Roe v. Wade backlash myth clouds real history of state’s rights and segregated schools

I believe that there are programs like that, programs like education and others, that should be turned back to the states and the local communities with the tax sources to fund them, and let the people [applause drowns out end of statement].

I believe in state’s rights; I believe in people doing as much as they can for themselves at the community level and at the private level. And I believe that we’ve distorted the balance of our government today by giving powers that were never intended in the Constitution to that federal establishment. And if I do get the job I’m looking for, I’m going to devote myself to trying to reorder those priorities and to restore to the states and local communities those functions which properly belong there.

Ronald Reagan, August 3, 1980, near Philadelphia, Miss.

Ronald Reagan kicked off his campaign for president in 1980 with a speech at the Neshoba County Fair near Philadelphia, Mississippi. It was his first public speech since his nomination at the Republican Convention.

And, like the speech he gave at that convention accepting his nomination, it never mentioned abortion.

It was, instead, about “state’s rights.” And no, the choice to give this speech near Philadelphia, Miss., was not a coincidence.

This was seven years after Roe v. Wade, and no huge backlash against that decision could be detected in Reagan’s campaign or in the groundswell of white evangelical support bolstering his run for the White House. You can’t find a hint of that in either speech and you won’t find much more than a hint of that in the 1980 election.

If evangelicals recoiled in moral horror after Roe v. Wade, as Al Mohler asserts, they did so very quietly and almost imperceptibly throughout the 1970s.

White evangelicals certainly were upset with the U.S. Supreme Court in those years, and Roe fit broadly into the pattern of the decisions about which white evangelicals were angry. But that anger wasn’t about abortion at all. That anger was about — to borrow Reagan’s preferred euphemism — “state’s rights.” It was about the belief that “that we’ve distorted the balance of our government today by giving powers that were never intended in the Constitution to that federal establishment.”

It was about white evangelicals’  desire to run tax-exempt private schools without federal interference.

Roe was a scarcely noticed footnote to the list of Supreme Court decisions that white evangelicals believed had, in Reagan’s words “distorted the balance of our government,” overriding their “state’s rights” in a way that was “incompatible with the sovereignty of the States, and of the Constitution itself.”

Mohler’s column reiterates what religious historian Randall Balmer calls “the abortion myth” — the creation story of the Religious Right:

Roe was the catalyst for the moral revolution within evangelicalism. The reality of abortion on demand and exposure to the logic of the abortion rights movement led to a fundamental shift in the evangelical conscience.

No it wasn’t. No it didn’t.

Look, we’re not talking about competing interpretations of ancient history. We’re talking about the 1970s. Mohler is 53 years old. He was there. The Bicentennial, Disco, Star Wars, Mr. October, Fonzie on water skis. He’s old enough to remember all of those things, and so he’s old enough to remember that the big flip-flop on legal abortion he calls “a fundamental shift in the evangelical conscience” came after the political realignment of “state’s rights” evangelicals, not before it.

I argue that white evangelicals’ reversal on abortion politics is a consequence of the political realignment that preceded it. It’s possible to disagree with that argument, but it’s not possible to argue — as Mohler does — that this reversal caused something that preceded it.

Balmer discusses the actual, rather than the mythic, origins of the religious right in his book Thy Kingdom Come, from which I’ve typed in the big excerpt below:

In the 1980s, in order to solidify the shift from divorce to abortion, the Religious Right constructed an abortion myth, one accepted by most Americans as true. Simply put, the abortion myth is this: Leaders of the Religious Right would have us believe that their movement began in direct response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s 1973 Roe v. Wade decision. Politically conservative evangelical leaders were so morally outraged by the ruling that they instantly shed their apolitical stupor in order to mobilize politically in defense of the sanctity of life. Most of these leaders did so reluctantly and at great personal sacrifice, risking the obloquy of their congregants and the contempt of liberals and “secular humanists,” who were trying their best to ruin America. But these selfless, courageous leaders of the Religious Right, inspired by the opponents of slavery in the 19th century, trudged dutifully into battle in order to defend those innocent unborn children, newly endangered by the Supreme Court’s misguided Roe decision.

It’s a compelling story, no question about it. Except for one thing: It isn’t true.

Although various Roman Catholic groups denounced the ruling, and Christianity Today complained that the Roe decision “runs counter to the moral teachings of Christianity through the ages but also to the moral sense of the American people,” the vast majority of evangelical leaders said virtually nothing about it; many of those who did comment actually applauded the decision. W. Barry Garrett of Baptist Press wrote, “Religious liberty, human equality and justice are advanced by the Supreme Court abortion decision.” Indeed, even before the Roe decision, the messengers (delegates) to the 1971 Southern Baptist Convention gathering in St. Louis, Missouri, adopted a resolution that stated, “we call upon Southern Baptists to work for legislation that will allow the possibility of abortion under such conditions as rape, incest, clear evidence of severe fetal deformity, and carefully ascertained evidence of the likelihood of damage to the emotional, mental, and physical health of the mother.” W.A. Criswell, former president of the Southern Baptist Convention and pastor of First Baptist Church in Dallas, Texas, expressed his satisfaction with the Roe v. Wade ruling. “I have always felt that it was only after a child was born and had a life separate from its mother that it became an individual person,” the redoubtable fundamentalist declared, “and it has always, therefore, seemed to me that what is best for the mother and for the future should be allowed.”

The Religious Right’s self-portrayal as mobilizing in response to the Roe decision was so pervasive among evangelicals that few questioned it. But my attendance at an unusual gathering in Washington, D.C., finally alerted me to the abortion myth. In November 1990, for reasons that I still don’t entirely understand, I was invited to attend a conference in Washington sponsored by the Ethics and Public Policy Center, a Religious Right organization (though I didn’t realize it at the time). I soon found myself in a conference room with a couple of dozen people, including Ralph Reed, then head of the Christian Coalition; Carl F.H. Henry, an evangelical theologian; Tom Minnery of Focus on the Family; Donald Wildmon, head of the American Family Association; Richard Land of the Southern Baptist Convention; and Edward G. Dobson, pastor of an evangelical church in Grand Rapids, Michigan, and formerly one of Jerry Falwell’s acolytes at Moral Majority. Paul M. Weyrich, a longtime conservative activist, head of what is now called the Free Congress Foundation, and one of the architects of the Religious Right in the late 1970s, was also there.

In the course of the sessions, Weyrich tried to make a point to his Religious Right brethren (no women attended the conference, as I recall). Let’s remember, he said animatedly, that the Religious Right did not come together in response to the Roe decision. No, Weyrich insisted, what got us going as a political movement was the attempt on the part of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) to rescind the tax-exempt status of Bob Jones University because of its racially discriminatory policies.

Bob Jones University was one target of a broader attempt by the federal government to enforce the provisions of the Civil Rights Act of 1964. Several agencies, including the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, had sought to penalize schools for failure to abide by antisegregation provisions. A court case in 1972, Green v. Connally, produced a ruling that any institution that practiced segregation was not, by definition, a charitable institution and, therefore, no longer qualified for tax-exempt standing.

The IRS sought to revoke the tax-exempt status of Bob Jones University in 1975 because the school’s regulations forbade interracial dating; African Americans, in fact, had been denied admission altogether until 1971, and it took another four years before unmarried African Americans were allowed to enroll. The university filed suit to retain its tax-exempt status, although that suit would not reach the Supreme Court until 1983. …

Initially, I found Weyrich’s admission jarring. He declared, in effect, that the origins of the Religious Right lay in Green v. Connally rather than Roe v. Wade. I quickly concluded, however, that his story made a great deal of sense. When I was growing up within the evangelical subculture, there was an unmistakably defensive cast to evangelicalism. I recall many presidents of colleges or Bible institutes coming through our churches to recruit students and to raise money. One of their recurrent themes was, We don’t accept federal money, so the government can’t tell us how to run our shop — whom to hire or fire or what kind of rules to live by. The IRS attempt to deny tax-exempt status to segregated private schools, then, represented an assault on the evangelical subculture, something that raised an alarm among many evangelical leaders, who mobilized against it.

For his part, Weyrich saw the evangelical discontent over the Bob Jones case as the opening he was looking for to start a new conservative movement using evangelicals as foot soldiers. Although both the Green decision of 1972 and the IRS action against Bob Jones University in 1975 predated Jimmy Carter’s presidency, Weyrich succeeded in blaming Carter for efforts to revoke the tax-exempt status of segregated Christian schools. He recruited James Dobson and Jerry Falwell to the cause, the latter of whom complained, “In some states it’s easier to open a massage parlor than to open a Christian school.”

Weyrich, whose conservative activism dates at least as far back as the Barry Goldwater campaign in 1964, had been trying for years to energize evangelical voters over school prayer, abortion, or the proposed equal rights amendment to the Constitution. “I was trying to get those people interested in those issues and I utterly failed,” he recalled in an interview in the early 1990s. “What changed their mind was Jimmy Carter’s intervention against the Christian schools, trying to deny them tax-exempt status on the basis of so-called de facto segregation.”

During the meeting in Washington, D.C., Weyrich went on to characterize the leaders of the Religious Right as reluctant to take up the abortion cause even close to a decade after the Roe ruling. … “What cause the movement to surface,” Weyrich reiterated, “was the federal government’s moves against Christian schools.” The IRS threat against segregated schools, he said, “enraged the Christian community.” That, not abortion, according to Weyrich, was what galvanized politically conservative evangelicals into the Religious Right and goaded them into action. “It was not the other things,” he said.

Ed Dobson, Falwell’s erstwhile associate, corroborated Weyrich’s account during the ensuing discussion. “The Religious New Right did not start because of a concern about abortion,” Dobson said. “I sat in the smoke-filled back room with the Moral Majority, and I frankly do not remember abortion ever being mentioned as a reason why we ought to do something.”

… The abortion myth serves as a convenient fiction because it suggests noble and altruistic motives behind the formation of the Religious Right. But it is highly disingenuous and renders absurd the argument of the leaders of the Religious Right that, in defending the rights of the unborn, they are the “new abolitionists.” The Religious Right arose as a political movement for the purpose, effectively, of defending racial discrimination at Bob Jones University and at other segregated schools. Whereas evangelical abolitionists of the 19th century sought freedom for African Americans, the Religious Right of the late 20th century organized to perpetuate racial discrimination.

  • LL

    Yeah, this (Fred’s post).

     The thing is, their rewriting of fairly recent history will probably work on a lot of people. For fuck’s sake, there are people now who (supposedly) think the Sandy Hook school shootings were an elaborate government conspiracy, and that was a little more than a month ago (don’t ask me how this came about, it doesn’t make any effing sense). So there’s all this stupid shit on the internet about the “Sandy Hook conspiracy,” and 15 years from now, some idiot will read it and tell all his friends (or if he works for some news organization, assuming those still exist 15 years from now, he’ll write/broadcast a story about it) that the Sandy Hook conspiracy still fascinates people and there are lots of people who disagree on what happened, even though anybody with more than 3 brain cells doesn’t disagree with the official story about what happened. 

    People are lazy. They won’t look anything up, they believe the stupidest-sounding shit if it comes out of the mouth of someone they know. I’ve seen it happen, right in front of me, after “9/11.”  

  • Magic_Cracker

    If evangelicals recoiled in moral horror after Roe v. Wade, as Al Mohler asserts, they did so very quietly and almost imperceptibly throughout the 1970s.

    Well, that is consistent with the attitude that intentions trump actions (and consequences).

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    And now, those dedicated schools they were trying to defend have lost their original reason for fighting, yet they continue to do so.  In fact, their current role now is simply to churn out more culture-warriors for the endless war.  

    … holy crap, I just realized that the Religious Right are the Traitor Legions in service to the Ruinous Powers.  o_O

  • Madhabmatics

     Uhhh excuse me, there is a huge difference

    the traitor legions are 100% correct in their criticisms of the corpse-emperor and his bootlickers, while the Religious Right has a hard time being correct about anything!

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Ann-Unemori/100001112760232 Ann Unemori

    Just found this: http://thewomanandthedragon.wordpress.com/2013/01/18/artificial-birth-control-satans-little-helper/
    Read it and be aware.

  • http://tobascodagama.com Tobasco da Gama

     You’re just figuring that out? The GOP was very much “blood for the Blood God, skulls for the Skull Throne” through basically all of the last decade, after all.

  • Jurgan

    “it’s not possible to argue — as Mohler does — that this reversal caused something that preceded it.”                                                                                                “Take that, causality!” https://encrypted-tbn2.gstatic.com/images?q=tbn:ANd9GcQgse9vGtuAWt9GoHo1zykPqBHdVU0tq5pJ04w5TKO_0_diJo51rw

  • JustoneK

    I’m really tired of states having more rights than people.

  • AnonymousSam

    Sanctified guacamole! Her little rant about feminism is frightening.

  • Launcifer

    To be quite frank, I suffer from cynical moments where I wish that one of these guys would break ranks and just scream “Blood for me! Skulls for my throne!”, ’cause I’m fairly sure a few of ‘em are thinking it, if not in quite so many words.

  • Fusina

     I had three siblings. Two of them I do not communicate with anymore (I stopped initiating contact with them, they have yet to initiate any contact with me). My daughter and I communicate a lot. She has only one sibling with whom I also communicate a lot. This woman is totally making shit up. Oh, and I don’t wear Manolos because they are ridiculously expensive for shoes, not because I don’t have enough (Yes, I am a SAHM). Also, there is a lot of stuff I’d rather have than yet another pair of overpriced shoes. Crafting supplies comes to mind almost immediately.

    My point is that large families do not necessarily hang together more, and not all working people like Manolos. For years, I wouldn’t buy sneakers that cost more than thirty dollars. Now that they are running in the forty dollar range, I wait for sales. They’re shoes. They’ll wear out, sooner than you want them to.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=667708632 Kenneth Raymond

    There have to be at least some Nurgle worshipers in the mix as well. Caring more for the lives of all the bacteria and viruses even when their presence could kill the host is right up the GOP’s alley. And health care? Who needs that! Y’know, Compassionate Chaos.

  • QueenKnitter

    I have to wonder why when I asked Ed Dobson the same question a year ago he denied it point-blank. 

    :/ 

  • Launcifer

    Nah, Pappa Nurgle’s a caring sort of chap when it all boils – heh – down to it. These guys… not so much.

  • P J Evans

     The lack of understanding of human reproductive biology is astonishing. So is the amount of misinformation she’s handing out.

  • AnonymousSam

    I guess I’m becoming inured to that. It’s seeing someone shoot themselves in the foot by wanting women to be completely subservient to men that continues to astound me.

  • http://mistformsquirrel.deviantart.com/ mistformsquirrel

     Compassionate Chaos… Oh. Dear. Sweet.  Bob.

    I think I’ve just hurt myself laughing. (T_T)  I’m picturing a Chaos Lord, helmeted, but in a George W. Bush suit and tie.  It’s simultaneously terrifying and HILARIOUS.

  • banancat

     Pretty much every Patriarchal father of a quiverfull of arrows for God is already this.  They’re mostly non-violent so far because they’re content to have a non-sexual harem of beautiful daughters to worship and adore them, but once the kids are all grown up and competing for resources and power within this tight group, I suspect they will expect their sons to fight for them to remain in power.  Their intention is to breed their own little empires and they don’t even try to hide that.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=667708632 Kenneth Raymond

    Mission Accomplished. [/tzeentch]

    *ducks*

    (“I have never made but one prayer to my god, a very short one: ‘O Lord of Change, make my enemies ridiculous.’ And Tzeentch granted it.”)

  • Turcano

    Well, that’s certainly true for most of the Legions, but the Iron Warriors still operate largely under their original agenda: to fuck over Rogal Dorn.

  • Katie

     They intend to breed their own empires, but it doesn’t seem to be working out.  The second generation is leaving in droves, and the ones that stay are often ending up unmarried, thanks to geographic isolation, and a subculture that hasn’t figured out a means for matchmaking.

  • http://www.mymusingcorner.wordpress.com/ Lana

     Even my mom will admit that abortion wasn’t talked about as sin in the early days following Roe.

  • Rakka

    We have always been at war with Eastasia.

  • reynard61

    “Just found this(…)

    “Read it and be aware, and be afraid. Be very afraid.”

    Wow! She almost makes it sound as if birth control pills are made in iron cauldrons from recipes in ancient, dusty grimoires while covens of witches dance around them chanting arcane spells. It would be utterly hilarious if the Real Life consequences weren’t often so disastrous.

  • The_L1985

     I made two very long comments explaining each fallacy point-by-point, commiserating with her for having such a horribly bad doctor, and making it very clear that Feminism Doesn’t Work That Way.

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    In all honestly, I see the Imperium rather than Chaos as being kind of like the religious right’s wet dream.  A star spanning empire in which the population is kept ignorant and afraid, an authoritarian regime fond of going to war and being unnecessarily brutal, dependent on technology that no one really understands, and a state religion in which all are expected to be fanatical worshipers, and those who do not will often find themselves the victim of white-robbed and hooded posses wielding flamethrowers and chainsaw swords.  

  • Marcion

    And much the the imperium, conservatives’ god (Ronald Reagan) is a dead guy who didn’t stand for what they think he stands for

  • wjca

    The importance of the abortion issue was that it provided a new flag to rally around. 

    The demand for the right to segregate their schools in peace necessarily limited the religious right to being primarily a regional movement.  Abortion gave them an issue which they could use in places where segregation was not a winning issue.  Which is to say, it allowed them to go nationwide.

  • Randall Balmer

    Someone just directed me to this site.  I’m Randall Balmer, the person who wrote the text excerpted above.  Yes, I’ve heard from others that Ed Dobson is now denying this.  Strange . . . I was in the room when he said it.  And also, if you look at my footnotes, you’ll see that the entire discussion — including Dobson’s remarks — was recorded, transcribed, and published in a book entitled “No Longer Exiles.”  And yet, as I understand it, Dobson has accused ME of lying!

    Go figure.

  • http://twitter.com/FearlessSon FearlessSon

    There have to be at least some Nurgle worshipers in the mix as well. Caring more for the lives of all the bacteria and viruses even when their presence could kill the host is right up the GOP’s alley. And health care? Who needs that! Y’know, Compassionate Chaos.

    Actually, there is such a thing as Compassionate Chaos, believe it or not.  You know how absolutely ruthless, brutal, and uncaring the Imperium can be.  Sometimes, even Chaos offers the promise of something better in return, and several people will turn to Chaos simply for the chance to improve things… often leading them right to Tzeentch, showing that it is not just Nurgle who seems compassionate.  Hell, Khorne can see like a noble ally when your world is being invaded by dangerous outsiders who hate you and he will give you the strength to protect those you care about.  Even Slaanesh can be appealing, offering a source of love and escape from the harshness of the galaxy, helping to make you as much of a paragon of yourself as you can be.  

    Of course, whether people who turn to Chaos in this manner can retain their nobility for long is another matter.  Many eventually forget why they devoted themselves in the first place, becoming drunk on the power it gives them.  

    Heck, even a few Inquisitors have turned to daemonology to protect the Imperium, with all the sacrifices and condemnation such acts of Radicalism require.  But when doing so can prevent an entire planet from falling and thus being subject to Exterminatus, consorting with the Ruinous Powers actually does seem like the more compassionate option.  

  • Albanaeon

    Goodness.  Nothing like a 40k thread to brighten the mood.

    Personally, as I play LOTR/The Hobbit I think that Mordor is the best analogy for the current GOP.  Lots and lots of orcs, whose real concerns lie pretty much with wrecking everything, a few lieutenant’s to keep them pointed in the right direction, and an overlord or two that’s really big and scary, but really powerless if you get down to it without the aforementioned.

    Oh, and trolls.  It wouldn’t be the GOP or Mordor without those…

  • Donato2

    It is correct that evangelicals initially did not recoil from Roe. It was the Catholic Church that immediately perceived the horror. From the beginning, the Catholic Church has been the intellectual and moral leader on the controversies concerning sexual morality.  The split over contraception presaged differences over abortion. Unlike many Protestants, the Catholic Church has a unified and holistic vision of human sexuality and this is why the Catholic Church sees the connection between contraception and abortion and why the Catholic Church immediately and clearly saw the evil of abortion.  It is also why the Catholic Church is to the pro-life movement what water and oxygen are to plant life. 

    None of this is to say that evangelicals are not sincere in their rejection of abortion. I have worked with many of them in the pro-life movement, and I can assure you their commitment to ending abortion precedes any allegiance to “state’s rights.” It is illogical to think otherwise. Life is a fundamental core value that transcends transient political concerns such as “state’s rights.”

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

    Or to put it more accurately, there has never been a question of sexual morality that the Catholic church couldn’t find a way to respond to by shouting “SIN! ABOMINATION!”

    Well, except for systematic child sexual abuse by the clergy.

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

     

    It is illogical to think otherwise. Life is a fundamental core value that transcends transient political concerns such as “state’s rights.”

    Does the fundamental core value of life similarly transcend political concerns such as “nation’s rights”? For example, is it similarly illogical to think evangelicals would support killing people over national sovereignty?

  • Lori

    Unlike many Protestants, the Catholic Church has a unified and holistic
    vision of human sexuality and this is why the Catholic Church sees the
    connection between contraception and abortion and why the Catholic
    Church immediately and clearly saw the evil of abortion.  

    It’s nice that you admit that the Catholic position on both contraception and abortion is about controlling sex.  We all know it’s about controlling sex, but most of the time people throw up a smokescreen about protecting babies. It’s refreshing to see someone skip all that and just tell the truth. Refreshing, but no remotely convincing since there is no justification for attempting to make the Church’s “holistic vision of human sexuality” legally binding, especially on non-Catholics.

  • Consumer Unit 5012

      It would be utterly hilarious if the Real Life consequences weren’t often so disastrous.

    As far as I’m concerned, this sums up EVERYTHING the right-wing has done in my lifetime.

    (And quite a lot of the left-wing, too.)

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    From the beginning, the Catholic Church has been the intellectual and
    moral leader on the controversies concerning sexual morality. 

    BAHAHAHAHAHA!

    Please, pull the other one!

    An entire hierarchy that succours and protects legions of priests who molest and rape young children and adolescents has

    Zero.

    Moral.

    Standing.

    Period.

  • P J Evans

     And you forgot the other part: they then blame the victim.

  • http://www.nicolejleboeuf.com/index.php Nicole J. LeBoeuf-Little

    You are much braver than I. I hit this comment (a response in the comments thread by the blogger herself)…

    Why is a smaller family size “ideal” and “desirable”? I think it is for (at least) two reasons:
    [...]
    2. Women want to be “free” from the demands of children, mistakenly believing they will be more fulfilled at a job than with their children or mistakenly believing that they are doing more good in the world by “using their gifts in the marketplace”. None of this should matter, of course, since God does not say in the Bible that women are to seek personal fulfillment, but rather that they are to be busy at home caring for their families.

    …and my brain automatically moved from “intellectually engaged” to “for the sick, sad, sob-repressing lols.”

    I mean, how do I even begin to intellectually engage in discussion with a woman who does not hold in common with me the idea that a woman’s being happy and fulfilled in her life is a good thing, a thing that God (whatever God one believes in) would want?

    I mean, I have seen quiverfull-types argue that women’s personal fulfillment comes naturally from staying home and caring for their families, but even they argued from the position that women’s personal fulfillment is good. They’d argue that there’s only one way for any woman to reach it, but they would not argue against the idea that reaching it is a positive. Whereas sunshinemary believes God doesn’t want her reaching it at all (or except perhaps as an unlooked-for side-effect of caring for her family, which should be as large as God and her body will allow). I don’t know what to do with that other than feel pity.

  • Sgt. Pepper’s Bleeding Heart

    For example, is it similarly illogical to think evangelicals would support killing people over national sovereignty?

    Point.
    Consistent life ethic-ers (who have no handy label, which is probably a good sign) certainly agree.

    My reading of consistent results in polls on the various issues suggests that most evangelicals do not embrace the consistent ethic of life. The twin Ricks of 2012 certainly don’t.

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

     

    I have to wonder why when I asked Ed Dobson the same question a year ago he denied it point-blank.

    Because Oceania has Always been at Peace with Eurasia.

  • Headless Unicorn Guy

     

    Pretty much every Patriarchal father of a quiverfull of arrows for God
    is already this.  They’re mostly non-violent so far because they’re
    content to have a non-sexual harem of beautiful daughters to worship and
    adore them, but once the kids are all grown up and competing for
    resources and power within this tight group, I suspect they will expect
    their sons to fight for them to remain in power.

    Herd animals with patriarchal harem systems usually drive off male offspring at or after puberty, when their sexually-mature presence threatens the Alpha Male’s exclusive control of his harem (i.e. ALL the females of the herd). 

    Reading between the lines of Thomas Cahill’s Gifts of the Jews, wasn’t Torah given to enable/make the people Transcend the Animal?

  • http://dpolicar.livejournal.com/ Dave

     > Consistent life ethic-ers (who have no handy label, which is probably a good sign)

    Word.

  • GhostOf503

     Strange to mention 9-11. How long until we start seeing “Obama Knew” in conjunction with Sandy Hook the way we saw “Bush Knew” in conjunction with 9-11?

  • http://blog.trenchcoatsoft.com Ross

     Negative twenty days.

    Moreover, James Tracy asserts in radio interviews and on his
    memoryholeblog.com. that trained “crisis actors” may have been employed
    by the Obama administration in an effort to shape public opinion in
    favor of the event’s true purpose: gun control.

    http://nation.foxnews.com/sandy-hook/2013/01/08/professor-says-obama-staged-sandy-hook-massacre

  • Sir Quaffler

    This is just making me depressed, to be honest. The fact that the Religious Right did nothing at first to decry the horrors of abortion and only brought that to the bandwagon once they weren’t allowed to separate colored folk in their schools. That blatant racism was the driving factor for their actions, not altruistic defense for the rights of all human life.

    I’d say I am wholly with the Catholic Church on this one, but there’s so much corruption with their political setup (yes I’m calling the clergy a political setup even though they seem to deny it as such at every opportunity they get), particularly with their glossing over of the atrocious acts their clergy make, that I don’t really want to be associated with them either.

    Am I alone here? Am I the only one who wants to truly do God’s work here on Earth without getting wrapped up in all this political horseshit?

  • EllieMurasaki

    So how do you propose to treat fetuses as people without treating pregnant people as of less value than fetuses? How would you solve the Savita Halappanavar problem? What penalty would you apply to someone who gets an abortion in a jurisdiction where abortion is legally murder, and what is your reasoning?

  • Sir Quaffler

    1) The right to life (for BOTH the fetus and the mother) trumps any other rights in question. Unless the pregnancy was such that it would endanger the lives of the mother and/or the baby, I would say the baby has the right to be brought into this world, and the mother has the right to deal with the baby however she sees fit after it’s born (whether it be adoption, leaving it to the state, etc., as long as she doesn’t commit murder).

    2)That’s just a tragedy through and through. That would fall under the provision I’ve said above, where the lives of the mother (and in this case the infant too, from what I can tell) were at stake. That I would not qualify as an abortion in the traditional sense; rather it would be a life-saving procedure for the mother that would, in the process, unfortunately kill the fetus. This is incredibly horrifying, but given the drastic circumstances in this case, I’d relent. Sadly, the infant had no chance of making it alive into this world, and it killed her mother too, so it would have been better for the mother to have that operation.

    3) Depends on the circumstances, again. If the procedure was required to save the life of the mother as was the case above, then I would not consider it murder and would work to make a provision in those laws to account for such an occasion; the reason being that it was required to save the life of the mother.
    If the mother was not in the right state of mind and could be proven to be so and/or she wasn’t entirely aware of the consequences of abortion, then I’d be lenient in the ruling; she’d still get a sentence, but considering the circumstances not as heavy of one as a regular murder. The reason being that there was a case to be made that she was temporarily insane or under duress stress, which clouded her judgement.
    However… if she was entirely aware of it all, in her right mind, and yet still got an abortion, punishment to the fullest extent of the law, including the death penalty. Reason being, she killed someone.

  • EllieMurasaki

    You answered and the answer has no internal inconsistencies. I don’t like your answer, but at least you aren’t being hypocritical.

    Please tell me you support widespread access to all forms of contraception and to comprehensive sex education, in order to minimize the number of people who find themselves pregnant and who do not want to be.

  • http://apocalypsereview.wordpress.com/ Invisible Neutrino

    Speaking of claims of manipulation of public opinion -

    How about the fact that companies now routinely hire “Public Image Professionals”?


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