If I may add to Georgia Clifton’s Open Letter to Home Schooling Parents on Behalf of Ron Paul:
When the Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA), an organization of which I am a lifetime member, announced this past summer that they were endorsing Mike Huckabee’s candidacy for President, I had barely heard of Mike Huckabee and decided to do some research and learn about this candidate. As Christians, it is our duty to judge not according to appearance (or words), but to judge righteous judgment. When making weighty decisions such as who will become our next leader, we need to evaluate our choices carefully. My desire is to lay out the facts that I found concerning Mike Huckabee and ask that you receive them with an open spirit of discernment. I will conclude by presenting you with a powerful alternative that you should prayerfully consider.
Why did the HSLDA endorse Huckabee?
In endorsing Huckabee, the HSLDA said that he is: 1) “a principled conservative” 2) “a friend of homeschooling” 3) “a man of character” 4) “a man with a mature faith in Jesus Christ.”
These are the four reasons the HSLDA gave for supporting Mike Huckabee. Incidentally, this was the actual order in which they gave them. Let’s examine each one, in order of my own priorities:
A man with a mature faith in Jesus Christ?
It’s easy to make this claim, but it’s difficult to speak against it, so I won’t. The only way to know with certainty whether a brother has a “mature faith in Jesus Christ” is not to listen to their words, nor to even look at their actions, but to examine their fruit. Along this line, I would ask why Huckabee’s son David was accused of hanging a dog, slitting its throat and then stoning it to death?
I would also ask why a man with a mature faith in Jesus Christ would constantly take the Lord’s name in vain with euphemisms such as “gosh”? Euphemisms for God and Jesus, such as gosh and gee are used by some people to avoid taking the name of God in a vain. Huckabee says, “I’m going to be a lot more careful about everything I say, because I find that it gets amplified to a new level…," but I would say that’s a poor reason to be careful about what you say. A better reason would be because you are constantly presenting yourself as a representative of Christ. James tells us to “let every man be swift to hear, slow to speak, slow to wrath.”
Does being a Baptist preacher automatically make someone a man of faith? Is history not replete with examples of spiritual leaders who used their positions to gain authority for themselves? I’m not saying that this is the case with Huckabee, but I am saying that his theological training and experience are insufficient proof of his mature faith.
In the recent CNN YouTube debate, a questioner held up a Bible and asked “Do you believe every word of this book?” Now, if someone asked me that question, I would see this as an opportunity to demonstrate my unwavering commitment to the infallibility and inerrancy of the Word of God. Instead, however, Huckabee gave a rambling non-answer:
“the fact is that when people ask do we believe all of it, you either believe it or you don’t believe it. But in the greater sense, I think what the question tried to make us feel like was that, well, if you believe the part that says ‘Go and pluck out your eye,’ well, none of us believe that we ought to go pluck out our eye. That obviously is allegorical.”
Wolf Blitzer stopped him and pointedly asked him whether or not he believed God created the world in 6 days 6,000 years ago. His response was, “I don’t know….” and then rambled on for some time in an effort to dodge the question. Apparently, he doesn’t like being asked specific questions about his faith. Another quote:
“I think I’ve probably been asked far more questions about my faith than Mitt Romney’s been asked about his,” Huckabee said. “Maybe I ought to be doing the ‘God speech’ out there. I might even include an alter call and an offering with mine.”
Putting aside for a moment his irreverent attitude, consider this: he was presented with an opportunity to show us just how strong his faith is in the Scriptures and ultimately the Lord Jesus Christ, but he floundered. He then pointed out that he was the only one on that stage with a theological degree. I would remind all of us that Jesus warned us to “beware of false prophets, which come to you in sheep’s clothing, but inwardly they are ravening wolves.” This is the same man who took a pretend phone call from God. Blasphemous sacrilege!
A friend of homeschooling?
I count myself blessed to have known the beauty of loyalty in friendship. The word friend is a powerful word and brings to mind words like “loyalty," “defense," and “familiarity." A friend stands by you through thick and thin and makes sacrifices for you when necessary. It may surprise you, then, that the New Hampshire NEA has also endorsed Huckabee. The NEA is the largest labor union in the United States and represents public school teachers. How can Mike Huckabee be loyal to both homeschoolers and the powerful public school lobby? The answer is: he can’t. Whoever will be a friend of the world is the enemy of God, and whoever is the friend of the public school union is the enemy of homeschoolers. This may explain why his “Issues: Education” webpage has only one brief and token sentence mentioning homeschooling. It may also explain why he defends the No Child Left Behind Act.
Where are Huckabee’s loyalties? Well, one morning in 1999, homeschoolers in Arkansas woke up to learn that they had been betrayed by their governor and friend, Mike Huckabee. The HSLDA had reported that under Gov. Huckabee, Arkansas became the first state in the nation to add restrictions to its existing home school law. From the report linked above, Huckabee signed the bill that the HSLDA specifically did not support. Can you call this man who signed legislation taking away our homeschooling freedoms a friend? Only if you are the NEA. Why did they pass this law? According to the HSLDA, the “public school lobby had been working overtime to convince the Arkansas legislature that the home school law was too permissive.” Rather than stand up against the powerful public school lobby, Huckabee caved in and took away freedoms that were previously given to homeschoolers. As the Psalmist wrote, “Yea, mine own familiar friend, in whom I trusted, which did eat of my bread, hath lifted up his heel against me.”
A man of character?
Where do I begin? I believe a man is only as good as his word, and when someone lies to me, I find it difficult to ever have that trust restored. I take lying very seriously. Mike Huckabee has been caught telling and repeating an outright falsehood. Read carefully this webpage that details how he got caught in this pretty blatant lie. How can you trust a man’s character when he is caught lying red-handed? Someone who tells lies is a liar, and that makes Mike Huckabee a liar.
Why did the Arkansas Ethics Commission officially reprimand him for violations five times in 14 years?
What do his peers in Christianity say? The conservative “700 Club” has disowned him. What is his reputation like among those outside the church? He is known as someone who has “a mean streak, a thin skin and a penchant for revenge.”
Huckabee is a member of a music band called “Capitol Offense." Would Jesus form a band? If he did, would he name it something like that? According to the band’s website, they formed it because of their “love of … classic rock-n-roll.” Where is the gravity and sobriety that Titus chapter 2 calls for in an older man? It’s not a gospel music band, either. It is a cover band with a set list including songs such as “Born to be wild," the highly sexually charged “Devil with a Blue Dress," “Freebird, “Honky Tonk Woman, and other similarly ungodly songs. Go read the lyrics to Honky Tonk Woman (it’s offensive) and imagine the pastor of your church singing that song. If a leader in my church formed a band to play that kind of music, I would call that a very serious problem. And we call him a man of character?
On the campaign trail and in debates, Huckabee frequently makes mention of his theological training and his status as an ordained minister. Jesus told us to beware of hypocrites who stand in street corners [feigning spirituality] wanting to be seen of men. We are told to go into our closet and close the door when we pray, so the Father can see us in secret. Why is Huckabee so vocal about his faith and his theological ordination? The only reason I can think of is that he’s doing it for political gains.
A principled conservative?
Huckabee’s history of pardoning violent felons with disastrous outcomes has been a major problem for his campaign. On immigration, he is a flip-flopper. As Arkansas’s governor, Huckabee supported in-state college tuition for young illegal immigrants, but recently, presumably for political expediency, has completely reversed his position.
How about taxes? By the end of his ten-year tenure as governor of Arkansas, Huckabee was responsible for a 37% higher sales tax, 16% higher motor fuel taxes, and 103% higher cigarette taxes, according to Americans for Tax Reform. Check out the infamous video of Governor Huckabee practically begging for any new tax.
What about pro-life issues? When asked about embryonic stem cell research, he said, “I don’t think it’s right to create a life to end a life.” So far, so good, but then he added, “That’s not a good health decision.” What on earth does that mean? He was later asked, “As president, you would seek to ban abortion?” and his response was that “I would seek always to promote the view that life is precious and should be protected. But I think it has to be won on a battlefield of one heart at a time rather than pieces of legislation at a time.” He clearly does not have a clear plan to stop or at least slow abortion.
I’m convinced, but what choice do we have? He’s the best candidate we have!
For this, I only need refer you to our brother, Dr. Ron Paul. For the sake of careful discernment, please look at Ron Paul with a fresh and unbiased eye. Ron Paul is a humble brother in Christ with a blameless record. His enemies have no ammunition against him, and his voting record as a 10-term congressman is consistent. He is a man who has proven himself to be trusted with the power he has been given. As an OB/GYN, he has delivered over 4,000 babies. He has been married for 50 years and has 5 children, 18 grandchildren and 1 great-grandchild. He is passionately pro-life and successfully defends that view against liberal pro-deathers. He has a plan to end abortion, starting with overturning Roe v. Wade and returning the decision to the local level where it will be handled by local leaders who must answer to their local voters.
His platform is strictly constitutionalist. His principle is that if the Constitution doesn’t specifically allow it, then the Federal government has no business doing it. He wants to abolish entirely the Department of Education, as well as many other massive unconstitutional government bureaucracies, and replace them with nothing. The beautiful thing is that we can trust him to actually do what he promises. He often repeats the mantra that he wants to “keep the government out of our lives.” As homeschoolers who want to raise our children ourselves, this should be music to our ears.
Is Ron Paul a friend of homeschoolers?
Ron Paul is the only candidate who has an entire microsite devoted specifically to the issue of homeschooling. According to Ron Paul, “The best way to improve education is to return control to the parents who know best what their children need. Congress should empower all parents, including home-schoolers, to control their children’s education…”
Ron Paul also believes that “No nation can remain free when the state has greater influence over the knowledge and values transmitted to children than the family.” Amen! Back in the year 2001, Dr. Paul said, “Under the United States Constitution, the federal government has no authority to hold states ‘accountable’ for their education performance. In the free society envisioned by the founders, schools are held accountable by parents, not federal bureaucrats.” Virginia Baker, a national pioneer of present-day home schooling, and the first mother in Texas to do so, has formally endorsed Dr. Ron Paul. She said, “Dr. Paul is the homeschoolers best friend.”
A friend is someone who will loyally defend you, even to the point of sacrifice, and I personally trust ONLY Ron Paul in this area. There is no candidate that can be trusted to protect the rights of parents to direct their own children's upbringing and education, except for Ron Paul.
Jim Fedako, economist and homeschooling father of five wrote, “As a homeschooling father of five, I recognize that there are many individuals and groups who would like to force my children back into the public schools. In fact, the NEA has a statement on their legislative platform that advocates the end of the homeschooling movement. Ron Paul stands for Liberty. He stands for the right of my wife and I to educate our children at home, away from the influences of the NEA and other such organizations.”
Ron Paul isn’t swayed by powerful lobbies. He never accepts bribes or gifts, and votes his conscience regardless of how unpopular it makes him. Ron Paul often finds himself casting the only “No” vote on bills before Congress that he sees as unconstitutional. In the face of what must be unimaginable intimidation, Dr. Paul stays true to what he believes.
There are literally hundreds of other reasons to support Ron Paul’s candidacy, and I would encourage you to begin at Ron Paul’s website.
But the media keeps saying that he can’t win! I don’t want to waste my vote.
What right does the media have in telling us who can and can’t win an election? Can they see the future? Or do they have information that is not generally available to the public? What is their track record in correctly predicting the outcome of elections? The truth is, Ron Paul dominates in straw polls, and he has raised many millions of dollars from tens of thousands of personal donations. He has an excellent chance of winning, despite what you may have been told. I would say that to simply vote the way the media tells you to vote is the only way to waste your vote. Vote for who you believe is the best candidate, regardless of who you are told is winning.
Please, for the sake of our future liberty as homeschooling families, give this serious thought, discernment, and prayer. Should you choose to support Ron Paul, please pray for him, his family, and his candidacy. Support him financially, and tell other homeschooling families about this champion of our liberty.
December 19, 2007