Welcome to Grand Rapids, George!

President Bush is going to be in Michigan this weekend to give the commencement speech at Calvin College over in Grand Rapids. I wonder how such a small Christian college can get such a BIG name speaker. Over here in Wolverine territory we get people like Chris Rock. Go figure. I also wonder what George is going to do with this published today in The Chronicle of Higher Education. An excerpt:

An Open Letter to the President of the United States of America, George W. Bush

On May 21, 2005, you will give the commencement address at Calvin College. We, the undersigned, respect your office, and we join the college in welcoming you to our campus. Like you, we recognize the importance of religious commitment in American political life. We seek open and honest dialogue about the Christian faith and how it is best expressed in the political sphere. While recognizing God as sovereign over individuals and institutions alike, we understand that no single political position should be identified with God’s will, and we are conscious that this applies to our own views as well as those of others. At the same time we see conflicts between our understanding of what Christians are called to do and many of the policies of your administration.

As Christians we are called to be peacemakers and to initiate war only as a last resort. We believe your administration has launched an unjust and unjustified war in Iraq.

As Christians we are called to lift up the hungry and impoverished. We believe your administration has taken actions that favor the wealthy of our society and burden the poor.

As Christians we are called to actions characterized by love, gentleness, and concern for the most vulnerable among us. We believe your administration has fostered intolerance and divisiveness and has often failed to listen to those with whom it disagrees.

As Christians we are called to be caretakers of God’s good creation. We believe your environmental policies have harmed creation and have not promoted long-term stewardship of our natural environment.

Our passion for these matters arises out of the Christian faith that we share with you. We ask you, Mr. President, to re-examine your policies in light of our God-given duty to pursue justice with mercy, and we pray for wisdom for you and all world leaders.

Concerned faculty, staff, and emeriti of Calvin College

A better question might be how did Mr. Bush get Calvin College?

12 responses to “Welcome to Grand Rapids, George!

  1. I wonder if the Mainstream Press/Radio/TV will take note of this ad. My odds: 100-1 they’ll ignore it. How sad.

  2. Stuff

    I’m terribly uninspired today, so I’m just tossing up a few things here for now.

    ➡ First, Chris Short of Our Life has started a new blog, Conservative Thinking (Our Life will now be his own family-oriented blog). Go on over to Conservative Th…

  3. My friend Chris over at Life in the Fast Lane wrote a post about her son graduating from Calvin College and resenting that W was the speaker. You can read her post at:


    I commented there (regarding the idiot who spoke at my graduation) and then followed up when I read this at DKos

    about the miscalculation of Calvin College as a lock-step Christian Right institution.

  4. way to go people

  5. mmm, yeah. W is coming to calvin because calvin’s prez, galen byker, envisions himself as a BIG fish in a BIG pond, when in reality he hasn’t been able to keep the actual pond behind the seminary free of green scum

  6. There are some very rich Republican donors in the west part of the state who are generous to their school and generous to their party. The ad suggests a more interesting mix of oil and water (pun intended) than is likely, given all of the connections in play.

  7. Poses a good argument doesn’t it…this past election was the lesser of two evils for me…on the liberal side of conservatism…I drew the line at Bush barely saying “The voices in my head told me to do it!”

    Thanks again for stopping by…I blog rolled you!

  8. Poses a good argument doesn’t it…this past election was the lesser of two evils for me…on the liberal side of conservatism…I drew the line at Bush barely saying “The voices in my head told me to do it!”

    Thanks again for stopping by…I blog rolled you!

  9. Christians will disagree about stem cell research, but it is both immoral and unpatriotic for Bush to use federal law enforcement officials to stifle the debate. The question for individual people is whether it is moral. The question for government is what policy will establish justice, insure domestic tranquility, provide for the common defense, promote the general welfare, and secure the blessings of liberty to ourselves and to our posterity. Whether that policy is Christian or not is for individuals, not government, to decide. The threat Bush presents is that he is using governmental power to stomp out the opposition. To make matters even worse, Bush tries to use the fact that Bush is “Christian” to justify abusing government power. It is almost as if Bush thinks he can make people Christian by using governmental power to force people to pray whenever Bush thinks prayer is warranted. If you oppose Bush’s religious choices, your Christianity is called into question. Whether or not Bush’s ban on talking to pregnant teens is moral or not moral from a Christian point of view, it is unconstitutional and a far more serious threat to free Christians everywhere than anything Osama Bin Laden is planning.

  10. At last! A post on politics I not only understood, but actually followed to the end! God bless you Calvin College for writing such a letter, and God bless Vicki for posting something political I can actually read. That was a great letter! Amen Amen. I am very anxious to read what the Pres has to say to that! I just hope he makes sense when he’s talking… HAAA! Nevermind. Too bad the letter was published before his speech – gives him a chance to have someone write a good response to it. I would have liked to hear the pres think on his own for once and answer that one on the fly!!! “Uhh. Uhh. I’m not prepared for questions like that. This is hard standing up here. Isn’t this a nice podium?”

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