New at Live Action – Joe Biden’s Selective Separation of Church and State

My latest Live Action post:
In a rather spectacular display of irony earlier this week, Vice President Joe Biden blasted the budget proposed by Rep. Paul Ryan (R-WI), which seeks to dramatically reduce federal spending, as a “contrary to the social doctrine” taught by the Catholic Church to which he belongs.
That’s a gross oversimplification – you can see Ryan (who is also Catholic) defend his budget’s Catholic principles here, but the short version is that the faith’s call to care for the needy is not a mandate to support any specific government method of delivering aid. True Christian charity is giving your own time and money to a cause, not just casting a vote to have someone else handle it.
But the real kicker, as Hot Air’s Ed Morrissey notes, is that this lecture on how to be a good Catholic politician is coming from someone who rejects his church’s call to recognize and protect life in the womb – an imperative which is far less ambiguous than Biden’s conception of social justice. Catholicism requires believers to support federal funding for specific government programs, but not legal protection for the most defenseless of God’s children?
Read the rest at Live Action.
Advertisements

In Which Our Feminist Betters Laud a Killer Communist

If liberals think they can score political points by tying their opponents to extremists, then I’ll see their latest example, Francis Grady, and raise them one Angela Davis.

Davis is a tenured University of California professor (of course), a self-professed Communist, a former Black Panther, and a likely accessory to the 1970 killing of Judge Harold Haley (she was acquitted despite over twenty witnesses, thanks to fellow Communists providing a dubious alibi and ideological brethren in the jury).

Though her primary causes are race and class, she’s found her way into the abortion debate thanks to a speech she delivered at the University of Kansas at the invitation of the February Sisters, the following passage of which feminist Pace University Law Professor Bridget Crawford highlights on her blog (though she omits what Davis “was in jail in Marin County” for):
I was asked to write a statement [for a San Francisco “reproductive rights” rally – CF] that very specifically engaged with the issue of abortion rights.  Of course, I was in favor of women’s abortion rights, but I did not want to take women’s abortion rights out of the context of the broader conglomeration of issues that constitute women’s reproductive rights.


At that time, we had learned that vast numbers of Native American women had been sterilized.  We’d also learned about the extent to which Puerto Rican women were used as guinea pigs by pharmaceutical companies in the production of what was then the new birth control pill. So, I wrote a statement in which I tried to make connections between women’s reproductive rights and women’s right to be free from forced sterilization. The statement wasn’t read.


My position was, I cannot talk about abortion rights in isolation from these other issues.  I’ve come to understand that when we talk about feminist epistemologies, we speak precisely about the ability to think, together, about things that often do not cohabit the same analytical space.
While San Francisco pro-aborts certainly could have used a good reminder that there are far worse things in life than not being able to abort your offspring, that’s also what makes Davis’ position so twisted: her insistence that abortion is central to reproductive freedom on the same level as sterilization and unscrupulous medical testing. Abortion kills a separate human being the mother regrets creating, undoing something she could have easily prevented in the overwhelming majority of cases. Sterilization prevents a woman from every having children again. In what universe are they comparable?

This is perhaps the greatest sin of modern leftists who claim the mantle of feminism for themselves: the intertwining of a noble cause with greed and injustice, using the honor of the former as cover for the shame of the latter, deceiving and intimidating people into accepting the lie that allegiance to their agenda is the only way to escape the scarlet letter of “sexist.” And what more fitting personification of that sin than a radical who aligns with some of history’s worst monsters in the name of “rights”?

Granted, the average pro-choicer doesn’t support the Black Panthers or the Communists like Angela Davis does. Heck, I’m not sure the average pro-choicer even knows who Angela Davis is. But if pro-lifers are expected to answer every time a lone extremist acts in our name, then so-called “feminists” who invite Davis to speak at their events and cheerfully disseminate her “wisdom” should have to do the same.

New at Live Action: Partial-Birth Abortion Defender Claims Phone-Calling Protestors Are More Offensive Than Killing Babies

My latest Live Action post:

The abortion crowd has so much invested in the narrative that pro-lifers are bullies that finding an actual example of pro-life misbehavior to exploit must feel like an early Christmas present. Washington Post columnist Petula Dvorak tells the tale of Todd Stave, the landlord of a Maryland abortion clinic where partial-birth abortions were performed by the notorious LeRoy Carhart, who’s had enough of the harassment anti-abortion protestors have allegedly subjected him to:

[H]is tormentors crossed the line last fall when a big group showed up at his daughter’s middle school on the first day of classes and again at back-to-school night. They had signs displaying his name and contact information as well as those gory images of the fetuses.
‘What parent wants to have that conversation with an 11-year-old on the first day of school?’ he fumed.
Soon after that, the harassing calls started coming to his home. By the dozens, at all hours.

Stave, however, didn’t take this lying down:

He began to take down the names and phone numbers of people who made unwanted calls. And he gave the information to his friends and asked them to call these folks back.
‘In a very calm, very respectful voice, they said that the Stave family thanks you for your prayers,’ he said. ‘They cannot terminate the lease, and they do not want to. They support women’s rights.’
This started with a dozen or so friends, and then it grew. Soon, more than a thousand volunteers were dialing.
If they could find the information, Stave’s supporters would ask during the callbacks how the children in the family were doing and mention their names and the names of their schools. ‘And then,’ Stave said, ‘we’d tell them that we bless their home on such and such street,’ giving the address.
The family of a protester who called Stave’s home could get up to 5,000 calls in return.

Obviously, harassing a man’s children crosses the decency line, no matter the cause. And if a call to his home was truly threatening, I’m not about to get worked up over Stave turning the tables on that caller.

But looking up their children’s names and schools?

Read the rest at Live Action.

New at Live Action – Hypocrisy Alert: Pro-Abortion Sexist Lectures Pro-Life Men on How to Treat Women

My latest Live Action post:
As a male pro-life activist, I’ve run into my share of sexism and condescension over the years, as abortion defenders have claimed I shouldn’t have a say on the issue because I’ll never have to worry about getting pregnant.  They’ve insinuated that I’m somehow trying to control or oppress women. Though pure sophistry, it’s something any guy who wants to save babies should expect to deal with – a lot.
On Monday, at the Huffington Post, Laura Trice fumed that she’s sick of men having the nerve to express their opinion on public policy questions related to abortion and birth control. She wants us to “rewind 2-3 months before most abortions happen and look in the mirror.” She wants men to take the following actions, which she claims would lead to a 90% decrease in abortion rates within 3 months, if widely practiced:

7. Make a personal commitment today to stop looking at pornography, stop engaging prostitutes and stop visiting strip clubs.
6. Make a personal commitment today to stand against sexual violence, rape and incest.
5. If you are Christian and have strong views, read this Susan B. Anthony essay and make a commitment today to be a better type of Christian husband.
4. Make a personal commitment today not to pressure a woman for sex of any kind when she says, “No,” “I don’t feel well” or “I’m tired.”
3. Make a personal commitment today to know a woman for at least 6 months to one year before having intercourse with her.
2. Make a personal commitment today not to take advantage of any woman who has been drinking or is impaired.
1. Make a personal commitment today to stop smooth-talking and lying to women to “get in.”

(Note: these are just the individual steps; see the original column for elaboration.)
Taken on its own, that’s perfectly smart, moral advice. So how can it possibly be controversial? Because of the implication in Trice’s conclusion…
Read the rest at Live Action.

New at Live Action – WaPo Columnist: It’s Racist to Defend Black Babies From Abortion

My latest Live Action post:

Lately, the mainstream media’s been doing a pretty good job of reminding pro-lifers that we hate women, but surely our malice isn’t limited just to women, is it? Of course not. Fortunately, dear readers, we have Washington Post columnist Courtland Milloy to remind us that we’re racist, too. Milloy claims the real intent of the pictured billboard, sponsored by Life Always’ “That’s Abortion” campaign, is to “shame the black woman, single her out by race and cast her body as the personification of sin and death”:

[T]he conservative effort now underway to overturn the court’s decision is not just being waged on women’s reproductive rights, but on the black woman as a person.
Do white women recognize the difference?

“When you add racism to sexism, oppression manifests itself differently,” said Paris Hatcher, executive director of an Atlanta-based women’s advocacy group called SPARK Reproductive Justice Now. “In this country, it’s okay to shame and blame the black woman, to pathologize and criminalize her behavior. Black women become the nannies, the mammies, the Jezebels.”

That must be it! Why didn’t anybody see it before? Apparently the rest of us were taken in by Life Always’ clever ruse of staffing its four-person Board of Directors with two black men and one white woman, leading us to naively infer that the billboards were motivated by compassion for the innocent black girls killed by abortion. How foolish of us!

Read the rest at Live Action.

Rick Santorum Is Losing Me

In January, I enthusiastically endorsed Rick Santorum for President, having been convinced that he finally demonstrated the political acumen to complement his philosophical integrity. For a while, Santorum’s performance seemed to affirm my decision—he effortlessly assumed the role of adult in the room during the Florida CNN debate, and his strength in the polls remains far stronger than most would have predicted just a few months ago.

Unfortunately, a handful of incidents over the past two weeks have forced me to reconsider. First came his lackluster performance in the Arizona CNN debate, during which he rationalized his support of No Child Left Behind thusly:
I have to admit, I voted for that, it was against the principles I believed in, but you know, when you’re part of the team, sometimes you take one for the team, for the leader, and I made a mistake. You know, politics is a team sport, folks, and sometimes you’ve got to rally together and do something, and in this case I thought testing and finding out how bad the problem was wasn’t a bad idea. 
Voting against your own principles because your team leader wanted you to? That’s not only about as un-Tea Party as you can get, it also stands in stark contrast to Santorum’s own one-word description of his candidacy that very night: “courage.”

Next, Santorum came under fire for saying that John F. Kennedy’s famous Address to Protestant Ministers made him want to “throw up”:
I don’t believe in an America where the separation of church and state is absolute.  The idea that the church can have no influence or no involvement in the operation of the state is absolutely antithetical to the objectives and vision of our country. This is the First Amendment.  The First Amendment says the free exercise of religion.  That means bringing everybody, people of faith and no faith, into the public square.  Kennedy for the first time articulated the vision saying, no, “faith is not allowed in the public square.  I will keep it separate.” Go on and read the speech “I will have nothing to do with faith.  I won’t consult with people of faith.”  It was an absolutist doctrine that was foreign at the time of 1960.
Don’t get me wrong; I understand as well as anyone the truth and importance of Santorum’s underlying point, that the Left has twisted the Establishment Clause to obscure and erase America’s Judeo-Christian foundations. We need a candidate and a president who will make that case to the American people. But we don’t need a candidate who makes it so easy for the Left to caricature that case. While some of JFK’s rhetoric could be interpreted as Santorum describes it, it’s hardly an obvious or indisputable inference—I suspect most Americans would read it as simply meaning he wouldn’t discriminate against Protestants or take his marching orders from the Vatican. What’s more, how much mileage do you think the Democrats will get out of ads which present Santorum as a wild-eyed theocrat who “wants to throw up” when he hears passages like:
I believe in an America that is officially neither Catholic, Protestant nor Jewish; where no public official either requests or accepts instructions on public policy from the Pope, the National Council of Churches or any other ecclesiastical source; where no religious body seeks to impose its will directly or indirectly upon the general populace or the public acts of its officials; and where religious liberty is so indivisible that an act against one church is treated as an act against all.
Or:
I believe in an America where religious intolerance will someday end; where all men and all churches are treated as equal; where every man has the same right to attend or not attend the church of his choice; where there is no Catholic vote, no anti-Catholic vote, no bloc voting of any kind; and where Catholics, Protestants and Jews, at both the lay and pastoral level, will refrain from those attitudes of disdain and division which have so often marred their works in the past, and promote instead the American ideal of brotherhood.
And most recently, he and Mitt Romney have been fighting over a robocall which asks Democrats to vote for Santorum in the Michigan primary. While Romney’s reaction is overblown and hypocritical, the fact remains that it contradicts Santorum’s own stated disdain for Democrats influencing Republican primaries, and its message was worse:
Romney supported the bailouts for his Wall Street billionaire buddies, but opposed the auto bailouts. That was a slap in the face to every Michigan worker, and we’re not gonna let Romney get away with it.
Not only is Santorum resorting to the very same class warfare he so admirably resisted not so long ago, but it raises the question: how can it be a “slap in the face” for Romney to oppose the auto bailout, but not for Santorum himself to do so? Attempting to give voters a false impression that you supported something you actually oppose isn’t exactly confidence-inspiring. (And for what it’s worth, one need not support either bailout to recognize substantive differences between them.)  

I’m not saying I won’t still vote for Rick Santorum in the Wisconsin primary. Many of his biggest assets—his unquestionable sincerity on social issues, his foreign policy expertise, and his relative purity on the crucial issue of government-run healthcare—remain unshakeable. Mitt Romney’s shortcomings (the latest example being this clumsy attempt to neutralize his wealth as a campaign issue) remain substantial. But I am saying I’m no longer certain he’s a stronger general election candidate than Romney, and so I must revert from identifying as a Santorum supporter to being undecided between Santorum and Romney.

Both men are far superior to Newt Gingrich (and Ron Paul, whose name shouldn’t even be spoken in the same breath as Gingrich’s). Both men have checkered pasts but are running on strong, unambiguous full-spectrum conservative platforms. Both men have denigrated themselves with petty, misleading infighting. Both men have displayed the capacity to change their tune for political expediency. Both men have shown promise in their ability to make the case against Barack Obama, but both men have also proven themselves to be disturbingly gaffe-prone.

I like and admire Rick Santorum. But I’m simply no longer confident enough in him to guarantee that he’ll get my primary vote. He and Mitt Romney have between now and April 3 to convince me they can get their act together and run a serious, focused, and reasonably caricature-proof campaign. May the best man win.

New at Live Action – New Report on Murder of Pregnant Women Reveals Why Misogynists Love Abortion

My latest Live Action post:
Just as pro-aborts are redoubling their efforts to persuade America that the champions of “choice” are vital to women’s independence and well being, a new report emerges suggesting just the opposite. The report, just published by Life Dynamics, compiles eighty known cases of women who were murdered because they refused to have an abortion:

One such example is Valicia Demery. When Bernard Bellamy Jr. learned she was pregnant he ordered her to have an abortion. When she refused, Bellamy ran her over with his car and left her to die. The night before the murder Bellamy sent Demery a text message telling her to come to her senses before it’s too late. When asked, “B4 what’s too late?” he replied, “ U will C.”

Life Dynamics founder, Mark Crutcher, suggests that the actual number of women victimized for refusing abortion is much higher, since women who succumb to intimidation and get abortions often let the incident go unreported.  And while abortion’s political defenders obviously aren’t condoning this behavior, Crutcher doesn’t think they’re completely blameless, either:
Read the rest at Live Action.