On Pastors, Red Herring, and Strawmen

There are times I hate politics. Not that I hate politicians. No, what I hate is the constant mis-representations of positions and, more importantly, facts related to the opponent.

Exhibit A: I read a foxnews.com article about the Democratic party-friendly people complaining about the outcry against Barack Obama’s association with his pastor Rev. Jeremiah Wright. The reason for the outcry? John McCain has not received similar scrutiny for his so-called “pastors” John Hagee and Rod Parsley. (read the article here)

This entire thing is nothing more than a Red Herring and a Strawman argument.

Let me say, first off, as an evangelical Christian I have no theological affinity for either Hagee or Parsley and I have no affinity for Wright either–I do not agree with much (if any) of their theology. But, as far as this article is concerned, theology is not the issue.

The issue is that Barack Obama has voluntarily associated himself with Rev. Wright and his church for the past 20 years. On many occasions, Obama has spoken very highly of Rev. Wright and his experience at Trinity United Church of Christ. John McCain has not been and is not currently a member of either Hagee’s church or Parsley’s church. I’m not even sure McCain has ever been to Hagee’s church or Parsley’s church.

Since there is no state church of the United States, all church memberships are done on a voluntary basis. What does this mean? It means that Obama has, for 20 years, chosen to keep his affiliation with Wright and Trinity United Church of Christ.

McCain and Obama both have received many endorsements, some were, I’m sure, unsolicited. Unfortunately, for Obama, his record of voluntary association with Rev. Wright for 20 years shows his (Obama’s) ringing endorsement of Rev. Wright. As for McCain, his record shows no endorsement of any kind to the teachings and/or churches of either John Hagee or Rod Parsley.

While the candidates cannot control who endorses them, they surely can control whom they, through their actions, endorse.

Ultimately, for the Democratic-friendly who wants to see McCain be piñata-ed by the media, their story does not and will not have any real traction because it built on faulty facts and presuppositions.

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