Obama: The Senatorial Preacher?
By Jared Wright
February 13, 2008
There’s been a political wave moving through the country and now that Super Tuesday is over it looks like it’s about to come ashore. A snippet of it was presented to me the other morning as the idea that people see Obama almost like a senatorial preacher, declaring the gospel of political hope and governing prosperity. Most of his speeches feel less like political meandering and more like pastoral reconciliation. This gleaming image of a political redeemer is only reinforced by Obama’s own claim to faith, hope and change in an unashamedly religious context. He’s quite quick to point out his personal religious beliefs and how they are intertwined with his political leanings.
If you didn’t know anything about him, you might think he is a preacher running for Commander in Chief, but a preacher he is not although he is admittedly Christian. But this isn’t about Christians aligning to Obama like they are to Mike Huckabee, because as a whole they aren’t doing that. It’s about people who haven’t found hope and who think they can find that hope in him. His aura of faith and change has carried him so high that he seems to be above having to answer questions about current political issues. Strong Obama supporters would disagree, but they support him admittedly for his stance on the issues not only his promise of change. On the other hand, to those who are turning to him for hope, not because he is pro-choice, he carries with him an air of a pastor leading his congregation to the White House.
The general voting public has become completely fixated with his presidential demeanor and enthusiastic speeches. So much so that his following has increasingly included those who want change regardless of his voting record as the most liberal member of the senate and his far left political views. The fact is- he’s just so likable and inspiring. There are those who don’t like Hilary for her views yet they willingly support Obama despite his more liberal record, Democrats and Republicans alike. Newsweek has even called crossing Republicans entering his camp Obamacans. It’s not a far stretch to say he’s aligned himself to be perceived as the savior for our country and the one to lead us to the promise land of comprehensive healthcare, a thriving economy and…we’ll I don’t know what else- because he amazingly hasn’t focused on the issues, just that he will create change. This rhetoric of change has been abstract at best yet none the less inspiring.
The underlining current of Obama support is a subconscious attraction, not just to an idea of hope, but to the belief that it will actually be delivered by him. Undoubtedly there are countless people who crave hope, change, security and the belief that someone can bring them peace and after listening to just one of Obama’s “change” speeches one gets the feeling that he can be that person. That’s what attracts so many to Obama. From the pulpit he rains down inspiring messages to masses of people who are in search for something more out of life. It’s so interesting how people have latched on to him, not in a political supportive manner, but in a pastoral leader way. The question that must be asked is- how is he, in the office of the presidency, going to act for the best of our country? Is the American public willing to appoint an inspirational speaker to the highest position in our country-- based on the current issues or a warm feeling they get when hearing him speak? It’s easy to get swept up with the expectation and promise of a better future, but I want to know what that better future is going to look like.
When it comes down to it, I don’t want a motivation speaker in the White House; I want a Commander in Chief. I want, based on a strong record on significant issues, a president who can perform based on a wealth of experience regardless if he is the best orator or if he looks the most presidential. For those who agree with Obama on all his positions, by all means support your candidate and vote on. But to those who hear a message of hope and prosperity and don’t care to look beyond mere inspiration, be careful for what you ask for; you just might get it.