Monday, August 25, 2008

Time for Change Indeed

10 weeks until elections. As UU's I believe we are called...
- to talk about something else at church. Why?

We are not the religious arm of the Democratic Party.
We sure do look like it far too often.

The elections are the focus of the media from now until November.
Someone needs to offer the media-weary sanctuary. And there are plenty of places for in-depth political discourse elsewhere.

I greatly enjoy that church-state separation concept.
Nuff said.

Now is a really good time to volunteer.
With so many civic-minded souls volunteering on the election, someone has to work the food pantry, drive the meals-on-wheels, donate the blood, and read to the kids.

We say we are open-minded, compassionate, and diverse.
Our political bumper stickers in the church parking lot say something else.

While the rest of the country argues, while the negative ads blare on, while the pundits fume, while the fingers point, while the nerves fray...

Let us instead be who we say we are.


Chuck B. said...

Let us be who we say we are: A liberal religion, an activist faith, and an answer to the right-wing political religious zealotry.

We are not the religious wing of the Democratic party, but the party has moved away from our liberal ideas.

We need to operate the charities, but we need to understand that good compassionate government can reduce the need for those charities; by providing jobs and opportunity so people can pull themselves up and out of their circumstances.

There is a separation of church and state, but for too long we have sat silently allowing a group of non-inlcusive, greedy, chickenhawk fundamentalist apocalypsophiles to pull us into war, blood shed and despair. We do not need to purport to be the religions of the Democrats, to be a guiding force for justice, peace and equality. We must however be in the game when it is played.

We are a faith, but we must have the courage and fortitude to offer a true and inclusive moral compass. We cannot do that by turning our backs in this moment of crisis.

Viola Liuzzo's death brought about the voting rights act. There is a line from that UU to this moment. Let us not shame the memory or her sacrifice, nor forget what we can contribute.

Change rarely is convenient, but with thousands dead and dying in a war that we were conned into, now is the time for UU's to shine and be the moral guide to a positive political change.

To bury our heads in the sand is to turn away from our 7 principals.

Now is a really good time to get out the vote for a better tomorrow, let the right volunteer.

Let us do what we say we want to do.

gloria f said...

May I respectfully disagree with your Jot!

I have volunteered at the Greene School for seven years and have at the same time been a Midlothian Co-chair for the Democratic Party, working to organize in 14 precincts. This is not a either or situation!

I am at times distressed with the number of people at our church who spend time talking about how wonderful we are at First UU (treating our church like a social club), rather than becoming active on the political scene, be it Republican or Democrat.

How can we live in a world and not care enough to make a difference?

Anonymous said...

I agree with you whole heartedly. I am a UU who has done a lot for the community and for the UU's and I frankly feel a little sad because I feel as I am no longer welcome in the UU church. I and my husband are prior military, we met in a UU church and got married by our esteemed blogger in a UU church. We are conservative in some views and liberal in others. I have felt out of place in the UU community because of my views. It leaves me very sad and lonely. I felt in my heart I was a UU but then other UUs say that I am not because I don't agree with what they say? That is why I left the Baptists, because I dared to question them and I came to the UUs because they welcomed questions. Apparently that is only on religion and not on politics. I am so tired of people EVERYWHERE being so polarized by not only what they believe, but the need to force their opinions on everyone else. I have stopped going to church months ago because of this feeling of negativity and I am not going back until way after the elections if at all. I am so sad by all that I see at the UU church. I thought/hoped we were different. I guess I was wrong.

Robin Edgar said...

I think that you have very high hopes if you think that this blog post will "work" in any way but I guess it can't hurt to at least write it down.

In spite of spurious claims to the contrary, the U*U "church" effectively is the religious arm of the Democratic Party, to say nothing of the Communist Party. . . ;-)

The Oregonian did not describe Unitarian*Universalism as "the Church of the Far Left" while reporting on last year's UUA GA without having some reasonable grounds to do so.

submandave said...

Anonymous, I share your frustration from the outside looking in. I was raised Presbyterian and met my wife while stationed in Japan. We are both fairly conservative in our social/political outlooks and would love to have a spiritual home where our children could have our values reinforced. Alas, my wife is unwilling to forgo her Buddhist beliefs and I am unwilling to subject our girls to a religious environment that tells them half their family is damned for eternity (unlike some we could mention...). Unforntunately, looking from the outside it seems that the UU is the religious front for every left-wing concept that comes down the pike and a Googling of "conservative universalism" yields only a handful of voices in the wilderness like our host bemoaning the reputation I've just stated.