I read my friend Brian Greenspun’s newspaper column on Sunday. When I say he’s my friend, I don’t mean that in the “come to my house for the Super Bowl” kinda way.
I mean we’ve been competing against each other in the form of the Las Vegas Review-Journal versus the Las Vegas Sun newspapers since we were kids, and you can’t do that without having at least some regard for the point person on the other side.
Anyway, in lieu of a better word, I read my “friend’s” column for the first several inches thinking: “Hey, am I actually going to agree with Brian, for once?”
Then came the second half and I was relieved to find that all was again right in the universe. I don’t agree with Brian Greenspun. At all.
The first part of his column staked out the position that this country has a lot of problems and we need to find enough people with common sense to fix ‘em.
So far so good.
Then he veered off the road of common sense by trying to extrapolate abortion politics to his perceived radicalization of the Republican Party.
His vehicle was the news last week that former Nevada Lt. Gov. Sue Wagner left the Republican Party and registered as an Independent.
“Where Sue got crosswise with the GOP was in its hypocrisy.
“A party that insists on smaller, less intrusive government is now insisting that the same government intrude on the most intimate and personal aspects of our individual lives. A party that professes to be conservative — that is, one that believes in the Constitution of the United States — is required by its patrons to abandon concepts including individual freedom, responsible stewardship of the public’s resources and a commitment to science and other fact-based reasoning.
“So, she quit. Just like millions of others have quit or been thrown out through the ever-narrowing opening of a smaller and smaller Republican tent.”
That’s so not true.
In fact, I quit the Democratic Party and joined the Republican Party several years back for the same reasoning Brian tries to attach to Sue Wagner’s act.
Truth is we all pick our poison when attaching ourselves to a national party. I don’t know of anyone who believes in every single plank in their party’s platform, or the words of every single leader representing their respective parties.
But when it comes to abortion politics, I found myself constricted as a Democrat.
I would not call my thinking on the subject hard-core “right to life.” It’s obvious to me that the whole subject of abortion is filled with a messy balancing of competing rights — that of the mother and that of the child.
In the Democrat Party any kind of thoughtful expression of the idea that the child does have rights independent of the mother’s — forget about at what time that might take place during gestation — has been erased.
There is no position in the Democrat Party other than the mother’s right to abort for any reason, any time up to birth. If you deviate from that principle in the Democrat Party, there is something wrong with you.
Nancy Pelosi has even advanced the argument (though she now tries to cover it up) that abortion may take place any time up to the time the mother decides to leave the hospital. Yikes! Let that wash over you for a second. One of the highest leaders in the Democrat Party is advancing “abortion” of live births.
At least as a Republican, there is still the discussion that we are born with unalienable rights. Science suggests that this “birth” can be defined up to and including the moment of conception. And Republicans are willing to talk about that. Democrats are not. Science for them is Roe v. Wade, which is more outdated science-wise than a black-and-white TV.
Point is, it is damn near impossible to be a “pro-life” Democrat. What you end up doing is what folks like Sen. Harry Reid do — whisper privately that abortion is wrong, but then publicly facilitate the killing babies through government funding of abortions. That’s bloody hypocrisy, Brian.