Obama’s First Week

No matter who we voted for in the presidential election, many of us-perhaps most of us-felt a patriotic pride in seeing America’s first African American president take the oath of office. As Peggy Noonan wrote in the Wall Street Journal, “There was a low-key patriotic fervor” on Inauguration Day, and as Obama was sworn in, children who were watching “must have picked up this: Anything is possible in America.”

I agree. Despite my concerns of some over Obama’s campaign promises, I felt that same good will watching that historic scene.

I also thought what a great signal this inauguration was to young African Americans, so many thousands of whom end up in prison. Tragically, many of these young men grow up fatherless. And they go to prison blaming the fact that as blacks they couldn’t get a fair break in American life. Well, Obama has proved that wrong. Every American has a chance to be president.

As Christians, we should be the first to applaud when we see the President doing the right thing. One of his first acts as president was to enact a new ethics code, barring anyone who leaves the Obama administration from lobbying the executive branch during the remainder of his term. And according to the Washington Post, the “rules also bar registered lobbyists from working in the administration on areas in which they have lobbied” two years prior to their appointment. Good! This reform is long overdue.

I was also heartened by the president’s order for more transparency in government. So long as we protect national security, government should be open.

But alas-by Friday, my euphoria was fading. President Obama overturned the Mexico City policy, meaning that hundreds of millions of your tax dollars will go to groups that aggressively promote and perform abortions. In his inaugural address, the President said that he would free science from its restraints and restore it to its rightful place. Translate that to mean that taxpayers are going to be funding embryo-destructive research (despite the fact that all the successes in such research have come about using adult stem cells).

So it is very clear that the question of life and how we view it, which is central to everything, is on the table. And Christians must be compelled to defend the sanctity of life at every stage, from conception to natural death; it’s integral to the Gospel.

As the late Fr. Richard Neuhaus and I argued in an Evangelicals and Catholics Together document, “…Christians who support the legal license to kill the innocent… [must] consider whether they have not set themselves against the will of God and, to that extent, separated themselves from the company of Christian discipleship.” Strong words.

But the life issue is not just one cause out of many that conservative Christians are concerned with; it is the overriding, overarching issue, with implications for every other issue, as I will be discussing in the next few days.

As we watch the new administration unfold, we must be in constant prayer for our new leader, as the Bible commands. Now I know how politics work, I’m not naive, but the survival of our way of life is at stake. So we must be praying hard-fervently- that President Obama will listen to wise counselors-and then have the courage to do the right thing.

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  • http://www.tell-usa.org Bob Struble

    All good points, Chuck, except this: “Now I know how politics work, I’m not naive, but the survival of our way of life is at stake. So we must be praying hard – fervently – that President Obama will listen to wise counselors – and then have the courage to do the right thing.”

    Fine, as far as it goes. But the “pray, obey and hope everything will be ok” strategy is hardly the stuff of fundamental reform. Or rather counterrevolution, which is what we will need to escape the postmodernist revolution, inflicted for decades now upon the vitals of what was once “America the Beautiful.”

    I would argue that we face a situation similar to what Roman Christians faced twelve years into the 4th century, AD. Instead of merely offering prayers for the ruler of Rome, Maxentius, Christian citizens of the Roman Empire infused their charity with tough love and then followed Constantine and his sky born vision – including the instruction, “in this sign conquer.” (See the Battle of the Milvian Bridge, 412, AD; also the revolt described in 1 & 2 Maccabees).

    For those who are willing to take up the good fight for America the Beautiful, let us look to salvation history, go outside the system, and press for a counterrevolution under the radical half of the fifth Article in the U.S. Constitution. On how an Article V convention might work, see the fourth chapter in Treatise on Twelve Lights, http://www.tell-usa.org

  • http://www.fatimashrine.com Peter M. Calabrese

    Nice article.
    For all the transparency that has been promised our new President also told a reporter not to ask impertinent questions – he would be told later what had transpired. Among his first appointments, one is a lobbyist who required an immediate exemption from the anti-lobbyist order you applauded. The Secretary Treasury fails to pay his taxes and even many Democrats are appalled. He certainly did not vet GOv Richardson thoroughly; he withdrew his candidacy on his own. The propsed head of Justice was responsible for fast tracking the pardons of FALN terrorists in the CLinton years.

    Unfortunately our new President is ot even very good at the things we were supposed to cheer him for.

    On the Pro-Life level he has appointed Emily’s List leaders and begun the other disasters you mentioned.

  • Claire

    I wish I could say that I felt some patriotic pride last week, but I didn’t. My feelings were way too clouded by Obama’s Messiah complex and his vicious anti-life stands.

  • Lucky Mom of 7

    Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching its people to love, but to use violence to get what they want. …And if we can accept that a mother can kill her own child, how can we tell other people not to kill one another?” Mother Teresa

    I believe in the personhood of every fetus (i.e. baby, child, human being). However, it needs to be emphasized that abortion is not just a philosophical debate about the right to life. It’s the most fundamental issue in national security. Who can blame Islamic extremists for dismissing us? Even they have th good sense not to kill innocent, unborn babies. It the United States it’s a “right” PROTECTED BY LAW. It’s absolute insanity and until we outlaw abortion, we’ll look like fools at the bargaining table. I wouldn’t trust us either.

    Lucky

  • richmaffeobooks

    I wonder if we haven’t elected another Saul (see 1 Samuel 8-31). Israels’ first king led the nation along a tragic path. Will President Obama and the Democratic majority lead us deeper into the culture of death?

    RichMaffeobooks.com

  • Grace Harman

    If Ken Blackwell, Alan Keyes, or any other pro-life African-American had won, I would feel proud that our country had made that choice. But president Obama seems to be a puppet of Planned Parenthood and the Humanist agenda, promoting population control “in absence of GOD”, and the elimination of “people of color” throughout the world- as Margaret Sanger had hoped to do, as seen with her “Negro project” in our South and the “Eugenics Project” of Nazi Germany.
    Obama is not “transparent” with his birth certificate and too many of his appointments are connected with dishonest or un -American groups. This may be a “scary ride” for all of us.

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