Thinking About Candidates

Another day, another GOP presidential candidate. Or so it seems. Rick Santorum entered the fray today. It should be another interesting, fatiguing, completely soul-sapping presidential race from now until next November. And religion will surely play a large role. Obama’s Christianity (or perceived lack therof). Romney’s Mormonism. Newt’s devout Catholicism (following closely on the heels of being a devout Southern Baptist). Santorum’s claim that he’s more Christian than any of his competitors.

But in their platforms and agendas, are any of these candidates truly Christian? Are they really following Jesus’ message to help the poor and the needy? Are they lovers of peace, or flexers of American muscle?

Martha Woodroof posted a great piece over the weekend only tangentially about Newt and his wife’s diamonds:

“As I’ve said before in On Faith, I am a person of faith who is not religious. As I’ve also said before, I am a complete fan of Jesus Christ, largely because, according to the Gospels, the guy was so not a hypocrite. He flat-out lived his faith, putting into practice all those inconvenient rantings about inclusiveness and giving a damn about the poor; gunking things up for the rest of us with bothersome statements about rich men, needle eyes and camels.

At no point did Jesus say thou shalt covet diamonds that cost more than the houses a lot of Americans are losing.Of course, Newt’s not the only politician who exudes the toxic glow of Christian hypocrisy. Almost all American presidential candidates claim to be fans of Jesus. So what are they fans of? The man’s outfits? His hairstyle? His commitment to walking everywhere and thus getting regular exercise?

It’s obviously not his selfless poverty, which, to me, non-Christian admirer of Jesus that I am, appears to be the heart of his message.”

Keep this in mind as the mud flies.

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