Obama’s First Day: A Religious Right Roundup

January 21, 2009


I thought it would be interesting to find out what the Religious Right has been up to on the first full day of Barack Obama’s presidency.  Recall that   in yesterday’s inaugural address President Obama pledged to restore science and gave a nod to religious minorities—most notably non-believers.  A look at some of the websites of some of the most noteworthy and powerful Religious Right organizations shows them responding with a combination of scornful defiance, willful resistance, and . . . abject obeisance? 

  •   The Christian Coalition’s blog features an entry titled "     He’s No Lincoln     " that accuses the President of signing legislation (the Freedom of Choice Act) that "will only lead to the murder of thousands more innocent black babies."
  •   The     Family Research Council’s blog     ponders whether an offhand comment the left-handed President Obama made while signing documents ("I’m a lefty—get used to it") is "a sign of things to come" from a left-leaning politician.
  •   The     American Center for Law and Justice     (or "ACLJ," a Christian conservative counterpart to the ACLU founded by Pat Robertson and headed by Religious Right attorney Jay Sekulow) features a blog posting bemoaning Obama’s first official actions, pledging to fight legislation that punishes hate crimes against homosexuals, and vowing to save America from the evil of same-sex marriage.
  •     The American Family Association     ‘s web page links to a blog entry     decrying the White House web site’s new outline of "Obama’s pro-homosexual agenda"     (an issue that I touched upon in a     previous posting     ). 
  •   The     Traditional Values Coalition     website announces Obama’s appointment of "Obamunist" nominee Leon Pannetta to head the CIA (     "the greatest gift Obama could give to Islamic terrorists around the globe"     ), and noting that artist Shepard Fairey’s     "Soviet-style" Obama "Hope" portrait     has been selected to hang in the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery museum.
  •   The website for Beverly and Tim LaHaye’s     Concerned Women for America     alleges that Washington, DC’s Doubletree Hotel held an "invitation-only," "homosexual mass orgy" on the eve of the inauguration.  (Why wasn’t I invited?  Was this event only for homosexuals inside the Beltway?)
  •   The     Focus on the Family website     links to a     blog by Candice Watters     , wife of FOF Director for Young Adults Steve Watters.  Mrs. Watters explains that although she did not vote for President Obama, she will celebrate his inauguration and obey his will.  She will do so not only "because we live in the greatest country on earth," but more importantly because this is what God wants her to do.  As she explains:     "Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. . . . He is God’s servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience."  

This last entry struck me as particularly chilling. As President Obama works to pass legislation that the Religious Right finds intolerable, it will be interesting to see how far Watters and her ilk are willing to take their peculiar brand of Obamamania.