Thursday, April 19, 2007

Pro-Life is not an Oxymoron.

Sometime there is nothing lonelier in this ultra-liberal Seattle than being a moderate democrat. If you are a conservative then at least you have a close, but small, group of friends. If you are a moderate democrat, however, and won’t partake of the bile and rhetoric launched against conservatives, than you are an outcast. I realized, today, the problem that keeps me out of so many social circles in this town is that I actually like conservatives.

My realization came today while discussing the recent Supreme Court decision regarding the partial birth abortion ban with a classmate before the beginning of my property law class. The conversation went awry when she started to complain about the labels, the pro-life and pro-choice bandied about by each side. I asked her what labels she would use and she responded, “how about pro-choice and anti-choice”. My response, “well, that’s not a neutral choice of words; it paints the opposition with pretty negative brush stroke.” At this point she starts to get upset, “I don’t care. These so called pro-lifer are just hypocrites” she then proceeds to go into a diatribe about the death penalty and Texas. I rebutted her arguments. I could tell that she was getting upset with me because I wouldn’t agree that the republican were a bunch of hypocrites, she thought I was blind, nay stupid. It was unfathomable to her to that I agreed on a pro-choice stance but wouldn’t also agree with her characterization of conservatives.

I think the crux of the problem with the ultra-left wing of the Democratic Party (and, just as a disclaimer, I think it is probably true about the ultra-right wing of the Republican party as well, but that is another post) is that they don’t really know or like any republicans. The result is that they spend all their time with each other complaining about republicans and convince themselves that they are right on their issues merely because the republicans are wrong. I don’t think this way.

It might have something to do with growing up in Idaho, the most conservative state in the Union, if not for Utah. As a result, I have a lot of friends and family who are conservatives: pro-life, NRA promoting, red-wearing elephants. I love and admire these people who are pro-life. Therefore I can’t and won’t stand for people who label my friends as hypocrites or dismiss them as people who “just don’t get it.” I heartedly disagree. My pro-life friends believe with all their hearts in life and live out their lives according to those beliefs; furthermore, these people “do get it”. They are just as smart and aware as any democrats who walk the streets of Seattle. But, despite this, I still disagree with my conservative friends.

My respect for conservatives requires that I think long and hard about the substantive meat of the argument and not the superfluous dispersion my classmates and many others I’ve met in this town through about. This central issue, of course to this abortion debate is no less than the meaning of life. There could be no smaller question. To pro-lifers, life begins at conception and that this life is just as valuable as that of my next door neighbor who is mowing his yard at this very moment, it is even more precious than that of killer or child molester, and therefore they desire to protect the unborn life with all the force of law used to protect citizens in this country. I, rather, believe that human life does not begin at conception. During the 1st trimester the fetus is just as likely to abort as develop into a child, it can’t think, can’t smell, can’t breath, and can’t even push its own blood around the few cells of its body. A human, it is not. Yet, I’m never going to convince my pro-life friend with science, I can’t even get them to buy into evolution; and they aren’t going to convince me with faith. So, we are at a stalemate. This essential dilemma needs to be acknowledged by both sides if we are ever going put this divisive issue to peace.

I fear, however, that it will not. There will still be the ultra-left screaming like harpies at the “hypocrites, idiots” and the trolls on the right yelling at the “murderers, baby killers”. What’s a moderate, conservative loving democrat to do?

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

They are left in the same boat as us moderate republicans. :)