by John Hawkins | May 18, 2009 11:15 am
There is a deep disconnect between the religious beliefs of most black Americans and how they vote. From a mid-2008 article in Newsweek,
The more religiously active an American is, the more likely he is to vote Republican–unless he’s black. That fact emerged in the second part of a Pew Forum study on the landscape of religious life in the United States, released this June.
…Despite the country’s religious multiformity, however, black Americans are the most consistently religious–and religiously active–ethnic group in the country. More than 90 percent of black Americans surveyed reported having a religious affiliation, and more than six in 10 said they were members of historically black Protestant churches. Moreover, black Protestants are among the most religiously involved Americans–85 percent say religion is very important in their lives, and more than half say they attend worship services at least once a week.
In other words, the average devout black Christian in America goes to church every Sunday, and then on an election Tuesday, votes for a party that is pro-abortion, pro-gay marriage, and that is in practice, vehemently anti-Christian on just about every issue that matters.
This tremendous fault line upon which the relationship between black Americans and the Democratic Party rests is being revealed in the battle over gay marriage in DC,
Finally, at long last, that incredible contradiction has finally been brought out in the open in DC,
Ralph Chittams has been turned out of restaurants, denied jobs and called unprintable names because he is black. He says he understands discrimination.
So forgive him if he doesn’t believe that denying a marriage license to a gay couple is morally equivalent to denying fellow black men the right to sit at a lunch counter.
“Marriage is a religious act,” said Chittams, 48, a Baptist minister and longtime resident of the Hillcrest neighborhood. “From the dawn of time, it’s been between a man and a woman.”
Words like that offend Richard Rosendall of the Gay and Lesbian Activists Alliance of Washington, D.C.
“Marriage equality benefits everyone,” he said. “The fact is that our opponents have no monopoly on faith or on holy scripture.”
Nowhere else in the U.S. does the debate over gay marriage take on quite the shape that it does in the District of Columbia. The city is one of the most liberal jurisdictions in the country. Its voters chose Barack Obama nearly by a ratio of 95-to-5.
If you recognize that God is telling you to go in one direction and the Democratic Party is demanding that you go in another, which way are you going to go in the end?
PS: Personally, I think Republicans should do everything possible to help the people fighting the good fight against gay marriage in DC. It’s on issues like gay marriage, where our values match up, that we can start to make inroads with open minded black Democrats.
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