home
RSS
October 18th, 2011
08:54 AM ET

The liberal church of Herman Cain

By Eric Marrapodi and John Blake, CNN

Editor’s note: CNN’s John Blake was formerly a member of Antioch Baptist Church North. He left 13 years ago.

Atlanta (CNN) -  Herman Cain has vaulted to the top of the polls as a Republican presidential candidate, but there’s one audience that may prove tougher for him to win over: his hometown church.

Cain, a conservative who recently said African-Americans were “brainwashed” into voting Democratic, is an associate minister at an Atlanta megachurch that has been a stronghold of liberal activism and is led by a pastor who cites Malcolm X as one of his influences.

Cain is a longtime member of Antioch Baptist Church North, which sits near the former college and home of the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr.

The church, founded by freed slaves 134 years ago, boasts 14,000 members and an operating budget of more than $5 million. For years Antioch has hosted a “who’s who” of civil rights activists as guest speakers, including Jesse Jackson and Andrew Young.

Antioch’s powerful senior pastor, the Rev. C.M. Alexander, doesn’t share Cain’s political philosophy, Atlanta clergy say. But Cain and Alexander are so close that Cain sang “The Impossible Dream” for the pastor’s 50th anniversary celebration. The Atlanta businessman-turned-presidential hopeful is well liked by many members of his church, though some disagree with his politics, Antioch pastors say.

Cain’s piety may be just as fascinating as his politics, interviews suggest.

“He’s a real person who is more complicated than the sound bite you may have heard from him,” says the Rev. Fredrick Robinson, a friend of Cain’s who was an associate minister at Antioch before leaving to form his own church.

At Antioch, Cain has had to share the pews with fiery critics of the Republican Party like Joe Beasley, a man born to sharecroppers who once said he’s been called the “N-word” more times than he can count.

Read about Cain's stint as an Atlanta radio talk show host

Beasley is a deacon at Antioch and serves as Southern regional director for Jesse Jackson’s Rainbow PUSH Coalition. He also knows Cain and has no problem with his presence at Antioch.

“We’re good friends. He’s a great speaker and a great singer. He has a great love for the church,” Beasley says.

Beasley says he doesn’t talk politics with Cain, though.

“I respect him – and I want to keep my respect for him,” Beasley says.

Beasley, who worked with Cain on his unsuccessful 2004 run for one of Georgia’s U.S. Senate seats, says Antioch’s acceptance of the former Godfather’s Pizza CEO is not unusual. It’s an attitude, he says, that starts at the top with Alexander.

“The reverend’s position is when we open the door, whosoever comes, let them come,” Beasley says.

Alexander did not return calls seeking comment. Cain also was not available to comment for this article.

‘He’s family’

The black church has long been a paradox. It is one of the most politically liberal but theologically conservative institutions in the black community. Cain’s house of worship embodies some of these contradictions.

Antioch is a member of the National Baptist Convention USA Inc., a denomination in which some churches do not ordain women. The denomination’s leadership publicly broke with King over his civil rights activism.

But like many black Baptist churches, Antioch has developed a strong social justice component to its ministry over the years. It offers ministries for people suffering from drug addition and those infected with HIV/AIDS, and it has been a Sunday stopover for black politicians running for office.

Cain and his family blossomed in this world, according to some people who’ve known them at Antioch.

Robinson, the former Antioch minister, says Cain’s parents were pillars of the church. Cain graduated from Morehouse College, King’s alma mater, and went away to make his fortune. He returned to Antioch amid “great fanfare,” Robinson says.

Cain eventually became a fixture in the church’s deacon’s corner, a row of seats near the pulpit. On any Sunday, Cain could be seen sitting with the other deacons in his favorite light-blue dress shirt shouting, “Preach Rev!” or “Say it,” as the minister preached, Robinson says.

In 2002, Cain became a licensed minister at Antioch, he told Christianity Today.

Antioch members accept Cain because “he’s family,” Robinson says.

“If Herman Cain was one of those real uppity ‘I’m too good for regular blacks folks’ kind of person, he wouldn’t have mingled with us like he did,” Robinson says.

Robinson left Antioch to form his own church in rural Georgia and invited Cain to speak three times. All Robinson could afford to pay Cain was $200. It didn’t matter to Cain, whose speaking fee is usually far more, Robinson says.

Cain accepted the offer and brought a group of worshippers along with him to support Robinson’s small church, the pastor says.

Cain’s views on race aren’t simplistic, Robinson says. Cain says he doesn’t think racism is a huge obstacle for blacks, but Robinson says Cain has privately told him it’s a problem and once even complained about “the good ol’ boy” network in Georgia Republican politics.

“He knows there’s racism in the tea party, but he’ll never say that because they are his supporters. That bothers a lot of people, but he plays to that base not because he’s a sellout but because he’s a politician,” Robinson says.

In one video on his campaign website, “The Official Herman Cain Train Music Video,” Cain poses with young African-American and white supporters at a tea party rally and bellows, "To those who say the tea party is a racist organization, eat your words!"

The Rev. Gerald Durley, senior pastor of Providence Missionary Baptist Church in Atlanta and a longtime activist, recalls when Cain performed the key song from “Man of La Mancha” for Antioch’s pastor.

Cain sang “The Impossible Dream” in his deep baritone and “got a standing ovation,” Durley says. (Cain, who recently released an album of gospel tunes, also belted out the song at a recent campaign stop.)

Cain’s conservative message that blacks should forget about racism and focus on pulling themselves up by their bootstraps doesn’t mesh with his pastor’s philosophy, says Durley, himself a longtime leader among Atlanta clergy.

When the evangelist Billy Graham visited Atlanta in 1994 for a crusade, Alexander demanded that Graham include blacks on the various committees that organized his speaking event at the Georgia Dome, Durley says.

“He’s not going to talk about pulling yourself up by your bootstraps,” Durley says of Antioch’s pastor. “It’s about providing bootstraps.”

Alexander has said pastors should be agents of social change, not “religious pop stars.” He says Malcolm X and Rosa Parks are some of his civil rights influences.

“It’s not enough to talk about what black folks ought to do,” Alexander once said. “We have to also look at what government is not doing to ensure fairness and equal opportunity. God is on the side of the least of these. Jesus said, ‘The first shall become the last and the last shall become the first.’”

But Durley says Alexander can separate Cain’s political and religious beliefs.

“(Alexander) has respect for him,” Durley says. “Cain has been there for years. I would imagine that Alexander would say, ‘I can separate his spiritual soul and salvation from his political dogma.’”

‘Very clear … faith walk’

Ken Blackwell - former Cincinnati mayor, former Ohio secretary of state and fellow African-American Republican - first worked with Cain on an economic growth and tax reform commission in the mid-1990s.

“(Cain) is a person who tries to live his faith in the way he conducts himself in public and private life,” Blackwell says. “He doesn’t just talk the talk. He actually lives what he says and believes in.

“We have prayed with and for one another,” Blackwell says.

Both Cain and Blackwell are cancer survivors, and the two men leaned on each other during their health struggles. Blackwell beat prostate cancer in 2000 and Cain was diagnosed with stage four cancer in 2006. Cain has said his faith, coupled with the right medical treatment, was a major reason he was able to fight and beat the disease.

“I was able to see he has a very clear and discernible faith walk he was very comfortable with and very dependent on as he met his challenges,” Blackwell says.

Ralph Reed, head of the Faith and Freedom Coalition and former Christian Coalition leader, says the time Cain spent behind the podium at Antioch has helped him connect with voters on the campaign trail.

“Herman Cain can hold his own with Mike Huckabee in terms of his ability to connect with and really develop a rapport with voters of faith,” Reed says. Cain heads back to Iowa next week to speak at a Faith and Freedom event with Reed.

“He shares their faith, he shares their values and he’s extremely good at being able to communicate his views,” Reed says. “I think someone who is comfortable with the lexicon of evangelicals is clearly going to over-perform in the early primaries.”

But while voters have welcomed Cain and helped rocket him to the top of polls, there are some fellow African-American clergy who are not as accepting.

The Rev. Artis Johnson, an Atlanta pastor, wrote an open letter to Cain in a local online newspaper, the Cascade Patch, after Cain said last month that blacks were brainwashed into voting Democratic.

“We are not circus animals or attendees of hypnotism shows that cannot make the reasonable and right decisions about who our greatest political enemies are, ” Johnson wrote.

In his letter, Johnson asked Cain why blacks would vote Republican when the party desires to disenfranchise blacks at the voting booth, denies the power of racism and believes the free market is going to address the needs of the poor and elderly.

“In my heart,” Johnson wrote, “I was hoping that you would represent a politician that did more than appeal to the worst in the electorate.”

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Baptist • Belief • Christianity • Herman Cain • Politics

soundoff (1,058 Responses)
  1. Dan

    rizzo, (aka Dem plant),

    I am in the lower-middle tax bracket, so I don't speak for the rich, but if the rich want to keep their money all they have to do is NOT create jobs by investing their money and, (if Obama goes too far), expatriating and spending their money elsewhere.

    October 18, 2011 at 12:01 pm |
  2. Kweg Yung

    Just because you believe in something doesn't mean it is real... But what the hell, go ahead and kill anyone who doesn't believe the way you do. God's obviously not powerful enough to stop evil in this world and really needs your help identifying and eradicating all non-believers. Kill them so they can be saved! Besides, killing brown people in foreign countries is a very profitable business. Corporate America has the military parts manufactured in communist China and automatically debits the American taxpayer... What a beautiful business model! Thank God we have the GOP to protect us!

    October 18, 2011 at 12:00 pm |
  3. Qularkono

    every group has some bias ... including the state of Hawaii which says they are the most diverse and least biased....
    but Christians (real Christians not just those in name only) believe that all fellow Christians are brothers and sisters in Christ ... all Christians throughout the world.

    October 18, 2011 at 12:00 pm |
  4. loathstheright

    Cain is pure evil.

    October 18, 2011 at 11:58 am |
    • hippypoet

      are you left handed?

      define pure –

      October 18, 2011 at 12:01 pm |
    • Retired Army in San Antonio

      Cain won't get my vote.....no way, no how.

      But to call him "pure evil" is about as extreme as you can get.

      Really......it's pretty sad that you'd 'go there'.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:04 pm |
  5. Why

    Why is it that the republican candidates always make it to the 'belief' blog for some obsure reason???

    October 18, 2011 at 11:58 am |
    • 9

      Yeah and Cain was found a spot for his 9 series tax plan.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:08 pm |
  6. jay

    My problem with Cain is that he thinks racism is not a burden to black people. And he think they been brainwashed into voting democrat. What does that tell you: he will ignore this issue and not even be concerned about it if he becomes president. I think that's ignorant of him. Given the history of this country, it is ignorant indeed to say that racism isn't a big problem. Not just for black but for white people also because of them are being hated because of slavery. He instead needs to tell people to get ride of their hatred for one another, put the past behind and live in peace and harmony, and the love of God.

    October 18, 2011 at 11:57 am |
    • Juan

      don't forget Brown people, Yellow people and the ones who were here first – Red people ...

      I've been profiled (by both White AND Black cops) and at airports.

      It's the 21st century and racism still is (and probably always will be) an issue.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:03 pm |
    • viv

      well said.>>>JAY for 2012

      October 18, 2011 at 12:12 pm |
    • Duane - St. Pete FLA

      it's sad how you liberals are really trying hard to keep reminding the blacks how bad they have it. Looks to me like they have ALL the opportunity in the world but still can't seem to figure out how to do it. Stop coddling blacks so much and make them stand on their own two feet and we all will be doing them a favor.
      The Prez is black…enough already…..let them help themselves or go hungery…..

      October 18, 2011 at 1:25 pm |
  7. David Murray

    We need persons of good character, who have overcome the challenges of life. Who understand the struggles of families and individuals, who want to work, but do not have work opportunities. It is refreshing to see a capable person coming from the general populace running for president, who has not been a politician previously.

    October 18, 2011 at 11:57 am |
  8. ajgorm

    I am glad it was Cain that broke this brain washing news to the Left anyone else would have been called a liar...

    October 18, 2011 at 11:57 am |
    • Jhn H

      don't be a child. Neither the left nor the right are brainwashed–this country is founded on the princples of both liberalism and conservatism. People who think that those who think differently are brains=washed or stupid are children. Ignorant, immature, children.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:02 pm |
    • JUGGERNAUT

      Cain is being called and liar and a racist puppet being used by the Tea PArty.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:04 pm |
  9. NO LATINO VOTES FOR HIM, NEVER.CAIN IS NOT NICE...

    This man ,Herman Cain in a campaign rally last Saturday regarding his immigration policy, said '...he would include building an electrified fence on the country's border with Mexico that could kill people trying to enter the country illegally'. How disgusting this man is, as a Latina voter I do not see any thing funny about his remark, he is a monster who will say or do anything in order to gain votes from white voters. He is a black Hitler, very dangerous for this country.

    October 18, 2011 at 11:56 am |
    • KeepCalmUS

      I'm Latino, and from Cali... I would vote for him.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:07 pm |
    • HERMAN CAIN IS AN IGNORANT AND ARROGANT MAN

      I agree with you, as a Latino voter I find it offensive that a presidential candidate would have such a remarks, in my book is a racist jerk.

      October 18, 2011 at 1:08 pm |
  10. MALEA

    TRUST ME THE BLACK DEM'S WILL NOT VOTE FOR HERMAN. HE KNOWS THIS BETTER THAN ANYONE. JUST LOOK AT HIS PASTOR, AND FELLOW MEMBERS THEY WON'T EITHER. CAIN IS GOING NOWHERE WITH THE MAJORITY OF THE BLACK VOTE. HE DOES'NT HAVE SINCE TO BE THE PRESIDENT OF USA. DAVID TO YOUR QUESTION, HOW CAN THE REPUBS, AND TEABAGGER THINK THEIR THEOLOGICAL CONSERVATIVE THINKING THINK THEY ARE SO RIGHT, AND LOVE GOD MORE THAN ANYBODY ELSE. THE GOD I SERVE DOES NOT LIE, NOR DOWNGRADE ANYBODY. HE LOVES, AND PROVIDES FOR THE LEAST OF THESE IN AMERICA.

    October 18, 2011 at 11:56 am |
    • Duane - St. Pete FLA

      The blacks will not vote for him because he speaks the truth....Blacks don’t want to hear that it's time to stop making excuses about all their failures but it's time black are held to the same standards as the rest of us......no more special treatment....blacks want to get into college? then study hard and compete like the rest of the kids.....Italian, Irish, Chinese, Jews, and the like were all disliked early on in the USA, they stuck together, worked HARD and made something of themselves.....DO THE SAME......it’s easy to cry and point to why things are bad for you….get off you butts and do something about it WITHOUT YOUR HANDS OUT TO THE GOVERNMENT.

      October 18, 2011 at 1:20 pm |
  11. Earle Belle

    Does Herman Cain Think Newt Gingrich is Stupid?
    http://www.ronpaul2012.com/2011/10/16/does-herman-cain-think-newt-gingrich-is-stupid/

    Pizza Man Herman Cain Will Not Deliver!
    http://www.revolutionpac.com/2011/10/pizza-man-herman-cain-will-not-deliver/

    “Plastic Men” to Air Preceding CNN Debate October 18:
    http://www.revolutionpac.com/2011/10/plastic-men-to-air-preceding-cnn-debate-october-18/

    Huffington Post Provides Proof That Herman Cain Lied At The GOP Debate
    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/10/11/ron-paul-herman-cain-fed-audit-gop-debate_n_1006228.html

    Cain Also Thinks the Fed Missing $9 Trillion Is Unimportant

    Herman Cain made it clear at the recent Bloomberg Debate in his answer to Ron Paul’s question about auditing the Federal Reserve that he simply doesn’t think it’s important.
    In 2009, the Federal Reserve admitted it could not account for $9 trillion. This is not a misprint. It wasn’t $9 million.
    Not $9 billion.
    $9 TRILLION.
    Does it have to get to $999 trillion, Mr. Cain, before you think the Federal Reserve issue is important?
    http://campaign2012.washingtonexaminer.com/blogs/beltway-confidential/norquist-9-9-9-puts-three-needles-taxpayer-arm

    Cain’s Favorite Fed Chairman is: “Print More Money”

    In the Bloomberg GOP Debate, Herman Cain said that Alan Greenspan was his favorite Federal Reserve Chairman. That the TARP-supporting, financial crisis-denying Cain would think Greenspan had a good head for economics should be no surprise, since he shows himself to speak like a true insider does.
    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GZUpZ_onC2k&w=640&h=360]

    Comparing the Candidates on TARP

    Let’s face it: The Cookie Monster is as good, if not better, than most journalists in highlighting this crucially important distinction between Ron Paul and Barack Obama, Herman Cain and Mitt Romney concerning TARP:
    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A2EqhZND1_I&w=640&h=360]

    "ObamaCare Advisers Were Also RomneyCare Advisers" Writes James Antle at The American Spectator:

    “Records show that Mitt Romney aides met a dozen times with the White House to discuss health care reform, according to reports that are sure to refocus attention on the similarities between Obamacare and Romneycare. The Massachusetts health care plan Romney signed into law was an inspiration for the federal legislation, signed by Barack Obama, that the Republican frontrunner has pledged to have repealed.
    It’s worth noting that at least two of the aides, Jon Gruber and John McDonough, are liberal Democrats, the latter a former aide to the late Sen. Ted Kennedy. The Romney campaign has downplayed Gruber’s role in crafting the Massachusetts law. These facts could either be mitigating, since it isn’t shocking a Kennedy aide would visit the Obama White House, or one could argue it revealed the liberal imprimatur on the Massachusetts health care law even during the design phase.”
    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XKfuS6gfxPY&w=640&h=360]

    Cain/Paul on the Housing Bubble

    Of course, there is no comparison. One was absolutely right and the other was absolutely wrong. No one is perfect and this is especially true of politicians, but to be so horribly wrong–even arrogantly wrong–about one of the worst financial crises in American history does not bode well for anyone seeking this nation’s highest office.
    Would anyone hire Cain as an economic adviser? If not, then why would anyone hire him for president?
    http://a4cgr.wordpress.com/2011/10/16/01-785/

    Video: Cain/Paul Comparison on the Housing Bubble

    Once again, there is no comparison. Paul saw the crisis coming because he understood the economic factors that were creating it, particularly Federal Reserve interest rate policy. Cain did not see it coming because he still does not understand basic economic truths, hence his notion that Fed policy isn’t important or deserving of scrutiny. (Stunning comparison, must view!)
    [youtube=http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Tn0EApd5wgw&w=640&h=360]

    October 18, 2011 at 11:56 am |
  12. Brad76

    Ron Paul 2012

    October 18, 2011 at 11:55 am |
  13. jm

    He is playing both end toward the middle, while raking in tons of dough from the koch brothers. He is their ploy and they have many ploys, such as bringing in some of the dumbest women on the planet to do their dirty work. They are totally corrupt and disgusting.

    October 18, 2011 at 11:54 am |
  14. ajgorm

    We knew they were brain washed when they called Obama the messiah and believed trickle down jobs and Obamacare would save them. As they praised Clinton for deregulation and sub prime loans.

    October 18, 2011 at 11:54 am |
    • WTHECK?

      I had to make a freaking account to reply to your ignorance. Who the heck do you personally know, or saw, call Barack Obama the Messiah. Come of it. It's sad.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:10 pm |
    • Phil

      when you say save in the contexts that you used the word it implies that we as african americans are in need of recue. If that is the case I am curious as to what/who need rescueing from? As far as the President is concerned we have voted for every white President from the time we as a people were given the right to vote. I am confident in the fact that we as a people know if nothing else very little was done for us by any of them. Lets just say that we know from history which side of our bread is buttered.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:10 pm |
    • iminim

      The term "brainwashed" implies that this group of voters is being manipulated by others who are taking advantage of psychological weakness to compel them to vote a certain way. Just because you disagree with the way they vote does not mean they are under a form of mind & behavior control. They just view the issues differently. Herman Cain would do better if he stopped insulting the voters and, instead, focused on telling them what he has to offer them & our nation should he be elected.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:47 pm |
  15. aug

    Well the basis of Republicanism is hypocrisy....I think this article solidifies the base. What a bunch of jag offs...

    October 18, 2011 at 11:54 am |
    • Dan

      Jag this for me.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:13 pm |
  16. Duane - St. Pete FLA

    blacks are brainwashed by the liberals......and see where that has gotten the blacks.....nowhere. Liberals promise to help the poor little black cause they need it and can't do it for themselves so all the liberals with their white guilt about slavery (that happened long long ago) keep thinking up social hand outs for them so as to keep them in their back pocket.....figure it out black Americans, the ONLY way to owning a home, getting a great job is to work hard in school and apply what you learn in the market place!!! Blacks have every opportunity whites do (see who is in the White House) so stop making excuses for your track record of failure and GET TO WORK! :o) You liberals would do the blacks right by kicking them in their butts instead of coddling them……..

    October 18, 2011 at 11:54 am |
    • MALEA

      YOU TEABAGGERS KEEP TALKING LIKE ALL THE BLACK PEOPLE DO IS WAIT FOR HAND OUT. THEN YOU SAY ALL YOU HAVE TO DO IS GO TO SCHOOL, AND GET A JOB. WELL YOU ALL DON'T EVEN WANT TO MAKE A WAY FOR US TO GO TO SCHOOL, AND WHEN WE DO GET AN EDUCATION, WE APPLY FOR A JOB, YOU BLOCK THAT TO. SO WHAT IN THE WORLD ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT? EVRY DOOR WE TRY TO OPEN YOU ALL CLOSE.I WORK FOR POOR RELEIF, AND I SEE MORE WHIT PEOPLE EVERY DAY THEN I DO BLACKS. SO AGAIN WHAT ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:02 pm |
    • Dan

      jag this.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:06 pm |
    • WTHECK?

      It's sad you come from my home state. It's also sad that you are likely lower middle class or poor fighting until your last breath for the corporations that won't even give you a job. You are just a sad person, content with stereotyping those you feel are beneath you. There is no hope for you. So I won't try to correct you.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:13 pm |
    • NavyAirVet

      At least Herman Cain is a real Black American and not half white like the current President. I'll vote for Herman if he gets the nomination but never for the community activist who has no history or past according to the press in this country. At least you won't hear Herman's preacher say God Damn America!

      October 18, 2011 at 12:15 pm |
    • Phil

      Brian some of you people are so predictable. We knew as a people that because 1 of us was elected to any office some of you would use that as a way to say racism is no longer in America. Just the mere fact that have used that as proof shows that racism is alive and well here.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:16 pm |
    • f leslie

      and see where that has gotten the blacks.....we have a black president, in fact we have blacks in every profession and they no longer sit at the back of the bus, drink at separate fountains. Blacks have benefited greatly from their "brainwashed" loyalty to liberals.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:17 pm |
    • Phil

      Steffani, I could not have said that better. You have hit the nail on the head. This Herman Cain fellow is the one who is somehow brainwashed into thinking that he is one of them and will be accepted by the Republican party as a friend.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:27 pm |
    • iminim

      "Brainwashed" is not another word for "disagrees with me." It implies that a psychologically weak & vunerable person is being exploited by those who are smarter or more cunning. No group of the electorate from the most conservative to the most liberal is being "brainwashed". They just disagree & see the issues differently.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:59 pm |
    • Seth

      You have no idea what you're talking about. Conservatives have not only done nothing to help people of color in this country, they work hard every day to make sure none but the richest white people are allowed any chance at the American dream.

      October 18, 2011 at 1:01 pm |
    • Duane - St. Pete FLA

      funny part is that I'm an Independent.......lol. Keep making excuses for your academic failures.....keep making excuses for the fact that 8 of 10 black kids grow up without a father, keep making excuses on why blacks score so poorly on standardized tests.....their parents who glorify the "Hip Hop" culture instead of academics are to blame. Thank god Obama was raised by whites or he would NEVER be where he is at......don't you agree?

      Pick your self up black America....stop believing you NEED government to "make it all better for you". Don't be afraid of the big bad world, just get out there and do the right things.....you know...
      1) follow the laws
      2) pick up a paint brush or a broom and take care of where you live.
      3) fathers be fathers and stop running off
      4) value an education
      5) take responsibility for your actions and those of your children
      6) Stop hating on anyone white
      7)get to work
      8) respect police and teachers....

      I know...all crazy talk to you liberals......lol. :o)

      October 18, 2011 at 1:01 pm |
  17. Mark

    "... but he plays to that base not because he’s a sellout but because he’s a politician.”
    Sorry, but those are the same things. We need effective government, not politics.

    October 18, 2011 at 11:52 am |
  18. Sarah Stroud

    I think Herman Cain is right - too many people (not just blacks) have been "brainwashed" into loyalty to the Democratic Party. Will somebody please tell me this: Knowing your party's stance on abortion is to keep a "woman's right to choose", how can you vote for anybody who believes it is okay to kill a baby, and call yourself a Christian at the end of the day? That's my question for you, Beasley. Maybe that's something you should address next time you get into a pulpit in the house of God!!!

    October 18, 2011 at 11:52 am |
    • NavyAirVet

      Judge not Lest you be judged.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:04 pm |
    • cory

      Sarah – the same way you justify Capital Punishment. And before you respond on Judgement day you won't be there representing me or anyone else. Please keep your ideology in your home and your religion in your Church

      October 18, 2011 at 12:09 pm |
    • Steffani

      To say that I am "brainwashed" is a disgusting insult . You're saying because I'm black, I can't think for myself; I don't know what the issues are so long as it's the democrats. That's what you and Herman Cain are saying and you are wrong. Go back and read the article again. Why should we support the Republican party when all they want to do is disenfranchise us, ignore the issues that concern me, and have shown such disdain for black americans? Go read about the "Southern Strategy" the republicans used in the 1960s to lure white southerners away from the democratic party. Who's truly brainwashed? You agree with Cain because he says what you want to hear. But I'm not worried about Cain. He will never be POTUS and in the end, he will be reminded by people like you that he is black.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:10 pm |
    • Sarah Stroud

      Cory: Ideology doesn't belong behind closed doors. That's how people get trampled underfoot by those who want for their adversaries to be ignored. As for capital punishment. Do some research on the translation of the bible. The text in the KJV says "Thou shalt not kill". It's translation is supposed to be "Thou Shalt not Murder". Big difference.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:14 pm |
    • Sarah Stroud

      Steffani: The topic of abortion is what has kept me away from the Democratic Party. Yes, there are some out there who may have some good ideas, but the fact is this: The Democratic Party is actively pro-choice. I always check into someone's abortion stance before I vote for him, or her. Because of your party though, abortion is why I will never, ever vote for a Democrat. Ever! It's also why I refuse to vote for Romney. He's a flip-flopper, and used to be pro-choice. Under the surface, I believe he probably still is.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:17 pm |
    • HJ

      Maybe Sarah that's because people have differing views on when life begans. As a Christian, all of us believe, thou shall not kill, correct? Does life begin at conception or further along? That's up for debate! That's the point. A question for you is how can Republicans claim to be Christian when they oppose most policies that tend to help the poor? That's what Jesus was all about, helping the least among us, black, white, brown, yellow, who cares. 1 John 3:17 But if someone who is supposed to be a Christian has money enough to live well, and sees a brother in need, and won't help him–how can God's love be within him. Prov. 19:17 When you help the poor you are lending to the Lord. And on and on and on!

      October 18, 2011 at 12:20 pm |
    • J.W

      Sarah I am personally against abortion, but there are still medical reasons why it is necessary. Plus just because abortion is illegal does not mean it will stop. There are more productive ways to reduce abortion than making it illegal.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:22 pm |
    • Seth

      The Republican-led war on iraq has killed thousands of babies - in addition to women, elderly, children, and innocent men. 115,000 and counting. So don't lecture us on how moral the GOP is. I for one will always vote for politicians to keep their noses out of a woman's health. Women who are forced to end a pregnancy don't need jail time in addition to the difficult situations that would require such a choice. Politicians who sign pledges or vote for bills that compromise the life and health of women in pursuit of votes or in defense of rigid ideology are the ones who need a lesson in morality.

      October 18, 2011 at 1:09 pm |
    • cory

      Sarah, You totally miss my Point...But Curious who shared that with you Jim Baker or Jimmy Swaggart?

      October 18, 2011 at 2:36 pm |
  19. Christopher Ndekwu

    What we are witnessing today amongst the republican fold is a "triumph of opportunism".It is only in America that you find Morally dead indiviuals like MITT ROMNEY being touted as a front runner,this man has no clear position on any issue.He only has a politically admissible stand on issues every election year.Hermain Cain on the other hand is a clown..He is a major ridicule to his SECT(Tea party).Bachmann is a joke.Ron paul an extremist,Perry is desperate and the other remaining candidates are so saddled with Tea party doctrines that they do not see beyond the tea partys' view...Lest i forget,i believe at this time Huntsman regrets being a republican!!!IT IS OBAMA'S ELECTION ............no contest!!!!!

    October 18, 2011 at 11:51 am |
    • howardfine

      And Obama is a blabbering hypocrite who has his own 99%’ers turning on him.

      October 18, 2011 at 11:57 am |
  20. ajgorm

    Funny ! To think that the Left is not brain washed being the sheep they are..

    October 18, 2011 at 11:50 am |
    • Brian

      Inane. I am not sure how having certain social values equates to brainwashed but I am guessing you aren't very free thinking with a comment like that. Each side calls the other sheep. Most people seem to be influenced by their peer groups and thus have an unshakable ideology impenetrable by facts. They do to not want to be ostracized by those around them. The fact is, if you have the courage to educate yourself and really know what you believe then you will make the right choice and feel at peace with it. So keep on bleating because you are not influencing anyone.

      October 18, 2011 at 12:10 pm |
    • Seth

      America's greatest leaders have always been liberals. Liberalism is, by definition, "the belief in the importance of liberty and equal rights." Thomas Jefferson, Andrew Jackson, Abraham Lincoln, Susan B Anthony, Franklin Roosevelt, John F Kennedy, Martin Luther King, Cesar Chavez, Ted Kennedy, and many more liberals dedicated their lives to making our country great.

      Ask yourself why you're a conservative. What are you afraid of? And why is that fear so important that it can hold back the potential of our nation? Liberals aren't your enemy. Fear is.

      October 18, 2011 at 1:16 pm |
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21
Advertisement
About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.