Monday, March 22, 2010

The Party of Death

In his book The Party of Death: The Democrats, the Media, the Courts, and the Disregard for Human Life, Ramesh Ponnuru explains how the leadership of the Democratic party shifted from a conglomerate of pro-life and pro-choice politicians to a party that is synonymous with across-the-board social liberalism, especially abortion "rights." In 2006, Ponnuru predicted that if the Democrats continued on their current path towards more and more radical support of no-holds-barred elective abortion, they would begin to seriously alienate their base.

Look what happened last night.

Bart Stupak (D-MI) disappointed pro-lifers all over the country when he fell for Obama's ridiculous executive order ploy. But according to this video taken last year in Cheboygan, he never planned to hold firm. Take a look here.

Note that his constituents were booing when the camera stopped filming.

Also, in a March 19 press release, Stupak reveleaed that his state had been the recipient of a $700K FAA grant. Just coincidence, surely. While the left-leaning media screams that there is "no proof" that Stupak took an executive bribe, and that many other states have also been awarded FAA airport improvement grants, a cursory glance reveals that Michigan got significantly more money than most, if not all, the other states.

But it's probably just a coincidence.

In his book, which is highly recommended reading for all pro-life activists, Ponnuru devotes an entire chapter to an analysis of polls taken in the U.S. regarding abortion and other bioethics issues, and what he found is that Americans favor far more restrictive abortion laws than their pro-choice representatives in Congress, the White House, and the courts. Ponnuru's analysis found that most people who favor legal abortion would restrict it to only the first trimester; some are even unaware that late-term abortions are legal on demand in this country.

Ponnuru's hypothesis was proven last night when a Democratic majority in Congress enacted sweeping new legislation which, according to every major poll taken in the past several months regarding health care reform, is not desired by the American people.

This is grisly proof that Democratic politicians have gotten too radical for their base. They have moved further left of center than the average Democrat.

Come election season, a cold November rain is going to fall on representatives who ignored their constituents.

This blog was cross-posted from

Thursday, March 18, 2010

But She Shoots Wolves!

I freely admit I am new to conservatism. When Sarah Palin was campaigning for the vice presidency, I was vehemently condemning more or less everything about her. I shared her belief in the sanctity of life, but that was about it.

Today, I am far more educated, and when I say "educated" I mean more truly knowledgeable, not just more skilled at repeating talking points, which is what "educated" meant to me when I was a radical left-wing pro-choice agnostic. I have spent countless hours in the past few months, to the increasing detriment of what was once a thriving social life, tracking down footnote after footnote, following the references and citations where they lead. I have more or less constant headaches from eye strain, my back hurts all the time, and I am thinking of hiring a research assistant just to field arguments from Facebook friends. Do you know anybody who'll work for cookies and gold star stickers?

When I was in my late teens and early 20s, I read books by Al Franken and Michael Moore (yes, on purpose) condemning Ann Coulter as a lying liar who lies. In the few years in which I was deeply interested in liberal politics, I admit the only thing I ever read by Ann Coulter was the famous quote extracted from her column published in Human Events three days after 9/11. It said, referring to Muslim terrorists and those who sheltered them, "We should invade their countries, kill their leaders, and convert them to Christianity." I remember the "moral" outrage I felt (I put the word "moral" in quotations because I had no morals to speak of then) at reading that quote, and I remember reading or hearing Ann referred to in the "mainstream" press as a hateful, venom-spouting polemicist skeleton. A lot of the vitriol was mixed with a weird amount of reference to her physical attractiveness, but I ignored the obvious sexism because it didn't suit my purpose at the time, which was to reaffirm my current beliefs that Ann was a lot like a cockroach, if you could imagine a cockroach who was also a willowy blonde WASP from Connecticut. (Most of us can.)

I didn't read even a single column of Coulter's, but that didn't stop me from bitching about how hateful and dishonest and horrifying she was whenever anyone mentioned her name (usually to bitch about how hateful, dishonest and horrifying she was). I can't remember which, and can't stomach the thought of tracking it down seeing as how I'm not getting paid, but it was either Franken or Moore who accused Ann Coulter of citing phony or misleading sources, when she cited anything at all. I took the liberty of tracking down a random selection of footnotes from her most recent book, and found to my total lack of surprise that they were neither phony nor misleading.

It's an uncomfortable feeling, finding out that a lot of what you believed was utter rubbish, such as that Bill Clinton is an honorable human being and Sarah Palin is a moron.

All I knew about Sarah Palin when I commenced to hate her was that she was a conservative, her daughter was knocked up, and the religious right LOVED her. I also found out pretty quickly, via an email forward, that she shot wolves from helicopters. As a lover of animals, this disgusted me. I watched a video online of Ashley Judd condemning Palin for destroying Alaskan wildlife, which should have been my first clue that Palin wasn't all bad. Judd, after all, is an outspoken proponent of Planned Parenthood and opponent of the Partial Birth Abortion Ban. How I was able to take seriously Ashley Judd weeping for "defenseless" anything is beyond me.

In true liberal form, I started emailing this video to everybody I knew, proclaiming loudly that the media was covering it up, although I had personally found the information via the media. A Google search for "Palin shooting wolves" done today gets 176,000 hits, the first few pages of which almost exclusively contain material which (a) was published before March 2009, and (b) fails to defend Palin's actions in any meaningful way. Instead, headlines scream: "Sarah's Cruel Streak" and "Alaska's Dead Wolf Pups Demand Justice." The left does this all the time and I know because I did it all the time. I would find a million references in the press to something "the right" was "covering up," get really pissed about the conspiracy, and tell everyone I knew about it. This happened all the time, from Halliburton to Guantanamo to Dick Cheney being the ogre under the bridge from The Three Billy Goats Gruff. (Not yet confirmed.)

I ignored the obvious, sexist jab at Palin made by Obama (the "lipstick on a pig" remark) and I laughed at the callous, though very funny, jokes my friends made about her baby. Sample exchange:

Me: She named her new baby something weird, too. Trig.
Friend: Guess what class he'll never be in.

Really funny, but totally mean. I admit it: I laughed. I thought about the hundreds of thousands of babies with Down syndrome who are aborted every year, and I was very glad she kept her baby, and glad she encouraged her daughter to keep her baby, but I still laughed. And I defended David Letterman when he made the terribly inappropriate joke about Bristol Palin, a teenager, on his talk show.

Why? Why did I hate her so much?

I honestly don't know. Maybe because it's what everyone else was doing. All the smart people are liberal! Tina Fey, who is so intelligent and funny and cool, nailed Palin to the wall on SNL. Everybody smart thought Palin was stupid, backwards, and contrived. And I'm smart! Ergo, I should find Palin stupid. Right?

This is the kind of non-thinking I did for years as a liberal. I absorbed the default position on every issue from media and pop culture, gleaned the talking points, and let 'er rip.

Sarah Palin was the target of blatant sexism during the 2008 campaign. For an idea of how she was perceived by liberals, Google her image now and you will find a plethora of images of her head pasted onto the bodies of naughty secretaries with their blouses popping open. Most of them accompany websites that denigrate Sarah's politics and beliefs. Conservative, pro-Palin websites do not indulge in fantastical images of her behaving like a soft-core porn star because they respect her.

Then there was Obama's "lipstick" remark, and the constant noise from the "feminist" camp about everything from her parenting skills to her "anti-woman" pro-life stance. While they should have been praising her for raising five children in a loving marriage to her high-school sweetheart as she ascended to governorship of a state and candidacy for the vice presidency of the United States, they called her, the only woman in the race with executive experience, a vacuous, vapid, ridiculous floozy. Meanwhile, liberal "men" blogged about her stupidity while in another browser window they collected photos of her for an... ahem... personal file. Ann Coulter is absolutely right: from Ann herself to Sarah Palin to Carrie Prejean, people go nuts lust-hating beautiful conservative Christian women.

Sarah Palin was the target of a pro-Obama (prObama?) media. While they lobbed him softballs about how hard it must be to be a black man in his position, and how hard it must be to be attacked by the right wing conspiracy, and how hard it must be to be so brilliant and so handsome at the same time, Palin was being asked tough questions, some of which were pointedly obscure or vague (experts had to point out later that there really was no one policy or group of policies that could be pointed to as the "Bush doctrine").

In a move typical for the prObama media, they went after divorce records -- not Sarah's but her alleged lover's. They found not a shred of evidence that she'd had an affair with Brad Hanson or Scott Richter, so eventually they had to shut up about it. I'm sure they sent her and her family a heartfelt letter of apology, just as I'm sure Judas and Hitler regularly go ice-skating together in Hell.

I defend Sarah now because in these instances she deserves to be defended. I do not defend her for shooting wolves from a helicopter or for encouraging others to do so. From what I have learned, this is not a terribly controversial activity in Alaska, where moose, caribou and other herd animals are depended on for food by many people and high predator populations can lead to food shortages. The majority of the few wildlife and hunting experts whose opinions I read online (3 out of 4) said that bear populations need more culling than wolves. Nevertheless, Palin is far from rare in believing Alaskan wolf populations have to be thinned by humans for various reasons.

I disagree with Sarah on this. I don't think she should shoot wolves, and I don't think anyone else should without a damn good reason, such as being in immediate danger from one.

But the same so-called bleeding hearts who tear their hair out with grief for the poor wolves who threaten human food supplies defend a woman's right to have her child murdered in the womb for any old reason at all, such as that she prefers a boy and is pregnant with a girl, or doesn't want to lose her figure, or can't stand the thought of having Bill Clinton's baby. All I can say is: give me a break. Please. Cut out the crocodile tears. This "defenseless" animal is a predator who had at least a shot at life. It's an animal. If it were hungry and you were nearby, it would rip your throat out without a second thought. The victim of abortion is a truly defenseless, utterly trapped and dependent human child. How dare you weep for the hundreds or thousands of predators culled by hunters in the wilderness while simultaneously dismissing without a thought the millions of human babies killed every year legally in your very own neighborhoods?

The attack on Sarah Palin is rife with double standards, sexism, hypocrisy, irrationality, and the left's typically twisted "moral" posturing. And it is not over. The way it looks now, Sarah is a "definite maybe" for 2012, and it will only get worse. As Obama and his supporters, who include the entire establishment media, try desperately to save his presidency for a second term (which, at the rate he's going now, will be desperate indeed) the attacks on Palin will only worsen and increase.

This time, though, for what it's worth, they won't have me on their side.

A slightly modified version of this blog was posted at Modern Conservative.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

A Week of War

This Friday, Congress will vote on President Obama's health care reform bill. If it passes, it will be the greatest threat to the physical life of the unborn and the spiritual life of the human family since Roe v. Wade in 1973.

President Obama, Nancy Pelosi, Howard Dean, and others have vociferously argued in the press that this bill will not use taxpayer money for abortions, will not expand abortion rights, and is not a partisan, pro-choice piece of legislation.

In response to each of them, I can only echo Rep. Joe Wilson (R-SC): "You lie!"

On July 30, 2009, Democrats in the Senate saw to it that a proposal to add explicit language to the bill, stipulating that no public funds would be used to finance abortion, was voted down. If they really intended to protect public money from paying for abortions, why not put it in the bill?

According to a non-partisan, non-biased analysis by the Associated Press (which, when it sides, sides with the left), Obama's health care bill would allow coverage for abortion. Also, the bill's particularly vague language makes it ripe for interpretation by activist courts and the Federal Health Commission -- almost all of which skew pro-choice.

We learned in an analysis of the bill distributed by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) that about $7 billion earmarked for Community Health Centers does not fall under the protection of the Hyde Amendment, leaving it wide open to be used for elective abortions.

A vast majority of moderate, conservative and non-partisan analyses of Obamacare agree: this bill will eventually, if not immediately, require each and every one of us, free Americans all, to see our tax dollars spent on other people's elective abortions. And if we refuse to pay in, according to the same legislation, we will be subject to fines which will make their way directly to the coffers of the publicly funded health care program. In other words, in order to keep our money from funding abortion, we will have to refuse to participate in the program, refuse to pay the fine, and accept whatever punishment is meted out.

I don't know about you, but I will literally -- literally -- go to prison before I will let even one red cent of my money be used to pay for someone else's elective abortion. And I am not the only one.

Whether you agree with socialized medicine or not, you have to admit that it is contrary to the principles on which our country was founded, and for which its citizens have always stood. This health care program will strip the United States of our identity as a bastion of liberty and individuality.

Recently I overheard a middle-aged black man and a younger white woman discussing the health care debate in the advising center of my college. I heard the black man say to the woman, "What these people need to understand is, it's legal. They may not like abortion, I may not like abortion, but the fact is, it's legal, and they need to accept it."

I desperately wanted to lean across and say to the man, "Slavery was legal once, too." But I decided to err on the side of politeness and decorum.

This week, I urge you not to make the mistake I made. Leave decorum behind. We shouldn't worry about hurting anyone's feelings when we're at war. We are on a battlefield at this very moment, and it is not a metaphorical battlefield of ideals and philosophies. Lives are very literally at stake, and not just a few: thousands, even millions.

If President Obama and his supporters have their way, it will become even easier and cheaper to have your unborn child killed in our country. And you and I will be forced to foot the bill.

If you know in your heart this is unacceptable, if you are determined to win this war for the lives and souls of your generation and the one to come, act today!

There are many things you can do this week to get the word out about the upcoming vote, but the most important thing you can do is call the wavering Congressional Democrats! We need them to vote NO! Let them know you support them even if their fellow Democrats do not. Their contact info is here. Get everyone you know to call them. Post it on your Facebook, MySpace, and Twitter. Invite friends over for an informal phone bank. Draft a simple email and forward it to your whole address book so everyone you know can send it to a Congressman, too.

We're all busy. We all have too much on our plates: work, school, family, boyfriends and girlfriends. A few minutes out of your day can save lives. Don't hesitate. A few phone calls now could avert a serious crisis to come.

If you are looking at this blog, it means you care. It means you are a fighter. Don't be silenced because you're too busy watching "American Idol" or playing your X-Box. That's what they want. They want a youth that is disengaged and easily distracted. They are counting on us to roll over and play dead. Disappoint them.

If those in power insist that we are no longer "the land of the free," they will learn very quickly that we are still "the home of the brave."

Kristen Walker is Vice President of New Wave Feminists for Life, a Dallas-based organization intent on returning virtue and morality to women’s empowerment.

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Conservative Punk

I stumbled across a website that has me feeling delightfully heartened. It's called Conservative Punk. Before I write more about it I'm going to do a bit more research, but I just had to share this excellent 2003 interview with the late music icon Johnny Ramone, of legendary punk band The Ramones, in which he shares his conservative views and support for the military.

We need to spread these kinds of things around so that people who think rock and punk are only for left-wingers can understand that they are espousing the kind of conformity they claim to despise. If they won't listen when I say it, they will certainly listen to Johnny Ramone!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Coming Out

As I learned in Political Science 101, political socialization is a lifelong process. Thus, it is no surprise that it took me 30 years to become a conservative. I hesitate to even write that word, because I have been indoctrinated to believe that "conservative" is a dirty word, synonymous with cruel, lying, ignorant, bigoted, fanatical, brainwashed, and stupid. If it is difficult for those of the Millennial generation -- those born in the 80s through mid 90s -- to declare themselves, let alone become, conservative, it is far more difficult for Gen Xers. Our entire identity was rebellion against the establishment, to the point that even our jeans were not allowed to be clean or fit properly until we were well into our 20s. (Mine are still questionable.) This mindset of radical liberalism became so prevalent that it is now its own institution, with its own protocol and dogma.

As a dyed-in-the-wool Gen Xer, it was inevitable that I rebel against it.

What I have learned over time is that modern liberalism is sentimentalism without substance. It's all very fine and good to see someone in trouble -- say, an out-of-work single mother -- and want to help her. The difference between modern liberals and modern conservatives is that liberals want to hand her a chunk of other people's money, while conservatives would prefer that she be empowered to earn a chunk of money, and keep earning more chunks, and keep that money to spend as she sees fit, rather than having to give large chunks of it away to perpetuate an endless cycle of need.

The other -- probably more important -- difference is that modern conservatives feel it is necessary for the good of the single mother, and by extension society itself, to point out the mistakes (conservatives believe in mistakes) that led her to be in a position so desperate that she requests a chunk of money from the taxpayers in the first place. Among the mistakes conservatives would point out are a failure to follow the basic tenets of sexual morality (conservatives believe in morality) such as having sex with someone she was not married to. Children of single mothers are more likely to do poorly in school, have sex as teenagers, and become single mothers or absent fathers themselves. At some point someone's got to stop the cycle of terrible decision making by pointing out that some decisions are terrible. Liberals would rather we affirm the "valid choices" of promiscuity and irresponsibility and instead teach our first-graders how to apply condoms and choose the IUD that's right for them.

The great Catholic writer and philosopher Peter Kreeft points out that the reason why the God of the Old Testament is often seen as cruel when compared to Christ (usually by whiny atheists who don't believe in the Bible anyway) is because compassion without justice is mere sentiment, and God had to instill a sense of justice -- a sense of right and wrong (something else liberals don't believe in) -- in His people before they could understand real love, a love with muscle. Love without muscle becomes something puny, that thing the liberals call "tolerance." Tolerance implies putting up with something. It invokes images of nameless masses, not separate individuals. It is not the hearty Christian love the Greeks call agape, which is true charity, which is not only active, vivid, and honest, but gets things done. Agape requires accountability. A parent doesn't teach her child responsibility, doesn't in fact teach her child anything of use, by giving her whatever she wants no matter what. That is simply not love. It is easy, and it makes the child temporarily happy, but it is not love. Ultimately, it's not even a particularly nice thing to do.

This is why liberal attempts to recast Christ as a misty-eyed hippie are so ridiculous. Yes, Jesus rescued the woman about to be stoned for committing adultery, but He also told her, "Go, and sin no more." This incident, among hundreds of others, implies that Jesus believed there was such a thing as sin, which immediately takes Him out of the running for hippiedom in particular and modern liberalism in general... although it never fails to confuse me why people who don't believe in Jesus want Him on their side so badly. It also tells us, more specifically, that Jesus believed adultery was a sin -- a decidedly un-liberal point of view. If He were a liberal, He would have instead said, "Go, and do whatever you want with whoever you want. Here are some condoms and, just in case, the number to your local Planned Parenthood and Medicaid office."

If you are wondering how I went from being the far-left radical I was at 22 to the conservative Libertarian/Republican I am at 30, the answer is complex... unless of course I strip it down to first causes and just say: God did it. Because that is the truth. It is also exactly the kind of answer that drives liberals crazy. I know this because I was one, remember? That phrase -- "God did it" -- is where I probably would have stopped reading and started ranting about the irrationality of belief in an interventionist deity and quoting loudly from Beyond Good and Evil.

My conversion to conservatism began with my conversion to Catholicism, and my conversion to Catholicism began with my conversion to pro-life from a default pro-choice position that was part-and-parcel with my liberal mindset, although I had never honestly considered the issue seriously by itself. No, I don't think you necessarily have to be a conservative or a Christian to be pro-life, but I think if you are going to be intellectually honest, if you are going to follow the pro-life argument to its logical conclusion, you are going to end up somewhere around conservative Christian. Recognizing the sanctity of life is recognizing that there is God, whether you want to call It that or not, and recognizing the right to life is going to cause you to ask some serious questions of modern liberalism, such as: how can the party that proclaims itself the champion of the poor and defenseless condone the ultimate in might-makes-right thinking? How can the same jerk in your workplace with the skinny jeans and ironic beard who got all up in your face about the innocent children dying in Darfur calmly dismiss the innocent children dying in their mothers' wombs at the rate of 1.2 million per year in the U.S. alone?

It's because liberals, for all their posturing about compassion, hold a functionalist view of humanity. That's because they have replaced Christ with Darwin, and they believe the solution to poverty is to kill poor people. (See Planned Parenthood.) One thing is for sure: it works! Just like blowing up your house will rid you of your termite problem. This is as brilliant as advocating that we cut off our feet because our pants don't fit. Your pants exist for your legs, not the other way around. These are the same idiots who recommend we conquer child abuse by killing children before they leave the womb, while suggesting we don't care about child abuse because we encourage people not to kill their unborn children. Then when we suggest people not have sex unless they fully intend and expect to make and subsequently care for a baby, we are accused of being Puritanical tyrants.

Having developed a healthy distaste for nonsense, I can no longer call myself a liberal, and having decided that, my only recourse is conservatism, which looks better and better the more I learn, the more I experience, and the more I think of Barack Obama, a black man, giving a speech at a conference for Planned Parenthood, your friendly neighborhood genocide factory, which has killed more black people than the KKK could ever dream of, and which operates legally in thousands of low-income minority neighborhoods around the world. How could I not identify with the only political ideology in the U.S. that recognizes this and condemns it? How could I not be proud to identify with that ideology, in an age when it is terribly unpopular to condemn anything besides condemning things? (Intolerance is the only remaining sin, according to liberals.)

Admittedly, I still have a lot to learn and wrestle with where conservatism is concerned. I am still learning about so many issues: civil unions, states' rights, isolationism vs. interventionism, the free market, the Fed, etc. But like St. Anselm, I belive in order that I might understand. And I refer here to Christianity, because where conservatism departs from Christianity -- and I am beginning to see that it rarely does -- I shall happily depart from conservatism.

The really difficult part is just beginning. I have to "come out." I have to admit to my peers, the people with whom I have identified and fraternized my entire life, that I am not one of them in a very fundamental and important way. I have to tell them that I can no longer support Barack Obama, that I am no longer convinced Ann Coulter is the Antichrist, and that there really is a liberal bias in the media. I am going to lose friends -- dear ones. And I am going to be faced with questions I probably can't answer just yet. But this is a part of life, if you're living it right: standing up for what you believe in, even when it's very unpopular.

I must become and remain a conservative pro-life Christian who speaks her mind as nonchalantly and unapologetically as pro-choice liberal atheists speak theirs. This is not easy. It means being ready to defend my position almost constantly, which is both tiresome and daunting. But it is necessary. Pro-choice liberals don't get up in the morning knowing they're going to have an abortion debate with someone, because theirs is the default position, at least in my age group. But to be a defender of righteousness, you must be perpetually armed and ready for battle, because your foe never sleeps. He is everywhere. He is lurking on Facebook right now, poised to click on the link to this blog and say insulting things, knowing he will be backed up by many anonymous commenters.

But once the friendly fire stops and the smoke dies down, I will be stronger and wiser for this experience. I will know who my friends are, and at long last, they will know who I am. Eventually, everyone will get used to the fact that I can no longer hide my beliefs. I will feel better, and they will get over it.

Meeting new people will be a bit trickier. I don't fit the conservative Christian profile. I'm not married and I have no kids. I work in the music industry. When it comes to other Gen Xers, I've read the same books, spouted the same arguments, made the same Rush Limbaugh jokes. I listen to the same music, go to the same places, sound the same, eat and drink the same stuff, wear the same Converse sneakers. I even have a facial piercing and tattoos. (When I voted in the GOP primary recently, the elderly gentleman who checked me in said, "You know you're at the Republican polling location, right?") I don't look the part, and this isn't going to change. On the outside I look just like your average 30-year-old MSNBC-watching Palin-basher.

They will never see me coming.

This blog was cross-posted to Modern Conservative.