July 31, 2004

Defending Polarization  ...but not propaganda

I received an interesting email today from a gentleman who suggested there needs to be a re-emphasis of style over content in religious institutions and political parties. He equated George Weigel and Garry Wills, calling them "absolutists".

I agree that style needs to be re-emphasized, but only in the service of content. The content in the case of an abortion is a dead child, and we owe that child not only our speaking, but our speaking in a style that is persuasive and will woo and not repel those who are on the fence. That's why I like FFL which doesn't demonize opponents but explains how pro-life is pro-woman, and doesn't make religious arguments (i.e. Truth capital 'T') but broader ones (truth, small 't').

Christ was a polarizer, but he never engaged in untruths, half-truths or propaganda in seeking his end. Just as God uses flawed individuals to effect his will, I believe he can use the flawed - though superior to the alternative - Republican party also. It's the increase in half-truths and propaganda in the parties that is worrisome, not the polarization between them.

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