Welcome to SuperPatriots, a basic log created to allow people of all political stripes to read and comment on the politcal events shaping the United States of America. Whether you are conservative or progressive, an open, contructive dialog should be conducted, and SuperPatriots is the place for it.

Location: Pennsylvania, United States

I believe that America is the greatest country in the world, and I intend to do my part to keep it that way.

Friday, November 12, 2004

George Washington on Religion and Morality in America

If you have never read George Washington's farewell address to the public at the conclusion of his Presidency, this is a must read. I have provided a link below.

I think it is important to note that for a democratic Republic to succeed it's people must exist in a culture of religion and morality. A Republic requires the citizenry to have responsibility and accountability because of the many freedoms afforded to us by our Constitution. If we are unable to monitor our owns actions, the legislature is forced to create law that limits freedom. Our concept of right and wrong is based on religious teaching, and its these teachings that set a standard for all of us to live by.

Read George Washington's comments about this:

27 "Of all the dispositions and habits, which lead to political prosperity, Religion and Morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of Patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of Men and Citizens. The mere Politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them. A volume could not trace all their connexions with private and public felicity. Let it simply be asked, Where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths, which are the instruments of investigation in Courts of Justice? And let us with caution indulge the supposition, that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect, that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle."

You can find George Washington's farewell address here:

It's long but worth it.

Did Moral Values really win the election?

The media has drawn the conclusion that Bush won the Presidency mostly due to voters basing their choice on moral values. While I am sure that this may be true in some cases, I believe that this theory is only partially true, and in fact may not be any more true than in any other election.

Before any Republicans decide they want to rip me a new one, lets examine some facts. First, the political divide that seems to exist across this nation started in the 2000 election. The 2000 election was really a reaction to the prior administration of Clinton, where the public learned that morals did not play a huge role in Clinton's daily life. Bush promised a more disciplined and convicted White House, which believed that the country came first. Al Gore represented a carry-over of Clinton, something that did not sit particularly well with conservative Democrats. The moral values question was not asked in exit polling in 2000, so we cannot know for sure, but Bush carried many counties throughout the country by margins not seen since Reagan's victories.

So what happened this year that made his victory more dramatic? Karl Rove spent the last 4 years trying to find out from the religious community why their turnout was not what they anticipated in 2000. He organized a grassroots campaign to energize church-going voters, both Republican and Democrat. He generated that Reagan feeling among this community of voters, who number about 10 million. He pointed to the counter-culture that was behind John Kerry; MTV, Madonna, Michael Moore, Bruce Springsteen, as well as the normal democrat cultural forces such as abortion and gay-rights. He asked them a simple question: Are these the people you want running America?

Moral values is a very broad category of values. There are moral values such as fighting poverty, caring for the elderly, and creating cures for disease. Capitalism is a moral value. Yes, thats right - "evil" corporations work to provide products and services that improve our lives. So what if they make money doing it, that fact is that educated consumers can punish corporations that fall outside of the moral compass of their role in our society. Consumers have to be blamed if bad corporations continue to exist because they can organize to put them out of business.

The media cannot figure out how the Republicans can claim the high ground on moral values, particularly when the Democrats represent themselves as the party for the poor and helpless. The fact is these voters were making a standing on religious values, not moral values. This is an important distinction because the Democratic Party will now start trying to drive home the idea that they represent moral values better than Republicans. What they will be forgetting is that they do not represent the religious values that drove this victory for Bush.

Democrats have failed to embrace religious people, or more particularly, people who actually try to follow their faith. They have mocked Christians as hypocrites, mostly because they claim to be Christians, yet they continue to make mistakes. News Flash: Christians are human beings, and God knows they still make mistakes. Christians learn about the mercy of Christ through these mistakes, and they try to improve. Expecting Christians to be perfect because they are Christians is a weak reason to mock them.

If Democrats want to win next time around they had better reach out to Christians, and stop pandering to their extremist God-hating base by ignoring Christians. Christians just saw the power they wield in this election. They aren't about to give it up.