- A victory for the pro-lifers today: The Senate Approves Ban on Abortion Procedure. Enjoy your victory while it lasts, is my advice to the right. Once I was very worried about this, but that was when I was assuming that O’Conner was going to retire from the Supreme Court during Bush’s first term. With O’Conner staying on the Court, however, it’s very likely that the Court is going to find this ban unconstitutional.
- Proof that not all conservatives are anti-gay: There’s a good Andrew Sullivan essay in the Wall Street Journal, criticizing other conservatives for their anti-gay attitudes.
So what is it? What exactly is the post-Lawrence conservative social policy toward homosexuals? Amazingly, the current answer is entirely a negative one. The majority of social conservatives oppose gay marriage; they oppose gay citizens serving their country in the military; they oppose gay citizens raising children; they oppose protecting gay citizens from workplace discrimination; they oppose including gays in hate-crime legislation, while including every other victimized group; they oppose civil unions; they oppose domestic partnerships; they oppose . . . well, they oppose, for the most part, every single practical measure that brings gay citizens into the mainstream of American life.
This is simply bizarre. Can you think of any other legal, noncriminal minority in society toward which social conservatives have nothing but a negative social policy? What other group in society do conservatives believe should be kept outside integrating social institutions? On what other issue do conservatives favor separatism over integration? We know, in short, what conservatives are against in this matter. But what exactly are they for?
- But then again… for a laugh, check out this response to Sullivan by David Frum, also in the WSJ. Frum argues that conservatives have no choice but to oppose gay marriage laws. Why? Because if gays can marry, the goverment will be forced to set up halfway-marriage laws, which heterosexuals will want access to, which will reduce heterosexual marraige. Why will halfway-marriage laws be necessary? Because conservatives will oppose full gay-marriage laws.
In other words – if we cut out the fuzzy middle of this logic chain, and look only at the start and end – conservatives have no choice but to oppose gay marriage laws because conservatives will oppose gay marriage laws. Oy.
- A few days ago, I mentioned the Terri Schiavo case. Today, Jeb Bush has signed a new law which will cause Schiavo to be kept alive via a tube feeder.
- Jasperboi, a non-op (I think – it’s not really my business, of course) FtM transsexual (I think) feminist – muses on the kinds of men that different parts of our society will allow/expect him to be, and also on the difficulties men can have on finding a place in feminism. Interesting stuff.
- From back in June, a very good post on Procrastination, arguing that arranged marriages have been overrated.
- Two interesting Times articles on childbearing and poverty. First, a case of a woman charged with child endangerment after her two children were murdered while she was at her job. She wasn’t able to find a baby-sitter, and she couldn’t risk being fired, so she left her two kids, ages 8 and 2, at home. While she was out, someone deliberately set her apartment on fire, killing the children. Now she’s been charged with child endangerment.
This underscores the desparate need for universal, free child-care. There’s no reason anyone should be faced with this sort of “leave your kids alone or lose your job and watch the kids starve” choice. To then charge the woman with a crime is disgusting.
Second, a new study finds that chlidren’s behavior improves as their family’s income goes up.
- Over on Body and Soul, why I’m probably voting for Kucinich in the primary.
- A really interesting essay, Free Mickey!, on an 1970s satire of Mickey Mouse that Disney attempted to sue into oblivionland.