NewburyportNews.com, Newburyport, MA

Opinion

March 8, 2014

Avoiding the wedge issues in GOP platform

(Continued)

A local Facebook friend, Brad White, in response to my horror at seeing the Republican State Committee platform drag out these losing issues, wrote this:

“The social issues are by and large wedge issues, useful to divide, useless to unite even by mild agreement ... I am not suggesting that those with strong views on either side abandon their principles for the sake of winning elections. Rather I am suggesting that one consider the role of government in a free society and the use of government to enforce what are, at their core, founded mostly in religious objection. I may feel strongly about certain things that annoy me, but I have no right to ask that government force be used to satisfy my peeves, however strongly held.

“I am also suggesting that if you feel strongly about an issue … you work to correct that in the secular realm, let people come to their own minds over time by persuasion and not force…

“Instead, turn to the core aspects of limited government, fiscal restraint, integrity and transparency and defense of the individual, not their destruction. When one side of the party preaches smaller, more efficient government but insists on giving that government power and control over private decisions, you have put fear in place of hope.”

I couldn’t have said it better, which is why I didn’t try. All I can do is urge everyone who wants a better-run Massachusetts and hope-inspiring America to ignore the very small group of activist Republicans who push these intolerant and losing platform planks, and to disregard the Democrat lies about the Republican candidates who do not take these positions. I’ll be voting for whoever reflects traditional Republican values as stated in the platform preamble: the power of the individual against the power of unaccountable, uncontrolled government.

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Barbara Anderson of Marblehead is president of Citizens for Limited Taxation.

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