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Citizen Voices

I mix religion and politics every day when I thank God that the United States has a two-term limit for the office of President.

Aside from that secret vice, I adhere to the precepts stated in the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, so I was filled with trepidation last Saturday when I sat down to listen to the so-called "debate" between Senator Obama and Senator McCain hosted by Pastor Rick Warren at his Saddleback Church in Orange County.

Though I had heard of Rick Warren's books, I was unaware of the extent of his church's connections with the media, nor was I aware of his discipleship to management guru Peter Drucker .  No matter how warm and fuzzy his religious message might be, this was truly a man with an agenda.

It seems Pastor Rick has a passel of supporters, (his books sold over 25 million copies) as well as legions of detractors. Without a doubt, many of his adversaries appear to be other pastors from even more conservative religious right persuasions, so I guess jealousy has a hand in some of the negative tracts I encountered.

But still I had to ask...how had Pastor Rick done it.... who gave him the go ahead to coerce these two candidates into spilling their guts about their personal religious convictions?  This encounter is unprecedented in American politics and it does not bode well for the preservation of the separation between church and state. 

Carol Lemei from Coronado, CA
August 28, 2008 at 05:10 AM
Thank you for pointing out the danger of the Rick Warren "faith debate" between Obama and McCain. I was totally horrified, and sickened that the candidates for President of the United States have been reduced to such pandering. I am stunned that there has not been more rage voiced about this intrusion of religion into our election process. We have serious problems, and our candidates need to be answering serious questions about how they will address our economic woes, the need for health care on the part of too many Americans, climate change and a coherent energy policy -- as well as how they will address our country's eroded standing in the family of nations. Mr. Obama's and Mr. McCains religious views are their own private business.

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