Character, McCain’s "Inaccuracies"

A few more thoughts:

1. I have one more comment on the Christian view that having the Holy Spirit automatically makes Christians want to do good. If the Holy Spirit makes us so righteous on the inside, then why does God use external means to build character in us?

Paul says in Romans 5:3-4: “And not only that, but we also boast in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope” (NRSV).

Hebrews 12:11 has, “Now, discipline always seems painful rather than pleasant at the time, but later it yields the peaceful fruit of righteousness to those who have been trained by it.”

And James 1:2-4 affirms, “My brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of any kind, consider it nothing but joy, because you know that the testing of your faith produces endurance; and let endurance have its full effect, so that you may be mature and complete, lacking in nothing.”

Why would God send us trials to build character within us, if the Holy Spirit automatically makes us righteous, as if God flips on our light switch and we become perfect people?

2. You know, I’m getting sick of people continually saying that McCain runs inaccurate ads, as if they’re the arbiters of what’s correct. Maybe Obama is the one who is inaccurate, on some of these occasions.

A few cases in point:

a. McCain ran an ad saying Obama wants to teach sex ed to kindergartners. Obama responded that this was only to warn kids about sexual predators. And the media echo chamber applauded Obama while presenting McCain as a liar. But, as John Lott points out in Media One-Sided in Covering Palin:

“…the legislation [Obama supported] also included this: ‘Each class or course in comprehensive sex education offered in any of grades K through 12 shall include instruction on the prevention of sexually transmitted infections, including the prevention, transmission and spread of HIV.’ How can you teach how to prevent these different sexually transmitted diseases without getting into some details about sex?”

Good question, Mr. Lott!

b. Okay, McCain’s not run ads on the Illinois Born Alive Infant Protection Act, but that’s an area in which Obama claims his opponents distort his record. The Act declares all babies who have been born alive to be legal persons, meaning a doctor can’t kill them. Obama voted against it in the Illinois Senate. He says he was all for protecting newborn infants, and that another law already did so. But he was concerned that the Act would undermine Roe vs. Wade (as if that’s a bad thing). But take a look at what Amanda Carpenter documents:

Obama has repeatedly claimed he would have voted for Illinois’ version BAIPA had it included language to protect abortion rights guaranteed by Roe v. Wade, as the federal version of the bill did, which sailed through the U.S. Senate 98-0. Contrary to what Obama has said, old records from the Illinois Senate archives show Obama did vote against a BAIPA bill that included such a neutrality clause virtually identical to the federal bill.”

So much for that excuse!

And here’s why Obama said he opposed the bill. He doesn’t just think it’s superfluous. He’s against protecting infants, since he thinks that doing so burdens the woman who wants an abortion.

“Essentially, adding an additional doctor who has to be called into an emergency situation to come in and make these assessments designed simply to burden the original decision to induce labor and perform the abortion.”

See here for documentation.

McCain may not be right in every accusation he makes, but are Obama’s defenses factually correct?

About jamesbradfordpate

My name is James Pate. This blog is about my journey. I read books. I watch movies and TV shows. I go to church. I try to find meaning. And, when I can’t do that, I just talk about stuff that I find interesting. I have degrees in fields of religious studies. I have an M.Phil. in the History of Biblical Interpretation from Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, Ohio. I also have an M.A. in Hebrew Bible from Jewish Theological Seminary, an M.Div. from Harvard Divinity School, and a B.A. from DePauw University.
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