Monday, November 17, 2008

Gay rights, gay rage

My latest American Spectator column:
The late historian Christopher Lasch was the first to identify (and Harvard Law professor Mary Ann Glendon later examined in depth) how "rights talk" insinuated itself into American culture as a dominant mode of political discourse in the decades following World War II. Because Americans are taught to think of "rights" as something sacred in our civic religion, those accused of violating "rights" are easily demonized, while those who advocate "rights" are sanctified.
Seizing on the triumphant narrative of the black civil-rights movement, liberals adopted the habit of framing political debates in terms of minority "rights" versus majority "discrimination." That this tactic involves a species of moral and emotional blackmail should be obvious. To disagree with a liberal, to oppose his latest policy proposal, is to invite comparisons to Bull Connor and Orval Faubus, so long as the liberal can make "rights" the basis of his argument. (Witness, for example, how Keith Olbermann addressed himself to Proposition 8 supporters, casting their position as morally equivalent to segregation and slavery.)
Please read the whole thing. On a related note, Tracey Meehan observes that some Republicans are blaming social conservatives for the 11/4 disaster -- even though Prop 8 got 1.7 million more votes than John McCain in California.

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