Happy Sunday! I’ve read a couple of great columns in the last week about the U.S. Republican party’s ongoing eruptions of anti-women extremism but haven’t had a chance to blog about them. Well, let’s fix that!
First up is this piece by Thomas Friedman called “Why I Am Pro-Life”. It eloquently makes the point that conservative fixation with abortion is a phony baloney-slice of fake morality:
In my world, you don’t get to call yourself “pro-life” and be against common-sense gun control — like banning public access to the kind of semiautomatic assault rifle, designed for warfare, that was used recently in a Colorado theater. You don’t get to call yourself “pro-life” and want to shut down the Environmental Protection Agency, which ensures clean air and clean water, prevents childhood asthma, preserves biodiversity and combats climate change that could disrupt every life on the planet. You don’t get to call yourself “pro-life” and oppose programs like Head Start that provide basic education, health and nutrition for the most disadvantaged children. You can call yourself a “pro-conception-to-birth, indifferent-to-life conservative.” I will never refer to someone who pickets Planned Parenthood but lobbies against common-sense gun laws as “pro-life.”
The whole thing’s great and you’ve gotta read it. It’s a fine antidote to prairie dog’s rhetorical excesses.
David Frum has written a similar piece that might be even better (although it lacks the satisfying fury of Friedman’s column). In “Let’s Get Real About Abortions”, Frum says pro-choicers and anti-abortion foes are locked in a tedious and point-missing argument and draws the should-be-obvious conclusion that those who expect women to take on the enormous economic and personal costs of raising children have an obligation to help those women:
Abortion is a product of poverty and maternal distress. A woman who enjoys the most emotional and financial security and who has chosen the timing of her pregnancy will not choose abortion, even when abortion laws are liberal. A woman who is dominated, who is poor and who fears bearing the child is likely to find an abortion, even where abortion is restricted, as it was across the United States before 1965.
Or to put it another in prairie dog speak: “Hey anti-abortion freaks, guess what? Money talks, bullshit walks. If you want to cut the abortion rate it’s going to cost you cash–and if you’re not willing to pay up, then shut the fuck up”.
It’s a great read and you must check it out.
Funny thing: I have loathed–loooaaathed–David “axis of evil” Frum for most of my adult life. He’s been a relentless apologist for ridiculous wars, tax cuts and more tax cuts and free market solutions to everything. He’s never been a social conservative, though. Obviously, he’s come to the point where he’s realized that his one-time fellow travellers are demented and bent on taking conservative ideas to extreme and crazy places.
I can’t argue with anything Frum says here, though. It’s sure nice to see a conservative make the case for social programs. If more conservatives talked like this we’d have a more civilized society. And prairie dog wouldn’t be constantly calling Stephen Harper’s federal Conservatives a gibbering mob of morlock sociopaths.