Posts Tagged ‘Rick Santorum’

No Mitch Henck, Obama and Santorum don’t hate gays equally

January 8, 2012

Throughout American history, civil rights for various groups, from women to blacks to gays, have come slowly and painfully. Typically, the movement begins with a small group in favor of expanding rights, a small group that is hostile to that expansion, and a small group that is ambivalent. In time, the last group gradually shifts to support the newer vision of social justice. That is what we see in President Obama’s support of gay rights. Barney Frank explains:

“My own view is that I look at President Obama’s record, he was probably inclined to think that same-sex marriage was legitimate, but as a candidate for president in 2008 that would have been an unwise thing to say,” Mr. Frank said. “And I don’t mean that he’s being hypocritical. I mean that if you live in a democratic society, it is a mix of what you think the voters want and what you think is doable.”

Liberals and conservatives alike enjoy pointing out that the president’s position on gay marriage is no different than Rick Santorum’s. Conservative(ish) Madison radio host Mitch Henck made this point over and over again the other day, feigning puzzlement at the gay community’s hostility to Santorum’s candidacy. Even if we disregarded the major gay rights initiatives Obama has championed, including domestic partnerships for federal employees, repeal of Don’t Ask Don’t Tell and a proactive campaign for gay rights abroad, there’s a major difference between Santorum and Obama on gay marriage.

Essentially, Obama is to gays what JFK and LBJ were to blacks in the early 60’s. He is trying to find a why to support the progressive definition of gay rights without losing an election. Santorum, very simply, is to gays what Strom Thurmond was to blacks. Not only is he viciously opposed to any recognition of gay partnerships, but he believes the law should reflect the view that homosexuality is immoral, just as Thurmond believed integration to be immoral.

Iowa Evangelicals vote for a Mormon and a Catholic

January 4, 2012

A generation ago, Iowa Evangelicals would have regarded last night’s results as a sad display of spiritual decay in the GOP. A Mormon beats a Catholic by 8 votes, followed by a social libertarian who rarely ever mentions God? Results like that would have infuriated Pat Robertson in 1980.

The acceptance of Mormons and Catholics by Evangelicals is NOT an indication that religion is no longer important in politics, or that religious voters prefer to keep Christianity out of politics. What it shows is simply that the religious right has puts its differences with Mormons, Catholics and Jews aside while it takes on its biggest enemy: American secularism.

Christianity teaches us that there is only one way to God, and yet, as we have seen in recent decades, some of the most prolific promoters of that message are willing to make alliances with supposed heathens and heretics to achieve a common goal.

For instance:

The Evangelical movement sees the Israeli Jewish population as a protector of the Holy Land from Muslims, which is curious, since it seems nearly impossible that Muslims could do worse than kill the supposed son of God himself.

Similarly, the Evangelical right has warmed considerably to Catholics, such as Rick Santorum. Sure, some might regard the Pope as the anti-Christ, but he’s still a hell of a lot better than Planned Parenthood.

Evangelicals are probably more reluctant to elect a Mormon, but at the end of the day, there are only a handful of states that have a cultural and political character more friendly to conservative Christians than Utah. A pro-life Mormon beats the hell out of a pro-choice Muslim, which is apparently the status quo.