First I spent long moments trying to decide upon my greatest moral failing. Then I spent longer moments asking myself whether I'd really want to share that failing with an audience of millions.
So much for playing along at home.
By the time I was done agonizing, Hamlet-like, over that question, posed by Pastor Rick Warren during his televised presidential forum at Saddleback Church in Orange County, Calif., he had gone to a commercial.
Color me impressed, then, with both Sen. Barack Obama and Sen. John McCain for not stammering homina homina homina -- as I would have -- and promptly answering that and other toughies during last week's forum. And color me impressed with the program itself; it was that rare campaign appearance that imparted something of value.
Credit the decision to ask both men identical questions; it allowed voters to draw sharp comparisons and contrasts. Credit also the questions themselves, which were designed to elicit not 10-point plans and strategic visions but, rather, some sense of how a man's mind works, some inventory of his soul.
John McCain gave the more impressive performance. His answers were crisp and concise where Obama's were long and thoughtful. Where Obama navigated shifting shades of gray in answering questions about faith, gay marriage and the existence of evil, McCain's answers were as direct as an arrow in flight.
Take, for example, a question about when a fetus gets human rights.
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