Although politicians often refer to family values, they rarely attempt to explain what they are. It seems that their moral leadership only goes so far.
Different families have different values, according to their ethnic background, religious beliefs and individual preference.
The question arises: Is it possible to speak of family values as if they were a homogenous commodity throughout the land?
While specific values may differ among families, a core commonality unites them all: a belief that human life is precious. If we really believe that, then the values we embrace will be decent, humane and interconnected.
Human life is precious. And we need to keep it that way.
It needs to be protected and nurtured with care. It needs the concerned dynamics of family support, a caring mother and father, loyal siblings, a community that looks beyond the immediate gains of profit to affirm what is good in us all.
There are nations where leaders do not consider human life to be precious. How many millions died in the last century alone to illustrate this fact?
In America, however, we say that are willing to fight to preserve our family values. We create laws that generally protect them. We have commissions and agencies and recreational programs that cater to the preservation of family. We also have soldiers who are trained to defend us, ready to put their lives on the line for the welfare of us all.
But in order to thrive, family values need a richer soil than laws and programs and a ready army. They need genuine compassion, concerned parenting, vigilance, open communication. They need love and meaningful traditions. Forgiveness. Freedom from greed. An atmosphere of friendship. Family values infer helping and tolerating one another, even our neighbors, for we all belong to a single family.
Seeds for Thought asks everyone to think about family values, and what they mean to us all. Speak out about them, without timidity. Question leaders about how their policies support family values. Remind them that family values is what humanity is all about.
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