Saturday, February 02, 2008

The Content of Their Character

I enjoyed reading this, on whether or not Mitt Romney's being a Mormon is a bigger hurdle that Obama's being black or Clinton's being a woman.

A6: In the past year or so, several polls have been conducted suggesting that as many as 37% of Americans might not consider a member of the Mormon Church to be fit for the office of President. What is your view of the possibility of a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints being elected to the presidency?

Reverend Murray: To me this seems an antiquated question. Would a Mormon be fit to serve as President? It was really antiquated when we asked the question about John Kennedy and whether a Catholic would be fit to serve as president. About Barack Obama and whether a Black would be fit to serve as president. About Hilary Clinton, whether a woman would be fit to serve as president.

If you want to, you can categorize anyone who is running. You could ask whether a White, Anglo-Saxon, Protestant, male is fit to run for president when that’s all we’ve ever had. It’s time to change. There can be arguments if you go by labels, but if you see that this is a country in pursuit of liberty and justice for all, if you perceive that in a democracy as opposed to a fascist form of government we must have liberty and equity in the process. If you can see that we are in the 21st Century, where people will soon be crossing the country in 30 minutes, where we will be vacationing on Mars, if you can see the new world then you accommodate yourself to it and stop living in the past.

People’s labels, as long as they are not labeled as a criminal mentality, or defined as someone not FOR the people, then you can judge the merits of that platform and what they stand for, not where they are standing...

A6: In 2008 whose candidacy will face the most opposition, Barack Obama ? Who do you think will face the most opposition or the most prejudice today?

Reverend Murray: The Mormon. Because America is still growing. The question, “Do we want a Mormon?” The ultra conservatives will start reaching into history and try to paint them as a radical sect, try to show that their belief system is alien to what perhaps a majority of Americans believe. Because that’s where we are now. Prayerfully, that’s not where we’ll be in 20, 30 or 40 years. We don’t know. I would say Barack would have the advantage. And anytime you say a black candidate would have an advantage running for President of the United States of America, great day in the morning!



Mrs. C said...

The article was extremely odd... written by a supposed Christian who tells us we ought not "judge" candidates based on their religion. According to him, we are to go into the voting place and magically set our religious beliefs aside because of the doctrine (not even in the Constitution!) of the separation of church and state.

Romney, as an American adult, has CHOSEN the Mormon faith and like it or not, people are going to read what they will into his choices as a REFLECTION of his inner beliefs and character. It's perfectly fair to "judge" a candidate based on his religion or lack thereof. I'm a VOTER, and I get to determine the criteria of my vote as I wish. At least I'm not going for good hair or teeth...

This isn't a job selling cars or running a corporation, or even serving in the military (yes, I'm going to "go there" and respectfully disagree with my fellow Christians... so long as homosexual acts are lawful activity... unfortunately). This is a job for which the American people are CHOOSING a candidate to serve in this capacity.

I know Mormons are extremely moral people and put most Christians to shame with their good works and clean living. But I cannot see myself voting for one as President of the US at this time. It may come down to a choice between Romney and Clinton... but that would be a whole 'nother ball game, wouldn't it?

Ellen K said...

It's always puzzled me how someone would vote for or against someone based on factors of their private life. For example, isn't picking a woman simply because she's a woman just as sexist as choosing a man for the same reason? Isn't voting for a person who belongs to a specific minority group simply because they are defined as a member of that group just as racist as not voting for them for the same reason? If I had my druthers I would disallow video debates and make all candidates write their views for public perusal. Of course, since fewer of us read, that would set up a whole other subset of limitations. Then we would have to have nonreading candidates...and the list goes on.