‘Values’ not housed in any one political party

To the editor:

There is little doubt that the moral issues of abortion and gay marriage played a key role in President Bush winning re-election.

Indeed, Shirley Preuss’ somewhat hyperbolic Dec. 9th letter to the Call exemplified conservative Christians’ fervor in their voting for the president.

Those of such persuasion are reminded that “values” are not confined to the issue de jour served by the Republican National Committee and/or Rush Limbaugh. Home-lessness, hunger and lack of affordable health care hold no less moral implications.

We are the wealthiest country ever to occupy a spot on this planet. Yet basic human dignity is a dream unfulfilled for so many Americans as the disparity between rich and poor grows ever wider in the name of supply-side economics.

Today we are occupiers of a nation we invaded, doing so for the first time in our history without a clear and present danger with which to claim any moral license. The United States just lost its 1,000th soldier in a war predicated on false information and dogmatic ideology

This administration’s treatment of war prisoners has bordered on, if not outright violated, war crimes. Such is the foundation of sand on which the Bush Admin-istration builds its house for a second term.

It is interesting to note what distinguishes abortion and gay rights from those pesky “bleeding heart” social issues like peace and feeding poor people. Those opposing abortion and gay marriage need only focus attention on the behavior of others, with little self-sacrifice involved. To shelter the homeless, feed the hungry, and heal the sick means I might actually — gasp — have to give up something.

What a convenience it is to claim the moral high ground by merely focusing on the bad behavior of the abortion provider and the gay couple. Where so many conservatives dare not apply a moral litmus test is when it is staring them back in the mirror and in the pocketbook, primarily in the form of taxes for social programs.

“Values” are not exclusively housed on the corner of gay and abortion nor in any one political party or religious denomination. To presume a political party, or president, has the unconditional favor of God is to return to a medieval mentality which in-variably leads to repression and loss of freedom.

Our founding fathers knew this all too well.

Brett A. Boyle