My Reader column for this week begins:
“In 1990 I was ecstatic when the popular Republican, State Auditor, Arne Carlson replaced the opportunistic, “pro-life,” political hack who had defeated him in the gubernatorial primary with the help of naive religious conservatives. When John Grunseth was outed for having chased his daughter’s friend around the family pool in a drunken attempt to rip off her bikini top he became instant poison. The pro-life Republicans had no face-saving choice other than to relinquish their death grip on the nomination in favor of Carlson. It would not be the last time that a false friend of religious conservatives would betray them. . .”
Reading the Story of El Salvador’s draconian pro-life idealÂ spurred me to get this off my chest.
WhatÂ Minnesota’s neighbor to the west, El Salvdakota, aspires to become in itsÂ new law to protect human life.Â
a small sample”
“Today, Article 1 of El Salvador’s constitution declares that the prime directive of government is to protect life from the “very moment of conception.” The penal code detailing the Crimes Against the Life of Human Beings in the First Stages of Development provides stiff penalties: the abortion provider, whether a medical doctor or a back-alley practitioner, faces 6 to 12 years in prison. The woman herself can get 2 to 8 years. Anyone who helps her can get 2 to 5 years. Additionally, judges have ruled that if the fetus was viable, a charge of aggravated homicide can be brought, and the penalty for the woman can be 30 to 50 years in prison.”
Old habits die hard. I’m at the Airport in the Cities. (Should be on the plane to San Ann. Don’t ask) Tried to log on the the blog. I typed in “Lincoln Republican” by mistake. No such thing.Â I shuda known!
Old habbits die hard. I’m at the Airport in the Cities. (Should be on the plane to San Ann. Don’t ask) Tried to log on the the blog. I typed in “Lincoln Republican” by mistake. No such thing.Â I shudda known!
This isÂ very interesting videoÂ interview of John McCain by Tim Russert who challenges the “maverick” Senator onÂ his recent raprochment with Jerry Falwell. (My blog software doesn’t have spellcheck and I don’t know if raprochment has one or two r’s. Rats!Â Not long ago IÂ spelled prerogative “perogative.” Phooey! I’m only the pronouncer at our local spelling bees in Duluth. I’m not one of the contestants. I’m not that brave.)
As a “McCainiac” in 2000 (I began a website for his Minnesota campaign) its a little distressing to see him pulling his punches on the folks who treated him in such an unchristian fashion. On the other hand, pragmatic politicians always have to prepared for the awkward political necessity of sleeping withÂ surprising bedfellows now and then. I hope for the Senator’s sake that Falwell doesn’t snore.
Moments after posting the previous entry I realized the difference between the two. If you were hiding a Jewish family in your attic, during World War II, and you told the Gestapo you weren’t hiding anybody you would be lying and doing right simultaneously. When I was growing up Biblical literalists had a hard time accepting this. To them the world was black and white. They wouldn’t countenance the heretical notion that you could take any liberties with God’s Ten Commandments, not even the one about never bearing false witness.When even more shocking questions were posed under the guise of “situational ethic” the literalists went into a state of apoplexy. It was bad enough to hear people trying to justify a lie but what about putting yourself in the place of a Jewish family hiding in the attic with a crying infant while the Gestapo was searching for Jews downstairs? Being found would mean certain death for everyone and the baby’s cries would definitely alert the Gestapo. The only way to save the family required smothering the baby. What to do? When I was a kid the literalists wouldn’t touch a question like this with a ten foot pole. Better the unexamined life.
So what do Bush loving, Biblical literalists make of this Administration’s “disingenuities?” I’d say that those of them who have stuck with Bush have crossed the treacherous black and white boundary of the Ten Commandments. In doing so they have followed in the footsteps of the pointy-headed thinkers from my youth who debated what that Jewish family should do. Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery.
This is a post I attempted to send yesterday as it the next. When the battery died on the flight to texas so did the post.I’ve emailed principals, trustees, school board members and PTA leaders. Now while I’m in San Antonio I’ll wait for replies and hopefully some reservation requests. One principal emailed back promising to make substitute teachers available for any of his teachers who want to attend. Cool.
I gave Michele Wallerstein, our President, an option to suggest changes but got nervous and sent my column in to the editor/publisher before she replied. Being a diplomat she changed my dyspeptic references to “greedy” legislators covering their “fiscal mismanagement.” It did her no good as I had already sent it in. I told her our legislators were all Democrats and unlikely to take offense since they’d just blame Republics who controlled 2/3rds of the state government.
InÂ its April 10th 2006Â story “God and the Founders” Newsweek had this stunningly secularistÂ quote from America’s founding fathers:
In a treaty with the Muslim nation of Tripoli initiated by Washington, completed by John Adams, and ratified by the Senate in 1797, we declared “the Government of the United States is not, in any sense, founded on the Christian religion. … “
It is a familiar notion that when the devilÂ makes his appearance he shows up asÂ a handsome, smooth talking, charmer. The liberal magazine “The Nation” uses that image on its front coverÂ to representÂ theÂ influential, and money loving,Â “evangelical” Republican, Ralph Reed.
The story they write is even more damning.Â
A friend sent me the latest Washington Monthly for this article. I found it online. Republican strategists made plans to have the Republican party maintain its power for a generation. It was less ambitious than the Nazi’s who talked about a thousand-year Reich but if this story is any indication it may not even last a generation.