A Unique Republican Message

December 1, 2009 at 5:33 am Leave a comment

“If we don’t try to understand and respect others, how can we expect them to respect us, our values and our way of life?” But our own political practice belies anything remotely like “civility,” a word that Leach has as much a right to use as anyone in public life.

“Public officials,” Leach observed, “are being labeled ‘fascist’ or ‘communist.’

And more bizarrely, significant public figures have toyed with hints of history-blind radicalism — the notion of ‘secession.’ ” This last is a reference to Texas Gov. Rick Perry’s effort to ride to reelection by invoking a concept that we thought had been discredited in 1865.

“There is, after all, a difference between holding a particular tax or spending or health-care view,” he said, “and asserting that an American who supports another approach or is a member of a different political party is an advocate of an ‘ism’ of hate that encompasses gulags and concentration camps. One framework of thought defines rival ideas; the other, enemies.” As a result, “citizens of various philosophical persuasions are reflecting increased disrespect for fellow citizens and thus for modern-day democratic governance.”

 Jim Leach spent 30 years as a Republican member of Congress who went his own way.

A very good read: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/11/29/AR2009112902014.html?wpisrc=newsletter&wpisrc=newsletter&wpisrc=newsletter

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