Another columnist, E. J. Dionne, gave me a flashback. Years ago — I think I was in college — I came up with a summary phrase for Ted Kennedy's rhetoric about abortion: "Enact socialism, or we'll kill the kids." That is the language of the hostage-taker. You see, Kennedy is always saying that, before we can move against abortion, we have to achieve a society in which nothing bad ever happens to a child.
Well, in a recent column, Dionne was hailing a big Kennedy speech:
[The senator's] challenge to the right-to-life movement was plain. "History teaches that abortions do not stop because they are made illegal. Indeed, half of all abortions in the world are performed in places where abortions are illegal." Those who oppose abortion need to face the fact that "the number of abortions is reduced when women and parents have education and economic opportunity." Don't those who care about the right to life have a special obligation to make universal prenatal care — and health care generally — a priority?
The rhetoric never changes: Unless you sign on to what Hillary Clinton and Marian Wright Edelman ask for, you have no right to oppose the destruction of unborn children.
In that same column, Dionne quoted Kennedy as saying, "Surely, we can all agree that abortion should be rare, and that we should do all we can to help women avoid the need to face that decision."
Why should abortion be rare? Why? If it is not the destruction of an unborn child — if it is akin to an appendectomy — why should abortion be rare? No one goes around saying that appendectomies should be rare.
And what do you mean, "help women avoid the need to face that decision"? What need? Is that a plea for birth control — which is as plentiful as water?
Kennedy has uttered sophistic gibberish, and not very good sophistic gibberish at that.
Wednesday, January 19, 2005
Enact Socialism, Or We'll Kill The Kids
Good item in Jay Nordlinger's column today.