Skip to comments.Make Welfare Payments, Not War (Left-wing Evangelical, Tony Campolo suggests)
Posted on 05/01/2007 9:32:07 AM PDT by SirLinksalot
Left-wing evangelist Tony Campolo and leftist Jewish activist Michael Lerner are organizing a new manifesto calling for the U.S. to repent and apologize for the Iraq war, eagerly collecting funds to publish the appeal in major newspapers across the nation.
Called An Ethical Way to End the War in Iraq, Campolo and Lerner want America to give up in Iraq immediately and pay reparations for her crimes. So far, they have collected the signatures of such enlightened luminaries as Harvard's Cornel West, radical nun Joan Chittester, Glen Stassen at Fuller Seminary, and former Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.) moderator Rick Ufford Chase. Left-wing peoples historian Howard Zinn has also signed on, even though he could not endorse the document's every nuance.
Many leftists are being encouraged to sign, even if they are uncomfortable with its religious language. Religious talk to palatable to some secular leftists, so long as its a rhetorical weapon against the United States.
Campolo, a sociology professor at Eastern University in Philadelphia, was a spiritual counselor to Bill Clinton after the Monica Lewinsky scandal. Lerner, the publisher of Tikkun, was famously a guru to Hillary Clinton until his radical politics made him politically unpalatable to the First Lady.
The Campolo/Lerner coalition is exasperated that toothless congressional Democrats are not willing to cut off funding for U.S. troops. So, they are introducing an ethical and spiritual vision of how America could change the way it acts and is perceived in the world. = Surprise, surprise: their ethical and spiritual vision demands that America retreat, surrender, apologize, and pay reparations, regardless of the consequences -- the constant refrain of the Religious Left for nearly 40 years.
The remedy for wrongdoing begins not only with the act of changing the path (stop funding the war) but also with apology and repentance (In the Biblical sense repentance conveys a return to ones highest self after one has gone astray and betrayed ones highest values), the manifesto opens. Campolo and Lerner want President Bush or congressional representatives to personally apologize to the United Nations for Americas complicity in the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent people. Indeed, President Bush should ask for forgiveness on behalf of himself and the American people who overwhelmingly supported this great wrong.
But the apology would not just cover the war in Iraq, naturally. There are so many American sins that need confessed! The president should acknowledge that this entire society has mistakenly adhered to the view that safety and security can be achieved through domination or control of others . Campolo and Lerner advocate that Bush announce a new U.S. policy that is based on generosity, kindness and genuine concern.
As the U.S and Britain beat a hasty retreat from Iraq, Campolo and Lerner suggest that volunteers from Muslim and non-Muslim countries come forward to provide protection for Sunni, Shia and Kurdish interests. It is not clear why such volunteers would be necessary. If the U.S. is to blame for the conflict in Iraq, then surely its exit will only facilitate widespread celebration, not any need for protection. It apparently is also important that these volunteers not be Christian. Campolo and Lerner explain that U.S. forces are perceived as modern-day imitators of the Crusaders who once devastated Muslim countries.
In his own separate explanation for Jim Wallis Sojourners, Campolo described how Americans and Brits are defined by many Muslims as a Christian army that has invaded a sacred Islamic land. Our armys presence is perceived by many in the Muslim world as a rebirth of the medieval crusades.
Lets assume that, according to the Campolo/Lerner plan, Jewish volunteers would also be equally unwelcome. So, the new volunteer force will apparently be comprised of Muslims, Buddhists, Hindus, Shintoists, and perhaps a smattering of animists, Wiccans and Scientologists, none of whom will be confused with Crusaders.
Campolo and Lerner also want a plebescite in Iraq to determine its future. But hasnt Iraq already had several free elections? Since the resulting elected representatives consented to the crusader army, apparently those votes do not count.
The apology by itself will not be enough, the leftists emphasize. True repentance requires the works of repentance. Thus, the U.S. must commit the hundreds of billions of dollars needed to fully rebuild Iraq. At the same time, the U.S. must commit one percent of its Gross Domestic Product for the next 20 years towards eliminating global and domestic poverty, homelessness, inadequate health care, inadequate education and repairing the environment around the world. This kind of reparation will be key to rebuilding trust in the United States. If every global evil could be eliminated so cheaply, how amazing that we have not already done it!
Campolo and Lerners proposed global welfare state would win America lots of new friends, they are convinced. But in the entire history of mankind, have long-term mandatory transfer payments by a government, whether domestically or internationally, ever purchased trust, appreciation or good will? Campolo is a Christian and Lerner is a Jew. Yet both of them prefer to ignore considerable Christian and Jewish teachings about human avarice, resentment and concupiscence. For them, as for the Religious Left, every human ill can be relieved by a check from the U.S. government.
And as for the Campolo/Lerner plans for U.S. reparations to Iraq, to whom would they be paid if Iraq collapsed into complete anarchy in the wake of an immediate U.S./British withdrawal?
Assuming that the volunteer force of Muslims-Hindus-Buddhists-animists-Wiccans-Scientologists cannot safeguard the money, perhaps they can simply be held in a trust fund until the new Iraq, free of all U.S. and Christian influence, will be ready for the new U.S. policy of generosity, kindness and genuine concern.
No doubt to the discomfort of some leftist signers, the Campolo/Lerner manifesto quotes some Scripture, from II Chronicles 7:14: If My people, which are called by My name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.
This Scripture is a summons to Christians and Jews to repent and turn to the Lord their God. But in the new sacred and Islamic Iraq that Campolo and comrades advocate, where Christians and Jews will apparently be forbidden, or at least unwelcome, this Scripture would be unheard and perhaps even illegal, like all other Christian and Jewish literature. Tragically, the Religious Left, in its unending political jeremiads, ends up disdaining not only its own nation and culture, but even its own supposed religious traditions.
LEFTIST Jewish activist Michael Lerner...
For the life of me, I will never understand Jews.
Campolo is the guy walking with Clinton.
And, I might add, supporting themselves without having to get a real job.
Just for the record, "welfare" and "charity" are voluntary gestures by individuals who wish to live by example, freely given from income from honest work.
Anything else that's forced is simply legalized extortion.
I reject that concept without exception.
Campolo, forever etched alongside the cynical-tear-wiping Bilk Linton at Ron Brown’s funeral, evangelical (my ass), should join the other duplicitous evangelical, Ted Haggard, for some sensitive touchy-feely. As an evangelical who means it, I seriously resent this.
My plan calls for Campolo and Lerner to go live in Iraq after we pull out!
Of which the Reverend Jim Jones is the appalling archetype for our time.
Tony Campolo has written a lot of books over the years and has been invited to speak even in conservative churches all over the country. Among the best selling books he has authored are :
1) FOLLOWING JESUS WITHOUT EMBARASSING GOD.
Hot button issues that impact the Christian life, including how to: protect yourself from technology without becoming Amish; have a devotional life without becoming a monk, and figure out the will of God without hearing voices from Heaven.
2) LETTERS TO A YOUNG EVANGELICAL
In letters to two fictional young evangelicals, Campolo endeavors to challenge and encourage young Christians in much the same way Paul did in his epistles. In keeping with this Pauline theme, Campolo addresses his letters to Timothy, but, in keeping with his strong belief that women and men are equally fit for church leadership, also addresses them to Junia, a spiritual leader to whom Paul refers in the book of Romans. As Campolo covers such topics as the religious right, fundamentalism, dispensationalism, homosexuality, abortion and Christian-Muslim relations, he steers clear of telling his readers what to think.
3) Speaking My Mind: The Radical Evangelical Prophet Tackles the Tough Issues Christians Are Afraid to Face
In this latest book examining some of today’s toughest questions and issues:
Is evangelical Christianity anti-feminist?
Is our affluent lifestyle at odds with our faith?
Is America really in moral decline?
Is Islam really an evil religion?
Should Christian parents pull their kids out of public schools?
Was the war with Iraq a “just” war?
4) 20 HOT POTATOES CHRISTIANS ARE AFRAID TO TOUCH
AIDS, women preachers, public schools, psychological counseling, homosexuality, and working mothers-these are some of the hot issues that many Christians avoid discussing. With insight and clarity, Tony Campolo confronts today’s toughest social and moral questions while raising a few of his own.
Instead of Left-Wing Luminaries, why not ask the heads of House and Senate? Or are they too chicken? (either one).........
My favorite Tony Campolo sermon was when he said this in a church setting :
“I have three things I’d like to say today. First, while you were sleeping last night, 30,000 kids died of starvation or diseases related to malnutrition. Second, most of you don’t give a shit. What’s worse is that you’re more upset with the fact that I said shit than the fact that 30,000 kids died last night.”
For that matter, why didn’t he just say — “most of you don’t give a f—k”. That would be more colorful, after all, it’s more important for him to get upset that 30,000 kids died than to curse.
Chuck Colson wrote about Tony Campolo in a Breakpoint article once :
What do you get when you hold a conference with 1,200 people who are all afraid of offending one another? Ill tell you what you dont get. You dont get unity, and you dont get agreement on anything.
Thats what happened when the Spiritual Activism Conference took place recently in Washington, D.C. According to the New York Times, this group of religious liberals came together to discuss taking back religion from the conservative Christians. But the conference members had trouble getting anything specific done.
The Times hit it right on the nose when it explained, Turnout at the Spiritual Activism Conference was high, but if the gathering is any indication, the biggest barrier for liberals may be their regard for pluralism: for letting people say what they want, how they want to, and for trying to include everyones priorities rather than choosing two or three issues that could inspire a movement. Never mind even setting policy goals; some conference members were afraid that singing hymns might be enough to upset some members. Instead of coming away with a clear set of objectives, the conference members mostly came away frustrated.
Ironically for a group that prides itself on tolerance, it seems the only thing the conference could agree on was its opposition to the religious right. But frustrating as it was for them, the group had to concede that the religious right is a lot better at getting things done. Beliefnet suggests this was because religious conservatives are willing to argue there is one correct view on policy issues.
You see, thats the crux of the liberals problem. This conflict is not about political or social divisions. Its about authorityspecifically, whether or not Christians are willing to acknowledge that the Bible is our authority.
Tony Campolo certainly recognized this. Though Tony and I disagree on lots of things, I really like Tony. Hes honest, and he loves the Bible. He tried to explain at this conference the necessity of following Scripture. But one participant retorted, I thought this was a spiritual progressives conference. I dont want to play the game of the Bible says this or that, or that we get validation from something other than ourselves.
There you have it. Validation from ourselves simply means you make up your own god. We Christians may interpret the Bible differently; we may apply it to life differently; we may have arguments over exegesis. But the Bible has to be the ultimate authority. Otherwise we end up worshiping the goddess of tolerance and believing that tolerance takes precedence over truth.
Dorothy Sayers, the great English writer, said it best: In the world it is called Tolerance, but in hell it is called Despair, the sin that believes in nothing, cares for nothing, seeks to know nothing, interferes with nothing, enjoys nothing, hates nothing, finds purpose in nothing, lives for nothing, and remains alive because there is nothing for which it will die.
This kind of so-called tolerance can never bring people together, but only as we saw in Washington, pull them farther apart.
Just because some two-bit huckster posing as a preacher says it, doesn't make it so.
Lieberals love to pull numbers from out of their butts.
Correct, and some of the books are good, and some of his talks are quite good, when he stays away from politics. But he is an extreme leftist when it comes to politics, and that can be a real problem.
But I have a few questions. The premise, I suppose, is to get out of Iraq and give them lots of money as a way to say sorry.
First question: pay who? Without the US forces there, the Iraqi government will likely fall in short order. Do we simply drop stocks, bonds and chunks of gold from a high altitude?
Another question: if leaving Iraq is the moral thing to do, and say if the prevailing theories about factionalizing are true (resulting in a bloodbath and / or genocide when one of the factions gains the upper hand), is genocide therefore moral?
God, I hate these written daydreams from fantasyland. An idiot holding a cross is still an idiot.
How about do neither?
That quote is typical reactionary rhetoric. Liberals use it all the time. He’d be better off preaching from the Bible than preaching social activism.
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