Senator Says Families, Churches Carry Burden of Society's Problems

Article excerpt

Byline: Carla Labunski Daily Herald Staff Writer

Sen. Dan Coats returned to his alma mater Wheaton College Thursday night to deliver the third annual Kuyper Lecture, co-sponsored by the college and The Center for Public Justice.

The Indiana Republican told the near-capacity crowd in Edman Chapel that the most daunting problems of American society are best solved by the smaller institutions of family, charities and churches, not by a large central government.

But most important, he said, is for government to incorporate morality into public policy.

"Government can promote moral answers to human problems without favoring or sponsoring any one moral or religious vision," he said.

The Kuyper Lecture was established in 1995 to foster discussion of Christianity and contemporary cultural issues. The lecture series is named for Dutch scholar Abraham Kuyper.

Coats said that liberals confuse liberty with uncritical tolerance; yet the "liberty to do what is right ... is the form of liberty the founders wanted to encourage; without oppression, but also without apology. …