Post-Election Reflections

Posted on November 14, 2012 by Dr. Jerry Rankin in Rankin Connecting

Though personally disappointed in the outcome, I join others in being glad it is over. The campaign was definitely over the top this year, dominating our attention for far too long. Better results could have been achieved if the $6 billion spent on negative and distorted advertising had been devoted to helping storm victims or reducing the federal debt. We are hearing analyses of the implications of the election from every direction, but the reality is we now have to live with the results.

That reality is not just a stale-mated congress and a socialist-minded president infringing on religious freedoms and saddling subsequent generations with debilitating debt. It is a polarized electorate like we have never known before. Our shattered optimism was based on a presumption that the majority of Americans respected our Judeo-Christian heritage, basic moral values of marriage and family and were committed to sound fiscal policies. But such is not the case!

Growing pluralism has brought a scope of diversity that is difficult to understand and uncomfortable to live with. We like our homogeneous enclaves in the Bible belt and confidence our destiny was secure in spite of a growing multi-cultural society. The land of freedom and opportunity has been a magnet that has reshaped our ethnic map. The benign witness of our churches has left a country now dominated by churchless citizens and humanistic values.

The challenge we face in the immediate future is not so much the direction of public policy and the radical views of our president, but how do we relate to the new majority of fellow Americans. Public officials winning the election is one thing, but we live with an electorate that has chosen to endorse gay marriage, is committed to abortion on demand and see nothing wrong with legalized drug use.

We live in a country that is apparently unconcerned about fiscal responsibility; and why should they demand a sound approach to budgeting by our government when most families have no compunction about living beyond their means. Financial institutions readily dispense credit to enable anyone to presume a desired lifestyle without realizing it brings ultimate bondage to indebtedness and robs us of freedom to enjoy the American dream. We have an electorate that demands entitlements of subsidies, food stamps and health care without any way for them to be paid.

I’m not in disagreement with the positions of conservatives engaging the culture wars but is this the way to influence the growing majority of a better, saner way? Christians should not retreat from being considered narrow and archaic, but do we have to sustain a reputation of being angry, judgmental and divisive. People are offended that we want to impose our values on all of society. Instead of fighting a losing battle is there not a “more excellent way?”

What if the liberal left witnessed an explosion of love and grace? What if they observed Christian conservatives expressing sensitivity to their needs even though not necessarily agreeing to the desired solution? We should not expect a nation bred on materialistic expectations, educated in agnostic institutions, raised in broken families and victimized by a failing economy to be any different. Instead of condemning and attacking, we might consider an attitude and lifestyle that just might attract them to Jesus Christ. After all, were it not for Him would we be any different?

One Comment on “Post-Election Reflections”

  1. Betty Jo Hudson

    Very well said indeed. Thank you.

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