This week is significant in the lives of the more than 40 million Hispanics in the United States in that it marks the beginning of Hispanic Heritage Month.
The presidential tickets in this election on both sides of the aisle have lots of "personality;" some of the candidates have even been referred to as "rock stars." John McCain's campaign manager Rick Davis has said that "this election is not about issues, this election is about a composite view of what people take away from these candidates." That has been widely interpreted as a prediction that the election will be about personalities more than about issues. That would be a tragedy. [...]
Christians are people who follow a tortured and murdered God. This fact speaks clearly to what our values should be. One of those values should be a rejection of torture, violence in the name of "law" and the common good, and murder.
Whew. Take a breath, Christians! I just read all the comments to my post Friday on Barack Obama's historic acceptance speech of a major party's nomination to the highest office in the country -- the first African American to have achieved that American milestone. The post was about the historical significance of that event and speech, especially on the very day of the 45 anniversary of Dr. Martin [...]
Yesterday morning, I started what would become an historic day with my favorite historian. As a young man, Vincent Harding was part of the inner circle of the southern freedom movement with Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., and later became one of the civil rights movement's best chroniclers and interpreters. Vincent has also been a mentor and trusted friend to me and to Sojourners for many years.
Vincent Harding was there at the Democratic Convention in 1964 when the party refused to seat [...]
I have been watching the Democratic National Convention this week, and I think when Barack Obama gives his acceptance speech tonight it is going to be an important historic moment. This is not to tell you who to vote for. That's up to you. But I can't help but anticipate watching a person of color stand in the place he will tonight. I don't advocate voting for him (or not) because he is a black man, but it sure is encouraging to see history unfold. The amount of anguish that comes with [...]
In January of 1964, President Johnson declared "unconditional war on poverty in America." In response, the Census Bureau created a methodology for establishing an "official poverty line," determined the number of people whose incomes fell below the line, and calculated the poverty rate. The formula for determining poverty was based on the assumption that food costs consume one-third of a family's after-tax income -- an assumption that is still used today, though food now constitutes [...]
As we pass the half-way point of our Jesus for President tour, we remember Jesus' admonition that we be "as wise as serpents and as innocent as doves." There is a lot of momentum around our little campaign of political misfits - from some of the mainstream media and from the dozen cities where we've had thousands of folks come together to plot goodness. And with the [...]
As a pro-life Democrat, and a member of the party's platform committee I will be pressing for the inclusion of an abortion reduction plank in this year's platform. Kristen Day, executive director of Democrats for Life, recently unveiled the organization's "95-10 Initiative," which she believes could reduce abortions by 95 percent over the next 10 years. While I am not that optimistic I do believe that abortions could be reduced significantly if we would address the economic [...]
Soccer moms, NASCAR dads, and now holy hipsters have been touted by political pundits and the mainstream media as the group du jour that political candidates must court in order to win the coveted presidential prize. Using select books and blogs, they conclude that these missional millennials have abandoned the political party of their parents and will be casting their ballots for Obama [...]
In the wake of Sen. Obama's proposals on faith-based initiatives, I listened to political pundits characterize this as simply another shift by Obama toward the political "center." All this knee-jerk analysis totally misses the point.
I've followed the development of this idea for years. In September 2000 I was at a breakfast for religious leaders at the White House when President Clinton [...]
The Evangelical Council for Financial Accountability (ECFA.org) was launched in 1979, in response to growing concern "over an increase of [sic] questionable fund-raising practices in the nonprofit sector." As their Web site explains, Sen. Mark Hatfield challenged "a group of key Christian leaders" to begin policing their own mission agencies as a kind of "Christian Better Business Bureau."
Perhaps 30 years later, evangelicals, because of "an increase in [...]