There is a fundamental belief in people that if we can only put the right rules in place, people will change. The morals will trickle down from the top until we are all moral people.
Libertarians think that we have enough personal responsibility that we can self govern. And with fewer laws there will be fewer issues because we'll shoulder that responsibility once we have the option.
Republicans and democrats both seem to think that we can be personally responsible in some areas but not in others. So some things need governed and others we should choose. They both have different ideas of what those areas are and how much we need our hands held.
The Christian Reicht seems to believe that if they dictate every social act, people will quit offending them. I'm mean, quit sinning. We'll all become good, moral folk.
But people don't seem to realize that they're all assuming the same thing. With the right governing in place, we will become what they wish everyone was. From self responsible to biblically moral, they all think that they can change what people are. Some of their ideas are more or less offensive to their various followers, but their ideals are all the same.
People seem to have a real tendency to invert cause and effect. The people at the top reflect the people they rule. In America, this is because we're a democratic republic. We vote for people to make choices for us. We vote for people with our values so that their choices will not be too distasteful. They make their choices based on pleasing their constituents so that we will continue to vote for them. Family values do play an important part. What values we have dictate the chain all the way up.
The biggest driver for social change is economic change. Not laws or governing. What they are really trying to do is control the economics that will bring about the social changes they most want. If you think that family values mean a woman stays home with the children and the man works and runs the household, you need a financial situation that reflects that. A man has to be able to afford his family and childcare must be prohibitive to a female working. She should also be paid enough less that she is the logical choice to stay home.
So when someone says "return to traditional values", what they are saying is they want women to be paid less and childcare to be very expensive so that society has no choice but to have the man work while the woman stays at home. She also has to be forced into having children to tie her down, so contraceptives should be difficult and abortions illegal.
If you want everyone to have an equal voice, you want everyone to have equal income. Hence higher taxes on the rich and "fair" hiring laws. In order to have smaller government, you need more personal power, which means more personal wealth and buying power. Both are a catch-22: if you eliminate all competition so that everyone is the same, you also lose incentive for growth. If you push competition, you are going to have richer and poorer folk.
Here's another thing: people vote into office what they want. People want governed. They want told what to do. They want hand holding, coddling, and fairness. While a few of us might want smaller government, most people want big government. Huge government.
Once again, hearken back to nature. In all social animals, there are few leaders, many followers, and those followers need their leaders. They need to be told what to do and how to do it and don't survive well without that structure. There's a reason cultures are what they are. It's what is most needed. Anarchy is followed, gratefully, by monarchies and dictatorships. The first thing humans do when given freedom is to make rules. Tell young children to free play and they choose a leader who invents rules and everyone else follows them. This doesn't change as people age, only the form of game does.
So when people talk about family values, and laws to keep people safe, think about what they really want. It's a play on words for economic control. It's the morals of the people that dictate who is in office.
I get very tired of people bashing whoever is in charge for their choices when they are in charge, with those choices to make, because of all of OUR choices.
TED Talk on the need to believe, which I think is what influences our views on govvie.