Saturday, July 03, 2010

Preston Manning--Keeping faith and politics completely separate will become impossible

[Originally posted at Bene Diction Blogs On, June 18, 2010]

If you have read Marci McDonald's new book, you will recall that Preston Manning--the former Reform Party leader--is someone that she has misgivings about, which she shared at some length.

On Monday June 14, in a speech in Charlottetown, PEI, Manning said some interesting things when you keep in mind the comments that you read in The Armageddon Factor.

The local newspaper quotes him as saying:

“What (politicians) do in practice is keep faith and politics in two separate watertight compartments.”
There are a number of reasons for this, including pressure from party whips and officials for politicians to stay on message, the idea to appeal to the separation of church and state and to remain neutral in a multicultural society like Canada, Manning said.
“We simply don’t know how to handle expression of faith in the political arena,” he said.
However, considering Canada’s democratic society, this will likely not be the case forever, Manning said.
“In the long run, it is not possible to keep faith and politics in separate watertight compartments, not in a free and democratic society.”
The responsibility to make this change does not fall on those who feel the need to restrict faith discussions in political settings, Manning said.
“The initiative for legitimating the discussion of faith in the political arena has to come from those of us who believe and have faith.”


h/t to Ray Pennings who cites this too.