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As Old Line Protestants Promote Gun Control, Will Evangelicals Join In?
"Whatever happens to gun control politically, these groups will probably have negligible influence." -- Mark Tooley, IRD President
Contact: Jeff Walton, Institute on Religion and Democracy, 202-682-4131, 202-413-5639 cell, jwalton@TheIRD.org
WASHINGTON, Dec. 21, 2012 /Christian Newswire/ -- Religions are uniting behind gun control after the Newtown shootings, according to officials at a press conference hosted this morning at Washington National Cathedral. United Methodist and Episcopal bishops joined representatives of the Islamic Society of North America, former National Association of Evangelicals (NAE) lobbyist Richard Cizik, National Latino Evangelical Coalition President Gabriel Salguero, and officials from the United Church of Christ and American Baptist Churches, among others.
A New York Times article prior to the event quoted NAE President Leith Anderson saying NAE has no official stance on gun control but might now "take a harder look." He cited King Herod's slaughter of the innocents.
IRD President Mark Tooley commented:
"Whatever happens to gun control politically, these groups will probably have negligible influence. The United Methodist Church has advocated abolition of handguns since at least 1972, with no appreciable impact on its own members, much less the nation.
"Will Leith Anderson now push NAE to join liberal, old line Protestant elites in prioritizing gun control?
"Instead of learning lessons from the implosion of old line Protestantism, NAE sometimes seems determined to follow its unfortunate example.
"Evangelicals should be wary of political pronouncements accompanied by poor and strained biblical exegesis, claiming the Gospel backs a specific political remedy in sync with whatever fashionable cause du jour."