The following opinion piece by Lauren Grindstaff Mckinnon was posted on Austin Petersen’s Facebook page today:
I have had many people ask who I am voting for this year and my answer often raises questions among my Christian friends. So here it is:
Why I, as a Christian, will vote for an atheist/agnostic this election:
I am voting for a man who is not without principle, has a strong moral compass, who has a heart for our country and a passion for our constitution.
He may not share the same religious beliefs as I do but he shares the same core values as I, and many Christians, do. He understands and respects that the constitution was written by many (not all) men who shared my faith and understands that its tenets are, in many ways, based on those core Christian values. But he also understands that this is a country founded on freedom, acceptance, love and equality for ALL, not just the straight, white, middle-class Christians. That everyone, of every race, creed, color, socio-economic status and religion are to be equal. We as Americans are not to discriminate against each other for our differences, but rather embrace them, learn from them, and ultimately find common ground.
I support Austin Petersen as my candidate for president because as a Christian, I share these beliefs. He doesn’t have to belong to a church or religion to prove to me that he is the best candidate for president.
Over the years I have witnessed candidates who claim to be Christian, who are dishonest, career “politicians” and poor examples of what a Christian should be.
As a Christian, it is my duty to love. Simply; love. Not to beat people over the head with religious dogma. That is not what Jesus did. He was an example of pure love and THAT is how he gained the followers and believers that he did. It was never to be some bloody crusade or religious dictatorship. As Christians, the most authentic and effective way to evangelize is to simply be an example of Christ like love and the lifestyle which our faith allows us to live. It is not our job to force anyone to do or say or believe the things we do. We are to govern ourselves by our faith and what we believe, but we are never commanded to judge, crucify, vilify or condemn those who believe differently than us. All we can do is plant the seed by being encouraging examples.
This is why I, a Christian woman, will be voting for an atheist/agnostic this year. Because he leads by an example of love and equality, is honest, has integrity and genuinely wants the best for our country and its people.