Reasoning Behind Giving the ACDP a Negative on Affirmative Action and a Yes/No on For Free Market Economy (Against Socialism)
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The Voters Guide is meant to be an objective evaluation of some of the leading parties using Biblical Principles. We are not here to be a voice for any particular party. We need to be constructively critical, so that parties will be provoked to re-evaluate their policies according to Biblical Principles.
Our director, Dr Peter Hammond, wrote the following response to JOY magazine, after the ACDP complained about the negative ratings we had given them on the two issues:
Dear JOY! Magazine
As you can see according to the attached correspondence, Africa Christian Action has been communicating for many years, concerning the disturbing trends in the ACDP. There is probably not another organisation in the country that has, for so many years, supported the ACDP so overwhelmingly. The ACDP leaders themselves have acknowledged themselves that they probably have obtained more votes through the SA Voters Guide and the work of Africa Christian Action than all other sources combined.
For this reason, when we saw the Manifesto 2014, we communicated urgently by letter, phone call, personally and in personal meetings with Kenneth Meshoe, Steve Swart and Cheryllyn Dudley. I personally and other members of Africa Christian Action, including Taryn and Mrs Scarborough sought to dissuade them from their inexplicable shift to socialist economic policies and racist BBBEE Affirmative Action race quotas.
We have stood as faithful friends and counsellors of the ACDP for many years. Yet integrity requires that we adjust the Voters Guides in keeping with the change in policies by the ACDP. As you will see from the attached correspondence, we have tried our utmost to communicate these concerns directly with the ACDP leadership on numerous occasions throughout 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017 and 2018.
We are glad to hear that the ACDP is now, at its most recent Manifesto launch, trying to distance itself from its previous support for Affirmative Action, but not even this goes far enough, but rather seems to be a play on words. Taryn’s communications with Audrey Bower makes clear that the ACDP still practically supports Affirmative Action/BBBEE although with a sunset clause and phasing out once its objectives had been achieved. Race quotas violate the Scriptural principles such as in Leviticus 24:22.
The whole purpose of the Biblical Issues Voters Guide is to provide a clear presentation on where parties stand on key issues. At a recent Back to the Bible Conference in KwaZulu Natal, Prince Mangosuthu Buthelezi publically expressed his support for the work of the Christian Action Network and the Votes Guide, even though the IFP received a generally negative score. It has led him to challenge his party, the IFP, to bring their policies more in line with Biblical principles, such as for capital punishment against murderers.
May God continue to bless, guide and strengthen you.
Yours for Faith and freedom
Dr. Peter Hammond
Here is the justification that we give on the www.SAvotersguide.org website for giving the ACDP a negative on Opposes Discrimination Based on Race (Affirmative Action):
In 2018, the ACDP changed their stance on Affirmative Action from supporting it with a “sunset clause” to:
“The ACDP would change the focus of Affirmative Action from previously disadvantaged to disadvantaged individuals. Because of the historic and current racial and socio-economic nature of poverty, the real focus of an Affirmative Action policy, based on disadvantaged, would not change dramatically from one that is race-based. However, this change in focus, away from the current racially discriminatory nature of Affirmative Action, will make it a social welfare issue.” Policy on Trade and Industry, ACDP Policy Document 2018
The problem with having Affirmative Action for the “currently disadvantaged” or based on personal economic status, is that the demographics of our country would still, by default, discriminate on the basis of race. There will (almost) always be lots more poorer black people applying for a job than coloured, indian or white.
The Voters’ Guide looks not only at the current stance of the party on a particular issue, but also their voting track record on Bills related to the issue, in this case Affirmative Action. This is important because it is essential to evaluate not just what a party or candidate says, but also what they do, or have done. The ACDP supported both the Employment Equity Act of 1998 and the Employment Equity Amendment Act of 2013.
We are aware that the ACDP apparently dropped all support for Affirmative Action at their NEC in February. We believe this was only due to pressure from some of their supporters. However, the ACDP leadership failed to communicate this with us directly. Considering their long-standing support for Affirmative Action and their voting track record we have thus decided to keep a negative rating for them on this issue on the Voters Guide.
In regards to giving the ACDP a “Yes/No” on: For Free Market Economy (Against Socialism):
It is correct that the ACDP supports the independence of business, private health care and the private ownership of property and property rights. However, from their 2019 Election Manifesto, the ACDP seems to support a system of taxation that is much higher than what the Bible teaches (any taxation as high as 10% is condemned as: “oppressive” 1 Samuel 8:10 - 18). They are not advocating any unique policies or means of alleviating the excessive tax burden on taxpayers (including VAT). (They do however, mention tax incentives for those wanting to start small businesses). Also, they support the existence of state-owned enterprises. “State-owned enterprises will be required to operate in open competition with private providers. They will ensure their continued existence by providing a superior service to the public.” (ACDP Manifesto 2018, Economy)
The ACDP claims that having a “social conscience” means that the government should fund schools, hospitals, social welfare grants and municipal “service delivery”. etc. (Although their Manifesto also states that they will support the existence of private Christian schools and homeschooling). However, Biblically it is not the government’s duty to fund such. The Bible is very clear that God has instituted civil government as “an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer” (Romans 13:4). The civil government is called to be a minister of God’s justice: “to punish those who do wrong” (1 Peter 2:14).
The ACDP also supported the Minimum Wage Bill of 2018. Minimum wage laws are effectively price controls set by the state. These laws prevent low skilled, young workers from getting a foot in the door to get experience. They can't produce enough to warrant them being paid the minimum wage so they remain unemployed. If it were a free market the rate of pay would be decided between employer and employee, no one else. I believe that these laws with our current unemployment crisis are just plain cruel. Minimum wage laws do not protect workers from exploitation.
The primary duties and responsibilities of civil government are the protection of law-abiding citizens and the punishment of law-breaking criminals. Psalm 101 reminds us that the duty of God-honouring rulers is to destroy the wicked, to root out evil and to protect the law abiding.
The only legitimate use of tax payers’ money is for law and order, justice and national defence. Everything else should be run by private enterprise and where necessary, churches or charities. Any state funding for more than justice and national defence is actually socialism. See Biblical Principles for Africa, Rebuilding Civilization on the Bible and Honest Money.