None of the Above

Mark Noll, America’s leading evangelical historian, explains why he won’t be voting for Kerry – or Bush.

Pagan Sox What is the faith of the Red Sox faithful? Though Mark Sappenfield of The Christian Science Monitor speaks with Cornell University V.P. Isaak Kramnick about the effects of the Puritan legacy on New Englanders who believe “that bad can triumph over good,” the remainder of his article suggests older belief systems than those usually associated with the cold, Calvinist city: faith in the renewal of warmth and life after dark winter where the annual return of spring upholds “an eternal cycle of optimism.” Read (without predictions): there’s always next year.
Daschle Rationale
Tom Daschle finds a reason to support the separation of church and state: Moonies!
“Vote Reality”
In a speech sponsored by MoveOn.org, Al Gore accuses Bush of masking “‘the most radical effort in American history to take what rightfully belongs to the American people and give as much as possible to the already wealthy and privileged,’” in “‘the symbolism and body language of religion,’” reports Michael Janofsky of The New York Times. Gore accused the president of misleading true believers with “‘phony moral authority,’” and rooted his “troubling inflexibility” in political ideology rather than faith. Drawing on Ron Suskind’s recent Times article, the former V.P. then urged the audience to support Kerry: “‘a proud member of the reality-based community.’” Republican operatives dismissed Gore’s speech as evidence of a “pre-9/11 worldview.”
Faith-based Land Redistribution
Dr. Pieter Bingle, minister of the Dutch Reformed Church in Cape Town (historically an Afrikaner church) announced to the South African parliament that his church felt it had a calling to give prophetic witness regarding land reforms. In the church’s submission, Bingle cited Psalms 24:1 to say that all land belongs to God; he said that past injustice should be redressed and restituted, but that the redistribution of land to victims of apartheid should start with state-owned farms rather than private land; and he added his hope that land reform not be politicized as it has been in Zimbabwe.
Special Forces Jesus
19 October 2004
“Did you see Special Forces op Jesus in his camo toga out murdering civilians in the Roman Green Zone? If He had done that, He would not have been the Son of God. He would have been just one more faceless ‘Bring it on!’ demagogue in an endless historical parade of bullies, pimps and thugs. And we today would be worshiping some pantheon of gangster punks instead of Him.” A somewhat perplexing endorsement for the Kerry ticket from Jane Stillwater, writing in Al-Jazeerah. Stillwater also calls for a massive mission on the “red states” to help Bush supporters out of their “heathen darkness, believing un-holy lies and practicing baby-killing.”
Not Just Sports

“‘The church is not just about sex scandals and papal decrees.’” It’s also, in part, about soccer. The AP reports that Vatican Radio now features a weekly show with a different cardinal each week commenting on the state of Italian soccer. The cardinals have caught media attention for their advice to coaches and managers on issues concerning how players are selected for the national team and the presence of too many foreign players in the country’s largest clubs. National coach, Marcello Lippi, told the AP, “‘I understand that Italy is a Catholic country, but now we’ve got cardinals talking out? I’m having a hard time understanding this.’”