By Lonnie Wilkey
Editor, Baptist and Reflector
We have all heard the accusation. Christians are just a bunch of hypocrites. They preach one thing, but live the exact opposite.
Sadly, there are Christians who do just that. But there are also Christians who try the best they can to match their words with their actions.
Christians, however, do not have the market on hypocrisy.
For those who read the Baptist and Reflector regularly, you are well aware that the paper and the Tennessee Baptist Convention, led by our executive director, Randy C. Davis, has taken up the banner for Yes on 1 (see stories on page 1 of this issue).
Dr. Davis especially has become one of the mouthpieces in Tennessee in helping to educate people in our state about the need to vote “Yes on 1.”
Yes on 1 is an effort in our state to encourage people to vote in favor of Amendment 1 which is on the state ballot this November.
There are probably some people in our pews who are sick of reading about Yes on 1. This will be the last time you see it in the B&R because when our next issue is printed, election day will have passed. But I certainly don’t apologize for the coverage we have given it.
Dr. Davis said it extremely well: “Friends, this is one of those times in history when disciples of Christ must take a stand. If we don’t, it is an indictment against Tennessee Christians and I believe failure will render us irrelevant in the cultural issues we’ll be facing in the years to come.”
Amendment 1, if passed, will not lead to the end of abortion in Tennessee as opponents of Yes on 1 would have you believe. If only it would. It also will not take away a woman’s right to choose or to not choose an abortion.
Amendment 1, if adopted by voters in the state, can eventually provide some common sense restrictions on abortion that already are in place in states surrounding Tennessee.
Because Tennessee currently has no informed consent, no waiting periods for abortion, and no inspection of abortion facilities, women from other states are coming to the Volunteer State in increasing numbers to have abortions.
Tennessee currently ranks third nationally in the percentage of out-of-state abortions. We have become an abortion destination.
But back to hypocrisy.
No on 1, the group leading the charge to get the amendment defeated has come up with its own logo. I do not want to print the logo but the words in it state: “Vote No on 1: Stop Government Interference.”
As the old saying goes, “Talk about the pot calling the kettle black.”
How can anyone on that side of the issue ever look the Yes on 1 crowd in the eye and call them hypocrites? Most of the ones who oppose Yes on 1 are the very people who support government interference in almost every other area of our lives from health care to building codes to the environment. The government even dictates what can be taught in our schools. And, I haven’t even mentioned the Internal Revenue Service. Talk about interference!
Yes on 1 is basically a grassroots efforts headed by people with some assistance from church and religious organizations. Yes on 1 reported last week that 600 Tennessee donors have given $455,968 in itemized contributions.
In stark contrast, No on 1 is funded primarily by eight abortion facilities in Tennessee and even out of state that have given them $1.4 million of the $1.5 million they have received.
In other words, the organizations that make money off abortions are the ones who so adamantly oppose Yes on 1.
Early voting began Oct. 15 and will end on Election Day, Nov. 4.
Don’t be confused by the rhetoric of those who oppose Yes on 1. They either want you to vote “no” or not vote at all (as long as you vote for a governor).
Christians can and must make a difference on Nov. 4. Vote “Yes on 1.”