What Conservatives Could Learn From Lawyers

 

shutterstock_121503352I flirted with a law career for about a semester, but quickly discovered that, while I can comprehend the language used, I cannot tolerate the general lack of common sense. Lawyers, especially prosecutors, do know something, however, that conservatives could really use when it comes to dealing with liberals: when quizzing someone in public, stick to questions whose answers you already know.

That principle would have been extremely useful for Idaho Representative Vito Barbieri. If you haven’t caught the headlines about him, this idiot decided it would be a good idea to ask if a woman could swallow a camera to find out “something” about an unborn child she might be carrying. I apologize for pointing out this stupidity, but it is sadly just one in a long list of stupid things said or asked by conservative men in government hoping to pass legislation that will control what women do with their bodies. Yes, I am using the liberal terminology here for a very good reason. When “stupid” is all that the conservative side has to offer, it should face the liberal ridicule it deserves.

When it comes to the pro-life movement, there are piles of examples like this and, for a conservative woman that is ambivalent at best on the issue, it’s painful. Throw in the fact that this conservative woman spent the better part of 20 years crafting messages for politicians, and it’s downright excruciating. First of all, any legislator on either the state or federal level who wants to tackle this issue needs to be sure to have done some real research before they speak publicly. When you make a fool of yourself by not knowing the answers before the questions are asked, you hurt not only your own credibility, but also the movement. Recall how Wendy Davis rocketed to fame: fighting a law that protects women in Texas from ending up with someone like Kermit Gosnell treating them. How is that “pro-woman”?

The opposition claims that the evil conservatives are trying to deny women needed health care. Instead of promoting the logical reasons why it is good to guarantee that doctors treating women in these clinics have privileges at a hospital, the response degrades into yet another moral argument about what women shouldn’t have. And because that happens, there also isn’t much information given about the fact that many of these clinics have people that aren’t actually licensed physicians doing surgical procedures on women. Complaints about onerous building requirements come up from the left, and the right doesn’t point out the fact that building codes dating back over a decade in most regions have already had these requirements for outpatient surgery centers and, in some cases, even basic physician’s offices. If the state in question took the federal guidelines without amendments, the latter is the case. No one bothers to ask liberals why it is a bad thing for ambulance workers to be able to easily access all patient treatment rooms in a medical facility.

Probably the biggest lie that conservatives don’t call liberals on is the fact that these clinics are, in fact, outpatient surgery centers. Just because these clinics serve only women, liberals say that they should be exempt from the requirements that any other surgery center for any other medical specialty must meet. And then they dare to say that is “good” for women? Meanwhile, conservatives focus on what? The unborn child.

Conservatives want to stop abortions after 20 weeks, but instead of using statistics from the liberal Guttmacher Institute as ammunition (scroll down and read under “Safety of Abortion”), it’s the emotional argument of saving unborn children. It’s better to cover the Internet with pictures of aborted fetuses instead of using legitimate and generally unbiased sources to make the argument that especially “surgical abortion” should be treated by the law as “surgery”?

After years of already knowing the answer to the question of what people care about more — women or unborn children — this debate is still framed almost solely from the perspective of saving the unborn. And this is in spite of legitimate medical and scientific evidence that could be used to show that at least certain types of abortion, especially the types that conservatives want stopped more than any other, are much more harmful to women than others.

This is not an “ends justify the means” argument here. This is simply pointing out the insanity of repeating the same thing while expecting a different result. It is also pointing out the failure to frame an argument in terms that actually matter to people and might move them to our side. And it is no different from the fact that conservatives are still failing to point out that many crisis pregnancy centers do more than just counsel women on options other than abortion. Many provide other services to help women make it through life as a new mother, or to prevent themselves from ending up with an unwanted pregnancy again by teaching them that they are worth more than what is between their legs. But no, there aren’t commercials or websites featuring women that are happy to report that they were helped by these organizations. There is just the liberal accusation that they are brainwashing women into not having abortions or lying to them so they can’t get one.

If this issue was handled only by prosecutors, I suspect that we would be seeing more of what I’ve mentioned here. At the least, there would be fewer misguided statements and questions like Barbieri’s. I don’t have an emotional investment in this issue; as I said before, I am ambivalent. I am not a social conservative, and do not take up moral arguments in politics. On the contrary, I learned long that politics is barely moral. However, I might find myself standing on the side of pro-life activists if the lives they were seeking to protect included the women that are harmed by abortion, as I’ve shown can be the case here.

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  1. user_86050 Inactive
    user_86050
    @KCMulville

    No.

    Your argument is that we can appeal to women by abandoning the moral argument and focusing on the medical danger to women as a way to get them to forego abortion. But that wouldn’t be interpreted as an argument to stop abortion; instead, it would be used as an argument to spend more money to clean up abortion clinics.

    You say that you’ve “learned that politics is barely moral.” Perhaps, but there’s a lot more to life than politics. Abortion is a moral issue, but politicians and judges and lawyers use politics to dictate how that moral issue is addressed by society. The essential problem with abortion is precisely that it has been politicized, turning what should be a moral discussion into a political football. What you’re advocating here is not that we restore morality to the discussion; you’re arguing that we remove morality and treat it entirely as a political discussion. That’s a hammer-nail approach, trying to use politics to solve everything.

    • #1
  2. Liz Harrison Contributor
    Liz Harrison
    @LizHarrison

    KC Mulville:You say that you’ve “learned that politics is barely moral.” Perhaps, but there’s a lot more to life than politics. Abortion is a moral issue, but politicians and judges and lawyers use politics to dictate how that moral issue is addressed by society. The essential problem with abortion is precisely that it has been politicized, turning what should be a moral discussion into a political football. What you’re advocating here is not that we restore morality to the discussion; you’re arguing that we remove morality and treat it entirely as a political discussion. That’s a hammer-nail approach, trying to use politics to solve everything.

    Respectfully, the pro-life movement is looking for a political solution to a moral issue by campaigning for legislation in the first place. I’m not the one putting this in political terms. I’m pointing out if you’re going to look for a political solution to your moral issues, you need to use political tools to get the job done.

    • #2
  3. user_129539 Member
    user_129539
    @BrianClendinen

    Liz Harrison: But, I don’t have an emotional investment in this issue; as I said before, I am ambivalent. I am not a social conservative, and do not take up moral arguments in politics. On the contrary, long ago I learned that politics is barely moral.

    I have to disagree here.  Politics is just religious disagreement in disguise. The political process is how people who have different beliefs on how as a culture, and individuals in a society, community, organization or family  should live and what actions should be performed by those units. Morality is the fundamental driver and motivation which informs and creates our beliefs.  Any time someone is making a statement on how anything should live their life they are making a religious argument at the core.

    Therefore what you really are saying is if politics is barely moral, is that the political process you work in barely abides by your religious belief system even if you don’t consider yourselves religious nor doing religious things. Your live and let live libertarian stance on abortion is itself a moral belief.

    We just don’t have a really good word in the English language to explain this type of moral stance,  therefore I think the lack of good language makes it easy to think we are not religious on something we don’t care about.

    • #3
  4. user_517406 Inactive
    user_517406
    @MerinaSmith

    Liz, defenders of life would like a moral and political solution, but more than anything they have to be moral. What you ask would be like those who oppose assisted suicide also lobbying to regulate how suicide doctors do their grisly work. At that point you’ve become an advocate for suicide. So no, what you suggest is not helpful.

    • #4
  5. user_86050 Inactive
    user_86050
    @KCMulville

    Liz Harrison:

    Respectfully, the pro-life movement is looking for a political solution to a moral issue by campaigning for legislation in the first place.

    I disagree. The pro-life movement is looking to undo a political intrusion, not to create one.

    There are three categories here; moral, legal, and political. The fulcrum of the issue is legal. Whatever the moral issue, the law (with Roe v. Wade) not only dictated the result, it also used a legal philosophy that effectively removed the whole issue from debate. The whole legal notion of privacy as a substantive right was a judicial fiat, imposed on the country with no recourse, no debate, and no way to reverse. It confiscated a whole class of moral issues and declared that the Court alone could decide them. As Scalia said, “do you really want nine lawyers to decide these issues?” Well, with Roe v. Wade and the corruption of the notion of privacy, that’s exactly what happened.

    The pro-life agenda, therefore, depends on reversing that corruption of privacy, and getting judges that abide by a judicial philosophy of restraint. We want judges to interpret what the law actually is, not imposing their private notions of what they think the law should be.

    The problem isn’t that the pro-life side is losing the argument. Quite the contrary, with the advent of sonogram technology, we’re winning that more than ever. The problem is that the Court prevents us from revisiting the legal debate.

    That’s where it gets political, because Democrats keep filling the judiciary with judges who follow the liberal philosophy that empowers judges to overstep their authority. Our problem is that we have a Republican party that doesn’t commit to the opposing legal philosophy, restoring the judiciary to its proper role.

    It isn’t a political debate at heart. It’s a legal debate, but it’s fought by appointing judges, and that’s where politics gets involved. The pro-life side isn’t trying to impose a political solution; instead, it’s trying to undo the political intrusion into the legal fight.

    Hell, if it were just a political debate, two sonograms would win the day.

    • #5
  6. Liz Harrison Contributor
    Liz Harrison
    @LizHarrison

    Brian Clendinen:

    I have to disagree here. Politics is just religious disagreement in disguise. The political process is how people who have different beliefs on how as a culture, and individuals in a society, community, organization or family should live and what actions should be performed by those units. Morality is the fundamental driver and motivation which informs and creates our beliefs. Any time someone is making a statement on how anything should live their life they are making a religious argument at the core.

    Therefore what you really are saying is if politics is barely moral, is that the political process you work in barely abides by your religious belief system even if you don’t consider yourselves religious nor doing religious things.

    No. I am saying that politics is dirty business. See Barry Goldwater on that. And I am generally opposed to most legislation that tells people how to live their lives. Less government, more freedom.

    • #6
  7. Ricochet Contributor
    Ricochet
    @TitusTechera

    A few objections. The recently incredibly successful political attack on marriage & the new political definition of marriage as including homosexual couples & whatever else is next–all of that started as a moral argument, it is usually argued in a deeply moralistic way, & it changed both politics & laws.

    Then look at the abortion debate: Is it not the case that the pro-life movement is at this point the majority opinion in America, which it was not in the previous generation? Has it lost any ground in the recent past?

    This is not to say that the pro-life movement should not be politic, which probably does mean settling for smaller policies, installing them, & building confidence & new habits of mind in politics on the way to an argument that stands on principle alone…

    • #7
  8. Liz Harrison Contributor
    Liz Harrison
    @LizHarrison

    KC Mulville:

    I disagree. The pro-life movement is looking to undo a political intrusion, not to create one.

    There are three categories here; moral, legal, and political. The fulcrum of the issue is legal. Whatever the moral issue, the law (with Roe v. Wade) not only dictated the result, it also used a legal philosophy that effectively removed the whole issue from debate. The whole legal notion of privacy as a substantive right was a judicial fiat, imposed on the country with no recourse, no debate, and no way to reverse. It confiscated a whole class of moral issues and declared that the Court alone could decide them. As Scalia said, “do you really want nine lawyers to decide these issues?” Well, with Roe v. Wade and the corruption of the notion of privacy, that’s exactly what happened.

    The pro-life agenda, therefore, depends on reversing that corruption of privacy, and getting judges that abide by a judicial philosophy of restraint. We want judges to interpret what the law actually is, not imposing their private notions of what they think the law should be.

    The problem isn’t that the pro-life side is losing the argument. Quite the contrary, with the advent of sonogram technology, we’re winning that more than ever. The problem is that the Court prevents us from revisiting the legal debate.

    That’s where it gets political, because Democrats keep filling the judiciary with judges who follow the liberal philosophy that empowers judges to overstep their authority. Our problem is that we have a Republican party that doesn’t commit to the opposing legal philosophy, restoring the judiciary to its proper role.

    It isn’t a political debate at heart. It’s a legal debate, but it’s fought by appointing judges, and that’s where politics gets involved. The pro-life side isn’t trying to impose a political solution; instead, it’s trying to undo the political intrusion into the legal fight.

    Hell, if it were just a political debate, two sonograms would win the day.

    If it wasn’t based on privacy, it would have eventually been based on public interest in promoting the safety of women. Abortion isn’t going to end, legal or not, period. At least it won’t until we end up with 100% effective birth control outside of abstinence. And no, I will never suggest that the government should be excused from respecting a right of privacy ever. I may not like what that means in one respect or another, but I would hate government pushing more than it already does into the private lives of people. As for the moral argument, it is based on the assumption that all people believe in souls, a deity, spirituality, etc. That isn’t the case. A majority do, but not all.

    • #8
  9. Liz Harrison Contributor
    Liz Harrison
    @LizHarrison

    Titus Techera:A few objections. The recently incredibly successful political attack on marriage & the new political definition of marriage as including homosexual couples & whatever else is next–all of that started as a moral argument, it is usually argued in a deeply moralistic way, & it changed both politics & laws.

    Then look at the abortion debate: Is it not the case that the pro-life movement is at this point the majority opinion in America, which it was not in the previous generation? Has it lost any ground in the recent past?

    This is not to say that the pro-life movement should not be politic, which probably does mean settling for smaller policies, installing them, & building confidence & new habits of mind in politics on the way to an argument that stands on principle alone…

    I am suggesting that we are reaching a break point on fighting based on morality. It is time to fight the opposition on its own playing field, using its own research against it. The shift has been happening because of rapid advancements in medicine that have made it possible to keep premature babies alive at a much earlier point in pregnancy, among other things. The science is shifting to the pro-life side, so I’m saying use it.

    • #9
  10. Ricochet Contributor
    Ricochet
    @TitusTechera

    Liz Harrison: I am suggesting that we are reaching a break point on fighting based on morality. It is time to fight the opposition on its own playing field, using its own research against it. The shift has been happening because of rapid advancements in medicine that have made it possible to keep premature babies alive at a much earlier point in pregnancy, among other things. The science is shifting to the pro-life side, so I’m saying use it.

    I agree with your latter argument, I see no compelling evidence for your first observation–what evidence do you see?

    • #10
  11. user_554634 Moderator
    user_554634
    @MikeRapkoch

    I completely disagree that the pro-life movement fails to address the serious health issues (mental and physical) of women. In fact, these issues are deadly serious. Crisis pregnancy centers typically avoid politics because the goal is to save one baby–and one woman–at a time. Our local pro-life group is heavily involved in promoting our center. The Montana Knights have Columbus has raised a ton of money for ultrasound machines for centers across the state.The local centers have developed sophisticated counseling methods to help post abortion women overcome the guilt and psychological scars left from abortion. Womens’ heathcare has been a constant theme. There has been legislation put forward to restrict abortions to 20 weeks. In Montana, nurse practioners and physicians assistants are allowed to do abortions. We’ve been trying to overturn that, but a court decision authorizing non-doctors to do abortions stands in the way.

    We cringe whenever a politician says something stupid, but that doesn’t happen all that often. It makes the news because abortion is such a hot issue and abortion advocates will do nearly anything to protect their interests. Planned Parenthood and other abortion favoring groups have sough to have crisis pregnancy centers closed down because, the irony drips, they do not provide healthcare.

    Of course babies are the focus. We’re literally confronting life and death situations. But the pro-life movement is in the vanguard when it comes to womens’ health.

    • #11
  12. Liz Harrison Contributor
    Liz Harrison
    @LizHarrison

    Titus Techera:

    Liz Harrison: I am suggesting that we are reaching a break point on fighting based on morality. It is time to fight the opposition on its own playing field, using its own research against it. The shift has been happening because of rapid advancements in medicine that have made it possible to keep premature babies alive at a much earlier point in pregnancy, among other things. The science is shifting to the pro-life side, so I’m saying use it.

    I agree with your latter argument, I see no compelling evidence for your first observation–what evidence do you see?

    I’m saying that we’re not seeing a spiritual awakening. Possibly the opposite. Churches aren’t talking about booming numbers with few exceptions. I’m talking numbers here. Logically, it is safe to assume that people that will be swayed based on morality are dwindling. I hope that makes sense.

    • #12
  13. user_554634 Moderator
    user_554634
    @MikeRapkoch

    One other thing. The pro-life movement does rely on the science–heavily. Now that the facts about the development of babies have been made clear by science, abortion rates are dropping, and public opinion is shifting. Science is now the spear.

    • #13
  14. Liz Harrison Contributor
    Liz Harrison
    @LizHarrison

    Mike Rapkoch:

    Of course babies are the focus. We’re literally confronting life and death situations. But the pro-life movement is in the vanguard when it comes to womens’ health.

    You’re inadvertently supporting what I’ve said here. I’m suggesting that the people that care about the lives of babies have been pulled into the pro-life side already. All that is left is to get more people that actually care about women. I’m saying that it’s time to back up the calls about Planned Parenthood being horrible for women with the hard scientific and medical facts that organizations like Guttmacher have assembled. It is time to use their own supporters’ statistics against them. And it’s time to show why pro-life organizations are for women’s health. The opposition has been allowed to lie about that for long enough.

    • #14
  15. Liz Harrison Contributor
    Liz Harrison
    @LizHarrison

    Of course, it seems Ben Carson agrees a little about what I’ve said here.

    • #15
  16. user_86050 Inactive
    user_86050
    @KCMulville

    Liz Harrison:

    If it wasn’t based on privacy, it would have eventually been based on public interest in promoting the safety of women.

    ?

    Liz Harrison:

    And no, I will never suggest that the government should be excused from respecting a right of privacy ever. I may not like what that means in one respect or another, but I would hate government pushing more than it already does into the private lives of people.

    That’s because you probably haven’t followed the argument about the corruption of privacy. There is no question that the Constitution includes a notion of privacy, and no one argues that there is no right to privacy at all. The corruption comes from the idea that the “emanations and penumbras” of such a concept can be defined as far as a judiciary wants to define them, without any input from the public or legislature.

    Liz Harrison:

    As for the moral argument, it is based on the assumption that all people believe in souls, a deity, spirituality, etc. That isn’t the case. A majority do, but not all.

    No, those aren’t the assumptions on which the pro-life legal argument is based, but even so – you’re now attempting a moral argument. If you want to engage the morality of it, fine.

    • #16
  17. user_554634 Moderator
    user_554634
    @MikeRapkoch

    Liz Harrison:

    Mike Rapkoch:

    Of course babies are the focus. We’re literally confronting life and death situations. But the pro-life movement is in the vanguard when it comes to womens’ health.

    You’re inadvertently supporting what I’ve said here. I’m suggesting that the people that care about the lives of babies have been pulled into the pro-life side already. All that is left is to get more people that actually care about women. I’m saying that it’s time to back up the calls about Planned Parenthood being horrible for women with the hard scientific and medical facts that organizations like Guttmacher have assembled. It is time to use their own supporters’ statistics against them. And it’s time to show why pro-life organizations are for women’s health. The opposition has been allowed to lie about that for long enough.

    I certainly agree with this. Just one example from Live Action.

    Liz Harrison:

    Mike Rapkoch:

    Of course babies are the focus. We’re literally confronting life and death situations. But the pro-life movement is in the vanguard when it comes to womens’ health.

    You’re inadvertently supporting what I’ve said here. I’m suggesting that the people that care about the lives of babies have been pulled into the pro-life side already. All that is left is to get more people that actually care about women. I’m saying that it’s time to back up the calls about Planned Parenthood being horrible for women with the hard scientific and medical facts that organizations like Guttmacher have assembled. It is time to use their own supporters’ statistics against them. And it’s time to show why pro-life organizations are for women’s health. The opposition has been allowed to lie about that for long enough.

    The pro-life movement does collect such data. The problem is, the media ignores the facts because abortion is the sacrament of the pro–choice side. For an example of pro-woman advocacy, here’s a link to Feminists for Life.

    • #17
  18. Ricochet Contributor
    Ricochet
    @TitusTechera

    So far as I can tell, the pro-life numbers are going up without any corresponding spiritual awakening. I am not sure why you think the two have to go together. Aren’t millennials surprisingly pro-life? At least, surprising to their liberals forebears, who might see them as ingrates, as some older feminists see some younger women…

    • #18
  19. user_129539 Member
    user_129539
    @BrianClendinen

    Liz Harrison:No. I am saying that politics is dirty business. See Barry Goldwater on that. And I am generally opposed to most legislation that tells people how to live their lives. Less government, more freedom.

    Oh I think I understand and would agree. You are saying politics is war  and there is very little that is glorious or good about war or fighting in itself. It is just something you have do sometimes to defend a moral position. However, even then there are moral bounders to what necessity can allow.

    So politics is barely moral because  there is nothing moral about politics for politics sakes or disagreement for disagreement sake but there are politics that is always wrong no mater the fight.

    • #19
  20. Vance Richards Member
    Vance Richards
    @VanceRichards

    Liz Harrison: As for the moral argument, it is based on the assumption that all people believe in souls, a deity, spirituality, etc. That isn’t the case. A majority do, but not all.

    I think when you are talking about ripping the arms and legs off a small child, the concern is with the physical harm done, not their spirit or soul.

    Also, is law anything other than a series of moral judgements? Even with something like tax law you have people who feel richer Americans have a moral obligation to pay more and others who feel it is immoral to ask one to pay more for the same government that others receive for less. Both are moral arguments. Morality can exist without laws, but laws cannot exist without people making moral judgements. So the making of laws, politics, is always about morality.

    Concern for “women that are harmed by abortion” is a moral and emotional argument by someone who doesn’t want to”take up moral arguments in politics”?

    • #20
  21. Jager Coolidge
    Jager
    @Jager

    Liz Harrison:When “stupid” is all that the conservative side has to offer, it should face the liberal ridicule it deserves.

    When it comes to the pro-life movement, there are piles of examples like this and, for a conservative woman that is ambivalent at best on the issue, it’s painful

    Sure stupid is a problem. It is a problem in every policy issue on both sides of the issues. People really should have a basic understanding of the issues and do some basic research before issuing statements.

    Taking that as a base line, I would ask how you are defining “the pro-life movement”? Virtually every pro-life group whose website I have visited provides information that would seem to meet your criteria: they argue from moral grounds, they argue for the baby and they point out the harms to women. It would seem to me that the “pro-life movement” is doing what you are asking, but that there are uniformed politicians making stupid statements.

    Did you visit any pro-life websites or are you asking a question “why don’t you focus on women” with out knowing the answer? ( that would seem to violate the premise of your argument)

    • #21
  22. Liz Harrison Contributor
    Liz Harrison
    @LizHarrison

    Jager:

    Liz Harrison:When “stupid” is all that the conservative side has to offer, it should face the liberal ridicule it deserves.

    When it comes to the pro-life movement, there are piles of examples like this and, for a conservative woman that is ambivalent at best on the issue, it’s painful

    Sure stupid is a problem. It is a problem in every policy issue on both sides of the issues. People really should have a basic understanding of the issues and do some basic research before issuing statements.

    Taking that as a base line, I would ask how you are defining “the pro-life movement”? Virtually every pro-life group whose website I have visited provides information that would seem to meet your criteria: they argue from moral grounds, they argue for the baby and they point out the harms to women. It would seem to me that the “pro-life movement” is doing what you are asking, but that there are uniformed politicians making stupid statements.

    Did you visit any pro-life websites or are you asking a question “why don’t you focus on women” with out knowing the answer? ( that would seem to violate the premise of your argument)

    I did bring up the stupidity of politicians on this. When there is push back against laws that would protect women, like in Texas, the response from the legislators is typically grounded in the argument for the unborn child. That isn’t useful. Apparently the pro-life groups aren’t getting their message to our representatives in legislatures.

    • #22
  23. Liz Harrison Contributor
    Liz Harrison
    @LizHarrison

    Mike Rapkoch:One other thing. The pro-life movement does rely on the science–heavily. Now that the facts about the development of babies have been made clear by science, abortion rates are dropping, and public opinion is shifting. Science is now the spear.

    Someone needs to tell the politicians that.

    • #23
  24. Liz Harrison Contributor
    Liz Harrison
    @LizHarrison

    Titus Techera:So far as I can tell, the pro-life numbers are going up without any corresponding spiritual awakening. I am not sure why you think the two have to go together. Aren’t millennials surprisingly pro-life? At least, surprising to their liberals forebears, who might see them as ingrates, as some older feminists see some younger women…

    No. At least I’m not surprised. They tend to focus more on the science, and don’t necessarily buy into the emotional arguments of their elders. Of course, there are also some that are opposed to abortion on moral grounds, too. There may even be a fair contingent of young women that are turning away from the messages of the older feminists as well.

    • #24
  25. Liz Harrison Contributor
    Liz Harrison
    @LizHarrison

    Merina Smith:Liz, defenders of life would like a moral and political solution, but more than anything they have to be moral.What you ask would be like those who oppose assisted suicide also lobbying to regulate how suicide doctors do their grisly work.At that point you’ve become an advocate for suicide. So no, what you suggest is not helpful.

    I am hoping that we don’t have legislators on any level acting on behalf of any specific causes exclusively when they are supposed to be representing all of their constituents. I know we ask if a legislator is pro-life, and that voters often cast ballots based on that answer. No, I do not agree with that concept, because there is no such thing as a completely pro-life legislative district. Bear in mind, I am not suggesting that activists sell out. I am suggesting that they arm politicians with different ammunition at this point. Conversely, I’m also not suggesting that politicians become activists. That is no better than activist judges.

    • #25
  26. user_554634 Moderator
    user_554634
    @MikeRapkoch

    Liz Harrison:

    Mike Rapkoch:One other thing. The pro-life movement does rely on the science–heavily. Now that the facts about the development of babies have been made clear by science, abortion rates are dropping, and public opinion is shifting. Science is now the spear.

    Someone needs to tell the politicians that.

    We do. They just don’t hear us.

    • #26
  27. Liz Harrison Contributor
    Liz Harrison
    @LizHarrison

    Mike Rapkoch:

    Liz Harrison:

    Mike Rapkoch:One other thing. The pro-life movement does rely on the science–heavily. Now that the facts about the development of babies have been made clear by science, abortion rates are dropping, and public opinion is shifting. Science is now the spear.

    Someone needs to tell the politicians that.

    We do. They just don’t hear us.

    They hear money and power. Stop contributing to them, and tell them why you’re not. Stop endorsing them, same deal.

    • #27
  28. Jager Coolidge
    Jager
    @Jager

    Liz Harrison:

    I did bring up the stupidity of politicians on this. When there is push back against laws that would protect women, like in Texas, the response from the legislators is typically grounded in the argument for the unborn child. That isn’t useful. Apparently the pro-life groups aren’t getting their message to our representatives in legislatures.

    Yes your example of stupidity was a politician. However you ended your piece by stating you could stand on the side of pro-life activists if thy cared about the lives of women. Pro-life “activists” do care about/talk about the lives of women. Republican politicians simply are terrible at  “messaging” this is nothing new.

    • #28
  29. user_517406 Inactive
    user_517406
    @MerinaSmith

    Legislators who vote their conscience are not at all like activist judges. They are elected based on their platform. Sure, they should listen to constituents, but they simply can’t be empty vessels in making legislation. Voters can then vote them out if they dislike what they do. Edmund Burke was right about this. Judges, on the other hand, are supposed to interpret law, not make it. They’ve gotten pretty sloppy about this.

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  30. Ricochet Contributor
    Ricochet
    @TitusTechera

    Liz Harrison:

    Titus Techera:So far as I can tell, the pro-life numbers are going up without any corresponding spiritual awakening. I am not sure why you think the two have to go together. Aren’t millennials surprisingly pro-life? At least, surprising to their liberals forebears, who might see them as ingrates, as some older feminists see some younger women…

    No. At least I’m not surprised. They tend to focus more on the science, and don’t necessarily buy into the emotional arguments of their elders. Of course, there are also some that are opposed to abortion on moral grounds, too. There may even be a fair contingent of young women that are turning away from the messages of the older feminists as well.

    How do you know–how do you, furthemore, propose to argue–that ‘they focus more on the science’? Do you feel the need to find or offer any evidence on this? Is it that you know millennials galore?

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