Tuesday, February 10, 2009

How We (Mis)Treat Our Friends

My own pro life activism dates to the mid 1960s. I remember taking the pro life side in debates held by our local democratic club. I fully expected that opposition to abortion was the next task of the human rights activists, liberals and Democrats. Over the next decade the anti human rights (and anti religious) faction succeeded in moving the Democratic Party to the right. In the process liberals, trade unionists and religious Democrats were progressively alienated. See my earlier post as to the resulting fragmentation of human rights supporters.

Canadian Pro Life supporters face a different situation than we in the US yet they seem to share our tendency to shoot ourselves in the foot by mistreating our friends. For a view of the resulting frustration read a Canadian Pro Lifer Blogger's posting.

After an absence of over thirty years I was pleased to find pro life liberals still active and successful in Minnesota. Yet the recent elections confirmed again the tendency of many pro life activists to alienate their friends. While the Minnesota Right To Life community endorses pro life candidates of any party this is not the case in many states. The National Human Rights Organization That I have been part of for at least thirty years angered me a few elections ago by not endorsing our pro life Congressman, a Democrat, even though he was opposed by a pro abortion Republican.

We now have a President that has taken strong pro life stands against torture, war and genocide. He even said, this week, that the value of all human life demands we work together to reduce abortions. You can bet that a fair number of statements will be made insisting that we can't join in that effort because the President falls short of our ideals. We will again appear to be willing to accept the death of many more babies rather than sully our hands with incremental progress.

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