During my afternoon workout today, I decided to turn to give CNN a chance. The only other channel available at the gym was airing a golf tournament, and I thought it would be good to hear from the other side of the political spectrum considering that I primarily watch Fox News.
The headline story was about President Obama’s announcement that his administration would no longer be deporting certain young illegal immigrants, but what really caught my attention was a fairly lengthy segment featuring Lisa Brown, a Democratic representative from the 39th State House District of Michigan (covering parts of Oakland County).
The headline of the story was that Rep. Brown was banned from speaking after she said the word vagina on the House floor during a speech she delivered opposing proposed legislation restricting abortion. The factory setting left-of-center anchor woman who was conducting the interview (if a series of softball questions constitutes an interview) spun the story as if the prudish, out of touch Republicans merely banned her from speaking because the word vagina upset their puritanical sensibilities. After all, as we are told time and time again, only liberals are hip and cool!
But Lisa Brown didn’t simply say vagina. What she said was “And finally Mr. Speaker, I’m flattered that you’re all so interested in my vagina, but no means no.” Not only is Brown guilty of committing a straw man fallacy (being pro-life does not mean one wants to dictate every aspect of a woman’s life), her comment was juvenile, unprofessional, and inappropriate to use in a formal setting. What if a male representative had said to a female speaker, “And finally Ms. Speaker, I’m flattered that you’re all so interested in my penis, but no means no”? He would have been accused of being sexist and the story would have been front page news in Michigan for days.
But it wasn’t the fact the fallacious or juvenile nature of Rep. Brown’s orchestrated, sophomoric comment that upset me the most, or how CNN spun it. What upset me the most was her claim that Republicans were imposing their religious beliefs on her and that she does not impose her religious beliefs on them. There are three problems with this accusation that is commonly and predictably hurled against conservatives.
First, liberals impose their secular beliefs onto the populace far more than conservative Christians impose their religious beliefs onto the populace, and secular liberals are the ones who control culture, media, and the public schools and universities. From your light bulbs, to the amount of water your toilet flushes, to the pressure in your shower head, to the size and color of the car you drive, to the temperature in your house, to smoking in a bar, liberals, have their hand in many aspects of your life. The list goes on and on. Their love of the environment and healthy living trumps your unalienable right to liberty almost every time. It’s not Pat Robertson who is banning large sodas in New York City, its Michael Bloomberg.
Second, western civilization itself is founded upon religious beliefs. Liberty, democracy, the equality of human beings, and even arguably science itself all derive from Judeo-Christian theological views of the world. Lisa Brown likely missed this history lesson while she attended public schools and universities (and so did I until I bought a few used books on Amazon), but the famous atheist philosopher Frederic Nietzsche did not, as he wrote in The Will to Power, “Another Christian concept, no less crazy: the concept of equality of souls before God. This concept furnishes the prototype of all theories of equal rights”. I am happy to have these religious beliefs imposed on me. And so should you.
Third, on what basis can Lisa Brown assert it is wrong to restrict abortion? If religion is out of bounds, the notion of a supreme law giver is also out of bounds. Morality becomes relative, no different from preferring Coke over Pepsi, and I have yet to hear an atheist or secular humanist prove otherwise. In fact, the honest ones admit it’s true. So by declaring religion out of bounds in the political arena, Lisa Brown loses her ability to say the Republicans are objectively wrong. In the words of G.K Chesterton on modern man, “By rebelling against everything he has lost his right to rebel against anything”.
So, to ease my frustration, instead of self-righteously posting my opinion on Facebook (alongside mundane updates about what people are eating and where they are going tonight) like most liberals my age would do to feel they adequately fulfilled their civic duty to better the world, I decided to do something at least somewhat more meaning full by getting out my wallet and making a donation to the Oakland County Republican Party: