Just when I had begun to worry that I hadn’t been irritating the right people, a letter like this one arrives in my mailbox and all is well again…
Dear Mr. Bennett,
I must first tell you that I am one of those Liberals that is accused of everything negative there is on earth and heaven by Conservatives. They say I have no family values but I have been married for fifty years and have four children. Every night while my family was growing up we had meals together and talked together about all issues. Now two of my children have children of their own and have continued the traditions of our family. Yet, I am said to have no family values. I believe that if my 12 year old granddaughter is raped, the child should be aborted—I don’t believe in abortion as birth control but only in dire circumstances—it is a Choice [sic]. I am a Christian who believes that ministers should not espouse politics from the pulpit and I believe that there are other religions in the world that should get respect. I believe that guns should not be carried openly and that hand guns were designed to kill people and not hunt for food so yes, I believe in gun control. Our forefathers were talking about muskets and yes, I believe that all people should be allowed to carry muskets. My gay, not by choice but by nature, son and his partner have been together for 15 years. The child that they have adopted is happy and healthy and none of them is causing the world to collapse because of amoral behavior. So you see, we probably don’t have much in common.
I am writing because I have read your recent columns and I have been a bit disturbed by your column and the responses online to them. When returning to the area six months ago your church was recommended to me and I have not yet visited it but after reading your columns I see that you are a minister of only Republicans and are quite close-minded. You say that you are not but you were basically preaching hate when discussing the Mosque in NYC. Have you read the Koran? If you have you have seen that it doesn’t preach hatred but peace. Christians have had our share of terrorists but some of you writing openly forget to mention that. You mention Charleton [sic] Heston like he was a savior and I can truthfully say, because I lived not far from him before his death, that he was a narrow-minded thinker. You fail to mention that there are strip clubs close to ground zero but I guess you put nudity above Islam. Muslims were killed inside the towers, please remember that. A cultural center is what is being proposed. Writing as you do you bring out the (name redacted)’s of the world who have negativity for everything. He can’t believe Roseville would close a school so why not start his own. [sic] I was educated in the Monmouth system and the teachers I had taught me respect, kindness, values, and book-learning. Because I might be angry I would never start my own school or home school my children because of evil teachers in the system.
Your reference to Phil Hare—I watched You Tube and my reaction was that he was saying we don’t have to worry about the Constitution because health care is not a Constitutional issue it is a basic human issue. Health care for everyone so that we can all live not just those who are wealthy. Since returning to Illinois I have read everything I can about Hare and Schilling and I don’t agree completely with either but I would like to have Schilling show me how he will keep services and reduce taxes. How will he fund schools or should we all home school our children? It is one thing to say NO takes but how will we function without them. Look to some of the things that Hare has done and then wave your conservative flag.
I’m also greatly amazed at the “Take back our country” mantra. Who took it? Because Democrats are trying to make some changes and are confronted by the party of NO is that what is meant? Where were you when the Republicans were running up the debt and sending our children to war? The greatest attack on our soil came when Republicans were in control of the White House—do any of you conservatives remember that? Do we need to take back the country because a black man is president? Have you seen John McCann’s [sic] birth certificate from the hospital in Panama? I don’t have my original since it was lost in a fire but I do have copies. I suppose that you adore Sara [sic], not a full term governor who sought to earn more on speaking tours. How much do you really know about her? Are we becoming a country of nay-sayers and people who don’t value intellect—go Sara [sic]!
Since you are only a minister of one party I will not be attending your church and you are probably glad that you keep people with differing opinions out. Please try to get to know some of the people of other faiths so that you can truly be a spiritual leader and not a Conservative hack. God be with you.
Don’t ya just love it?