Democrat presidential candidate Kamala Harris, who is unapologetic in her support for abortion rights, told a gathering of left-leaning clergy and activists Monday that it is Jesus’ parable of the Good Samaritan that shapes her views on public policy.
Harris was the last of nine 2020 presidential hopefuls to speak at an all-day forum kicking off the three-day Moral Action Congress hosted by The Poor People’s Campaign, a coalition bridging like-minded people and organizations in all 50 states for a “national call for moral revival.”
The campaign focuses on issues that activists argue impact poverty in the United States, such as raising the minimum wage, climate change, voter suppression and access to health care.
“This is about morality, it is about what are our morals,” the 54-year-old California senator told those gathered at Trinity Washington University, a Catholic institution.
“It is about what is right, what are the teachings of Christ and other leaders who teach us the importance of living a life that is not about ourselves but about service to and for others.”
Harris explained that she was raised by parents who were active in the Civil Rights Movement and spent their time marching in the streets for justice and equality. She said she was taught early in her life that her purpose “should be about service to others.”
“So, I then put that into the context of what is morally right. I often think of the parable of the Good Samaritan because what the teachings are there from the book of Luke, it is about how do we define neighbor,” Harris stated.
“Everyone knows [we need to] live and treat our neighbor as we would want to be treated. But what I like about the parable of the Good Samaritan is that it’s about defining who is neighbor and understanding that neighbor is not about the person who shares your zip code.”
The parable, found in Luke 10, is one of Jesus’ most famous teachings laying out what a neighbor is and what a neighbor is supposed to do. The parable is told after Christ explains that his followers are called to love their neighbors as themselves. Christ was asked “who is my neighbor?”
While many people might think of neighbors as people who live in their community, Jesus pointed to the story of a feared foreigner who stopped to provide aid to a stranger who had been beaten and left for dead when a priest and a Levite did nothing to help.
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SOURCE: Christian Post, Samuel Smith