Thursday, October 11, 2012

On Politics, Part I, The Reality Of Politics

This series of posts is in response to Facebook and personal discussions I've seen and have been involved in.  In short, I hear things that simply do not make any sense.  Please note that I write this, not from a perspective of having all the answers but rather that the answers are more simple than they may seem once the fog of emotion clears and the clarity of reality emerges.

In a discussion once a friend told me the reason that he left his previous church was because it was too political. (Political as in church politics.) Now it might well have been to political, but when I hear something like this I generally assume there is more to it than I'm getting, or even than the person telling me is aware of.

The truth is that politics are very much a part of life.  We all engage in them daily though we do so unaware.   When you and a friend go out to dinner you both discuss and agree on a place and a time to go.  There is give and take on both sides because it is your goal is to have dinner together.  You can't, then, very well go to different places or at different times. You have a common goal.  This is politics in its simplest form.  Sure, it's easy because you both desire the other's company.  But no matter if it is the politics of a complex society like this upcoming election or deciding on dinner, the process is the same.

Yes, it is the same, but it's not always warm and friendly or agreeable; and as such not always easy.  Suppose you were handcuffed to your friend... Who am I kidding. If he was your friend when you were handcuffed, he wouldn't be for long. We all know that.   This would bring about drastic changes.  Still, one thing in the end would be true: where the one went the other would go also. 

This is one reason I am leery of the "I don't like either candidate" response to a question.  It is not like the outcome is not going to impact the person that says this.  They're going with the majority like it or not.  Their choices are clear, even if neither choice is good.

Next time I will discuss a legitimate "I don't like either candidate" position.   


Stan said...

Not detracting from anything you've said thus far, but ...

... in my experience most often when a person says that their church is "too political", it isn't about governmental politics. It's about church politics. Are they running it biblically or as a business? Are they tending to the Word or tending to the preferences of the most generous donors? Is it about spiritual growth or personal power? Yes, still politics by your simplified definition, but not what we typically think of when the term is used. (And no way to run a church.)

Dan said...

I see the misunderstanding. I added a parenthetical statement to clear that up.

Timmy Jimmy said...

The "I don't like either candidate" to me is just a copout to facing the issues. We are never given a perfect candidate, thankfully, for if we were, we would end up worshipping that candidate. But to discount both of them, especially when that person's policies do and will affect you is not being responsible.