Short Views

The Inevitability of National Politics

Many conservatives have become disenchanted with national politics.  This disenchantment is understandable.  Strong support for Republicans seeking the White House and seats in Congress has done little to conserve the type of society most of those voting Republican wanted to conserve.  By almost any measure, American society has moved steadily leftward in recent decades.  Social conservatives, in particular, have little to show for voting for Republican presidential and congressional candidates: Roe v. Wade, written by a Nixon appointee, remains the law of the land, and a Reagan appointee wrote the decision requiring all states to recognize gay marriage, something that seemed unthinkable as recently as 2004, when George W. Bush’s re-election was aided by a string of statewide referenda against gay marriage.  In addition, there is no denying that national politics has become increasingly ugly.

Rather than waste their efforts on national politics, some now argue, conservatives should focus their political energy on the local communities in which they live and expend most of their energy on the task of preserving and transmitting what remains of traditional American culture, including the Christian beliefs that helped build that culture.  As understandable as the conservative disenchantment with national politics is, though, a tactical retreat from national politics poses dangers...

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