This election is highlighting a troubling path for our nation

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This election isn't just highlighting a clear difference of opinion between competing political campaigns. It is revealing a troubling rip in the fabric of the basic beliefs America used to collectively hold.

Our No. 1 constitutional right to freedom of religion is being challenged, as the Christians among us demand control of the political agenda. The role of our military as a means of defending us is being transformed into a belief that America can use military might to force other nations to conform to our ideas of how they should run their nations. The accepted belief that taxes should be set according to one's ability to pay is now being spun upside down as the wealthy demand lower tax rates based on how valuable they feel they are to our economic success. Our traditional encouragement of those at the lower rungs of the ladder is now being changed into a view that the working poor are moochers and should be ridiculed and left behind.

Our long-held belief that universal education is an investment so our society can have the skills necessary to grow and succeed is being replaced with the idea that education will go only to those who can afford it.

Fifty-one percent of our population, women, now have to fight for control of their reproductive health, as a new wave of men seek to dictate decisions we once believed belonged to women, their doctors and their families. In the name of a hypocritical concern about deficit reduction, we seem poised to throw away the entire social safety net we have built for the working poor, the middle class and our elderly, so the wealthiest 1 percent can have it all.

To put it bluntly, we are voting our way into a war-mongering theocracy that will have only rich and poor classes. How ironic that we are doing this in the name of Jesus, democracy and freedom.

IKE GITTLEN
Mt. Lebanon


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