Carol Platt Liebau: Tightrope Walking

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Tightrope Walking

Here is an explanation of the biggest dilemma that Nancy Pelosi faces. With constituents on the left who have seen their party out of power in Congress for 12 years, incredible pressure has built up to see changes on the fronts they consider most important -- including controversial proposals on abortin and gun control.

It will be interesting to see how Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid handle the demands of liberal activists who have, indeed, done a lot to get the Dems back in power. When the GOP right pressures its leaders in a comparable way, the leaders have the help of the press in portraying the demands as excessive and unworkable. With the MSM in a perpetual left-leaning crouch, Pelosi & Reid may not be able to hope for any such deliverance.

What's more, the MoveOn crowd and other lefties aren't as patient as the Republican base. It took a long time -- and a lot of spending, stalled judges, and hesitation on foreign policy -- before the conservatives got restless. The lefties seem to have a shorter fuse; people like this (warning: some profanity in linked post) don't seem to be quite as likely to want to play nicely with others as the well-meaning people in the oft-derided religious right.


Blogger Ruth Anne Adams said...

Clowns to the left of me.
Jokers to the right.
Here I am....stuck in the middle with you.

10:47 AM  
Blogger Red7Eric said...

Carol, you might very well be a "well-meaning person" in the "oft-derided religious right," but while it is true that there are those on the left with little tolerance for those who do not share their views, there are an equal number of those on the right, especially those who bring religious dogma into political debate -- for whom arguments typically end with "because God says so -- that's why."

As someone who exists slightly left-of-center, I'm always hopeful that those on both sides of the political spectrum will someday learn to speak with one another. And I must say, I have hope for this new Congress. Many of the Democrats who were elected last week have typically conservative views on "left" issues such as gay rights, abortion rights, and gun control.

I believe that this is the most centrist class of Democrats ever elected in this country, majority or no. Most of us lefties aren't expecting the country to swing way to the left as a result. In the meantime, your voice could be one that encourages people from both the left and right to work together in a meaningful way, should you decide to put it to use.

1:43 PM  
Blogger Editor said...

Funny how the Decider claimed to be a Uniter.

6:42 PM  
Blogger Cliff said...

Editor said...
"Funny how the Decider claimed to be a Uniter."

You know what Dittohead, the election is over! What good does any of that talk do now?

8:29 PM  
Blogger Marshall Art said...

Never, ever, have I heard anyone try to argue an issue with "because God says so". This only happens within religious circles, but not in the public debates. Faith may support one's position, but no one uses it as a definitive plank. Just doesn't happen.

One can't be a uniter if one side refuses to stop obstructing.

11:54 PM  
Blogger Red7Eric said...

Marshall Art states ... "Never, ever, have I heard anyone try to argue an issue with 'because God says so.' This only happens within religious circles, but not in the public debates."

Well, Art ... take a listen to anyone arguing in the public sphere to restrict or outlaw abortion, legalize prohibitions against same-sex marriage, or keep Terri Schiavo on life support after her brain had atrophied beyond all recognition.

The mention of 'God' is alive and well in "the public debates," as you refer to them, and any religious conservative would balk at the suggestion that they should somehow separate their spiritual life from their political beliefs. To do so would be ungodly.

But it sure makes those who have different opinions difficult to have a voice on these same issues, even if we're determined to keep the debate on an earthly sphere.

9:51 AM  
Blogger Marshall Art said...

But I DO listen to those debates and partake in them as well. Are we talking about politicians? Are we talking about average citizens? One group might use religion as a direct debating point, the other as a source of their beliefs. I've never heard a politician say "because God says so" and I've only heard the Falwells and Robertsons say anything like it. It just doesn't happen. Nor does it need to. Those who support the liberal side of most social issues haven't made their cases scientifically, whereas I believe the conservative side has plenty of scientific support before ever needing to lean on the Lord to make their case.

What you might be thinking of are those times when some schmuck judge hands down a decision that undermines the will of the people, and the people are outraged at the thought of being forced to support something that runs counter to their religious beliefs. In these cases, bringing in God is absolutely appropriate. The rights of these "sinners" are being put above the rights of the faithful to live according to their beliefs. I don't want to hire a guy who dresses like a chick. I don't want to rent a house to a gay couple. I don't want my tax dollars going to support the murder of the unborn. All of these things, and others, I oppose due to my religious beliefs and it is unConstitutional to force me to comply. But while the debate still rages, before a judge sticks his nose into where it doesn't belong, these issues can and are debated without religious references almost always, because as I said, it isn't required.

10:25 PM  
Blogger eLarson said...

As "red7eric" quoted even John Kerry here, freedom of religion is a fundamental right. Being elected to office does not mean you give up that right.

If you think your Congressman is relying on religious argument to the detriment of other factors, vote against him. As we have seen, sitting Congressmen are NOT immune to the ballot.

8:21 AM  

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