Quoting Charles79 (Reply 191):
not the least because Obama is actually a very religious person.
I actually am not so sure if he is. I get the sense that he is not. I think that's one of the few things he does that's a show, and I find that sad that someone should feel it necessary to do that.
You get the sense he's not? It's time to learn more about your candidate. (Not that any of this makes him unworthy, I'm just saying you don't know your candidate very well.) Obama speaks about his faith pretty extensively in his own web site. (www.barackobama.com)
The first paragraph of "about barack":
"He joined a small law ﬁrm, taught constitutional law and, guided by his Christian faith, stayed active in his community."
From the "faith" section, under "Barack's Faith Principles"
Key values in Barack Obama’s public statements on faith and politics
• God is constantly present in our lives, and this presence is a source of hope.
* Our failure as progressives to tap into the moral underpinnings of the nation is not just rhetorical, though. Our fear of getting “preachy” may also lead us to discount the role that values and culture play in addressing some of our most urgent social problems.” - The Audacity of Hope.
Faith is a source of action for justice.
“Imagine Lincoln's Second Inaugural Address without reference to "the judgments of the Lord." Or King's I Have a Dream speech without references to "all of God's children."
Their summoning of a higher truth helped inspire what had seemed impossible, and move the nation to embrace a common destiny.” – Call to Renewal Keynote Address
“We should never forget that God granted us the power to reason so that we would do His work here on Earth - so that we would use science to cure disease, and heal the sick, and save lives.” – World AIDS Day Speech: Race Against Time
And from his Call to Renewal address (also on the web site)
But Mr. Keyes's implicit accusation that I was not a true Christian nagged at me, and I was also aware that my answer did not adequately address the role my faith has in guiding my own values and my own beliefs.
I think we make a mistake when we fail to acknowledge the power of faith in people's lives -- in the lives of the American people --
But as the months passed in Chicago, I found myself drawn - not just to work with the church, but to be in the church.
You need to come to church in the first place precisely because you are first of this world, not apart from it. You need to embrace Christ precisely because you have sins to wash away - because you are human and need an ally in this difficult journey.
It was because of these newfound understandings that I was finally able to walk down the aisle of Trinity United Church of Christ on 95th Street in the Southside of Chicago one day and affirm my Christian faith. I submitted myself to His will, and dedicated myself to discovering His truth.
(This little gem might interest you) More fundamentally, the discomfort of some progressives with any hint of religion has often prevented us from effectively addressing issues in moral terms. Some of the problem here is rhetorical - if we scrub language of all religious content, we forfeit the imagery and terminology through which millions of Americans understand both their personal morality and social justice.
BUT WAIT, THERE'S MORE...
But what I am suggesting is this - secularists are wrong when they ask believers to leave their religion at the door before entering into the public square. Frederick Douglas, Abraham Lincoln, Williams Jennings Bryant, Dorothy Day, Martin Luther King - indeed, the majority of great reformers in American history - were not only motivated by faith, but repeatedly used religious language to argue for their cause. So to say that men and women should not inject their "personal morality" into public policy debates is a practical absurdity. Our law is by definition a codification of morality, much of it grounded in the Judeo-Christian tradition.
There's a lot more, but I got tired of cutting and pasting.
[Edited 2008-10-29 06:30:08]