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I feel shocked when I hear that moral values are why people re-elected President Bush. The faith tradition that is so integral to my life taught me that taking another life is immoral, whether it is an American or an Iraqi. It astounds me that we are talking morality in this country without questioning the ethics of having avenged the deaths on 9/1 1 by killing innocent Iraqis. Never mind that the 9/1 1 report states that Iraq had nothing to do with that day. I have never felt so alienated by 51 percent of my countrymen.

Are we really reclaiming our moral high ground by prohibiting gay marriages? My faith tradition has challenged me to be tolerant. A cultural divide is what they are calling this. And maybe they are right. There is a cultural divide in this country when fundamental issues of morality -- whether people can feed and clothe their families and the taking of innocent lives -- are ignored.

I feel sad today for our country because I know that we have it in our hearts to care about more.

Maureen Heffern Ponicki

Town of Tonawanda

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