PTC Statement on Speaker Joe Straus’ Decision Not To Seek Re-election – Rev. Charles Foster Johnson, Executive Director

Rev. Charles Foster Johnson - Executive Director of Pastors for Texas Children

Rev. Charles Foster Johnson – Executive Director of Pastors for Texas Children

We receive the news today of Speaker Joe Straus’ decision not to seek re-election to the Texas House of Representatives with sadness that the Texas Legislature is losing a true statesman. But, our main response is one of profound gratitude for his remarkable tenure. Simply put, Joe Straus represents the best traditions of moral leadership in our Texas state government.

We are confident that he makes this decision in accordance with God’s guidance and his family’s best interests, and we wish him every abundant blessing on the journey ahead.  We thank God for the decency, integrity, and courage with which he has guided the people’s chamber.

But we cannot let this moment pass without sounding this alarm:  we are in deep moral crisis in our beloved State of Texas.

  • We pander to the basest fears, instead of the highest ideals, of the body politic.
  • We sow confusion and division among the people and do so under the delusion that God is on our side.
  • We flaunt clear constitutional mandates with impunity.
  • We lie without consequence and impugn the integrity of decent men and women, all for fleeting political gain,
  • We violate the public trust for personal profit.
  • We advance policies that benefit the few at the expense of the many.
  • We disenfranchise our fellow Texans as if they are not fit for democratic self-determination.
  • We enrich ourselves at the impoverishment of the poorest in our midst.
  • We spout “Lord, Lord” at every turn but have no interest in building the Kingdom of Love and Justice that our Lord commanded.

Though we are too puffed-up to see it, we are now under the judgement of Almighty God.

Let us repent.

Let us repudiate the politics of fear and distrust that has come to mark our public discourse and legislative decision-making.

Let your voice—if need be, the only voice—speak truth, equality, and justice for all Texans against the industry of lies and corruption that has become our politics.

Let us replace Joe Straus with a host of decent men and women dedicated to public service that pursues God’s Common Good for all God’s children.

We are Texans.

We can and must do better.