In response to Rick Allison (Your Views, Jan. 5): What do “family values” have to do with respect and freedom? These are things that come from valuing individuals for their own sake. Yet those who've preached “family values” have always denounced the individual and asserted that the group — in this case, the family — is the proper basis for society. This makes “family values” a form of collectivism. As such, it's no different from any other form of collectivism.
What inspires self-respect and respect from others is an individual's value as something unique and unrepeatable, with his own character formed by his own choices — not whatever that person may be as part of some group. It's the requirements of the individual's rational nature that demands freedom. Respect for the individual and his rights led the Founding Fathers to create this country.
When individuals are told to negate themselves and reject their own value, they start down the path that turns some into monsters. For once they've rejected their own value, they're incapable of valuing anything else. And once they've rejected their own value, they will discard the freedom that comes with it.
Rob Abiera, Oklahoma City