Angry mobs, really?

by Rachel Held Evans Read Distraction Free

 Things are getting really ugly at McCain/Palin campaign rallies these days.  From Sarah Palin’s charge that Barack Obama “pals around with terrorists,” to supporters hoisting “NO-BAMA” signs that call Obama a “socialist” and “liar,” to boos, raised middle-fingers and even racial slurs directed at members of the media, it’s getting completely out of hand, and McCain has done little to stop it.

At a New Mexico rally, when McCain asked the rhetorical question--“Who is the real Barack Obama?”--a man from the crowd shouted out, “terrorist!” McCain looked a little surprised, but went on with his speech. Chants of “Obama Osama!” are becoming more popular. Speakers have resurrected the old tactic of calling Obama by his full name—Barack Hussein Obama—to stir up uncertainty and fear regarding Obama’s past. Even the Secret Service has gotten involved, launching an investigation after someone shouted “kill him!” at the mention of Barack Obama’s “friendship” with Bill Ayers. (It is unclear whether the threat was made against Obama or Ayers.)

…All of this while people are losing their homes, watching their 401(k) plans plunge, and struggling to make sense of what has happened with the economy.  

Now, I understand that John McCain and Sarah Palin cannot be held responsible for all that is said and done at their rallies. However, the rhetoric that they are using is not helping matters. It was Palin who first introduced the word “terrorist” to this conversation. It is McCain who is running negative ads attacking Obama’s character.

What is most disturbing to me about this whole thing is that polls show that 68 percent of white evangelicals support John McCain. Shouldn’t these evangelicals be calling McCain out on this? Shouldn’t they be holding their candidate to a higher standard of morality? How in the world does stirring up racial tensions and making false accusations represent Christian values?

I searched online and couldn't find any articles from conservative Christians denouncing these tactics. Why not? Please let me know if I've missed something here!

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