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Web Letter

As an admirer of Jesus, and a believer in the change Obama promises, I am disappointed and saddened by the choice of Rick Warren to deliver the inaugeral invocation. There are so many more authentic representatives of the teachings of Jesus Christ. Rick Warren and his ilk inspire millions to pray: "Jesus, save us--from your followers."

Maureen Carlson

La Conner, WA

Dec 17 2008 - 9:51pm

Web Letter

The tone of Ms. Posner's article indicates to me that you know little about Rick Warren and that you are writing about him from the left edge of the political spectrum. A more balanced article would also indicate to me that you had "done your homework" regarding Mr. Warren while still maintaining your political views.

I urge you to investigate Mr. Warren, his theological base and his organization. I predict that you will find a realistic, down-to-earth, godly man who is making the world a better place than how he found it. You will find no political scandal, no hypocrisy, no Elmer Gantry.

Your article is based upon the political premise that President-elect Obama chose Warren simply to curry favor with a segment of the political right wing. Realistically, there may be some merit to that view. But a Christian President-elect choosing a Christian minister to offer a blessing at the inauguration might well be based upon a sincere effort to seek divine providence and to spread the word of Christ to an increasingly godless country (and world). When a Jew is elected president, and that time is overdue, one would expect him or her to ask a noted rabbi to invoke a blessing upon our leaders and our nation.

To my mind Rick Warren being asked to participate in the inauguration is more theologically based than politically motivated. Just as it would be in the future when a Jew and perhaps then a Middle Easterner were to ask God's blessings from his or her theological point of view.

John Parkhurst

Rye, NH

Dec 17 2008 - 9:46pm

Web Letter

I was very interested in the story about Rick Warren and very saddened by it.

George Scott, the chaplain at Punahou School, would have been a wonderful choice. He is the chaplain at Obama's high school in Honolulu and would reinforce the idea that his upbringing was Christian; he is black; and he is a wonderful person.

George Scott would make a better statement about Obama's religion than Rick Warren, as Punahou is a UCC school. (I am not a member of the UCC, but did attend Punahou.)

Midi Cox

San Diego, CA

Dec 17 2008 - 9:27pm

Web Letter

It is great to see Obama looking to guys like Rick Warren.

Obama always has struck me as a decent guy with lots of smarts and good points.

He needs someone like Rick Warren to help him convert to authentic Christianity, as opposed to the ersatz carnie-barker gimcrack version that provides palliatives to consciences darkened by advocacy of grotesque evils like abortion.

Good choice, glad to see the pseudo-Christians getting uneasy.

The less they like Obama, the better I think he's doing.

Rick DeLano

Redondo Beach, CA

Dec 17 2008 - 9:15pm

Web Letter

Sarah Posner is quite correct to point out why Rev. Warren is unacceptable to progressives and people who believe in the US Constitution--the separation of church and state. Obama was the first politician that I supported with monetary contributions, hoping that he would be different. I am deeply disappointed.

Michael Weisberg

Gainesville, FL

Dec 17 2008 - 7:41pm

Web Letter

What's shocking to me is the continued shock at the ongoing litany of the new Obama's transgressions against the progressive world. Obama has already backed away from his promises to tax windfall profits by the energy industry and restore taxes on the wealthiest members of society. He has chosen either false "in name only" Democrats to be in his cabinet, or outright Republicans. In fact, his entire cabinet is a laundry list or thousand-word-picture of what has gone wrong with the Democratic Party over the last thirty years. He has not so much as addressed the progressive grassroots base that brought him to power since accepting the nomination; it's as if we've ceased entirely to exist on earth.

And, yes, he is genuflecting in front of the rightist evangelical base of the Republican Party, a group he is now doing more to embrace than his own power base. Obama is not just making "worrisome" signals about where he intends to go with his administration, he is sending very alarming and clear signals that he is more a President for Rick Warren or Robert Rubin or William Kristol than he is for any progressive.

For progressive media, the shock needs to end--and get through the subsequent denial--to get to the justifiably angry response that Obama deserves. He isn't just pursuing a regime of Clintonesque "triangulation," he is simply stabbing the progressive world in the back and walking away smiling.

Seymour Friendly

Seattle, WA

Dec 17 2008 - 7:13pm

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