Standing On Principle Or Tilting At Windmills On The Abortion Issue
So…here we are…it’s been two weeks and I’m kicking my next piece on the RMSP down the road again. I’m currently engaged in a job search since the credit crisis has been a disaster for the Commercial Real Estate market. “WHERE’S MY BAILOUT?”
Anyway…I’ve learned how to use Feedly and Yoono to track front page and member posts while working on other things and at the same time track my peeps on Twitter, (Thanks Aaron G) and Facebook. Anyway, I still pop in from time to time to comment in threads that catch my attention but my time to post articles is limited.
So, I’ve recently had a back and forth with a person in a recent “Goodbye Cruel World Post” from an individual that has crossed the thin line between standing on principle and tilting at windmills.
The reason for the parting of ways according to the original poster is the policy of Front Pagers being required to be pro life to be accorded that honor of being Front Pagers.
The person leaving the site over this issue is typical of the Washington crowd and Moderates/Liberals on abortion. They demand ideological purity when it comes to their libertine views and their pet issues whether they be on fiscal or defense issues yet they have no tolerance at all for Pro Lifers and traditional marriage proponents who stand on their principles and they demand that we forget our “Pet issue” and shut up! How dare we stand for anything and how dare we commit the heresy of not appeasing their delicate sensibilities on their “pet issue”?!
My thread posts in reply to this individual and others started me thinking about doing a whole post on this since it is an issue that demands to be addressed as we try to rebuild the house that Reagan built. So…here we are…My RMSP post is delayed yet again and I’m off on a tangent.
Where to begin?
One example of the problem I want to discuss is the person who professes to be pro life, and/but can’t see why this issue is so important to some of us that it can’t be put aside indefinitely. Other issues take precedence over abortion in their mind.
Then there are those that say they are pro life but in favor of a woman’s right to chose. Again, if you are pro life and believe abortion is the taking of life…how does one person’s right to chose to kill another person take precedence over the other individuals right to live?
So, they are pro life, (which by definition is a belief that abortion is murder) yet they can’t see why allowing 1.5 million abortions to be legally committed every year isn’t something that shouldn’t be put off for the foreseeable future or even permanently while we deal with other “more important issues.”
They more often than not will go out of their way to ensure Pro Choice Moderates and Independents aren’t offended by the majority of this party. To this person the expansion of the “big tent” is the be all and end all of politics. Yet somehow the people that are expected to sacrifice to grow this tent are SoCons and those who care about abortion or traditional marriage.
Next we have the RMSPers who put the tent above all else. These people are the worse of the bunch because they will compromise with any group on every issue in the Republican platform to “expand the tent.” But the Pro Life Majority of the Party is a different matter entirely. For these people there can be no compromise with us. We are to shut up and be seen but not heard…We don’t matter even though we’re the majority of the Party. Anything goes with this bunch but somehow they’re never expected to sacrifice for the tent while the rest of us are expected to do all in our power to forward their pro-choice/pro gay marriage agenda!
Then there’s the canard that we have to run people who can win in blue/purple states followed with a line about “true believers” losing “valiantly” as if anyone is arguing we shouldn’t run people who can win in blue states…Nobody with any brains is making that argument…the issue is and always has been the idea that the majority of us shouldn’t be expected to knuckle under to this minority once they’ve arrived!
For these folks, presumably Pro Lifers should be happy to accept second class status within the party to expand the tent and just forget an issue that fur us is the basis of all other rights guaranteed under the Constitution. On top of that, apparently there is no problem whatsoever with Pro Lifers being made second class citizens by people who profess to want to “Team build.” The self same people that make us second class citizens in the Republican Party are the very ones that grouse about our intolerance driving others from the party…Uhm…excuse me…shouldn’t the first step in “Team building” be to stop demonizing your own team members and consigning them to second class citizenship?
So….Putting the shoe on another foot…lets try a hypothetical to dive home my central point:
What if the Party said FisCons should shut up about the bail out fever currently overwhelming us because we need to “Expand the tent” and “we can’t win with just Fiscal Conservatives and we need to appeal to the middle on fiscal issues”? Ditto socialized health care? Or increasing taxes? What if the party decided that the only way to save the auto industry is to reinstate the Smoot-Hawley Tariff Act to protect American Industry?
What if the Republican Party decided that DefCons should shut up about winning the War On Terror and immediately pull out of Iraq and Afghanistan because we need to “Expand the tent” and “we can’t win with just Defense and Foreign Policy Conservatives and we need to appeal to the middle on Defense issues?” What if the party decided military spending is taking money that could better be spent on bailouts and universal health care and call for an immediate cut of 50% of all defense spending?
To the leadership in the Republican Party…Please tell me…why is it that the SoCon wing of the party is expected to remain a part of this grand coalition but we shouldn’t expect a place at the table on abortion, or traditional marriage? Why is it that we can’t expect the party to stand up to the anti-religious pogrom being directed at us by radical secularists and the “gay rights” crowd whose main purpose is to minimize us and make us pariahs in our own country?
Growing the party and expanding the “big tent” is the goal for you?…So…how do you expect it to grow by picking up maybe 5% to 10% of moderates and independents while at the same time ticking off and alienating 40+% of the party by doing so?
And why would you assume we owe this Party anything if it refuses to represent us?
Finally, I’m all about the stool… It does indeed take a coalition of all three legs to make a majority…so where does this idea come from that the coalition ends at the SoCon leg where we’re expected to tow the party line and expect nothing in return? I, like Reagan, support the big tent but not when expanding it means painting “Pale Pastels.” I’m rare in that I support the whole stool…To be sure, SoCons aren’t the only ones that keep getting preached at by the country club set and the leadership of the Republican Party on compromising our principles to expand the “big tent”…but we’re certainly on the front pew and we’re always the ones wearing the dunce cap at the front of the class!
The issue at hand and the main point of my column is “yes we need a “big tent”…and we win with a three legged stool…but to say one leg of the stool has to give up on their principles to appease the other two legs puts things in the wrong order!” Where we’re getting in trouble is with a coalition of naysayers and malcontents from each leg working, (some consciously, some unconsciously and some banding together with others from each leg), to undermine the goals of SoCons and the party as a whole!
What we need as a party is for each leg of the stool to stand up for its principles and stop insisting that each of the other legs give up on their own principles. We as a Party can only stand on three legs…and we can stand taller based on how strong each leg is! By continuously gnawing at the SoCon leg we end up weakening the whole stool!
The key to this thing is that if each leg stands up for their issues they can count on large segments of the other legs to support them in their causes. In those instances where some from one leg insist on silencing an entire leg…they must be resisted by the rest of us. An attack on one leg must be recognized as an attack on the whole stool. Once we recognize this reality we will again achieve majority status and likely maintain it.
But let any two legs continue to actively attack the remaining leg and tear it down at every turn?
Well we richly deserve the place we now find ourselves!