We all know how the Republican Revolution swept into congress in 1994 largely because of the very carefully crafted and packaged “Contract with America.” While the intent may have been good, their vision of America and its values left much to be desired.
Michael Lerner, editor of Tikkun and a leader of the Network of Spiritual Progressives, realizes the value of such a statement of principles and vision. He has drafted “A Spiritual Covenant with America,” a covenant which better reflects Christian values and responsibilities than did the Contract of the conservatives.
As he notes in his introduction to the Covenant,
America needs a New Bottom Line, one which judges institutions, corporations, legislation, social practices, our health care system, our education system, our legal system, our social policies not only by how much money or power they generate, but also by how much love and compassion, kindness and generosity, ethical and ecological sensitivity, and by how much they nurture within us our capacity to respond to other human beings as embodiments of the sacred and to respond to the universe with gratitude, awe and wonder at the grandeur of all that is.
The Spiritual Covenant with America is one way to translate that New Bottom Line into policies for our society. The “we” is all those who will embrace this New Bottom Line.
While I do not agree with all of his takes on mainstream liberalism (Liberals do not disregard personal responsibility; the conservatives have merely repeated the charge so often that mainstream America believes it is true, and the liberals have not effectively denied that charge), his stands do indeed better reflect the liberalism which I hold and which is consistent with the doctrines of the Gospel.