ to need ’em. All them folks in them trailer parks is jess FREE SPIRITS! Dey ain’t PO!
The “Religious Right,” the Moral Majority… Give me  break!
Oh, yeah, A Republican in California is responsible for this.
*Or, “Manufactured Outrage: One Job We Haven’t Outsourced.”

October 17, 2008 Posted by | Conservatives, Current Events, Democrats, Elections, John McCain, McCain, Morality, Obama Bucks, Race, Racism, Rant, Republicans | 30 Comments

Caught Between Iraq and a Hard Place…

Just as I began to berate the Republicans for “enabling” racism, the word came that noted militant, arrogant atheist, Christopher Hitchens has endorsed Obama, ridiculing Palin for her Christianity!

I’ve always said that I can’t fully embrace the GOP because they give “aid and comfort” to racists. And Hitchens’ endorsement reminds me that the Democrats also provide God-haters a soft spot to land.

I have many, many problems with Palin, but her professed faith is not one.

October 14, 2008 Posted by | Atheism, Barack Obama, Christianity, Christopher Hitchens, Conservatism, Conservatives, Current Events, Democrats, Elections, God, John McCain, Politicians, Politics, Republicans, Sarah Palin | 3 Comments

…On the Other Hand…

“Sarah Palin doesn’t reflect the views of most women! She is not in favor of abortions even in the case of rape or incest!” (Most Democrats on many cable news shows)

I ask, “How is this a bad thing?” These women act as though it is traitorous to womanhood to not believe in killing a baby! Let me ax you this: “If YOU  were in the womb as a result of a rape or incestuous act, would YOU want someone to stab you in the back of your skull and suck your brains out?  Or would you want to live?” (Hospitals are so full, doctors are so rich, because people — fetuses, too — want to LIVE! That is the default position.)

Wouldn’t YOU, as the viable fetus, want the CHOICE(!) to decide for yourself?”
Pregnancy may be about the woman, but abortion is about the baby. It is about the BABY.

I know it may look as though I’m contradicting myself, but I’m not. I’m with Palin on this one. If we were picking a President based on the issue of abortion solely, I would surely side with her.

Democrats don’t endear me with this kind of argument. Neither do they when they say, as they so often do, that, “She has some awfully extreme views, like Creationism…”

Whoaaa! Hold it! It is far more plausible — and provable — that somebody created something, than to say that something created itSELF! 

They kill me acting as though their extreme, radical views on life and God are shared by everyone — at least everyone rational.

Once again, if we were choosing Presidents based on how the world was made, I would be a Republican. But to choose that party would be like trying to eat ice cream after it had been dropped in a sandbox!

September 11, 2008 Posted by | Abortion, Christianity, Conservatives, Creationism, Democrats, evolution, God, Liberals, Politicians, Politics, Pro-Choice, Pro-Life, Religion, Religious Right, Republicans, Sarah Palin | 67 Comments

I’ll Just Stay on the Couch.

My pop called me yesterday and told me that NBC (msnbc) had demoted Chris Matthews and Keith Olbermann for, I guess, inordinately biased commentary during coverage of the Republican National Convention. They did this at the urging of the GOP. Wow.

So, Republican officials are so bothered by partisan coverage that they go to the trouble to (and have the power to) have the two top msnbc anchors publically embarrassed in this fashion?

I don’t deny that they are, in many cases over there, in the tank for the Democrats — and Obama in particular. The aforementioned, as well as Rachel Maddow, David Gregory, and many of the guest pundits, don’t hide their leanings.

But my point is this:

FOX News does the same thing! Hannity, O’Reilly, Brit Hume, FOX and Friends, and practically all their guests don’t just lean TO  the right, they lean ON it. Heavily. In fact, Hannity has basically said that it was his job to make sure McCain gets elected. In order to get a real picture of how the race is really going, you have to do your own homework and look at all of it.

I have a point of view. YOU have one, too. Being on teevee doesn’t excuse one from being human, it seems.

For me to join a party — either one — means that I have to swallow a lot of stuff I wouldn’t eat at gunpoint. To call myself a Democrat, I would have to be cool with folk like Maddow and Maher ridiculing me for my hard and fast stances on Creationism, God, gay marriage, and abortion. I would have to deny the very existence of “sin” and play ball on a team populated by atheists, anarchists, feminists, and folk who have no moral compass whatsoever.

To call myself a Republican, I would have to be at ease riding on a bandwagon alongside people like this. And with people who live on my very own street who drive by me while I work in my own yard and stare at me as though I am made of the stuff I am spreading on the grass! To call myself a Republican, I would have to align myself with many people who would claim to serve God while harboring hatred in their hearts for anyone of a culture or ethnicity different than theirs. I would, generally speaking, have to be like the Jesse Lee Petersons, Ken Hamblins, and Larry Elders of the world and act as though racism is either non-existent, or entirely black folks’ fault. I would have to look the other way when they do things to people that I find heartless and un-Jesuslike.

 Yesterday’s move crystallizes the problem I have with those in power on the Right. They spent months decrying Obama’s lack of experience, and in a purely — transparently — political move, selected a very nice lady with five children and conservative views who had presidential qualifications slightly better than my high school guidance counselor! And just as they tried to make me think that stuff running down my back was rain (Iraq being part of the search for 9/11 justice), they tried — with astonishing, dismaying success — to tell us that Mrs. Palin was the absolute best choice to very possibly be President. I like her. I really do. But I like my mama, too, and she ain’t qualified to run this country!

The thing is, when black folk down the line have been up for high-profile positions, the first and last thing brought into question was their qualification. We have had to jump through a million hoops (even to the point of having to take tests in order to vote!), to become coaches, general managers, business owners, college students, and doctors.

You can say whatever you want about whether Obama has the right political positions as far as taxes, abortion, homeland security, or health care, but you can’t argue (convincingly) that the man isn’t qualified through his education and public service history to be President.

No one was talking about “Executive Experience” until Palin got selected.  Republicans say it so much that they forget that McCain himself  has none. By that reasoning, Palin should be running for the head job!

Another thing: I am 6′ 3″ tall, and over 240 lbs. All my adult life, I have had to play the role of “Mr. Nice Guy” in order to put white folks at ease. Black folk are generally not intimidated by size. When I go into a store, or into a business situation, unless I am in a hostile environment, I make an effort, mostly unconsciously, to not be mean-looking. I don’t want to perpetuate any stereotypes.

Obama has had to run as well as he has without resorting to the same tactics Hillary and McCain used against him. He has the added burden of being tagged with the “Angry Man” label. Michelle, his wife, has likewise been hit with the “Sassy Black Woman” tag. While both sides use ads that exaggerate the position of the other, there has been that extra little bit of spice in the GOP spots.

And the convention was filled with the kind of divisive rhetoric that makes a lot of people like me not really feel welcome at the party. I know this was just fine with some on the convention floor…

I’m sorry. When I close my eyes and think, “Republican,” (not “conservative”) I see “Sean Hannity” with his “Great Americans” and his leading questions designed only to corner and squash his opponent. I see Karl Rove — who should be in jail — Ollie North — who should be in jail — and that racist Mark Fuhrman — who shou — you know what I mean. How do they always end up as guests on FOX?

The Democrats had their share of ad hominem stuff, too, but as objectively as I tried to be, it seemed that the Republicans shoved the knife in deeper. I want people to deal with the issues, not see who can make the snidest, cleverest remark. Especially when one side cries “foul” and has people on the other side fired for trying to play by the same crooked rules! And they call the Democrat thin-skinned.

The extreme jingoism, masked as patriotism, was unsettling to me. “DRILL, BABY, DRILL!!!!” “USA! USA! USA” “GOD BLESS AMERICA!!!” (and NOplace else) They claimed Obama had a Messiah complex, but it suuure looked like there was some flag-worship/monument-idolatry going on in Minnesota. And what was up with the 9/11 video in the background?  Would a Democrat have been able to use that footage as a badge of honor in that fashion? Rhetorical. Don’t answer.

It was all “win at any cost.”Why else would the party of traditionalists and evangelicals who think that a woman’s place is best in the home raising her kids choose a woman with a whole slew of young-uns and the busiest job in her state? For the first time in history? When the other side had millions of angry, disenfranchised women with nowhere to go? That was a brilliant, slick move. And it is working. I don’t fault you for supporting her. But if Obama had a degree in journalism and mayored a town of five thousand, he wouldn’t have made it past Iowa! Can you say “flip-flop?”  Maybe if he pronounced his name, “O-Bamma” like Alabama…

It is as though there are two separate countries at war with one another to decide who will get to exercise power. It really saddens me.

Yes, Olbermann makes me cringe. But Hannity makes me want to fight!

The point is that to get into bed with either party means compromising certain of my “Essential Issues.”

So, rather than do that, I’ll just stay on the couch.

September 10, 2008 Posted by | Abortion, Barack Obama, Christian Life, Christianity, Conservatives, Democrats, FOX News, Hillary Clinton, Hypocrisy, Jesse Lee Peterson, John McCain, Larry Elder, Liberals, McCain, Obama, Politicians, Politics, Pro-Choice, Pro-Life, Race, Racism, Rant, Religion, Republican Convention, Republicans, RNC, Sarah Palin, Sean Hannity | 5 Comments

Look at You, America!

Medgar Evers. Shot dead in the back in his driveway in front of his family. Chaney, Schwerner, and Goodman. Civil rights workers, murdered. Four little black girls. Blown up in a church, for goodness sake. King. Shot in the face. Black women and men, sprayed by fire hoses, chewed by german shepherds, beaten with sticks, spat upon, hanged, burned, castrated, terrorized, cheated, miseducated. All these atrocities and countless more in attempts, mainly, to keep black people from that one central symbol of human, American freedom: The Vote.

The crux of the Civil Rights Movement was the right for black people to vote. Voting was the most direct route to economic fairness, education, and basic human rights, and both sides knew it! That was probably why there were so many trumped-up rules and restrictions. That was why so many black folk, and sympathetic white folk, died premature deaths. Voting is more “America” than that fabled Apple Pie.

I am not a Democrat. I am not a Republican. And I am not a “Bill O’Reilly Independent,” either. I have true non-negotiable differences with both parties.

I don’t support a woman’s “right” to have an abortion any more than I would be expected to have the “right” to kill my two-month-old daughter sitting next to me. But I also think that there are life-and-death repercussions for systematically leaving whole segments of the population to perpetually, generationally fester and prey on each other. Spiritually speaking, I think there are souls being lost in poverty, gang and drug-infested areas of America, and frankly, God says that loss of the soul is more serious than loss of the body to death.

You think white girls are not getting pregnant, too? Look at the “Girls Gone Wild” phenomenon. Look at Ft. Lauderdale and Cancun during spring break. Come with me to an Ole Miss frat party! I submit that if their conservative daddies were not paying for so many abortions, the white out-of-wedlock-birthrate would look like the black one.

I just don’t think that either party is the “Party of Christ.” Were that so, eight years of George Bush would’ve done something to curb — not advance — gay rights and abortion. Twenty years out of the last twenty-eight of Republican presidency would have decreased some of the moral ills that plague us. Practically speaking, Republicans don’t appear to love God any more than do Democrats…

This is not about for whom I am voting or endorsing. Don’t dismiss me as just another Brother voting for a Brother because he is a Brother. I don’t do that. Besides, we black folk have been voting for white guys for years! We don’t tend to discriminate like that. We get or surgeries from white doctors, we get our teeth pulled by white dentists, we get our loans — when we can — from white bankers, we buy our homes — or rent them — from white realtors, we fly planes piloted by white pilots, and on and on…

We even worship a white Jesus! And we don’t care! (melody: I Dreeeam of Genie…) “I wor- ship Je-sus – with the light – brown – hair…!”

But there is a reason why so may blacks were Brooklyn Dodgers fans. There is a reason why so many black folk moved to Detroit to work in the auto industry back in the day. They gave us a chance. That is the reason why so many blacks vote with the Democrats.

But never did I really think that even democratic white voters, West Virginia notwithstanding, would en masse vote in favor of a black dude with an African name for the highest office in the most powerful nation! I am nonplussed! My wife cried her eyes out as she listened to his ostensible acceptance speech. This was US up there! Our dead sharecropper, housekeeper grandparents. Our lynched great-uncles and stepped-on progenitors.

I am so proud! Michelle Obama was skewered for daring to hint that her American experience was anything but idyllic. But as someone who was — and occasionally is — persecuted for my pigment, I totally understand her perspective. I have never been ashamed to be an American. In fact, when I was in the military and overseas, I was almost overconfident in my Americanness! But black folk see the country from under the stairs. I am overjoyed that America has come this far in this struggle to take an unknown black guy and rocket him past a woman who started this race five feet from the finish line.

I really feel like an American now, like I have a chance, however remote… And if you ave a problem with me just now saying that, I am not bothered. 

I never once thought I could tell my son that he could grow up to one day be President. Now, I can. My folks told me that if I applied myself, I could be a lawyer or a doctor or an engineer. They never told me I could be the President, though. If they did, it rang hollow like knocking on a pressboard dinner table with an aluminum spoon. That ceiling was plaster and concrete! They never thought this day would come. In a way, the nomination is more significant than the general election would be. It speaks of possibilities, of what might be, of living on stars.

When he first got into the race, I was totally dismissive, not believing that this country would ever let a Negro run the show. And then he won the Iowa caucus… I never thought I would see it.

The Republican machine can be treacherous though. Sean Hannity, et al, will not go gently into that good night to be sure!

This nomination definitely does not kill all racism, not even most of it, but it shows that the ship is actually turning.

Hank Hanegraaff, a theologian whom I admire greatly, and from whom I have learned a countless amount, often is known to have said that “the Bible says nothing about race except to run the race.” The problem that I have with what appears to be only lip service to the realities of racial disharmony is that he does not address the fact that we still have to live. We still have to “do life” in this country. How does his statement make those people feel who have had to start from a mile behind the starting line? How does that statement play out in this current predatory lending crisis? How does it work when I have to read racist jokes written by co-workers in a black magazine? What does it do when a racist neighbor confronts my wife?

It is fine to say that when you get to come and go as you please, and play golf at whatever country club you please without stigma, but it does me little good when I have police walk up on me with their hands on their guns because my tags were out.

And the Bible certainly does deal with race! Moses’ own sister was struck with leprosy when she rebuked her brother for marrying a Cushite — a black woman. And Peter, Jesus’ own disciple, was reprimanded by Paul for showing racial prejudice towards non-Jews. So, while Hanegraaff is a kind of mentor to me, his seeming dismissal of racial issues hurts those like me who expect a prominent “evangelical” to echo the heart of God on the practical application of Christians on everyday racial issues.

It makes it look as though “evangelicals” don’t mind us serving the same God as long as we do it from our own neighborhoods, our own churches, and with our own women. Surely this is not the case!

But regardless of the political ramifications, regardless of how this affects potential Supreme Court demographics, how doggone cool is it that people of all hues can truly look past exterior differences and cultural unfamiliarity to nominate someone unlike themselves? THAT is America! That is a glimpse of what this country can truly be! Irrespective of how you see the role of government, how great is it that the most historically oppressed group of people in this country can be finally equal enough to win the nomination of a major party in a cycle when the OTHER major party has so alienated people that it is highly likely that the latter will likely lose power?!?

No, Obama is not someone to whom I would look for Spiritual guidance, but neither was Reagan or Nixon or Clinton or Carter or Bush. Maybe Huckabee, but definitely not Romney or Gore. But we are not electing pastors. We are trying to find someone to competently run this nation’s business. To govern and legislate justly in the best interest of every American, not just the rich, the Spiritual, the privileged.

Race doesn’t determine my politics. But I refuse to be angry that someone who lives life through the same prism that I do has a chance to sit in the Top Chair.

I am exceedingly proud to finally, really, be able to tear up my Three-Fifths of a Man card and step into this full surrogate American humanity.

This is like Joe Louis versus Max Schmeling. Jesse Owens versus Hitler. They run, they fight, for themselves, but for the rest of us, too.

So, gimme five, America! On tha black-hand side! You got soul!

June 4, 2008 Posted by | Abortion, Barack Obama, Christian Life, Christianity, Civil Rights, Conservatives, Democrats, Elections, George Bush, God, Hillary Clinton, Humor, Martin Luther King, Obama, Politics, Pro-Life, Race, Racial Reconciliation, Racism, Religious Right, Republicans, Sean Hannity, Vote | , | 8 Comments

Pastor Peas

We have had, in this recent torrid election season, prime reasons why we should not vote for a person because of what faith they claim.

The Religious Right (I really think that, to them, the “RIGHT” is more than a compass point but a perspective. I don’t like it) hold so much sway in politics these days in terms of getting people elected and furthering certain agendas that now every public official has to have a personal pan pastor on his arm like a prom date in order to win, and put at ease, that sizeable body.

“He must be a good person! He parts his hair on the left side, he wears a blue suit and a red tie, and Jerry Falwell likes him!”

Maybe we ARE sheep!

John McCain, after losing his last presidential bid, was known to have cussed out that evangelical body. They didn’t offer him their ring to be kissed, and he felt they cost him.

So, this time, he was running around (like Jim Valvano after winning the NCAA champeenship looking for somebody to hug) trying to get what HE thought were powerful, influential pastors to use as cufflinks and flag pins.

Just to show how unaware McCain is, he chose two of the most theological off-base, Word of Faith, Prosperity purveyors out there!

Rod Parsley is one of the biggest names in the pulpit pimp stables. He raises money for TBN regularly, telling folk that, basically, sending money to TBN will activate the will, blessings, and power of God on their behalf. Basic “Give to Get.”

I saw this tactical shift of his a couple of years ago to issues of abortion and gay rights (two of my own sticking points) and I realized that he was aiming to do just what he has done; get aligned with this powerful constituency. He began writing patriotic books on winning back America and such, and to the untrained eye, he looked to be just as orthodox as Dobson or Stanley or the late Adrian Rogers. His doctrine, however, is still as foul as it ever was. McCain seemed to miss that. No. What made HIM jump ship was that Parsley made negative comments about Islam. That made him sever his ties. As if it is the responsibility of a “Christian” pastor to uphold the tenets — equally– of Christianity and Islam. Or any other faith, for that matter… I have friends who are Muslim, and I dare not water down the Truth of Christianity for the sake of harmony. I respect them, but do not have to believe what they believe, any more than they believe what I believe!

Then there’s John Hagee! This man is cut from the same cloth as the others — Copeland, Hagin, Creflo, Hinn– but he comes across simply as a “fire and brimstone Texas preacher.” What McCain didn’t know, or perhaps care to know, was that Hagee has said that the Jews came to Jesus to be the Messiah to them, and that Jesus “flatly refused!” WOW! He is known to be one of these guys who interprets the Bible with a newspaper. He predicts, with every new disaster, that that is a further sign of the Apocalypse, and that each new dictator on the scene was spoken of in Revelation. Never mind the huge pile of unfulfilled prophecies behind the curtain on the stage…

It is his belief (along with many other evangelicals) that the desire of God is for the current generation of Jews (were these people of Russian and Polish and German descent the SAME people spoken of in the Bible??? Just wondering) is going to suffer His wrath for the Jews who rejected Him two centuries ago. Hagee — and just about every other American Christian church — thinks that the Jews are to be herded back to Israel in order for the events in Revelation, Daniel, Thessalonians, and other parts of Scripture to happen. I believe it is called “Zionism.”

So, he is a “friend” of the Jews. He seems to make his living from that starting point. It is all he talks about. What he doesn’t say, though, is that these biblical events, in his understanding, mean that two thirds of the returning Jews are to be killed after all the Christians are “raptured” away, a la the “Left Behind” series of books, by Tim LaHaye.

Wonder if they would consider him a friend if they knew that…? Hagee, it seems, believes that the Jews can be saved without acknowledging Jesus as Messiah and Savior. Many Christians today believe this, it seems. This is another subject for another time. I am still studying on it.

He has also regularly appeared on the TBN telethons raising money to support a lie.

It would seem that McCain, who champions campaign finance reform and honest fundraising, would have stayed away from these two men just based on the fact that they have been involved in fleecing the weak in the most egregious type of fundraising there is!

Okay, then there is Rev. Jeremiah Wright.

There is an incendiary preacher here in Memphis, Bill Adkins, who preaches and conducts church in what appears to be the same way Wright did. Liberation Theology. They preach from an Afro-centric perspective rather than a Christo-centric one, it appears. They wear the dashikis and the kufis and lament the ills and injustices of black American life with a little bit of Jesus and the way of salvation and holiness sprinkled on the top.

Listen, to be honest, a lot of the emotion with which they speak, the mistreatment and alienation, echo in my spirit as well. I understand the idea of seeing America from the point of view of an abused step-child who loves the parent but calls him out on the realities of the relationship. But I don’t ever let that supersede my faith! In Christ, there is neither Jew nor Greek, slave nor free…!

The irony here is that Bill Adkins, the aforementioned pastor, used to be the associate pastor at my old church. He was there when I was a kid. He was over the vacation bible school program, and upon preaching the Gospel and explaining what salvation meant, I — a fourteen-year-old boy– stood up to be saved and baptized, and I made my sisters get up and come, too! In front of all those other kids! In other words, he led me to Christ, along with my family members. I looked up to him and sat under his teaching, but I don’t agree with some of the things he has said in his pulpit. Hmmm…

While a lot of what these guys preach have a secular truth to it, while in the speeches of MLK a lot of the same tones are touched, their theology can sometimes alienate rather than unify. While I may shout, “amen” to acknowledging the injustices, I have to be careful to remember that if I don’t forgive my brother, God said that He won’t forgive me! While I am an activist at heart, wanting to right the wrongs of The Man against mine, I must — if my faith is real — realize that God let’s nothing slide! He will get the revenge that I sinfully want to mete out.

But to be honest, my educated guess is that Obama, wanting to be in a position to do some good in the black Chicago community, wanting to be relevant to black folk who can sometimes be rough to folk who are not just like them, went to this church back then because it fit his criteria. This pastor had influence and charisma, and it was probably to Obama’s benefit to link himself to this inner-city black church. He probably wasn’t going to bible study on Wednesday night! He, as any other politician, was surely not sitting at church every Sunday!

The Mayor here is a member of my old church, and he was there maybe once every two months! 

It sounds opportunistic, yes, but I submit that all politicians are opportunists at heart. I have, over the years, seen dozens of people, white AND black, running for judge or mayor or congress or senate or the school board or sheriff or roach killer or night manager come to my church to beg for a vote only to leave right after they finish talking! 

Hillary didn’t need a pastor. Her church is Feminism, and they are their own gods. 🙂

If these candy dates were truly well-versed in the faith that they claim, they would NOT be in support of killing an unborn baby, or denying real help to those who can’t help, or sanctioning the wedding of two dudes, or racist policies, or teaching evolution, or  any other Democratic or Republican tenet that violates the way of God. Their Faith would inform and influence their decisions in a tangible, visible way. Both parties have Spiritual dealbreakers in their core principles. Jesus is neither Democrat nor Republican. Christians in the Bible pooled all the resources and doled them out as needed! (Hear that, bootstrappers?) But Jesus ain’t a Communist, either! I will vote, but I won’t vote based on who the Christian is. Otherwise, I’d vote for my pastor!

How can Christians be effective no matter which group is in control? That is the question.

My feeling is that we cannot look to any politician or party to be the governmental conduit through which our faith changes the world. These latest “pastor problems” highlight that fact.

 

May 28, 2008 Posted by | Abortion, Barack Obama, Benny Hinn, Christ, Christianity, Church Life, Current Events, Democrats, Elections, False Prophets, False Teachers, Hillary Clinton, Jesus, John Hagee, John McCain, Kenneth Copeland, Liberals, Prosperity Gospel, Pulpit Pimps, Religious Right, Republicans, TBN, Zionism | 4 Comments

Sean Hannity or Rosie O’Donnell. Pick Your Poison.

Anyone who knows me, or has read my words, knows my positions on most issues and knows that I stand outside of any particular demographic. I am watching Sean Hannity and forcing down the bile that rises, and wonder:

Where’s MY party?

 I am a Christian.

I am a Black male.

I am actually MARRIED to the mother of my son.

I was in the military. I’m not a pacifist, but THIS war is creating problems, not solving them.

I make my living in the arts.

I believe Affirmative Action is the best known way of closing the opportunity gap in America. (Uh Oh…)

I believe in gun ownership, and tough crime enforcement.

I believe that there are policemen who abuse their power, and let their racial prejudices influence their work. I have experienced it. Recently.  

I believe in abstinence before marriage, and that Godly marriage is between one man, and one woman.

I hate taxes.

I think that the government owes me protection and opportunity since they take my income before I even get it.

I don’t hate, or even dislike, White folks.

I HATE racism, though. I don’t ignore it when I see it, and I talk about it when it happens.

I think that (this will probably hurt some of you…) The “Christian Right,” is populated by a LOT of people who are flat-out racist. 

Abortion is a dealBREAKER!

So, I ask you: Where do I go? For whom do I vote?

Democrat? I can’t, because as I stated, abortion cut that tie. Also, being a Christian, I do not agree with many other of the moral positions they, as an organization, take or endorse. For example; school prayer, gay marriage and all things pro-gay, EMBRYONIC stem-cell destruction, partial-birth abortion, (the regular kind is bad enough!) feminism, and the eradication of my faith from public discourse or display. Besides, any voting atheist would likely vote democrat. Even though atheist Christopher Hitchens is in favor of the war, he’d rather drink a gallon of holy water and tattoo the Cross on his right cheek than vote for Mitt Romney! How can I vote with those who hate God?

They are cotton-soft on the punishment of crime, to the point that practically NO murder is heinous enough to warrant the death of the perpetrator, even with indisputable evidence. Prominent democrats are known to bash active Christians to mush at every opportunity. The Hillary Clinton, John Edwards, John Kerry kind of Christians are cool though, because their faith has never been taken out of the package. Christians are the last group that it is still politically proper to ridicule.

Democrats (and once again, I am generalizing…) would tell me that if I hear an intruder in my house, I should cower in the closet and wait for the police to come rather than shoot him myself. That’s because they have enough money that the cops will come RUNNING if they call. I shouldn’t even own a gun, according to them. But who’s going to stop the crooks from getting guns? THAT bell can’t be un-rung. 

The only time they quote the Bible is to mis-quote “Thou shalt not kill,”and “Judge not, lest ye be judged.”

If you are engaged in almost ANY immoral activity and need an advocate… Get a democrat! You want to smoke weed? Get a democrat.  You want drug use legalized? Get a democrat. You want to marry another YOU? Get a democrat. You want to say all manner of foul things on the air, or join NAMBLA (North American Man-Boy Love Association ), or teach second graders about using condoms, or get rid of all those offensive nativity scenes at Christmas? Call the ACLU. The PUPPET of the democrats. Are you a female who wants to join a football team, or are you a gay male who wants to teach young boys how to camp in the woods? Get a democrat. They’ll get it done for you!

You make a lot of money? Get a democrat! They’ll take a third of it before you get a penny and propose to spend it on some unGodly enterprise you abhor. They don’t care, they don’t have to tithe. Let the ignorant Christians worry about all that junk. Rather than actually care, they simply throw money at a problem and pat themselves on the back for it. 

Maybe they weren’t about this stuff in the past, but they are now.

The Democratic party came into my awareness as the party of those who freed us from the bonds of Jim Crow. They were the Kings, and Kennedys, and L.B.J.’s of the sixties who obtained for us the right to vote, intermarry(!), and attend any school. They were the party of fairness and equality. Generally speaking, of course. My parents voted democrat, and so did I. But in the last few years, as society has become more permissive, the party has done the same. 

They are populated by a lot of passive, pacifist, communist-minded, put-all-our-resources-into-the-same-pot, anything-goes-except-for-anything-I-don’t-agree-with folk who don’t see that there is no perfect society, and that their way of operation is plunging us all into an orgy of moral debauchery that is rotting us from the inside out… WHEW! They love animals, but hate fetuses. They think that men and women are exactly the same. Democratic women value career over family, and sex over marriage, abortion over the right of the unborn.

Ask Rosie O’Donnell who she votes for. Susan Sarandon. P.DiddyPuffDaddyPuffyCombsHoneyCombsPufftheMagicDragon*. Oprah. Sean Penn, Brad Pitt, Eddie Murphy, any rapper, or pop singer, (if they even vote at all!) Gloria Steinem. Ask Madonna, or the head of Planned Parenthood. Ask Al Sharpton. Jessie. Ask any atheist, or random college professor. Democrats don’t worship God, they worship their own Righteousness.

 I don’t care what anybody says, my vote is a mark of my loyalty, and I refuse to align myself with those whose beliefs and sentiments are diametrically opposed to the God whom I worship. I will not give my loyalty to those who operate in contradiction to my worldview. As stated in an earlier post, my beliefs inform all my decisions.

So… Does all this mean that I am a         republican?

NO! Just as emphatically, if not moreso.

Yeah, republicans say that they believe in upholding the same moral values I have, but they repulse me in other ways. (again, for you knee-jerks, I generalize)

I mentioned Sean Hannity at the outset. For the purpose of this lesson, he will be my prototype. He claims Christ, he is clean-cut, and fiercely patriotic. He loves the police, and is willing to give them as much rope as they need. Until, like tonight, one is caught on tape threatening a motorist with trumped-up, made-up charges for sassing him. (I don’t dislike police, some of my friends are cops, I just happen to be of an ilk that has seen what those with “God Complexes”- a term a cop friend gave me- can do when motivated) Hannity is, apparently, God first, America first, family first. But it is my considered opinion that, after exhaustive research, he, Laura Ingraham,  Ann (tiChrist) Coulter, and Rush (to judgment) Limburger will be riding the four horses at the Apocalypse! I’m just sayin’…

Hannity appears to be a nice guy, but there is something in he way he speaks that bothers me. When he interviews someone with whom he disagrees, he does so only in an attempt to corner them, not to advance the discourse. He is a shill, a sycophant for his party, and (facetiously) if I am better than anybody, I am better than he, because I at least try to look objectively at all political sides! He may not be a racist, but he looks just like one!

Republicans, in general, are the party of the Cold. They ignore the plight of the haven’t gots. They are sincere in that, unlike democrats, they don’t care and don’t care that you know  that they don’t care. And rather than throw money at a situation, they just throw empty platitudes, peppering their rhetoric with terms like, “bootstraps,” and “self-made.”

Republicans are the party of law enforcement. As I stated earlier, I am Black. I know some of you may have wondered what difference THAT made. (many republicans view the “Race Card” the same way Dracula looks at a Cross!) Being Black makes me sensitive to issues of wrongful incarceration. Being Black also has made me a victim of unfair treatment. In the last few years, DNA has acquitted many unjustly imprisoned Black men. Republicans would have said, “Why are we wasting so much time on this case? He was convicted by a jury of his peers!” They forget that juries are populated by people. Not twelve Jesuses!

I am in favor of the Death Penalty insomuch as it is justly applied. Which it is NOT. I have a friend who, when working for a public defender, was involved in a case in which a mentally retarded teen was put to death for accessory to rape and murder. He was in the car and was not allowed to get out when the incident began. He did not have the reasoning skills to make the right decisions. He WAS RETARDED! and now he is dead. This has happened many times. We are a country that executes mentally deficient Black people. Republicans look at the news and say, “He’s Black. He’s on the news. He’s guilty.” Tell me I’m wrong, Hannity.

I was in the military, so I cannot be accused of being a pacifist. War is sometimes necessary in order to restrain great evil. I understand that it is not an exact science, and that sometimes innocent people die. But there is point at which talking is done, and one must fight.

When those planes hit those buildings, I said, “Let’s get whoever did that. Not arrest them, but kill them.” Terrorists are punks.  I think all terrorists need to go see the Lord. Flat out. I was on board, honestly, when we went into Afghanistan, but when the President started to turn that big machine left towards Iraq, I jumped off. When he said that they had WMD’s I gave him the benefit of the doubt -more doubt than benefit- until it became apparent that Iraq was on the table from the beginning.

I am against this war now, not for the pacifist’s reason, but because if you ask me to loan you my car to go to the store, and you drive right by the store and proceed to Vegas, I will rebuke you and doubt your word in anything else. I will not, as Hannity does, hang in there with you truth or lie, right or wrong. And that does not make me a bad American. (Hannity regularly calls those he agrees with, such as Ollie North, G. Gordon Liddy, Newt Gingrich, Trent Lott, or Charlie Daniels, “Great Americans.”)

The Religious Right are republican, and as I said earlier, I agree with their moral stances on certain Christian issues, i.e. abortion, sexual purity, gay rights issues, self-protection etc. However, there are other moral issues, too. Jesus commanded us to care for the poor, and parentless, and to show compassion for the weak, but I don’t see them crusading about that. It is often said that the (late) Falwells, and such tend to love the fetus and hate the baby. This seems to be true.

It appears that the Religious Right say all the religiously right things. But when I see you in the street, or in the store after church, or in your schools, or dating your daughters, your actions and glares tell the TRUE story. Your faith has a loud, powerful-sounding motor, but no transmission! You say that you love the Lord, and follow His tenets, but your lives rat you out. You say racist things, you think racist thoughts, you live apart from any unlike you. On purpose. You go to all White churches, send your kids to all White schools, if at all, join all White country clubs (are there any other kind?), and live in all White suburbs. I know whereof I speak: I am the only Black man on my street!

When you close your bibles, and speak on political, social matters, you begin to sound like a party full of Archie Bunkers. You eschew government programs clearly designed to help the poor, neglecting to notice that there are more White folk on welfare than Black folk, and you talk about quotas as though someone made you eat mud. You take your kids from schools that get too Black, and you defund them and wonder why Black kids are undereducated. I have even heard some of you, in true Bunkerian fashion, dare to say that White men are the most discriminated against! REALLY?!

So you get profiled, and shot 51 times while unarmed, and targeted for predatory loans?

YOU have to ask permission to sit under a tree, and get charged for attempted murder for a school fight, too?

Oh. Is this about a JOB you didn’t get?! Is that all?! You know how many jobs I didn’t get?  ALL of ’em! Except for the busboy job, or the stockboy job. You’ve got the world at your FEET! You know how long my WIFE has been trying to get a better job? And SHE graduated magna cum oh lawdy! Did YOU have to disguise, change, or alter YOUR name because it sounded too WHITE? Miss me with all your boo-hooing!

 Government programs, such as CETA, gave me, and countless other inner-city teens, jobs when I was a kid. That ended under the reign of the Great Reagan. That is just a fact. When I was young there were NO gangs in my city. Crime, drug abuse, and teenage pregnancy were anecdotal and not ubiquitous, as they are now. We had government mandated programs to provide us with the diversionary activity not needed by privileged republican children. That was one significant block in the Jenga pile that, when removed, began to topple Black youth. Republicans don’t like government programs.

 I’ll have to do another enitre post on Affirmative Action, but I’d like to ask an honest question. Give me an honest answer: How would you, Hannity, or Hannitite, propose to FAIRLY deal with the opportunity gap that has been in the very DNA of this nation since its inception? How do you propose to even up a race that has been going for generation after generation after generationaftergenerationaftergeneration? Someone whose father’s father’s grandfather was allowed to obtain a grant or land rights or inherited a plantation or a Harvard admission that allowed him to enrich his great-great grandchildren when my great-to the third power-grandfather couldn’t, by law, learn to read, or own a horse, or vote, or get a bank loan. Those are the cold hard facts. We are here now, all of us, and we have to figure out the best way to do things.

When you ignore the pus-filled, bleeding pimple on the nose on your face, and tell me to “Get over it! None of you were slaves,” you expose yourself as heartless and worse!

You know what? When Beaver Cleaver was going to school in an air-conditioned building, and learning from new, state of the art books and equipment, my mother was being taught by a woman who didn’t even finish high shcool, in a school in the weeds, with inadequate books, if any at all! This still happens to this very day! My grandfather “worked hard,” according to your simple formula, and HE didn’t get to live out the fulness of the American Dream. My mother had to watch him call eight-year-old White kids “Sir.”

My sister, an aviation major, had to endure having a flight instructor LIE and tell her that the plane in which she had to train in order to complete her flying hours for graduation was out of order for months. When we had a White woman call to request the same plane, he said, “Sure! When can you come in?” My sister is now an elementary school teacher. You want more? I got a million of ’em! 

It is a cold and heartless person who can look at this evidence and say that all that needs to be done is to hire the most qualified person regardless of race. By that reasoning, you know, Hannity, that the Haves will Get, and the HaveNots will Get Screwed! Being poor doesn’t equal being stupid. Those with none have the same capacity to learn and achieve if given a fair shot as those with everything.

One final point: Who do the racists vote for? Who do the KKK that vote, vote for? What party does David Dukes Claim? What was Strom Thurmond’s affiliation? After the civil right’s era? Stop someone with a rebel flag in their back window and ask them whether they voted for,

Bush or Clinton.

Clinton or Dole? 

Bush or Gore?

Bush or Kerry?

The prosecution rests. Racism and hypocrisy, like abortion, are dealbreakers.

I will not be voting alongside those who hate me! That would be the same as going to the Grand Wizard’s restaurant and orderin’ up a mess a’ fried chikken an’ greens! What would be the chances of my getting some added substances, some special sauce along with my order? I won’t vote for who the racists vote for, because their programs and such might cause harm to those who don’t share their hue. They might ignore real cases of racial mistreatment in order to feel good about themselves. Republicans don’t rock those kinds of boats. I will not look ahead in the line and find out that I and the disingenuous, dual-faced Hannity are buying the same items. 

I will not vote with those who claim Christ, but don’t SHOW Christ.

So, to my earlier question: Where is my party? How do I vote and maintain loyalty and integrity. I recognize the sacrifices made by those courageous forebears of mine. Blacks, of all Americans, have an obligation to vote. But what do I do? Independents are often irrelevant. How would Jesus vote? Would he align Himself with the baby-killers, or the racists? With the militant lesbian feminists, or the dispassionate Pharisaical hypocrites?

Where is the party of the morally upright (sex, crime, punishment, pro-life, family), fiscally sound (reasonable taxes, programs), socially compassionate (education, underprivileged compassion, racial fairness) American? Show me. Tell me. Write me.

 Before I close, I want to say that I attend a church that is iconoclastic in the sense that they tear down every negative stereotype about the interaction between Blacks and Whites! They are multi-racial, mostly White, and WONDERFUL! Our church has actively plunged into the torrid waters of racial reconciliation. They love me and I love them. They have almost made a liar out of me in this post, which is partly why I continually stated that I was generalizing. If the whole world were MY church, I dare say, we’d all be living just one floor below Heaven!

*Sean Combs, a hip-hop performer.

September 13, 2007 Posted by | Abortion, Ann Coulter, Barack Obama, Christianity, Conservatives, Democrats, George Bush, God, Hillary Clinton, Humor, Liberals, Mike Huckabee, Political Correctness, Politics, Race, Racism, Religious Right, Republicans, Sean Hannity | 9 Comments

Candy Dates

Why are they called “candidates” when they are never CANDID about anything?

September 12, 2007 Posted by | Al Gore, Barack Obama, Conservatives, Cynicism, Democrats, Elections, George Bush, Hillary Clinton, Humor, John Edwards, John McCain, Language, Liberals, Mitt Romney, Political Correctness, Politics, Republicans, Rudy Giuliani, Satire, Semantics, Truth | Leave a comment

On The ’08 Predilection- excuse me- PresiDENTial Election. sorry…

Maybe politicians who claim to be Christian and approve of abortion do so because a fetus can’t vote!

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,” (The Lord, Jeremiah 1:5)

September 12, 2007 Posted by | Abortion, Al Gore, Barack Obama, Christianity, Current Events, Democrats, Dennis Kucinich, Faith, God, Hillary Clinton, Humor, Immorality, John Edwards, Juanita Bynum, Liberals, Morality, Oprah Winfrey, Planned Parenthood, Politics, Pro-Choice, Pro-Life, Religion | 1 Comment