Archive for Wednesday, July 2, 2008

Obama seeks expanding faith-based initiatives

July 2, 2008


— Courting evangelicals and other religious voters, Barack Obama called Tuesday for an expansion of President Bush's initiative distributing federal aid to church-based groups that provide social services.

Obama promised the faith-based initiative would be "central" to his administration if he were elected.

"The challenges we face today - from saving our planet to ending poverty - are simply too big for government to solve alone. We need an all-hands-on-deck approach," Obama said at a news conference outside a community ministry in Zanesville, Ohio.

The Obama campaign has been targeting evangelical and religious voters, many of whom have shown waning enthusiasm for the Republican Party as they have become disenchanted with the Iraq war and a younger generation of evangelical leaders has expanded the movement's political agenda from divisive cultural issues to include such concerns as climate change, AIDS, genocide and poverty.


Tom McCune 9 years, 11 months ago

There isn't a "faith-based" organization in the world that can resist the temptation to use tax money to force religion down the throat of anyone within range. I was feeling OK about Obama until this. What a coward and a panderer. Bob Barr for the Libertarians is looking better all the time.

Confrontation 9 years, 11 months ago

I don't see the problem with this. There are many faith-based organizations that do a better job than many state agencies. As long as religion isn't be forced down the throat of clients, then I'm fine with this.

beatrice 9 years, 11 months ago

Good for him. By giving those peole something to do, maybe they won't be so bitter. It really isn't a bad idea when you get right down to it, but it does come across as a political move rather than a plan for the nation. However, I'd rather have Obama pushing a faith-based initiative than Bush, who also then pushed the faith itself, not just the initiative.

Confrontation 9 years, 11 months ago

Yes, I would, 75x55. That's the tough part. I'm assuming the feds would want the f-b organization to follow the same non-discrimination laws that the feds have (not that the feds have the best laws for hiring/firing). Many organizations, religious or not, find ways to get around hiring LGBT people and others. That's hard to prove sometimes. I do know that many good agencies, such as Catholic Charities and Jewish Family Services in KC, help a tremendous amount of people. I'm definitely not a religious person, and many of the people who work for these agencies aren't of that particular religion , or any other religion. However, they do provide assistance to people who aren't being adequately helped by the state or federal government. Look at their food pantries, emergency assistance funding, job assistance, foster care, and other programs. I've known many people who have gone to faith-based agencies for help, and they weren't required to read a bible, wear a head scarf, or to complete a morality survey.

miker 9 years, 11 months ago

I think we need all the help we can get ! What's wrong with reaching out ? Cynicism is rampant , so observe the subject w/ a ten foot pole & then make up your mind ,if you haven't already.

beatrice 9 years, 11 months ago

Marion, he wouldn't push a faith, be it Christian or Muslim or Hindi or Jew, but rather he would use a resource: religious institutions and the millions of people who may possibly serve as volunteers to varying degrees. That is why it is different from Bush, who pushed his evangelic Christian beliefs through programs like "abstinence only sex-ed" and his fight against stem-cell research.

Godot 9 years, 11 months ago

No one should be suprised by this, as a follower of Liberation Theology, Obama sees no separation between religion and politics.From an article by Cardinal Joseph Ratzenberger, aka Pope Benedict XVI; "what is liberation theology?Initially we said that liberation theology intends to supply a new total interpretation of the Christian reality; it explains Christianity as a praxis of liberation and sees itself as the guide to this praxis. However, since in its view all reality is political, liberation is also a political concept and the guide to liberation must he a guide to political action:"Nothing lies outside ... political commitment. Everything has a political color." A theology that is not "practical"; i.e., not essentially political, is regarded as "idealistic" and thus as lacking in reality, or else it is condemned as a vehicle for the oppressors' maintenance of power....Obama's faith-based initiative will look much different than Bush's.

Godot 9 years, 11 months ago

From the New York Times, July 2, 2008:"If elected, Mr. Obama said, he would call for a pre-inauguration review of all executive orders pertaining to the religion-based program, particularly those dealing with hiring. The program would "be central to our White House mission," he said, and would consider elevating the director of his Council for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships to a cabinet-level post."And who would he appoint to his cabinet as, what, Secretary of Faith?

8ball 9 years, 11 months ago

isn't it funny how when it was bush's idea,it sucked,but now that obama agrees,its great.what a bunch of hypocrites. BUCK FARRACK IN 08

Godot 9 years, 11 months ago

On the surface, it appears that the difference between the Bush faith-based initiative and the one Obama plans to include as the mission of his presidency, is minor. However, With Bush, the focus was simply to allow faith based organizations to compete, on a level playing field, with secular ones, for federal grants and funds already allotted for education, healthcare, housing, etc.Obama envistions a cabinet post in charge of a set amount of money allotted specifically for faith-based organizations. This Secretary of Faith (or whatever name Obama declares) will have the authority to decide which faith-based organizations meet whatever standards he or she sets. This is a huge difference between Obama and Bush, and it legitimately raises the question of the separation of church and state, in a very scary way.

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