For years, I’ve tried to be gracious to liberals. I’ve always strived to give them the benefit of the doubt–that they are really well-meaning people who just don’t understand how dangerous their policies are. I’ve tried to tell myself, “They just don’t see that bringing a baby to the brink of birth and then sucking her brains out is wrong–and morally injurious to the society that sanctions it. They just don’t get that seizing the assets of productive workers in order to redistribute them to those who refuse to work discourages productivity and encourages sloth. They can’t quite figure out that men and women were designed for each other. But they mean well.”
But liberals rarely extend the same grace to conservatives. Never do they say, at least publicly, “Conservatives are well-meaning people who just don’t understand that life and death are morally equivalent. Conservatives just don’t understand that government owns all the wealth, and that people shouldn’t have more just because they work harder and produce more. Conservatives just can’t see that men and women are interchangeable. But they mean well.”
No, they liken us to Nazis, as though it were our policies that called for exterminating society’s rejects. They insist that we are motivated by hate. And they claim that it is we who seek to curtail rights–while they pass restrictive campus speech codes, seize honestly gained wealth and property, and regulate, regulate, regulate.
Now their judgmentalism has reached a new low. Yesterday at Border’s I stumbled upon a new book titled Using Terri. Terri is Terri Schiavo, the brain-damaged woman who was dehydrated to death earlier this year at her husband’s request.
According to its subtitle, the book is about “The Religious Right’s Conspiracy to Take Away Our Rights”. Rights like a husband’s right to demand that his wife thirst to death?
Its author’s chief claim to fame, if not moral authority, is that he was one of the lawyers for Michael Schiavo, not really a paragon of virtue in my book. According to him, conservatives were exploiting Terri Schiavo’s tragedy as part of our quest to destroy the constitutional right to personal autonomy. We didn’t really care about Mrs. Schiavo, or what her husband-ordered, court-ensured death meant for the culture. The people–lawyers, writers, legislative staff–working long hours, trying desperately to save Mrs. Schiavo’s life were motivated by a lust for power, not by compassion, according to this view.
It’s really pretty sad–sad that the author, and so many of his liberal compatriots, can’t recognize genuine compassion for an individual and concern for a culture. Their judgmentalism has blinded them. They just can’t see.