That’s the title of this week’s TAE Online column, hot off the presses. (I finished it about two hours ago. That’s what I call service. FWIW, Ben Kunkel here is just as good.)
Update: From Mark Tooley’s description of the setting of Obama’s speech, not to mention the statements of his fellow speakers, Obama emerges, by contrast, as a moral and theological/political giant.
Update #2: Im going to give Jon Schaff the last word. Beginning from Tooleys description of the event, and provoked (especially) by Marian Wright Edelmans speech, Jon has this to say:
Imagine a meeting of the religious right that used this kind of language? What would we read about them? The claims to moral superiority. The belief that their policy preferences have been endorsed by God. The depiction of their opponents as "weasels."
It seems the honest way to have these debates is as follows. The left can claim accurately that Christ wants us to care for the poor. They can then claim that in their opinion a large welfare state is the best way to obey that commandment. That is different from saying Christ wants a large welfare state. Christ tells us to care for the poor, but he is agnostic on how to go about it. Likewise, all agree that Christ wants us to care for the weakest among us. Religious conservatives believe that includes the unborn. So lets have a debate about what we owe, if anything, to the unborn.
Barack Obama would have to concede that those are "fair-minded words," unlike the ones apparently uttered by Edelman.