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James Dobson on Social Justice

     Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a Lutheran pastor and theologian, stood against tahe Nazi regime and its oppression of the Jews, for which he paid with his life. ... Through the ages, godly leaders have confronted wicked regimes and their policies. Since pastors and laymen are now eing told to remain in the safety of their churches, I wonder what Cal (Thomas) and Ed (Dobson) would say about the Christian martyrs, from John the Baptist to lSir Thomas More, who opposed those in positions of power. I would like to hear them attempt to make a consistent argument against Martin Luther King and his effort to end racial segregation in the 1960s. Would they consider his a wrongheaded attempt to 'usher in righteousness on Air Force One' (one of Cal's favorite laugh lines)? King's followers marched idrectly from the church and into the street, where powerful fire hoses knocked them off their feet. One of those marches was led by a pastor. In fact, during this time period, King was frequently on the phone with Attorney General Robert Kennedy in the Justice Department, and growing federal pressure helped break the back of the racist resistance to integration. In that sense, righteousness was indeed 'ushered in on Air Force One.' If it is wrong for today's Christians and their churches to stand against laws that are unjust and evil, then it must have been wrong for the people in Birmingham to oppose an unjust system while singing 'We Shall Overcome.' 
     What about the great debate over slavery some 140 years ago? ... Who would dare criticize those courageous pastors today, who were undoubtedly maligned at the time, for speaking out against the Confederacy? ...
     Conservative Christians can and must let their voices be heard in the public square. The political system does not belong exclusively to those with whom we disagreee, and we should not yield them a single victory without defending what we believe. This is the way democracy works. It is a representative form of government that should involve every citizen."

James Dobson is president of Focus on the Family. His article is one in Christianity Today (9/6/99, p. 56-58) that responded to the book Blinded by Might: Can the Religious Right Save America? by Cal Thomas and Ed Dobson (no relation). 

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