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Mon May 14, 2012, 05:56 PM

Culture War Commencements

Obama's speech at Barnard and Romney's at Liberty were a stark illustration of their ideological differences

....this week all you have to do is read Barack Obama’s speech at Barnard and Mitt Romney’s at Liberty University to see a dichotomy as stark as the one on either side of a picket line...

It was how(Obama) talked about the Constitution, of which he said, “Yes, it had its flaws — flaws that this nation has strived to perfect over time. Questions of race and gender were unresolved. No woman’s signature graced the original document[.]” But, he added, “What made this document special was that it provided the space — the possibility — for those who had been left out of our charter to fight their way in. It provided people the language to appeal to principles and ideals that broadened democracy’s reach. It allowed for protest, and movements, and the dissemination of new ideas that would repeatedly, decade after decade, change the world — a constant forward movement that continues to this day.”

Contrast that with Romney at Liberty this weekend, in which he cited David Landes to declare that “Culture makes all the difference… . Central to America’s rise to global leadership is our Judeo-Christian tradition, with its vision of the goodness and possibilities of every life.” There was the purposeful declaration that “marriage is a relationship between one man and one woman,’ the shoutout to the anti-gay marriage Chick Fil-A founder and various clergy, the sermonizing.


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