Faith as an important part of selecting the next President

Published 12:00 am Friday, January 18, 2008

Dear editor:

Many factors are brought into play in the race for the presidency &8212; party affiliation, position, money and others. However, one important ingredient is the part that faith plays.

First, let me identify myself: a Baptist for a lifetime, tolerant of all races and groups. Having prayed and worshiped with blacks, some of the finest people I know are black. Further, my son-in-law began and for eight years pastored a bi-racial Baptist church &8212; 60 percent black and 40 percent white. My daughter, a product of our home, took four black children into her home (diapers and all) for three months while their mother was away in drug rehab.

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During the present presidential campaign, criticism has been leveled against certain candidates concerning their faith. A case-in-point is Mike Huckabee, a Baptist.

There is fear that his religious connections will unduly hinder him from making proper decisions. Another case is Mitt Romney, a Mormon. Some believe his denomination is not mainline Christian and that Salt Lake City would exert undue pressure on his decisions. This brings to mind Barack Obama, brought up in a Muslim home and presently a member of the Trinity United Church of Christ, a church which permits only black members. Facts concerning Obama&8217;s beliefs are revealed in the church&8217;s Web page During his appearance on Oprah Winfrey&8217;s program, Obama indicated his membership in the aforementioned church, which according to the Web site has a &8220;non-negotiable commitment to Africa.&8221;

It is difficult to realize that the above facts have not been dealt with during this presidential campaign. In my initial statement, it is evident that I have no qualms concerning a black candidate, but a Muslim dedicated to Africa is quite troubling indeed.

Harold Blackburn