Our election has come and gone.
Possibly the most significant thing Americans learned with this election
was the tremendous polarity and division that was revealed among our populace as the campaigning came to its conclusion. Regardless
of whether or not the voting itself was flawed or tampered with, we cannot deny that as citizens in our country we are not
united in our most important views. When the smoke and flames from the shock and awe of the election results cleared away,
from a wide range of news and commentary sources as well as voices of our citizen-voters we learned that the most powerfully
determining factor was that of "morale values."
On the surface, we are faced with the notion that the majority of this
country - possessing the higher values of morality that matter most - has finally spoken in rebuke of those in the minority
who apparently do not equate morale values in the same way.
On the surface we who did not vote then with the "morale majority" are
left to consider our ways, our values and our lifestyles as having been condemned or deemed "unrighteous." Even now at this
early post-election time pundits and politicians are advising the losing party to figure out a way to reach out to this indignant
moral majority by inserting god-talk into the dialogue in a meaningful way in order to make headway at the next election.
Liberal politicians and liberal political critics have been put on notice
that their disagreement with conservative political and religious values will not be as tolerated as it has in the past. This
past week on several occasions we witnessed this "putting on notice" by conservative politicians, pundits and conservative
Christian leaders who demonstrated aptly that they have been offended for a long time and "enough is enough."
Tempers flared, angry words were spoken on broadcast programs that revealed
more than just a sense of having voted their conscience and having rejected one candidate in favor of another. Resentment
was powerfully displayed; a humorless resentment that revealed just how powerfully offended this majority voting block has
been by the criticisms, satire, sarcastic humor and open political attacks on their religious beliefs and on a president they
deeply revere as their "Christian in the White House."
It appears that many of us were blind to this and sorely underestimated
the depth of that resentment. Decades of stand-up comedy that ridiculed the religious in the country is an example of what
has been simmering for a long time - an offendedness that finally boiled over into an almost blind willingness to ignore any
detailed examination or critique of Mr. Bush's presidency coupled with an unforgiving desire for what might be called the
ultimate repudiation of irresponsible, disrespectful and diminishing behavior.
Comedians have always had their best success when they cause us to laugh
at ourselves. An ignorant assumption that everything about our society was therefore "fair game" has resulted in a long-festering
and simmering resentment of having one's most cherished values belittled publicly. There are things, as I learned from my
wife long ago, that are flat-out just not funny.
We are then left with the circumstance of today in which one segment
of our society has risen in righteous rage to rebuke the other offending segment. Things ARE that black and white in this
country right now.
Today, liberal organizations, liberal Churches and liberal Christians
have been given the word that there is a more fundamental degree of righteousness that matters beyond the basic fundamental
concepts of Christ. Driven by radical Christian political power-mongers, whether intentionally or not, those voters who refused
to see the reality of the direction in which those power mongers want to take our nation will now face the consequences of
their personal decisions.
Voting against gays, abortion, evolution and in blind support of our
“Christian in the White House” was the easiest moral choice those voters – and we who voted against Mr.
Bush as well - will have to make. The moral choices will only become more difficult as time moves on. Things will not progress
more easily now that the majority has spoken.
Those who voted to affirm their support of the current political administration
have caused the entire electorate to assume an equal responsibility for all that America - a nation populated by a Christian
majority - has done in the past four years and what America - a nation now dominated by a Christian majority - will do in
the next four years. That is the real meaning of the need to understand what Mr. Kerry meant when he talked about a "global
As happens every four years, we as citizens are given the responsibility
to endorse or repudiate decisions and actions of our leaders. In so doing, every four years we send a message to the world
as to what this nation – founded as a consequences of groups of colonists seeking religious freedom itself - stands
for and will stand for in the coming years.
Although this election was never about the candidates of good versus
the candidates of evil, the majority of voters acted as if it were so. However, now we all will have to bear the glory or
the shame of that decision. In using the words "morale values" victorious political and religious pundits have had to admit
that those values centered on a current narrow range of concepts: abortion, gay marriage, and evolution.
Yet, morale values were also at the heart of the argument against re-electing
the president. He has not been dishonest or shy in proclaiming his sense of having been placed in the presidency by God nor
his intention to foster conservative corporate business and tax philosophies and a neocon philosophy of world domination.
Those who voted for him heard him repeatedly assert those dogmatic economic and political views. There are moral values inexorably
and directly connected to these philosophies as well.
Christianity, however, is more than narrow views of gays, abortion and
evolution. We have a significantly larger list of moral values that owe their origination to Jesus Christ.
An honest person realizes the implications of all convictions. Any who
proclaim moral values absolutely must address personally and publicly – when they speak out - how our nation reconciles
its thinking with the broader array of traditional Christian values. © Arthur Ruger 2004