Hypocrisy In The 14th

Monday, March 12, 2018

“Woe unto thee if after all thy profession thou shouldst be found under the power of ignorance, lost in formality, drowned in earthly-mindedness, envenomed with malice, exalted in an opinion of thine own righteousness, leavened with hypocrisy and carnal ends in God's service.” - Joseph Alleine 

A special election is taking place in the 14th District for the Tennessee State Senate. It is not a complicated election. The balance of the State Senate is not in play. There are two candidates easily distinguished from each other by their differing policy positions. Three choices are available to the voter: conservative, liberal, or abstention. Only a scandal could bring such an election to newspaper front pages outside of the 14th District, and lo, it appears that we have one. Someone doesn’t believe in God.   

I assume that a significant number of voters might consider a candidate not believing in God as reason enough to prevent their support. And while I do not agree with that position on its face, I am not here to change those minds. This is not meant to be a letter in support of Gayle Jordan. I know very little about her, and I wouldn’t encourage any of my fellow Tennesseans to alter their vote on my account. This is simply a letter meant to address the naked hypocrites turning a woman’s religious beliefs into a cudgel. 

According to the Pew Research Center, 81 percent of white Evangelical, 60 percent of white Catholic, 58 percent of all Protestants, and 61 percent of all Mormon votes went to a man who had an affair with a porn star before his youngest son could even crawl. His lawyer admits to paying that porn star $130,000 to keep her mouth shut. How many of you mourn for the sanctity of marriage, but voted for a man with five children from three women?

Tennessee isn’t the only vote set for Tuesday. There is another special election happening at the same time in Pennsylvania. That one is occurring because Republican Congressman Tim Murphy had an affair. Congressman Murphy was what would be called a “family values” conservative. He had the endorsement of LifePAC, the Family Research Council, and was even a member of the House Pro-Life Caucus. Text messages between Mr. Murphy and the woman he had an affair with show that Mr. Murphy had conceived a child with her, and that Mr. Murphy encouraged an abortion. When the woman complained to Mr. Murphy about the hypocrisy regarding his public pro-life stance, Mr. Murphy replied, “I get what you say about my March for life messages. I've never written them. Staff does them. I read them and winced.” 

Christianity doesn’t have a monopoly on morality. Suggesting that it does is not only insulting, but contrary to the evidence. Perhaps if Christians spent more time trying to post the Beatitudes in courthouses rather than the Ten Commandments I would be less obliged to make this point. I was always taught to judge people by the content of their character, rather than by their race or creed. It seems to me that Gayle Jordan deserves that kind of consideration.  

Nolan Crenshaw

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