Veggie Tales Creator Phil Vischer is Woke

Written by Laurie Higgins

Christian creator of the well-known children’s video series Veggie Tales, Phil Vischer, is woke, folks. Recently, in some tweets, Vischer appears to be defending voting for the corrupt influence-peddler Joe Biden who embraces all sorts of policy positions that oppose biblical truth.

Biden vigorously supports the Equality Act, which will lead to the oppression of theologically orthodox Christians. Biden enthusiastically affirms the legal redefinition of marriage to include homoerotic unions. He supports the chemical sterilization and surgical mutilation of gender dysphoric minors. He supports the sexual integration of women’s private spaces. And the corrupt Biden supports both the slaughter of humans in the womb through all nine months of pregnancy for any and no reason as well as compelling taxpayers to fund them. No worries for Vischer. He’s got a host of fallacious arguments to defend voting for the deceitful, corrupt Biden.

Vischer’s suggestion that Christians are justified in voting for a pro-feticide candidate echoes the argument made by the group calling itself “Pro-Life Evangelicals for Biden” (no joke) who argue,

[W]e believe a Biblically shaped commitment to the sanctity of human life compels us to a consistent ethic of life that affirms the sanctity of life from beginning to end. Many things that good political decisions could change destroy persons created in the image of God and violate the sanctity of human life. Poverty kills millions every year. So does lack of healthcare and smoking. Racism kills. Unless we quickly make major changes, devastating climate change will kill tens of millions. Poverty, lack of accessible health care services, smoking, racism and climate change are all pro-life issues.

Theologian Dr. E. Calvin Beisner destroyed their argument:

“Pro-Life Evangelicals for Biden” demonstrates two serious failures in ethical thinking: the failure to distinguish between intentional and accidental harm, and the failure to distinguish between death, on the one hand, and lesser harms, on the other. The Bible clearly makes those distinctions, with important consequences (see, for examples, Exodus 21 and 22).

By failing to make these distinctions, “Pro-Life Evangelicals for Biden” obscures the meaning of “pro-life” and undermines the pro-life movement.

In abortion, every “successful” procedure intentionally kills a human being. Poverty, lack of health care, and smoking often lead to poor health and sometimes to death, but none of them involves someone intentionally killing another person—and neither does climate change, regardless whether you think it’s catastrophic and primarily manmade or benign and primarily natural. And while racial bigotry does involve unjust intent, it rarely leads to intentional killing.

Another serious ethical failure in this statement is confusing negative rights (against harm) with “positive rights” (to benefits). … [N]egative rights are consistent and enforceable, but “positive rights” are inherently self-contradictory and unenforceable. Your negative right against assault and battery doesn’t contradict any right of mine. My “positive right” to a “universal basic income” or “adequate health care” can only be enforced by the state’s willingness to violate your negative right against the forcible taking of your property to pay for it.

Negative rights are the implication of true, Biblical justice; positive rights are the expression of Marxist/socialist egalitarianism.

Theologian Andrew T. Walker responds to the argument advanced by Vischer and his “buddy” Skye Jethani in a YouTube video that if the election of a president won’t end abortion, the issue need not occupy a preeminent place in voters’ calculus:

Jethani’s analysis compares and confuses two dissimilar things: Voting in order to end all occurrences of abortion and voting to expand or impede access to abortion and the larger underlying abortive worldview, are separate things. The underlying assumption in Jethani’s video is that because abortion will continue regardless of political circumstances, it should not be the preeminent factor in how a Christian votes. This explains a major ethical presupposition: Do we vote on the basis of a pragmatism that concedes the moral playing field to abortion’s inevitability or do we vote based on the substantive moral issue at hand? Jethani believes the consequentialist reality means downplaying abortion as a sole litmus test in voting. A more principled approach, on the other hand, would investigate whether and how one’s vote materially contributes toward something systemically wrong. A law that allows for abortion is inherently unjust, like a law that allows for murder, slavery, child sex-trafficking, pedophilia, etc. With morally permissible laws, we can afford to be consequentialists. Yet with intrinsically unjust laws we must oppose them for fear that “we give approval to those who practice them” (Rom. 1:32).

… We should ask ourselves: Is our vote contributing to a systemic injustice by further entrenching its worldview? Are we empowering mechanisms that will dilute abortion’s grip on American politics or promote it? And let us be very, very clear: Despite the Republican Party in no way being equivalent to “God’s party,” the difference between the two parties’ attitudes toward life could not be any starker. The Democratic Party has moved from “safe, legal, and rare” to eliminating any stigma whatsoever and working to protect the right to an abortion at the latest possible stages. Voting for the Democratic Party when it comes to abortion is voting not only for policies or a platform, but a worldview …  opposed to clear Christian moral principles. 

Vischer evidently believes that opposition to illegal immigration is “anti-immigrant” or “anti-refugee.” Is he suggesting that unless America has open borders and the government subsidizes all the needs of every immigrant, we are neglecting the biblical admonition to care for the “least of these”? If not, then does he have a specific number of immigrants that America must allow in to satisfy the biblical command to defend “the least of these”?

A point of clarification: Pastor and theologian Kevin DeYoung explains that in Scripture, “the least of these” refers to “other believers in need–specifically itinerant Christian teachers dependent on other Christians for hospitality and support”–not to “all of suffering humanity.”

Perhaps Vischer could explain what an “ethno-nationalist” worldview is and provide conclusive evidence that Trump holds such a view. Perhaps he could also provide evidence that proves that Trump’s policies will hurt the poor, incarcerated, and sick. Before the Chinese Communists unleashed the virus on the world and concealed its escape, Trump’s economy had helped poor persons of color like Obama’s economy never did.

I assume Vischer’s reference to hurting the sick is a reference to opposition to Obamacare. But the hope of conservatives is that getting rid of Obamacare would improve healthcare for everyone. Conservatives want to bring market forces to bear on healthcare to lower costs, increase access, and improve service. There’s a reason many Canadians come to the U.S. for treatment and surgery.

Without mentioning Trump by name, prognosticator Vischer suggests that Trump’s re-election will “have little impact on the unborn.” Trump seeks to defund Calculated Carnage and appoint conservative originalist judges. Is it not possible that those efforts could one day have an “impact on the unborn”?

Vischer has made several videos on race in America for his “Holy Post” podcasts/videos. In one video, Vischer responds to questions from whites who ask why Vischer continually refers to “we” when talking about guilt or responsibility for past acts of racism. He speciously argues that since Americans say things like “We defeated Hitler” and “We put a man on the moon,” and “We won the Cold War,” they should say, “We horribly mistreated Native Americans for centuries.” Vischer claims that,

We love to take collective ownership for the great things America has done, and then completely reject any ownership of the terrible things America has done.

Seems like a rational and fair claim, but is it? Note that he uses the term “collective ownership” in the first half of his sentence but omits the adjective “collective” in the second half. That change is relevant.

When Americans say “We defeated Hitler,” or “We put a man on the moon,” are they assuming personal, individual responsibility and credit for achievements in the same way that leftists are demanding they now assume personal, individual responsibility and guilt for the racist acts in America’s history? Or, rather, are they saying great things have been achieved by Americans, just as they say terrible things have been committed by Americans?

Wokesters like Antifa, BLM™ and Vischer are not merely asking that whites acknowledge that terrible things have been committed by Americans—which all Americans already do. They are demanding that individual white Americans publicly acknowledge their personal, individual culpability for the racism of dead white Americans. They want us to say individually, “I am guilty. I am a racist.” They hold “whites only” corporate indoctrination “sensitivity workshops” in which whites are expected to confess and self-flagellate for their sins.

If we reframe Vischer’s analogy a bit, does anyone ever say, “I am personally responsible and deserve credit for the historical achievements of defeating Hitler and putting a man on the moon?” No, of course, no one makes such a claim, except perhaps an insane person.

Vischer uses sophistry to suggest Americans say things they don’t in order to compel them to confess to sins they did not commit. He expects white Americans who never claim personal, individual credit for cultural achievements to take individual responsibility for the terrible things others have done.

Vischer also abused Scripture to argue that all white Christians should be held culpable for the past sins of others. His simplistic theological argument fails to address the complexity of Scripture on this issue—complexity that DeYoung illuminates in his very helpful posts on this issue.

Vischer acknowledges that “the Bible does talk about individual sin and individual repentance,” adding the leftist-infused comment that “as highly individualistic Westerners, we like that. We get it.” But surely Vischer knows that the Bible wasn’t written exclusively to or for Westerners. Perhaps the fact that many white Christians in America “get it” has nothing to do with being “highly individualistic Westerners.” Perhaps they’re understanding Scripture correctly.

DeYoung offers a more nuanced and helpful understanding of biblical teaching on individual and corporate responsibility:

[T]he Bible has a category for corporate responsibility. Culpability for sins committed can extend to a large group if virtually everyone in the group was active in the sin or if we bear the same spiritual resemblance to the perpetrators of the past. Furthermore, the sins of others can be imputed to us if there is a natural, moral/political, or voluntary union.

And yet, the category of corporate responsibility can easily be stretched too far. The Jews of the diaspora were not guilty of killing Jesus just because they were Jews. Neither were later Jews in Jerusalem charged with that crime just because they lived in the place where the crucifixion took place. And we must differentiate between other-designated identity blocs and freely chosen covenantal communities. Moral complicity is not strictly individualistic, but it has its limits. All white people today are not automatically guilty of the racist sins of other white people.

Both Biden and President Trump are flawed humans. Christians and all voters who value the Constitution, the separation of powers, the rule of law, and biblical truth on the sanctity of life should focus on policies, principles, and the people who will be appointed by and serve under the next president. As historian and professor Victor Davis Hanson has said, if Americans want “civilization,” they must vote for President Trump.

Listen to this article read by Laurie:

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