I have good friends. They are in a mixed marriage: she's a Republican, he's a Democrat. Both take their respective affiliations seriously. They've always made their union of political opposites work. But this season, there is coolness in the political air.
I am grateful to have moved beyond the blinders of my family's politics. I am grateful to know my own mind, one that is progressive and liberal, and that neither of those are dirty words (and neither is conservative, for the record).
There aren't too many things that can be satisfactorily explained with a single, two-valued variable like left-right. And I never found satisfying a discussion of which of the Republican candidateswas farther right or who was more conservative.
By targeting risk factors and having specific solutions, we can expect to prevent most crime before we have to punish it. Be wary when you hear politicians promoting one-step solutions to crime. The real world is complicated and so are the solutions.
Rick Santorum is absolutely right that higher education is a liberal and secular force in our society at present. But he's also highly simplistic in his view that it creates liberals or atheists -- or that it intentionally discriminates against conservatives or the devout.
There is a policy myth is that churches and charities alone could take care of the problems of poverty -- especially if we slashed taxes. But this really has more to do with libertarian political ideology than good theology.
Despite gains made by the Republican Party, support for activist government remains very strong. Evidence from Gallup shows that Americans tend to be ideological conservatives but operational liberals.