What Part Of "Shall Not Be Infringed" Don't You Understand, Senator?
In her brief time in the national spotlight, Republican Vice Presidential candidate Sarah Palin, if nothing else, has rejuvenated the debate in this country regarding certain fundamental values. Interestingly, not all of this stems directly from the candidate's spoken statements but rather from a number of comments made about her by her Democratic counterpart Senator Joseph Biden.
From comments made on Fox and Friends mentioned in an Associated Press article titled “Biden says Palin family is off limits to critics”, voters learn that, to the Delaware Senator, government and politics are the ultimate and perhaps only source of values, truth, and hope.
In analyzing Palin’s acceptance speech, Biden remarked, “I didn’t hear the phrase ‘middle class’ mentioned. I didn’t hear a word about healthcare. I didn’t hear a word about what we’re going to do about the housing crisis, college education, and all the things that the middle class is being burdened by now.”
Maybe these things were not mentioned because for the most part they are not much of the government’s business. If anything, government involvement for the most part tends to exacerbate the problems in these perplexing areas.
For example, why is it the government’s responsibility (and thus ultimately the taxpayer’s) to bail you out of bad real estate investments? By subsidizing education to such an extent where it is available to just about everyone whether they really want it or not, its value has been undermined to the point where a bachelor’s degree may actually signify less actual learning than a high school diploma from previous generations.
Traditionally each social sphere oversaw the affairs in its own domain and exercised caution when venturing into the waters overseen by the neighboring spheres (especially if the one doing the intruding was the government). However, to liberals such as Biden, now as the government reaches into additional corners of our lives in the name of supposedly making our lives better, ultimately government and politics will be the only sphere that remains or be the sphere that ends up controlling all the others even it terms of the attitudes that these institutions will be permitted to express.
If the Obama campaign wants to refrain from commenting on the propriety of the daughter of a Vice Presidential candidate being expectant with child outside the bounds of marriage, that is the prerogative of the Obama campaign. After all, there are platoons of the far more deviant in the Democratic Party such as Chelsea Clinton who has been shacked up for years living in what used to be called “sin”.
However, though Obama might think he hands down stone tablets from on high with Biden taking them to the people as some kind of 21st century Moses, to say what the press and the people can and cannot discuss hints at a theoretical usurpation of the First Amendment even more offensive than an out of wedlock pregnancy or a recalcitrant segment of the public that does not sweep under the rug the moral values they have been taught simply because they have become an inconvenience to the elites that have set themselves up on a level above the rest of us.
The American people, through opinion-forming institutions such as the media, churches and now the blogosphere, must be the ones to decide for themselves this weighty ethical concern. For while the only right decision is to keep the baby, there are some so progressive in their outlook that they would ship to a Khmer Rouge-style reeducation camp anyone that does not reflexively embrace these new reproductive fads where the baby shower. To some of us, to takes a while to debate the consequences for any potential parental shortcomings when minors become parents before they properly ought.
There is indeed forgiveness and restoration in Christ. However, most of the time those stepping into these challenges are not up for consideration for one of the nation’s most solemn offices.
Frederick Meekins is an independent theologian and social critic. Frederick holds a BS in Political Science/History, a MA in Apologetics/Christian Philosophy from Trinity Theological Seminary, and a PhD. in Christian Apologetics from Newburgh Theological Seminary.