Baptist Press ran an intriguing story this week. It was one of those laugh-to-keep-from-crying stories from the sort-of-secular public square. Hang on. Sit down, in fact. You're not going to believe this one.
Nine U.S. Representatives voted against a resolution expressing support for Christianity in general and Christmas specifically.
Ho hum, you say? Here's the punch line to the story. When similar resolutions were put up for a vote on behalf of Ramadan and Diwali, no House members voted against them.
The resolution's sponsor expressed astonishment over the "no" votes. Rep. Steve King, R.-Iowa, said he could not understand how members of Congress could vote against the measure after the House approved without opposition similar resolutions honoring observances of Islam and Hinduism.
... "I would like to know how they could vote 'yes' on Islam, 'yes' on the Indian religions and 'no' on Christianity when the foundation of this nation and our American culture is Christianity. ... I think there's an assault on Christianity," King told Fox News, according to a release from his office.
Of the nine representatives, all Democrats, who voted against the Christmas resolution, seven supported both the Ramadan and Diwali measures. Those seven were Reps. Gary Ackerman and Yvette Clarke, both of New York; Diana DeGette of Colorado; Jim McDermott of Washington; Bobby Scott of Virginia; and Pete Stark and Lynn Woolsey, both of California. Rep. Alcee Hastings of Florida did not vote on the Diwali resolution, and Rep. Barbara Lee failed to record a vote on the Ramadan measure.
After all, why did the nine U.S. representatives oppose the Christian resolution but not the other ones? Do they oppose Christianity in general or find some of its principles abhorrent? Perhaps they simply cannot cast a vote that would cause a conservative Christian or two to cheer?
Baptist Press reporter Tom Strode might want to go back and ask these kinds of questions to a few of the House members who voted against the Christian resolution.
The notion that some House members actually oppose Christianity is not far-fetched.
Earlier this year, Rep. Pete Stark of California announced that he doesn't believe in God; he called himself a "non-theist." Why does Stark oppose a resolution expressing support for Christianity but not other major religions? Having covered Stark for a couple of years for the old San Francisco Examiner, I know from firsthand experience that he is not exactly a tight-lipped pol.
Maybe it's just me, but I find that the Christian press runs a lot of stories like this one. The reporter has a great story to tell, one that the mainstream media overlook, but he or she fails to report it thoroughly. Perhaps they struggle with a lack of time and resources.
It need not be this way. Just read Dickens' Christmas Carol.