Awesome. It's kind of fun to find out that the culture warriors over at Slate have created a new feature that would be perfectly at home here at GetReligion. The name of this standing feature says it all, proudly:
The Obama Messiah Watch: Introducing a periodic feature considering evidence that Obama is the son of God.
The whole idea is that, even for people on the political left, it is kind of embarrassing to watch the mainstream press melt into a little emotional puddle in the face of the wonder of Obama. Emotional puddle or spiritual puddle? Ah, that is the question.
Thus, here is the first installment of this new feature at Slate. Click here to go to the text with all of the URLs intact. (I'm too lazy to do them all right now because, hey, it's my birthday and I feel like taking it easy.)
By Timothy Noah Posted Monday, Jan. 29, 2007, at 6:23 PM ET
Is Barack Obama -- junior U.S. senator from Illinois, best-selling author, Harvard Law Review editor, Men's Vogue cover model, and "exploratory" presidential candidate -- the second coming of our Savior and our Redeemer, Prince of Peace and King of Kings, Jesus Christ? His press coverage suggests we can't dismiss this possibility out of hand. I therefore inaugurate the Obama Messiah Watch, which will periodically highlight gratuitously adoring biographical details that appear in newspaper, television, and magazine profiles of this otherworldly presence in our midst.
Today's item, from a Los Angeles Times profile by Larry Gordon about Obama's two years at Occidental College (before he transferred to Columbia):
In [political science professor Roger] Boesche's European politics class, [classmate Ken] Sulzer said he was impressed at how few notes [italics mine] Obama took. "Where I had five pages, Barry had probably a paragraph of the pithiest, tightest prose you'd ever see. ... It was very short, very sweet. Obviously somebody almost Clintonesque in being able to sum a whole lot of concepts and place them into a succinct written style."
Readers are invited to submit similar details -- Obama walking on water, Obama sating the hunger of 5,000 with five loaves and two fishes -- from other Obama profiles. And also, of course, to repent, just in case the hour approacheth nigh.
This raises an interesting question, in light of Obama's own accounts of his spiritual journey into progressive Christianity. On that day when he answered the altar call at Trinity United Church of Christ in Chicago and "declared a personal relationship with Jesus Christ," does this mean he expressed faith in Himself? To paraphrase the usual evangelical language, did Obama, at that moment, enter Obama's heart?
Meanwhile, journalists are not the only people struggling to learn all the words to the new political anthem, "Our Obama is an Awesome Obama." According to Newsweek, stand-up comics are having trouble, too. Some are taking different approaches to this theological problem. Here's my favorite:
MAKE FUN OF HOW YOU CAN'T MAKE FUN OF HIM
"Obamamania" has become absurd. "Daily Show" viewers heard a heavenly noise -- "a choir of angels," host Jon Stewart said. "It can only mean one thing: Barack Obama did something." Jay Leno's line: "The big story, of course: 'American Idol.' But enough about Barack Obama."