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Friday, September 22, 2006

Kerry's context

NEWTON

Scott Haile of Newtonville writes in a letter to the editor that a key piece of context was missing from a Globe article ("Kerry urges cooperation to reduce abortions") about Senator John Kerry's recent speech on abortion. Namely, that Kerry was speaking at Pepperdine University, a conservative Christian institution.

In a context where many in his audience believe abortion to be morally wrong, it makes perfect sense for Kerry to emphasize his own opposition to abortion while encouraging consideration of a different political response to that belief. Understanding the context of the senator's speech's might give us pause before we question his motives for bringing up religion -- although, of course, his acceptance of the speaking engagement at Pepperdine could have been aimed at raising just that issue.

Does the context of Kerry's speech matter? Was he trying to open minds or was he pandering? The discussion is joined in the Globe West Message Boards.

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