You heard it here first (probably): another one of these statements purporting to speak for the evangelical community as a whole is on it’s way. My former boss, Charlotte World editor Warren Smith, bends but does not bust the embargo, but warns:
This unfortunate and unseemly power struggle should not be ignored in evaluating this “Manifesto.” The list of people who have not been asked to sign it, or who have chosen not to, is as revealing as the list of those who have, or will. Former presidential candidate Gary Bauer and Family Research Council President Tony Perkins both told me they had not seen the “Manifesto.” Tom Minnery, executive vice president of Focus on the Family and the organization’s “point person” on public policy issues said neither he nor James Dobson has signed the document.
Other conservative evangelical leaders who often speak out on political issues have been kept out of the process. That list includes Rick Scarborough of Vision America, former White House speechwriter and Beverly LaHaye Institute Senior Fellow Janice Crouse.
Also shunned, at least so far: the Southern Baptist Convention’s Richard Land, Ohio-based Phil Burress of Citizens For Community Values, Faith2Action’s Janet Folger, homeschool guru Michael Farris, and Concerned Women For America President Wendy Wright.
There is also a growing list of evangelical heavyweights who have been asked to sign but have (so far) refused – due either to flaws in the document or, as one prominent evangelical leader told me, to the “exclusivity” of the list of signatories.
Group-speak always caters to the lowest common denominator, doesn’t it? And now it’s likely leading to the need for another re-definition of terms.
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