My skin isn’t thick enough to endure criticism trailblazers like Harris, Pelosi, Gandhi, Meir, and Thatcher have had to suffer; but I have been inspired to follow in their footsteps, in my own ways. As Harris told Marie Claire magazine, “I want [young] women to know, you are powerful and your voice matters." Amen, Sisters. Amen.
We Modern Moderates have core values we try to uphold – and we expect our leaders to set a good example and uphold them, too. These values are neither Left- nor Right-Wing, and Democrats and Republicans should be able to agree on them (if nothing else). We believe they have stood the test of time and are essential for our democracy.
These values were ingrained in many Modern Moderates by parents, spiritual leaders, teachers, coaches, or other adults significant in our lives. No matter where they came from, however, they are precious to us and vital for our leaders. Here are some of them:
No surprise, moderation is Modern Moderates’ first core value. Not sexy perhaps, but a key to successful living – and leading. The idea “all things in moderation”, traced back to ancient Greece (c. 700 BC), has similar variations throughout history. In politics, it means extreme views are short-sighted and ineffective.
Always the best policy. From George Washington (“I cannot tell a lie”) to “Honest Abe” Lincoln, America has been served best by leaders who tell the truth. We reject recent assertions that there are “alternative facts” and “the truth is not the truth”. The Bible (Book of Ephesians, Chapter 4, Verse 25) says it best: “So then, putting away falsehood, let all of us speak the truth to our neighbors, for we are members of one another”.
“R-E-S-P-E-C-T, what that word means to me” (in tribute to the recently departed singer/civil rights icon Aretha Franklin). What it means to us: we should respect our fellow Americans and their beliefs, including those different from our own, and show them the respect they deserve. In return, we demand respect for our own views from those who disagree with us.
Major religions worldwide specify helping the poor, elderly and sick as a basic tenet of their faiths. Modern Moderates realize we have much to be thankful for, while many in America and around the world do not. We want our country to extend a helping hand to those less fortunate, and we want our leaders to display compassion on our behalf.
For now, these values give us a starting point for our discussions. See What We Value – Part 2 for more of our core values.
Finally, if we can agree these values are constructive, they could provide a foundation for working together. As Martin Luther King taught us, “We must learn to live together as brothers or perish together as fools”. We Modern Moderates believe these core values can help us live together – so we do not perish together.