Evangelicals have collaborated with people who differ on issues before, and that sort of tolerance is needed now.
Question: Does politics shape the evangelical debate on climate change?
Richard Cizik: Because there is a concept, even a biblical concept, called co-belligerency; that you can be a cobelligerent with our erstwhile enemies. For example, even on population control or abortion issues, there are people who oppose us on those issues. And yet it’s possible, you see, to be a co-belligerent with them on something else without compromising our integrity. My . . . my integrity is not compromised because I’ve shown that I am both a pro-lifer opposed to abortion. I even have opposed historically population control movements. And so that doesn’t change the fact that I can at the same time say over here they are right. Look, we can walk and chew gum at the same time. Really. I mean evangelicals can make these distinctions. We’ve done it for decades. For example, on the religious persecution movement for example, we’ve collaborated with those who oppose us on abortion to save babies from being burned in bonfires in Darfur. In other words, we’ve collaborated with people who oppose us on the sanctity of human life, on the definition of marriage to work together to save lives against persecution or genocide. We do that and have done that successfully with eight, nine, 10 major bills before Congress. So we can do this. It’s not impossible. It’s just those who really don’t want to do this that raise that as a bogyman.
Recorded on: 6/25/07