08/08/2004: Thought for the Day:
During a televised debate in the 1999 presidential primary in Iowa, the three Republican contenders, Steve Forbes, Alan Keyes, and George Bush, were asked what "political philosopher or thinker" had most influenced them and why. Forbes cited John Locke; Keyes, the Founding Fathers; and Bush, "Christ, because he changed my heart." In the clip of this moment that appears in The Jesus Factor, Bush's sincerity is evident; unfortunately, so is his intellectual poverty and lack of historical referents. We're told that he reads the Bible every day (the way some of us might read, say, the newspaper) and that he once brandished a copy of it during a speech on federal funding for faith-based charities, saying, "This is the only handbook you need. This handbook is a good go-by." As the Rev. Welton Gaddy, leader of a liberal Christian coalition, points out, in a nation founded on freedom of religious practice, promoting the Good Book as a manual for public policy is a disquieting choice. Especially since, of the $100 million so far dispensed to faith-based charities by the Bush administration, not one dollar has gone to a Jewish or Muslim organization.
Len on 08.08.04 @ 02:13 PM CST