As a follow-up to my post, Had Enough Yet?, regarding the latest betrayal of pro-lifers by the Republican Party, I wanted to talk through this a little more. I am still seeing some pretty serious backlash across social media and it is refreshing in spite of the infuriating actions of the Republican majority.
Christians are in an abusive relationship with the Republican party, a relationship where the GOP takes and takes and heaps abuse on us and we still keep coming back convinced that they actually like us when in fact I think a lot of establishment Republicans either sneer at us behind our backs or find us repulsive chumps that are tolerated for our votes. I am not alone in that opinion.
The redundantly named Eric Erickson writing for RedState opines in his elegantly titled essay, The Pro-Life Movement Must Stop BeingWhores of the Republican Party, that pro-lifers are to the Republican party what black voters are to the Democrats, a reliable voting block that has nowhere else to go:
In short, the pro-life movement must stop being the whores of the GOP. The Republican Leadership knows the pro-life movement is in its pocket. They have nowhere else to go. They have no one else to vote for. As much as Republicans look at black voters and tut-tut that they are being taken advantage of by a Democratic Party that knows black voters will not go anywhere, the Republicans are doing precisely the same to pro-life voters.
I actually think the better comparison is that Christians are to the Republican party what working class union folks are to Democrats, a reliable voting block that shows up to vote and contribute funds but gets nothing in return. I was just talking to my eldest son about this today. Contemporary Democrats are mostly concerned with taking money away from people who work to bribe those that don't and pandering to sexual deviants and illegal immigrants even though that not only does nothing to help working class Americans, it often is at odds with their economic self-interest and their own personal values. Likewise Christians and other pro-life religious groups (mormons, Catholics, etc.) vote overwhelmingly for the GOP but in return get lip-service about abortion and policies that mostly are aimed at the richest Americans (many of whom are ironically Democrats) or otherwise are at odds with Christian principles.
What!? I have to be joking, right?! Of course Republican policies are Christian principles! Like for example:
- Pre-emptive wars of aggression! Ok maybe that is not a good example.
- Lower taxes! While that is a good social policy it isn't really an issue that Christ spoke about. He told us to render unto Caesar, not to lobby Caesar for tax breaks.
- Insistence on working for a living, see 2 Thessalonians 3:10-12! Well in context that is speaking about people in the church and is not speaking to broader social policy (which I agree is a dehumanizing policy and bad for the economy and for those who receive the aid). Ironically we are incredibly intolerant of the welfare recipient that may or may not be part of the church but we not only tolerate but celebrate clergy in our midst who take money from the church gathered from the work of others.
You get my point.
Eric goes on to say, and I hope actual conservatives are listening, that:
We will remain conservative in the primary, but now we must say we will generally be Republican in the general. There must come a time, however, when we are willing to blow up a Republican in a general election and make an example of them for betraying our first principles.
That time is now.
This site must now commit itself to defeating Republicans in general elections, even if it means a Democrat will get elected, should those Republicans betray the first principles of our party. Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-NC) must be first on that list. If she is not beaten in a primary, the fight must continue in the general election.
Pro-life voters must do the same. Our shared agenda will never advance if they keep serving as agents of the GOP. National Right to Life, among others, must stop working so hard to give seals of approval to the GOP and must start fighting the GOP. The pro-life cause must stop being a job protection racket for otherwise failed political consultants and must be a child protection effort willing to fight those failed political consultants and the politicians they back.
It is clear the GOP thinks the pro-life cause can be taken for granted and its voters will come home every election because of the Supreme Court, the
policy, etc. But it must be a two way street. The pro-life cause must stop
acting like the Republican Party’s whore and must, instead, show New Testament
grace to the world and Old Testament vengeance to politicians.
If you pay attention to politics and especially pro-life politics, that statement is staggering.
I am less than convinced that trying to bludgeon the GOP into obedience or forming a third-party will get the job done. The coercive power of the state is universally corruptive to the Kingdom. What we really need to do is completely divorce the church from all forms of statism, refusing to be patsies for any secular political movement and instead taking the way of the cross as our marching orders, trading in the sword of the state and the ballot box in return for the towel and the basin of servant-hood and humility. Nevertheless it is always encouraging to see an abuse victim seeing he light and leaving their abuser.