Soul Of Plitics



As a political activist, Jim Wallis, the founder of Sojourner magazine, wrote an excellent book called The Soul of Politics: Beyond "Religious Right" and "Secular Left". In his book Wallis tells us about the problems afflicting our country and that they must be remedied. His title is accompanied by the phrase Beyond "Religious Right" and "Secular Left". By this he means his book is for everyone, not just liberals or conservatives, but for all people. The object of the book is to "address the spiritual center and the moral heart of our political discourse."
Politics in the United States has become dysfunctional. The government today has a liberal movement and a conservative movement, both usually working against each other so that nothing seems to get accomplished at Capital Hill. Liberals have no real moral values, it seems, and conservatives deny the structural injustice and oppression that is apparent in the United States. The social crisis that is upon us is bringing our country down. Wallis talks about a vision; he says that we need a new vision for our country or we will perish, for the author of Proverbs said, "Where there is no vision, the people will perish". Scary as that saying sounds it seems to be coming true. The inner cities of our nation are fast becoming, and most already are, areas that seem to have no hope and no where to go, where children are killing each other in the street and unemployment is becoming high because of no available jobs. Another problem that he describes is materialism that is fueled by our consumeristic society. Wallis says that, "The insatiable momentum of our consumerism will ultimately poison both our environment and our hearts unless we learn our right relationship to the earth and its abundance". At a quick glance at consumerism we think, "This is a good economy because people are spending and making money". But if you look deeper you can see the horrible consequences of a society that keeps with consumerism. We have more than we need, yet we have the urge to go out and buy more because our neighbor just bought a new car and we can\'t let him beat us. Or a commercial tells you that you have to have this new product, or without it you are "uncool". Gender issues are also a part of the book. He talks about a village that was turned into a Naval base, and that women were used by the military personnel. All these issues are at the core of why this country is becoming what it is, and Wallis gives us ways in which to deal with them.
I consider myself a conservative with some liberal twists, at least compared to the traditional conservative view. I have recently had the feeling that if this country continues on the path we are on, then it will fail. Many people live in total disregard to what is happening around them. This is part of the problem. People should become aware about the situation and try to help it any way that they can. Maybe they don\'t actually see what is happening around them, but how can they not know what is going on with the modern communications that we have? Either they don\'t see it or choose not to which is not good. I have always lived near heavily populated areas and have had friends that are greatly affected by the degradation of society. I don\'t know people that have lived in an actual ghetto area like Watts has, but they live in areas that are considered poor and are involved in gang oriented life. I have also had friends that lived in rich neighborhoods and still lived and loved the gang lifestyle. Their moral system is basically non-existent and their respect for the government is equally non-existent. I feel sorry for their situation they are in and wish there was some way in which I could help them. I have tried to talk to them about religion to no avail. Many of them do not believe in God, which I believe plays a big part for the reason of their morally deficient lifestyle. I agree with Wallis in that to help these people