Saturday, April 23, 2005

NARAL: On "Justice Sunday"

(courtesy of NARAL Pro-Choice America)

This Sunday at 7:00 pm EDT, Senator Bill Frist is partnering with radical conservatives like James Dobson and Tony Perkins to launch "Justice Sunday" - a national telecast to churches across the country which claims that opposing the far-right's "nuclear option" is tantamount to discrimination against "people of faith."

NARAL Pro-Choice America asked me - a lifelong Christian and Episcopal priest - what I thought about "Justice Sunday." Frankly, I don't recognize the God Senator Frist and company speak of.

The God I know does not ask the government to impose one person or group's moral beliefs on all others. The God I know would not have us pit believers against one another in the service of a purely political agenda.

The God I know is less concerned with our bedrooms than with seeing our faithfulness and love reflected in our budget, our foreign policy, our social and economic policies.

Poster being used to advertise "Justice Sunday"

Sen. Frist and others certainly have the right, even the responsibility, to let their judgment about who and what they support be informed by their own values and faith commitments. You and I may wish that those values more closely mirrored what we understand to be spiritual and democratic principles. Nonetheless, as irrational and unfaithful as some of their positions may appear to others of us, they have the right to them. What they do not have the right to do is to impose them on us all - and most certainly not to destroy our democratic system in order to do it.

Frist and Dobson's "Christian" objection is not to the filibuster, but to its outcome in this case - the refusal to confirm some judges. They argue that these judges are Christians, and are being opposed because of their faith. I'd argue that we're opposing these judges because of their policies and history, and many of us oppose those policies and that history precisely because we are faithful, spiritual people of many religions.

These judges have histories of rulings that dilute the rights and protections afforded to various categories of disadvantaged people (elderly, poor, people of color, disabled, immigrants, women, gay and lesbian). People within many religious traditions are charged to care especially for just such people.

To Contact Your Senators About This Issue

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