Democratic Presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg has once again openly invoked his faith in the political arena. In his latest remarks, “Mayor Pete” argued his religious beliefs drive him to envision a world without weaponry.
Speaking to a panel of leaders at a faith roundtable in Rock Hill, S.C. on Sunday, the Indiana politician declared that “the commitment to peace” is “such a core teaching of Jesus is also something that I think is a core goal of the right kind of American foreign policy.”
“It doesn’t mean that we ignore threats,” he qualified, according to the Washington Examiner. “It doesn’t mean that we unilaterally disarm. It doesn’t mean that we can move tomorrow toward a world with no weapons, although that is the world that we are called to envision.”
However, Buttigieg assured that “it does mean that we can take steps that will move us closer to that reality.”
The Afghanistan veteran, who is an active member of the Episcopal Church, went on to discuss “the politics of Jesus,” and addressed the Lord’s call for us to be peacemakers in the world (Matthew 5:9) and to love our enemies (Matthew 5:44).
Buttigieg related this to America’s decisions on foreign policy. “When it comes to our actions abroad, I think that in many ways, the question is how near can we approximate the radical teaching that we are to love our enemy,” he said. “I think the best we can come to it in our time is to see the humanity in our enemy and ask whether they must be our enemy.”
In a clip of the event posted to Twitter, Pete could be seen criticizing the current administration while using faith-loaded language.
We must “speak to the values that so many of us do derive from our faith,” Buttigieg urged, “and talk about what that might mean in the policy context, in the political space.”
“Right now, we have a situation where the actions that go on in this administration remind me of the scripture that says, “Whoever oppresses the poor taunts his neighbor,'” Buttigieg said.
“We have actions going on right now that afflict the afflicted and comfort the comfortable — they go against that strong current in every faith tradition to which I’ve been exposed, that commands us to concern ourselves with the most vulnerable, the most marginalized and to accept responsibility for lifting up those who are less fortunate and for seeing dignity in everyone.”
This is not the first time Buttigieg has called on his Christian faith to drive home a political point.
During his appearance at last month’s CNN “Climate Crisis” Town Hall event, Buttigieg said it was time to address the “very conservative places” and engage in frank dialogue about the threat of climate change.
“Let’s talk in language that is understood across the heartland about faith,” he explained to CNN’s Chris Cuomo. “If you believe that God is watching as poison is being belched into the air of creation, and people are being harmed by it — countries are at risk of vanishing in low-lying areas — what do you suppose God thinks of that? I bet He thinks it’s messed up.”
Buttigieg added that “eventually, it gets to the point where this is less about the planet as an abstract thing, and more about specific people suffering specific harm because of what we’re doing right now.”
“At least one way of talking about this,” he said, “is that it’s a kind of sin.”