Monday, January 11, 2010


I found this on A Conservative Blog for Peace, which is always a great read.

"What is ‘tolerant conservatism’?

Charity and discretion about people’s failings while at the same time not making excuses for those vices either.
Don’t ask, don’t tell, we give you your space and God forgives but we don’t teach that it’s not a sin."
(The man who coined the term? The Right Rev. Peter Robinson, Rector of St. Paul's Anglican Church, Prescott, AZ.)

I like this definition, except maybe for the "don't ask, don't tell" part. I need to think that bit over before I decide.

This weekend some core members of New Wave Femmes gathered to make signs for next weekend's Roe v. Wade memorial events in downtown Dallas. (There will be a memorial mass for the approximately 50,000,000 children killed in the U.S. since abortion was legalized in 1973, followed by a rally and a peaceful march to the federal courts building and back.)

It was a wonderful experience of fellowship for NWF, with probably too much wine. We spent hours discussing matters of faith, morals, womanhood, sex, hair dye, swearing, attractive monks, ghost hunting, bean dip, and more.

What came out of this evening of work and fun, other than attending Mass with a pounding headache, were some dynamic ideas about where New Wave Femmes is going and what the next year might have in store for us. Together we can do a great deal to help women and children, and the men who love them.

Later I'll be posting more about NWF, but meanwhile I am reflecting on the definition of "tolerant conservatism" and what it means for our organization.

While discussing what we should print on our signs for the rally and march, knowing that there will be press there and whatever we write might be on the 6 o'clock news, I found myself saying to the other girls: "Never apologize for telling the Truth." I want to capitalize truth because I do believe there is an objective Truth that exists independent of what (or whether) we think about it. While we want to be nurturing to people, to show them compassion and act always from love and kindness, we are only doing them a disservice if we lie to them.

That's why I like, for the most part, the term "tolerant conservatism" and the way it's defined. It is possible to love people and even understand why they do what they do without condoning it.

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