For the past 20 years I have
toiled in the vineyards of two state legislatures: in California for 12 years
and now in Wisconsin for the past eight, along with occasional forays to the U.S.
Congress. In these arenas I have represented the interests of state councils of
churches, which are really the interests of those who don't have the time,
money or wherewithal to advocate for themselves: children, impoverished
families, working-class parents with low-paying jobs.
Recently representatives of Wisconsin Governor-elect Scott Walker asked me to assist with the Governor's Inaugural Prayer Breakfast in Madison. Walker, a young, dynamic conservative Republican and Christian evangelical who is the son of a Baptist minister, was swept into office last November in the anti-incumbent tidal wave that hit most of the nation.
Recently some huge billboards along British Columbia’s major roadways showed black-and-white photos of car wrecks—gashed and mangled metal, clouds of steam and smoke—all illumined under the luridness of fire, flares, searchlights and siren lights. The caption beneath the ads was as stark and grim as the photos: “Speed is killing us. Slow down and live.”