December 22, 2004

Nick Kristof Undergoes Philosophy Expansion

Nick Kristof is a New York Times columnist who often seems to mne to be misguided, but likes to travel to out-of-the-way places, and shows in his columns that he has a big heart. He ponders here (free subscription) what he sees as the surprising paradox that Kansas Senator Sam Brownback, a man of both faith and right-wing pedigree, actually cares about the poor and human rights:

One of the most conservative, religious, fascinating - and, in many ways, admirable - politicians in America today is Sam Brownback, the senator from Kansas who is a leader of the Christian right.

Sure, Mr. Brownback is to the right of Attila the Hun, and I disagree with him on just about every major issue. But 'tis the season for brotherly love, so let me point to reasons for hope. Members of the Christian right, exemplified by Mr. Brownback, are the new internationalists, increasingly engaged in humanitarian causes abroad - thus creating opportunities for common ground between left and right on issues we all care about.

Perhaps uncharitably, I can't help wondering if many on the left don't care about a human rights issue unless it provides an opportunity for America-bashing, and certainly not if the human rights violators are soi-disant "anti-imperialists" or socialists, just as some on the right only used to talk about human rights when they could use the issue to bash communism.

Kristof is bemused, but impressed that Sen. Brownback actually believes and tries to put his faith into practice.

“There is more in heaven and earth, dear Horatio, than is dreamt of in your philosophy.”

And more than in mine.

The whole article is worth a read.

Merry Christmas, all.

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