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Obama & Warren: A Marriage of Convenience

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It would be an understatement to say that I was shocked by President Elect Barack Obama's choice in Rick Warren to deliver the invocation at his inauguration ceremony. Two more outwardly different people you are not likely to find. Obama supports abortion-rights, Warren does not; Obama supports gay-rights, Warren does not. Amongst many other diametrically opposed beliefs and ideals, abortion and gay rights are certainly two of the most charged and divisive in American today. So why on earth would Obama select Warren? And why would Warren accept?

Many will say that Obama selected Mr. Warren in order to reach out to the right, that he wants to show America that he will be open-minded, considerate, and willing to honor and respect the beliefs of others. Likewise, the same has been said of Mr. Warren, that his brand of Christianity is ecumenical, open and unifying. Just who is one to believe? Am I to accept that the leopard has changed his spots, or that the zebra has changed his stripes? Is either more plausible than the other? What's more, if Obama's selection is nothing more than an attempt to prove his bipartisanship, it is a meaningless gesture. Would it not be more appropriate, and speak volumes more, if he selected cabinet members with broad appeal? I don't seen much concern over broad-appeal in Obama's selection of the likes of Hillary Clinton, Tom Daschle, and Leon Panetta.

I may be ruining my shot at a cabinet post here, but I suspect the truth of the matter is that neither Obama nor Warren are really who or what they claim to be. There is always a certain amount of showmanship in politics, and certainly as much in Warren's brand of slickly-marketed, drive-thru religion; but where does the glitz end and deception begin? I simply cannot accept that two people can stand on such totally different foundations, can join hands and sing kum-bai-yah with honestly and sincerity. Somebody's playing make-believe on a national stage.

So what does all of this mean, and who cares? Well, for me it means that I have been right about Mr. Warren all along; his actions suggest that he really doesn't believe all that he espouses. Because of his position of true power and influence, it is even more frightening that Mr. Obama, in his selection of Warren, has taken actions in opposition of his own stated beliefs. Remember the old adage, "Actions speak louder than words?" How can any right-minded person be expected to believe in the sincerity of a man who says one thing, but then does another?

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About Nate Fleischer

  • Interesting article. I’m constantly amazed by the pundits dissecting every move.

    This was the sentence that caught my eye.

    “I may be ruining my shot at a cabinet post here, but I suspect the truth of the matter is that neither Obama nor Warren are really who or what they claim to be.”

    The sad truth may be that NO ONE is who they claim to be.

  • ‘Is the Church Sending Wrong Message to Women of Abuse?’

    I am very disturbed Pastor Rick Warren would encourage a woman who is being beaten to stay married.

    This man will have blood on his hands. We all need to say something about this!

    Here’s the rest of story

  • Warren, by his own admission, is trapped by dogma.

    “I wish there were a third [justification for divorce] in Scripture, having been involved as a pastor with situations of abuse,” Warren said. “There is something in me that wishes there were a Bible verse that says, ‘If they abuse you in this-and-such kind of way, then you have a right to leave them.'”

    It’s a classic example of the disastrous result of biblical literalism: the obstinate refusal to believe that anything written there could contain the slightest subtlety.

  • Brunelleschi

    Maybe the truth is more like-

    “None of those leaders are who WE THINK they are.”

    I wouldn’t read too much into it. Look at Obama overall. He’s been far from exclusive in all the other decisions he has made. Maybe he is just that way.

    The more I watch Obama, the more I appreciate how clever he is.

  • Marcia Neil

    There is a dam built in the northwestern Pennsylvania mountains that was a tribal-treaty violation; the dam was built a short distance from the town of Warren, PA, and holds back water that floods an entire river valley using the term ‘reservoir’. The natural flow of the river was altered using dynamite to build the dam. The use of the ‘Obama’ name as a type of political scheme can be contested with investigations and protests about his qualifications for the office of the U. S. Presidency, while the possibility that Warren will one day or night be wiped off the map remains critical.

  • Brunelleschi

    Anyone care to translate that one?

  • Clavos


    It’s typical for her, though…

  • Just one more brick to build my argument that ‘Marcia’ is not a real person but a bot of some kind: here triggered by the words ‘Warren’ and ‘Obama’ to generate a comment which is syntactically and grammatically correct but makes absolutely no sense. Time for the bot programmer to go back to the drawing board, perhaps…

    Either that, or she’s some sort of autistic savant.

  • Jordan Richardson

    Here’s what I’m wondering:

    Is the bloody invocation really that important?

    I mean, I know everything is. Everything, from the colours of the ties of the former presidents to the fact that they ordered off the menu, is drastically important. But is it, really? Or is all of this nitpickery and posturing the result of years of over-saturation, boredom, and arrogance?

    Does it really matter?

  • I think both of these men are sincere in their differing beliefs. But they don’t buy into the whole “us vs. them” mentality that is so common. Just because people have differences doesn’t mean that they can’t work together, and respect each others views. I applaud both Warren and Obama. See this article for a different view on the Warren/Obama story.