Wednesday, June 25, 2008

James Dobson vs. Barack Obama

As has been widely reported, Dr. James Dobson on his June 24 Focus on the Family radio broadcast criticized Sen. Barack Obama's biblical interpretation. Dobson based his criticisms on a speech delivered by Obama on June 28, 2006 at Call to Renewal's Building a Covenant for a New America Conference.

When it comes to expressing support for a particular candidate, I am a Baptist minister to a fault. I refuse to endorse or in any way publicly support a particular candidate. I do express my convictions by voting and I do reserve the right to preach the Good News to the best of my ability and if such preaching on any particular occasion makes me sound like a Democrat or a Republican or a Libertarian or a Green, then so be it. But I won't endorse any candidate.

I say all that to say that this post should not be regarded as an endorsement. I just believe that the exchange between Obama and Dobson raises some important issues.

I am also concerned that we too often accept the media's framing of someone's remarks rather than listening to or reading those remarks for ourselves. In these days when someone's public words are readily available on the internet, there's no reason not to go to the source for ourselves.

So, as a public service, I offer the following links.

First, you can go here to listen to Dobson's remarks about Obama's speech.

Second, you can go here to read the full text of Obama's remarks.

Then you can make up your own mind, which I strongly encourage you to do.


Anonymous said...

I commend you for putting these links up and to bringing up the issue. It is very important that people not take other people's word or interpretation on an event as they can be colored and misconstrued to represent any opinion.

Interestingly enough, the same can be said for the church and it's representatives.

Jerry Jordan said...

is the church obama refers to on 95th street the one where rev wright is pastor?

Mike Ruffin said...


Indeed. I guess that even we read or hear someone's words for ourselves we still interpret them through our own filters. Still, that's better than just accepting someone else's spin on them.


Yes. At least, that's where he was pastor; he's retired now.