Wallis asks us important questions:
"When did Jesus become pro-war?"
Indeed- the right wing claims to be "pro-life"- it rails against abortion, stem cell research, and works itself into a froth over a brain-dead woman in Florida, yet it aggressively persues the death penalty, promotes wars against nations that never attacked, nor threatened us, and condemns universal health care as "socialist." How did this come to be?
"When did Jesus become pro-rich?"
Indeed- the right wing loves tax breaks for the rich, cutting of social programs for the poor, and social infrastructure, in favor of the aforementioned. How did this come to be?
"When did Jesus become a selective moralist?"
Indeed- the right wing loves to condemn those on welfare, those who happen to have been born gay or lesbian, and those who suffer from the great racial divide that still exists in this country. How did this come to be?
It came to be, because we on the left are quick to condemn, and slow to understand. Wallis breaks it down, for anyone who is willing to read, and learn.
Would the Jesus that opened up a can of whoop-ass on the money changers in the temple condone Bush's coddling of Ken Lay, and Enron, who robbed thousands of their pensions and life savings?
Would the Jesus who said "blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God" condone the Bush Bowl's war in Iraq?
Would the Jesus who said "That which you have done to the least of these, you have done to me", condone the Bush administration's cuts to programs aimed at aiding the poor, the starving, and the homeless?
I think you know the answer...Wallis sounds a clarion call in his book, reminding us that the principles that he, and the millions of other progressive people of faith across this nation are fighting for, are not unique to christianity- they are universal. The only reason that Bush, Frist, and DeLay have been able to co-opt christianity, and bend it to their corrupt will in the poilitical sphere, is that we on the left have been silent, for far too long.
Wallis constantly reminds us that the greatest christian prophetic voice that ever appeared in our nation, Martin Luther King, spent his life fighting poverty, racism, and war. When we turn our backs on the foundations that he built, we let Bush, and his ilk, define the moral paradigm of our country.
The one qualm I have about Wallis' work is that he boasts about the meetings he's had with the Bush Bowl, and the letters that he's sent to the white house. He doesn't seem to realize that in the few times that he's had face time with Bush, his pleas have fallen on deaf ears, and that whatever letters he's sent to Bush were most likely shipped off to the local landfill, after being put through the nearest paper shredder, without even being read.
Wallis doesn't seem to understand the true nature of the beast that we're all fighting against.