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A scene from the documentary <i>The New Black</i>
Promised Land Film
A scene from the documentary The New Black

Races united in faith and politics

Race Issues

When I briefly lived in California, I remember driving past people holding up pro-Proposition 8 signs. Prop 8 was a voter-approved constitutional amendment that affirmed marriage as a union between one man and one woman. (A federal court later ruled it unconstitutional.) I rolled down the window and gave them a thumbs-up.

Considering that I’m black and that 90 percent of black voters choose the party that opposes laws to protect marriage, the campaigners might have been surprised by my support. But the 2008 election results would clear things up. Although blacks in California voted overwhelmingly for Barack Obama, 70 percent voted “yes” on Prop 8. Pew reported that black Americans are more religious than other groups. So why did they vote for Prop 8 and then send to office the party that opposed it?

I’m neither an authority on black people nor their spokesman, but I can tell you that some consider it against their interests to vote for conservatives. Generally, blacks who vote for liberals tend to see Big Government as a positive thing. Supporters of an ever-encroaching central government are willing to trade some of their freedom and privacy for a safety net.

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I used to vote for liberals, but I began to examine what I believed and why and figured out I was voting for the wrong people. Although one doesn’t have to vote for conservatives to be a Christian, I’ve found conservative values to be more in line with biblical principles. I can’t separate faith from politics. Some Christians can.

Black and white evangelicals agree when it comes to redefining marriage. Taxpayer-funded PBS apparently finds this agreement odd. It’s airing a documentary called The New Black, which “examines homophobia in the black community’s institutional pillar—the black church—while exploring ways this phenomenon may have been exploited by political conservatives.”

“Homophobia”? How about the conviction that what God calls sin and an abomination is indeed a sin and an abomination? Political conservatives (read: white, heterosexual Christians) aren’t exploiting “the black church” on the homosexuality issue. They’re reaching out to their spiritual brothers and sisters in an ungodly culture to pursue the cause of Christ in a fallen world. I hope that one day soon more black Christians change their voting patterns.

The only exploitation going on is the homosexual lobby co-opting the 1960s-era civil rights movement to make blacks feel ashamed for opposing deviant behavior. Back in the day, black Americans no longer wanted to be treated as second-class citizens in the country of their birth. The movement morphed into a monstrous civil rights industry, where groups hustle for special treatment and search for “racism,” “sexism,” or “homophobia” under rocks.

Christians should avoid the hustle. The apostle Paul tells us, “Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect” (Romans 12:2, ESV). In a fallen world, we elect fallen leaders, but American Christians of all races should be joined, not divided, on such important issues.

La Shawn Barber
La Shawn Barber

La Shawn writes about culture, faith, and politics. Her work has appeared in the Christian Research Journal, Christianity Today, the Washington Examiner, and other publications

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