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02/28/2012

Socially conservative politics: Pick your narrow lane, continue to stagnate everything

by Jeremy Hooper

In just two lines, National Organization for Marriage co-founder and longtime Republican commentator Maggie Gallagher demonstrates how fully the socially conservative mindset has reduced our political conversation:

"Look, independents are independents and not Democrats or Republicans, because they don’t vote on the social issues. If they voted on abortion or gay marriage, they would be in one of those two parties." [NRO]

That's it? Those are the lines? If you have concerns about reproductive freedom or the rights of same-sex couples to enter into a legal union, then your entire political consciousness is shaped by where you fall on one or both of these two matters? That's where we are in 2012 America? These are the considerations that trump all else?

Unfortunately, that is where we still are, largely, because the Gallagher/Santorum wing of the GOP forces us to be through their nonstop attempts to stop or rollback freedoms. Worse than just forcing the conversation, they force us into contrived boxes where federal marriage amendments and womb control somehow become conservative, encouraging family stability through lifetime monogamous couplings somehow becomes liberal, and "up" and "down" become defined more by talking point machines than truth.

This "culture war" is killing us. The self-appointed "values voters" are the only reason why we have such muddied myopia; their loosened GOP grip is the only way we can move beyond it.

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