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Thursday
May172012

Pastor vs. President: Black Christian Women Forced to Choose

By Dianna Hobbs, President & CEO, EEW Magazine

In an article titled Church-Going Black Women Forced To Choose: My Pastor Or My President?” Syracuse University Professor, Dr. Boyce Watkins asks, “Can you live the Christian lifestyle your pastor preaches while supporting the policies and beliefs of President Barack Obama?”

Clearly, Obama’s stance in support of gay marriage is at odds with Bible-based teaching in many predominantly black churches. But according to Dr. Watkins, women are so in love with Obama’s “presidential swag” that they just may be too busy swooning over the black family man’s “beautiful family photos on the cover of Essence Magazine” to side with a man of God’s biblical position over Mr. Obama’s anti-biblical stance on gay marriage.

But are black Christian women that gullible and easily swayed?

Personally, I resent the implication that we are somehow so helplessly romantic that our principles take a backseat to our fantasies. With all due respect, I think I’m downright insulted.

As a black woman and the Founder of Empowering Everyday Women (EEW) Online Magazine, the nation’s leading web publication for Black Christian women, I say that is not an accurate depiction of who we are.

While I understand there is no monolithic viewpoint within the Christian context on the issue of gay marriage—some view it from a purely political angle, not through emotional or spiritual lenses—a vast majority of us are led by the spirit of God and our core Christian convictions. We are an Ephesians 4:14 people. That scripture says, “We won't be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth.”

Whether those tricky viewpoints in opposition to the word of God come from the president, preachers, or community leaders like Reverend Al Sharpton, Julian Bond, Melanie Campbell, or Reverend Dr. Joseph Lowery—all who signed a letter in support of Obama’s pro-gay marriage stance—God is the final authority in our lives.

We are not hapless, overly romantic drones unable to think for ourselves when a positive image of a black man is dangled in front of us.

There is one thing in the article Dr. Watkins almost got right if we change three words.

He said, “Asking these women to abandon the teachings of the pastor and bible that they’ve loved for so many decades could possibly be too much to ask.”

Replace “could possibly be” with the word “is” and Dr. Boyce Watkins and I will be in agreement on at least one thing.

Named one of the 70 Most Most Influential Black Christian History Makers by Black Christian News Network, Dianna Hobbs is President & CEO of Empowering Everyday Women Online Magazine, the nation’s leading web publication for women of faith and color. Visit Dianna Hobbs online at www.EmpoweringEverydayWomen.com.  Connect with Dianna at www.Faceboook.com/dianna.hobbs.

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    Let’s be clear: Millions of Black women are deeply in love with President Obama. They love the fact that Obama represents the powerful black man who remains dedicated to a black woman and raises beautiful black children. They fantasize about him in a way that reminds us that love is completely blind: Policy doesn’t usually matter nearly as much as Obama’s “presidential swag” and the beautiful family photos on the cover of Essence Magazine. This love affair never would have started had the

Reader Comments (8)

I am screaming YESSSSSS!!! We are not somehow desperate dummies for any example of good black man. Our faith and values matter. THANK YOU DIANNA HOBBS!!!

I found it funny that he just injected himself into our brains and then told US what we were thinking! The GALL

May 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterOshe'

Well said, Dianna! Sadly there are a lot of women who will throw their beliefs to the side and go with Obama just because he's black. I am NOT one of 'em. Let's be clear on that. Glad to hear someone speaking out!

May 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterKendra

Really? Um... how about neither! My choice is the Lord Jesus Christ (Acts 5:29). And AMEN, 'Oshe!

May 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTreasure

not THIS Christian Chick. I didnt vote for Obama. #thatisall

you have to decide what's important to you. I was where alot of black Christians were stewing in the offenses of the past. But God will avenge every wrong, i dont have to do it for him. so now, I want GOD's PICK for President not my own. even if that's OBAMA for now, cuz it SURE aint ROMNEY (lol) but if i put GOD's business first HE will take care of mine. so im staying home. But alot of people even PASTORS were drinking the OBAMA kool aid and its sad because OBAMA is half KENYAN and no KENYAN ( tho sympathic with racism) have EVER been a slave in AMERICA

dont get it twisted.

May 17, 2012 | Unregistered Commenterim sorry

I've been reading that folks are opting to stay home on Election Day--or in other words, not vote at all. Along with general principle, there are several reasons to avoid this tactic as a form of protest. For one, when you don't vote, you don't exercise your right and privilege as a citizen and two, your "greater of two evils" could get the spot.

I will (have to) vote for Obama again and I can do this with a clear conscience because while I don't agree with EVERYTHING he says or does, I have to look at his overall record and specifically his efforts toward reducing the negative impact of student loans. He's the first president who has had student loans. That means a lot to this recent college graduate.

Also, I DO NOT want Romney's version of presidential leadership (based on his religious and political leanings).

So if nothing else, don't stay home. Go and vote, even if you vote for a write-in candidate of your choice.

May 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterTreasure

Treasure pretty much summed up my thoughts. I remain an Obama supporter. Have we ever had a president with whom, as a voter, you agreed with every single opinion or action? When I look at my choices for the 2012 election, it's Obama all the way.

May 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterPatriciaW

Thanks for this article addressing this issue. Nobody can tell anyone else what to do but we can't sit back and let others draw untrue conclusions about us based on assumptions. I'm glad that the Lord is the one we have allegiance to. Amen!

May 17, 2012 | Unregistered CommenterMarianne

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