By Dr. Ed Hollilday/The Rev. James Hull
Point: Ed Holliday
The late evangelical leader, Chuck Colson, who was imprisoned for his role in the Watergate scandal co-authored a book entitled “How Now Shall We Live?” Colson’s book spoke to how Christians should live in this dark world by reflecting the light of Christ.
That is why I ask the question: How do citizens determine who to vote for in the upcoming elections?
President Obama is challenged by Mitt Romney. Sen. Roger Wicker is being challenged by Democrat Al Gore (not the former vice-president) and our U.S. representative, Alan Nunnelee, R-Tupelo, faces Democrat Brad Morris. For the Mississippi Supreme Court there is no incumbent; Pontotoc’s Josiah Coleman is running against Batesville’s Flip Phillips.
James, I have three general points that I use to evaluate candidates. First, I look at their Judeo-Christian values. I want to know not just what they say but how their actions reflect their core values.
Second, I want a candidate that understands how to create an environment that produces private sector jobs; I want government that sets rules but does not pick winners and losers.
And third, I apply what I call the three E’s. These are education, experience, and Ed’s philosophy. You will have to substitute your name for Ed, but my core principles mesh with my experiences over the years to help give me political insight.
Applying my criteria I plan to vote for Romney, Wicker, Nunnelee, and Coleman – unless you can persuade me otherwise before Nov. 6.
Counterpoint: James Hull
I’m confident that you don’t mean to suggest that one’s Christianity should be measured by one’s vote, but a skeptic might think otherwise. I agree with you that the candidate’s values are important, and the voter’s values are important, and what’s of even more importance is what outcomes both value. I want candidates who believe in education, a strong economy, and doing everything they can to eliminate poverty, crime, hunger and disease.
Several years ago I remarked to a table of other pastors I was a moderate Democrat. One of my tablemates snarled, “How can you call yourself a Christian and be a Democrat?”
I responded that before I knew what a Democrat was my grandmother raised me to love people no matter how different and always remember that Jesus died loving everybody. When I became a man and went in search of a political party that best reflected how my grandmother taught me, I became a Democrat. “My faith”, I told him, “informed my politics. My politics didn’t inform my faith.”
So, I can’t help but notice that (1) you began your commentary invoking your Christianity and (2) you ended your commentary pushing three avowed Republicans and one non-partisan Republican judicial candidate.
I can assure you, Doc., the Democrats love God just as much as those four do.
Dr. Ed Holliday is a Tupelo dentist who has written two successful books. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. James Hull is an award-wining journalist and a political consultant. You may contact him at email@example.com.