Sunday, June 8, 2014

Reaching Christian voters

Progressive Christian Jim Wallis supports the new EPA carbon standards. I'm not crazy about the notion that we must be good environmental stewards because God gave us dominion over the earth, but it's a step in the right direction. And he makes a good point: "I believe the most compelling narratives for dealing with climate change must be moral ones, theological ones, and biblical ones, especially if we are to reach and engage the faith community." And this one on the relation of his spirituality to the environment: "Climate change is not another issue to move higher up the list of our concerns. Rather it is the concern central to all other issues."

Given that the US is 73% Christian, and 62% are members of a church, it makes sense that to influence them to vote progressively on climate change will require not just a moral but also a theological and/or biblical framing. I'm going to leave that up to the Christians like Wallis.

Lakoff reinforces that progressive framing must be based on morality and values to get at our subconscious moorings for our rational justifications. And we see the likes of Senators Sanders and Warren framing exactly that way, which reach our more educated, 'rational' Christians. But for the less educated and/or rational, it's going to take more biblical framing to sway them at the voting booth. And unless and until integral theory can step outside of its own 'evolutionary' framing and talk to these religious ignoramuses in their own terms, we best leave it up to the likes of the Wallises to do that framing for us.

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