An open letter to a political hopeful

Dear Candidate,

I notice that you often reference your faith when speaking of the reasons you should be elected to public office.

I assume that you do not mean faith in science, since science is mostly about certainty and probability, not faith and desire. When you describe your campaign as being “faith-based”, I assume you mean that you have faith that there is an all-powerful Big Guy Who Floats in the Sky, who’s invisible but who tells you how I should be living my life.

Do I understand that correctly? I may’ve overlooked some subtleties peculiar to you, and if so I apologize.

We all have the inalienable right to believe in whatever invisible beings we wish. So I say: go for it. But when people who want political power believe in all-powerful Big Guys Who Float in the Sky, I worry. What’re they going to think their Big Guy is telling them to do? How will these unpredictable instructions affect me as a constituent?

History is replete with examples of silliness and chaos and horror unleashed when good people believe their Big Guy compels certain actions.

  • There’s a Big Guy Who Floats in the Sky who tells us that men can magically transform bread into actual human flesh … but women don’t have the magic.
  • There’s a Big Guy Who Floats in the Sky who tells us that gay people should have their heads chopped off with swords at public ceremonies.
  • There’s a Big Guy Who Floats in the Sky who tells us that women must be veiled, their genitals maimed by crude surgery, and must be killed by their brothers if they are the victims of rape.
  • There’s a Big Guy Who Floats in the Sky who tells us that women must never touch male religious people, and that women must not enter sacred places while they are menstruating.
  • There’s a Big Guy Who Floats in the Sky who tells us it’s okay to elect to the presidency a guy who laughingly bragged about sexually assaulting women.
  • There’s a Big Guy Who Floats in the Sky who tells us that wearing my cotton-polyester teeshirt is a sin.

I could go on, but I think you get the message.

Elected officials are immersed in crowds of people, all telling them what to do. Their staff, their donors, constituents, lobbyists, colleagues. Everyone has an agenda as they try to coach or manipulate the elected official to say or not say something, to change their position, to cast a vote this way or that. Sometimes the agendas are hidden, but at least the advice-givers are visible to all of us.

Don’t get me wrong: I know we’ve had some great leaders with good hearts who accept instruction from their own Big Guy. And there are terrible leaders who are secular. When there’s an electoral competition between two such extremes, my support always goes to the person with heart.

Most of the time, though, when people in politics promise to follow the instructions of their own version of the Big Guy,  my respect diminishes as I question their common sense and their intellect. Public officials with an all-powerful, invisible advisor who floats in the sky?  That’s scary for all of us.

Please share with your friends!

2 thoughts on “An open letter to a political hopeful”

  1. You know I love you but you have to understand that “My Big Guy in the Sky” tells me that I should love and except everyone, my job is not to judge, my job is to live in faith and hope that I can bring better things to this world. My Big Guy doesn’t separate women who have their menstrual cycle, nor does he feel that members of the LGBT community should have body parts removed or believe that they are lesser people. I know there are people in the world who use stories from the Bible to do horrific things but I don’t believe that the majority of faith following people believe the items you listed above. I know you follow heart and my heart was telling me I needed to share My Big Guy with you.

  2. Liz, I too always thought organized religions did more good than evil. Then Trump got elected with huge support from, especially, evangelical Christians. I’ve had to reconsider. There would need to be about a billion people as dear as you to begin to balance-out the evils brought upon the Earth and humanity by this choice. I am grateful for you, and I’d clone you if I could. And I surely would not change a molecule of you because I love you as you are. But there just aren’t enough of you.

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