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McMorrow's moral leadership
A state senator from Michigan is showing us what strength that is neither angry nor mean can look like.
Yesterday, Michigan State Senator Mallory McMorrow was falsely and viciously attacked by name by a colleague in a fundraising email, and she responded. Not in kind, not with moralizing, holier-than-thou anything (and yes, that is a fine line), but she responded with a deep-seeded moral conviction in the power and value of serving others, of equality at the center of civic life, and (I believe) spoke directly, face-to-face to her accuser in the statehouse chamber without flinching, grandstanding, or equivocating:
I talk and write often about the lack of moral clarity and conviction in the Democratic Party. Sometimes we avoid moral arguments because they deserve to be ignored and are distractions from the work of public service. But too often we seem to avoid moral arguments because somehow “moral” feels too close to “religious” for the increasingly urban secular community within the broader liberal movement or because we fear our moral worldview might alienate others. In fact, a genuinely liberal, abundant, empathetic worldview includes more people in our cause as opposed to narrowly circumscribing “American” and pointing at “others” for our limitations, failings, or frustrations. The idea that moral leadership is somehow not a “kitchen table issue” is offensive. When anyone is hatefully attacked, we need to come to their defense with a strong moral heart, not by changing the subject, dismissing the attacks as insane or absurd, or leaning on the safe but fallacious idea that ours is the obvious, rational course.
I urge you to watch the whole thing (it’s only 5 minutes). There’s plenty to critique. It is not a perfect strategic response, but it represents a clear example for the sort of kind toughness that Democrats must embody if we are to be trusted and believed as the party seeking to build and serve everyone, everywhere.
For those new to 7 Bridges, welcome! Generally, weekdays are for quicker, often in-process thoughts or things I just want to share (like this one), and weekend editions are for deeper explorations. More guest essays are on the way, too.
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