The Shortcomings of Obama/Obama’s America

I don’t imagine I’ll vote this year. I have voted before, and I’m not utterly opposed to it. As I tell my non-voting friends, just think of it as a form of non-violent social protest. Still, inasmuch as I’m convinced the church is a pilgrim people suffering in and trying to save a fallen Babylon culture, I’m convinced that determining who wields Babylon’s sword is a matter of some indifference to me.

I did go see Dinesh D’Souza’s hit job (I mean, documentary) about Obama and found it disappointing, not because it tried to paint a conspiracy-theory portrait of Obama as secretly hating America and planning to bring it down from within, which I think we’re all getting used to, but because it missed the opportunity to make a number of valid criticisms of Obama’s policies. Here we have a President who has redefined “enemy combatant” and “civilian” in such a way that we regularly, robotically kill suspected enemies without trial. Here is a President who ran on opposition to indefinite detention and within his first year established a framework to make such detentions legal. Here is a man who ran against Bush’s abuse of centralized power, and then shored up that power. These are pressing concerns – bordering on terrifying – and here is an opportunity to enlighten a public eager to believe… and nothing is said.

I suspect nothing is said because D’Souza and his constituency have a vested interested in exactly the moves Obama is making, so long as their party can take control of that shored-up power and use it to further their own view of America’s aims.  And what is left for the church to do?  It’s not enough to make sure one group of oligarchs rather than another wields that sword, though we may see some specific ends worth procuring in the process, and that’s not nothing.  Yet our central task remains witnessing to the reality of God’s reign, in which enemies are destroyed not through pin-point accurate unmanned drones, but through the love of God.  Our central task remains to open our homes and  tables, to pray for our leader and troops, and for theirs.  Our task remains to be the church in a fallen world, a world that can’t even recognize its fallenness.

The shortcomings of both Obama and “Obama’s America” are made up for in the church.


3 responses to “The Shortcomings of Obama/Obama’s America

  1. I’ve contemplated not voting this year, as neither of the major party candidates deserves my vote. I think I may vote for the Libertarian, though. I know…it’s a “wasted vote.” But it’s also my way of protesting without having to explain why I didn’t vote.

    The nation, the world, and everything in between, all are going exactly according to God’s plan, and the President, just like the kings of history, is hand-selected by the sovereign God. My vote, literally means nothing. Even more so, since I live in Texas, my vote means even less, because Texas will go for the Republican candidate. I’m most certainly not voting for him.

  2. Food for thought: instead of “groups of oligarchs,” try “the oligarchy manifest through different fronts.” Romney is Obama is Bush is Clinton is Bush is Reagan is Carter etc… and Amen to your conclusions.

  3. We may not be of this world, but even the bible says our leaders, whatever their title, are appointed by God. Whether they come to that station by way of the people’s vote (driven by the Spirit), or by direct divine intervention, I am weary of the evangelical argument that our vote does not matter. Since the data shows only a small percentage of the population even votes, I haven’t felt for a long time that the vote truly represents the people. We will lose our right and our voice if we don’t exercise it. In fact, I’m wondering if we already have.

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