Mapping the religious divide in the healthcare debate


Ed Stoddard of Reuters:

The Pew Forum on Religion & Public Life has released a useful backgrounder on the role of faith groups in the increasingly bitter and partisan U.S. healthcare debate. You can read it here.

The report focuses on the two large faith-based coalitions that have emerged on opposite sides of the political struggle to overhaul America’s system of healthcare, which is President Barack Obama’s top domestic priority.

Faith for Health, is a broad coalition of self-described progressive groups that strongly supports Obama’s reform drive. It includes mainline and evangelical Protestants, Catholics, Muslims, Buddhists and Jews.

The Freedom Federation is a group of mostly conservative Christian organizations — a key Republican Party base — which strongly opposes what many of its activists decry as “Obamacare.” Both groups have taken to the airwaves and undertaken grassroots campaigns.

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For those who would look to Scripture for guidance and counsel on this issue, (and if a lobbying group is calling itself "Christian," one might think this would be a good place to start) I commend to you Jesus's parable in the tenth chapter of Luke's Gospel: "Who, then, is my neighbor?" You know the one.

Read it again, and meditate on its meaning as you think it might apply in this case.

I offer here an additional reading:

a man who had fallen among thieves

by e.e. cummings

a man who had fallen among thieves

lay by the roadside on his back

dressed in fifteenthrate ideas

wearing a round jeer for a hat

fate per a somewhat more than less

emancipated evening

had in return for consciousness

endowed him with a changeless grin

whereon a dozen staunch and Meal

citizens did graze at pause

then fired by hypercivic zeal

sought newer pastures or because

swaddled with a frozen brook

of pinkest vomit out of eyes

which noticed nobody he looked

as if he did not care to rise

one hand did nothing on the vest

its wideflung friend clenched weakly dirt

while the mute trouserfly confessed

a button solemnly inert.

Brushing from whom the stiffened puke

i put him all into my arms

and staggered banged with terror through

a million billion trillion stars

Doug Curlin

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