Faith & Social Justice: In the spirit of Richard Overton and the 17th C. Levellers

Military Families Begin to Abandon Bush, the Iraq War, & the GOP

See the story in the Los Angeles Times here.  See the full Bloomberg poll here.  I suggest that this represents a new maturity in U.S. political discourse in some regards:  Peace activists, including pacifists, have managed to separate out their opposition to a war or to militarism from the appearance of disrespect for military personnel, their families, and their sacrifices.  One result is that war opposition is no longer immediately discounted as unpatriotic–a change from as recently as 2004. The poll shows that military families are no longer seeing Republicans as automatically more supportive of military personnel and families than Democrats, that the long barrier against former military personnel speaking out in opposition to sitting presidents, war policies, etc. has lifted, as has the barrier against military families speaking out against said policies. There is still a stigma attached to dissent from active duty personnel, but that is lessening.

We have a long way to go in promoting a culture of peacemaking and nonviolence, but these changes are to be welcomed.


December 7, 2007 - Posted by | Uncategorized


  1. This makes me think of Yoder’s suggestion in that Sojourners article that Christians might elect to vote for someone like Nixon in order to bring shame upon the nation. Sometime shame is necessary to bring about real change. That sounds dangerously like Friedman’s doctrine, but there’s a truth in it.

    Comment by Thom Stark | December 8, 2007

  2. I think that would be a very bad reason to have supported W (or Nixon).

    Comment by Michael Westmoreland-White | December 8, 2007

  3. I’m not sure that it would be support. And I don’t think Yoder was actually recommending it. The point is, maybe the disaster will change the minds of those whose minds otherwise could not have been changed. Maybe in some respects there’s a more fertile field today for the message of Christian nonviolence than there was five years ago.

    Comment by Thom Stark | December 8, 2007

  4. Hmm., actually Thom, I think that’s true–and an example of the way God can bring good out of evil. But what a price!

    Comment by Michael Westmoreland-White | December 8, 2007

  5. Indeed.

    Comment by Thom Stark | December 8, 2007

  6. And, notably, those that don’t abandon the GOP are flooding over to Ron Paul, the ardently anti-war candidate the GOP have.

    That graph never ceases to amaze me — getting 2x more in contributions than McCain says a lot.

    Comment by Robert Fischer | December 8, 2007

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