Let’s talk about one of the greatest political oxy morons of all time. This is a continuous and mundane occurrence. It’s the basis and primary position for each of the political parties. I’m talking about the death penalty and abortion. Generally if you’re a Republican you are against abortion and for the death penalty. Conversely Democrats generally support a woman’s right to choose and oppose the death penalty.
Why do I use the term oxy moron? While I have been a Catholic for my entire life I like a quote from one of my favorite comedians, the late George Carlin, who used to say “I was Catholic until I reached the age of reason”. George always credited the nuns with nurturing his creativity and allowing him to “understand” the Catholic religion. I assure you his vision was not the same as theirs. That being said this is not about my religion or any specific religion but the seemingly opposing ideas that are bound together in our culture.
Let’s start on the right. The republicans support the opposition of the Roe v Wade decision. They want abortion limited to very specific circumstances. I understand their position. Life is sacred, even unborn life. They associate this position with a moral or religious conviction. Orthodox Jewish people hold a similar belief and usually have large families. So we associate the position that life is worth preserving at almost all cost with the Judeo-Christian tradition and the more conservative leaning Republican views in general.
Now what about the morally corrupt, dangerous and incorrigible criminal. No, not the politicians, death row inmates. The conservative/republican position, let’s kill them all. Now to my sensibility religious or moral people who want to preserve life to advocate killing because the government says its ok is just not right. These positions do not gel.
Moving to the left, the Liberal/Democrat positions. This camp supports a woman’s right to choose. This seems like a fair position. I personally don’t see a problem if it’s right for someone else. It’s not for me but hey why should I stop you if it does not affect me. It is the law of the land. The position has been challenged over and over and the result is still the same, it’s still the law. While it may not be my morality it is law lets follow it. However this same camp thinks that the government/jury or judge should not have the right/power to execute a convicted inmate. Well it’s the law in the jurisdictions that have it so why should we do something different? I know the arguments, your not god, they, the jury or judge , may have gotten it wrong, but it is still the law so let’s be consistent and follow the law.
The way I see it the republican/conservatives should support the abortion issue and also be against the death penalty. You know preserve life, turn the other cheek, give them another chance or revenge belongs to god. This is the Christian way. Lets be consistent. Accordingly the liberal/democratic side should support abortion and the death penalty. You know, they are both the law so lets enforce them equally.
Alright I know that there are other issues working here. Some candidates can’t get the votes in certain places if they say the wrong things. So what is the real ideology here? Is it well established moral or religious beliefs or could it be political ideology that seems to support the needed votes to get elected. I guess that I have a problem with consistency. Either you are going to follow the law regardless of how it effects an individual life or your are for the sanctity of life even if it does not coincide with the law. Oh where is Mr. Spock with his logic when you need him? I keep forgetting that we are humans and as such we are emotional and for the most part not logical.
I like watching Real Time with Bill Maher. I do not always agree with his position on things but he and/or his guests usually make me laugh. He is very much against religion of any kind particularly fundamentalist groups be they Christian, Muslim or whatever. Having said that, we will end where we began, with a quote from the late George Carlin. “ Pray to Joe Pesci, you get about the same number of prayers answered as you get from god and he looks like a tough guy who can get things done.”