I heard Chris Matthews say something that really annoyed me. I don’t know the exact quote, but he said Democrats are the party of compassion and Republicans are the party of morality.
He was specifically talking about the Mark Foley scandal (yes it is a scandal – if Republican leadership sat on it for two or three years, as has been reported, to protect their power as a group, rather than people – kids actually, it is definitely a Republican scandal) implying that this will really damage their party as a whole.
The real problem I have with that comment isn’t that the Republican party only talks morality to woo the religious right, rather than lives morally, it is that compassion is moral.
Jesus taught us to be compassionate toward the poor, the despised, the “least of these.” It is not moral to expound tax breaks for the rich to help build a business. It is moral to give as much as we can to those who need our help, and while it may not be a perfect solution, the government and the taxes we pay to support it are what we have to do that right now.
Morality and compassion are intertwined and cannot be separated.