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Americas choice

Discussion in 'American Politics' started by mindlight, Jul 4, 2020.

  1. mindlight

    mindlight See in the dark Supporter

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    The next American election comes in momentous times with Plague and economic crisis as the back drop to what just might be one of Americas most important decisions yet. As an international observer of the American scene, married to an American, descended from Americans but not American, I do not have a horse in this race but it really matters who wins as this will impact the whole world and not just America. But at the end of the day this is Americas choice and I am interested to hear your reasoning about this.

    It strikes me that the major issues are the following:

    1) Covid-19: Who will best manage Americas response to this global Pandemic. Has Trumps performance disqualified him from office, would Biden do any better?

    2) Economy: Who is best placed to bring Americas economy back from the brink? This is something which also has major international implications. A depressed America cannot buy our goods either.

    3) Health care: It has never been clearer that a comprehensive and systematic approach to health care is needed in the USA. But can America provide this without bankrupting America? Who is best placed to cut costs and provide comprehensive care for all Americans?

    4) Social Mobility: America is perhaps the most unequal society on earth. But so long as there is a degree of mobility between rich and poor this matters less. But it seems in recent years this mobility has declined. The rich stay rich and the poor get poorer. Hispanics and Blacks remain poor while whites are richer. Who can best address the problem allowing for incompetent rich people to fall and meritorious and hard working poor people to rise.

    5) History: A culture is built on positives not negatives. But the cancel culture and new totalitarianism of the left appears to want to build statues of victims and tear down statues of heroes. While a review of race relations and historical slavery is perhaps overdue are the left handling this correctly? What would it do to America to have such people in charge?

    6) Judaeo- Christian values: Arguably attitudes towards the poor (4) and sick(1) & (3) are a crucial part of any Christians response to the world as is the Stewardship of the economy (2). But so also their response to the gay lobby and to extreme feminist attitudes towards the unborn and the traditional family are also a part of this. Which presidential candidate can be the greater blessing to the church in terms of selecting supreme court justices, enabling freedoms of worship and encouraging a Christian character to laws.

    7) International Reputation: This matters for America for security and trade reasons and so simply ignoring International opinion is not an option. Trump seems to get on well with Modi and Putin and has strong armed China over abusive trade practices. He is ridiculed in Europe and most people have no objectivity when it comes to him here. NATO allies are now spending more on defence because of him but do not trust America as much. Who is the best candidate to secure the advantages of a strong America in the world without incurring its costs?
     
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  2. Richard T

    Richard T Well-Known Member

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    You have most, if not all, of the right issues. Sadly, we have two poor candidates. Yes, there are a couple of strengths in each one of them but for the most part they will further the decline of America. If I had to choose, I would pick Trump because I think the Senate an the House will be run by democrats. Divided government in that case would be good.
     
  3. mindlight

    mindlight See in the dark Supporter

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    Is weak or checked leadership what America needs at a time when there are major structural issues to be dealt with and at a time of extreme crisis?
     
  4. CaspianSails

    CaspianSails Well-Known Member

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    I would agree with Richard T. The issue for Americans is a choice for a continued Republic or a minority forced moved into Socialism, rampant socialism. At this point other and important issues are going to take a back seat. A United States with Democratic control of the House, Senate and White House will result in a much weakened international posture, much worse than the present position. The focus will be entirely on remaking America into something much lesser that serves the progressive elite and furthers the corporate globalism at the expense of the Bill of Rights. We have seen as much in colleges and universities across the US where freedom of speech has been curtailed to freedom of acceptable speech which means liberal progressive conformity. If America goes down that path the world will pay a high price, not just America. We are not talking about the Swedish form of socialism but more the former USSR or even Venezuela with revocation of freedoms, denial of rights, insistence on conformity and centralized control of all business activity. As we have already see, non conformists and those who object will be cast out of society and left to whatever they may eek out without assistance. The summer of riots and looting is driven solely by political motivations to remove Trump and set in motion a drastic and quick move to the radical left. At least that is how I see it.
     
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  5. mindlight

    mindlight See in the dark Supporter

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    When Americans talk about the radical left and rampant socialism I often wonder what they mean and what they are so scared of. If indeed you mean the kind of totalitarian control. thought police and impoverishment of the old Soviet Union then you would have a case. But if you are referring to the idea of for example a National Health Service then I completely disagree. America spends twice as much on health as major European countries for NO extra benefit. Indeed American life expectancy is lower and many Americans have found themselves facing the current Pandemic without a job to pay insurance and without a systematic and comprehensive health coverage. That Americans have been slowly and quietly growing sicker and sicker over time is abundantly clear with rampant obesity and the cancers, heart issues and diabeties that come with that. So somebody who proposes a national health care system in America is not advocating Soviet oppression and impoverishment but rather more freedoms for poorer Americans. less insecurity about health and more money in your pockets at the end of the day. Why should the executives of large pharmaceutical , or health care providers rake in millions when many Americans are on the bread line. Why should they massively inflate costs in your system and be allowed to get away with that?

    Regarding the radical left on political correctness and being the mouth piece of the gay lobby and extreme feminists you may well have a point that is not the kind of people you want in charge of the country.

    But a paralysed government cannot do anything about the major issues facing the USA today
     
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  6. Goonie

    Goonie Not so Mystic Mog. Supporter

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    I do find it funny the right portraying Biden as a far left socialist:doh:. It's reminiscent of the portrayal of Lincoln as a rabid abolitionist before the civil war.
     
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  7. Tom 1

    Tom 1 Optimistic sceptic Supporter

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    As another non-American, I struggle to understand the apparent resistance among US Christians to secular government. As is plainly obvious, involvement of the church in the politics of ‘the world’ leads not to the promotion of Christian values but a corruption of them, where Jesus is represented by a grotesque coterie of bootlickers plainly more interested in their own wealth and influence than anything else. Government is government - for everyone. The government isn’t and shouldn’t be just for Christian interests, that’s what the church is for.
     
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  8. mindlight

    mindlight See in the dark Supporter

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    The founding fathers of the America that broke away from British rule were mainly Christian and wanted to preserve freedoms of worship that were massively encroached upon by Obamas administration. Some of the back lash against the Democrats by Christians can be explained in terms of that historical experience. But so also many Christians have not been immune to the lust of power and greed of those in high office and toadied to people not worthy of their support. I do think that laws make a difference and did so in the case of abortion for instance, so the selection of Christian Supreme Court justices is a good thing not a bad one. But the age old discussion of what Christians should do with secular power is the background issue. Some clearly believe that the primary responsibility is to God and that the state should have a theocratic shape, others wish to enshrine Gods respect for our freewill and concern for the common good into good governance. This tension has always existed in Christian responses. Also sometimes secular people better illustrate Gods concern for the poor , sick and elderly for instance than do Christians themselves. The question is whether the Democrats or Republicans better do that. It is Americas choice not ours at the end of the day.
     
  9. Tom 1

    Tom 1 Optimistic sceptic Supporter

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    What limitations on worship were imposed on people under Obama?
     
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  10. mindlight

    mindlight See in the dark Supporter

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    Yes and I am not sure that Marx and Lenin and Stalin (in increasing order of probability) would not have had him shot for being too right-wing. Also I doubt Corbyn and he would have been BFFs
     
  11. Hazelelponi

    Hazelelponi Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Sure..

    I think Trumps response was probably about right. To explain, the response was far too controlling for me and not controlling enough for the left so it's was probably a good balance..

    Trump. Biden had 45 years in government and the economy has been doing great (far better than the last decade) under Trump, so Trump wins the economy vote hands down.

    I think America is too large for a single payer system. I think having a safety net for those in poverty is going to be our best bet otherwisewe risk economic collapse. These bills come due eventually, and this is one we can't pay.

    America is not the most unequal in earth... she has a thriving middle class, we just need politicians in office that will foster the economy for that class, instead of selling her out.

    Trump is absolutely our best bet on this front, Biden fosters a two class society (extremely rich and poor), we need jobs for the middle class here, not an environment that outsources every good.

    I see nothing but civil war in our future if the dems ever gain power again.

    Judeo-Christian values begins at home, not in governments. Governments follow no God, and thereby no Christian can ask any government to act Christian.

    We do ask government to protect our Christian way of life that we may follow our God, and Trump is the best choice here.


    The world has long loved American money while hating Americans. I'm not in the business of paying foreign nations to "like" me, and I don't think our government can afford to.

    They are going to grumble and talk bad about us no matter what we do... better to withdraw from the whole "please please please like us" nonsense and get back to looking out for our own people.
     
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  12. Tom 1

    Tom 1 Optimistic sceptic Supporter

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    I haven’t come across anything that dates in much further back than the 3rd century or thereabouts, the NT and various early Christians writers drew a sharp dividing line between a borderless church in which issues of nationality and civic standing were dealt with differently, and the apparatus of the state.
     
  13. mindlight

    mindlight See in the dark Supporter

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    ...
     
    Last edited: Jul 5, 2020
  14. Tom 1

    Tom 1 Optimistic sceptic Supporter

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    Where do these kind of ideas come from?
     
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  15. Tom 1

    Tom 1 Optimistic sceptic Supporter

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    I can’t see anything in there that would limit anyone’s ‘freedom to worship’. I’d take that to mean something than impinges on any person’s freedom to attend church, practice their faith, things of that sort, not something that requires them having to deal with the fact that not everyone follows their religion.
     
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  16. mindlight

    mindlight See in the dark Supporter

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    If I was an American this would be a reason to vote against Trump. He acted too late and ignored the advice of his advisors. Also I believe he reopened the economy too early and before control was restored. As a result there are exponential rates of growth in many states. But maybe I am being naive about the individualism and self sufficiency of many Americans vis a vis presidential authority and also the resistance of state governors to a total lock down. In Germany we locked down and now the economy is coming back online without an explosion in the numbers of cases. I do not know if Biden would have been any better but I suspect he might have acted sooner.

    Trumps America First economics does seem to work for the American economy. Bidens approach seems more bound to the considerations of professional politicians than any understanding of business. But arguably Trumps strength here was his undoing re the Pandemic. He puts money before the lives of vulnerable people.

    I agree that how such a system could be organised and how it could be paid for are the crucial issues, Big Pharma, Lawyers and even Health Professionals seem to be in the way of genuine cost reform. But the current situation is a mess and this Pandemic has highlighted this. The massive insecurity in many Americans about health care, declining life expectancy and the quiet growth of sickness that has made so many Americans vulnerable to this Pandemic illustrate this.


    The wealth of America is controlled by a tiny elite and the Middle Class have been under pressure for many years now. Has Trump truly reversed this trend. Has social mobility increased under him. Outside of America the consensus is that the opposite is the case and only the rich have benefitted from his economic reforms

    Trump turning US into 'world champion of extreme inequality', UN envoy warns

    I agree Republicans would be better on this


    Governments can do immense harm and also good to the quality of Christian lives and freedoms. American self sufficiency and individualism is exactly what God is rebuking in the current Pandemic. But agree that Trump more likely to promote Christians to Supreme Court and more likely to protect freedom of worship

    America gains enormous advantages from its network of alliances and bases and also trading connections. Despite the feeling of being the unappreciated global policeman that is not the case in many areas. The British were there with you in most of your wars for instance. Trump has no problem putting world leaders backs up but maybe he could get more done faster if he worked with them rather than against them. If Biden simply wants to return to the costly way things were that might also be a mistake.
     
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  17. mindlight

    mindlight See in the dark Supporter

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    Obamas response, unlike 90% of presidents before him, was characterised by an understanding of the church state separation that meant the president could not behave like a Christian for fear of offending the others. But the result was bans on prayer in public schools and a degrading of the authority of the presidency in many Christians eyes.
     
  18. Tom 1

    Tom 1 Optimistic sceptic Supporter

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    I’m not sure if that’s correct - school sponsored or obligatory prayer in schools, regardless of a person’s faith or lack of, was banned in the US in the 1960s, by the Supreme Court. Private prayer at school in groups of people who want to take part in it is not banned, no bans of any sort of other activity other than that covered by the 1962 decision were introduced under the Obama administration.
     
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  19. mindlight

    mindlight See in the dark Supporter

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    The Early Christians quoted the OT enough and there is abundant advice in that about how a Christian in a secular position of power might look. Daniel, Joseph David & Solomon to name but 4. Also Pauls interactions with secular authorities are illustrative of this. Once Christians achieved a majority in the population then this became a live issue. Constantine, Charlemagne, Alfred and many Russian Tsars are examples where this marriage of secular power and faith brought immense advantages. The Fourth Crusade, or Europes religious civil wars might be taken as an example on the other side by contrast
     
  20. Athanasius377

    Athanasius377 Out of the deep I called unto thee O Lord Supporter

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    The phrase "freedom of worship" is problematic. It is the preferred phrase the Obama administration used rather than the older and more comprehensive "religious liberty". Or even better, use the first amendment's free exercise language as the exercise of religion is far more than what occurs in a building on Sunday morning (or Saturday if that's your thing). That means the right to express yourself in a manner consistent with your christian faith including how you run your business (Burwell vs Hobby Lobby stores), run your schools (Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church & School v. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, which was a unanimous 9-0 decision siding with the church) or the type of health insurance you provide for your employees (Little Sisters of the Poor vs Azar). In other words the right to act as a christian in every avenue in life not just Sunday mornings. Freedom of worship addresses none of what I wrote. At the very least I think it's fair to say the Obama years were antagonistic towards churches.
     
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