Is ‘Politics’ America’s favourite sport?

If there is one thing I have learnt about America and Americans, it is that politics is their favourite sport. You don’t have to go far to hear some one spruiking about this or that politician. Or political party, or government selection party.

The process there seems to be a bit like the Australian Cricket Team selectors, having a go at our national cricket team in the first few innings of the test matches. The one thing I am yet to see happen often within my observation of politics and any talk about politics, whether it be here or overseas, is that of honouring all in authority.

The Apostle Paul tells us to honour all in authority. I’m wondering just how seriously we take his encouragement to honour all in authority with our thoughts, words and deeds? Honouring someone doesn’t mean we have to agree with them. Honouring someone means that despite our disagreements, we will still consider them with dignity and respect as someone who is made in the image of God. Who therefore deserve to be treated with the dignity and respect that image deserves.

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About Craig Benno

I'm an average aussie guy who has lived perhaps a not so average life.
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3 Responses to Is ‘Politics’ America’s favourite sport?

  1. tildeb says:

    I think you’ve touched on an essential difference between secularism and the kind of religion you favour: where does legitimate authority originate?

    The most peaceful, prosperous, socially stable societies are those that recognize that authority to govern comes from the governed, that authority in law derives from those who live under it. This is secularism, Lincoln’s “unfinished work”… government of the people, by the people, for the people consecrated on the field of battle at Gettysburg by its human cost for this ideal: that to have liberty all must be born equal in authority.

    You would have us follow Paul and yield our personal authority to the authority of others so long as we all yield our authority to god. This notion, Craig, is – I hope you can truly appreciate – incompatible with what we call secularism: liberty based on autonomous authority of the individual simply inherited by being born, free to pursue ‘happiness’ in the Enlightenment sense of the word.

    When it is believed by many that the authority for personal autonomy and liberty is subjugated to god’s, then they attack the very foundation of our liberty, the source of legitimate authority for our governments and laws.

    And herein lies the rub: for those who choose like you to grant your personal authority to god on the basis of your religious beliefs, you have the liberty to do so only on the fact that in law you and not god have the authority to do so. But when you choose to grant MY personal authority to by subjugated to your god, then you have crossed a line and do not have that authority. By acting so, you have in fact and deed acted against the the foundation of your own liberty. This is why you do not have the authority or liberty to assign my personal autonomy to be subjugated to the authority of your god under law. This is an illegitimate use of personal authority, an abuse of legitimate authority.

    • Craig Benno says:

      I don’t personally know any christians who would try and force others to follow God. You can’t force anyone to follow God and believe in God Tildeb. However, just as you have a right to speak forth your own belief system, I too have the right to speak about my own belief system of life and creation. And will do so. I don’t know where you come from, but here in Australia none of our laws subjecate any to religious ways of life.

      Christ came to show us how to live. Christ showed us how to love. Christ showed us the way of relationship with the father. And its through Christ we receive the empowering presence of the Holy Spirit. I continually pray for you that the eyes of your heart will also be enlightened and that you also will know the fullness of the hope we have in Jesus Christ. My prayer also includes that you will know Christ and his love for you and all people in the same way you know the nose on your face.

  2. tildeb says:

    You just don’t see it, Craig. You do, in fact, try to force others to follow your god. You do so by supporting the reason that my life is subject to the authority of your god. This authority shows up throughout the public domain, throughout the education system, throughout government, throughout civil and criminal law, throughout healthcare, throughout public policies, and you are willfully blind to it because you assume – incorrectly – it’s right and proper.

    For example, my choice for end of life issues is DEFINED by confusing who owns my life: me or god. If me, then the laws against euthanasia make no sense.

    For example, my choice for reproductive services and medical research is curtailed and constrained by your religious assumptions that the very god you just so happen to worship somehow plays a legitimate role in defining and determining what services and research are ‘acceptable’.

    The list goes on and on (pastors in schools? In the role of counseling? Hello? Anybody home?)

    Of course you have the right to speak your mind. But you do not have the right of imposing the authority you simply believe belongs to god over and above my claim to have authority over me. By doing so, you undermine your own authority to choose to give it to the god you favour.

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