Weggie-issue

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A term refering to the fact that the very people most distracted by divisive wedge issues and scapegoating tend to be those who end up getting weggied.

Contents

Commentary: Let's Talk About Those Weggie-Issues

-By PatriotismOverProfits

Abortion

Ok, seriously now, let's all dump the posturing and find some ways to reduce abortions. The Republicans have held every branch of government for more than four years, and now have replaced a moderate republican with a radical republican in the Supreme Court. Yet they have taken no action to reduce abortions. The Clinton Administration saw abortions drop, but Abortions are rising under Republican dominance - and if they're not, why are are the republicans preventing statistics from being gathered?

Furthermore, one has to wonder if Republicans really believe life begins at conception.

Let's remember that the vast majority of abortions don't happen by choice, in clinics - they happen in the form of miscarriages. This happens about 50% of all conceptions, most of the time without even the mother noticing.

Why? Pollution, malnutrition, poor health care, stress, and causes that could probably also be easily prevented with enough research.

So you believe that Life begins at conception? Think about this for a moment: you're walking down the street and half the population of the Earth suddenly drops dead mysteriously. The Republicans don't even notice. They don't ask for research into why it happens. They don't even acknowledge it's existence, and even dedicate themselves to policy that makes the phenemenon more common.

Republicans continue to weaken laws against pollution, pesticides and such, they continue to oppose progressive health care systems like those enjoyed by the rest of the developed world, they continue to push jobs to be stressful and with wages too low for a father to support a family - anti-family jobs - regardless of what effect that has on mothers.

In short, this isn't about pro-choice versus pro-life. Republicans are pro-choice alright - a polluter's choice to pump abortion-causing chemicals into the environment and onto a mother's food, and so on.

Now onto the question of why people choose to have abortions. This is linked the quality of jobs and the economy, as well as the social safety net. The stress of two-worker families trying to make ends meet, of stressful, low paying, high-turnover jobs, frequent unemployment, lack of financial security, and so on, tears apart marriages and results in abortions. But Republicans revel in the dog-eat-dog approach to economics. "Boo-hoo" the Republicans say, "Quit your whining". But people don't whine. They just go off to the divorce court and abortion clinic.

This is also linked to teen pregnancy. Look at a list of which countries have the least teen pregnancy, and it's identical to a list of who has the most progressive government - Scandinavia has the least, Europe is in the middle. The USA as a whole has the most, but of the 5 states with the lowest teen pregnancy rate, 4 are Blue, while all 5 of the highest are red. It is clear that the Republican squeamishness when it comes to sex education and contraceptives is counterproductive. Their concept of human nature - that "the teenage sex drive will be neutralized once every teenagers role model - the government - steps in", is completely out of touch with the reality of human nature.

And why do Republicans suddenly stop caring about children once they're born? Look at the mortality rate of children under 5 in the developed world, and it matches a list of who has the most conservative governments. The USA tops the list, Europe is in the middle, Sweden has the least, with nearly 3 times less child mortality than the USA.

Despite more than four years of Republican dominance, there also has been no effort to make adoption easier. There have been no research grants to find ways to prevent miscarriages. Nor has any thought been given to the situation in the third world - imagine how much stress your marriage would be if you have to find a way to survive on a dollar a day, like one billion of the world's people do.

The Sanctity of Marriage

The Republicans have held every branch of government for more than four years now, and they have yet to prove they believe in the sanctity of marriage. The 50% divorce rate, which fell under Clinton, is rising. (Like the abortion rate, the divorce rate is lower in Europe and highest in Republican-voting states. Massachusetts has the lowest divorce rate, while the highest divorce rate in the nation is found along the Bible Belt.) The Republican's favorite TV station, FOX, has started pumping out marrige-mocking reality shows without a peep of protest from the Republicans. The Republican's favorite role model for youth, Britney Spears, had a Vegas wedding. Spousal abuse continues without comment. The traditional one-breadwinner family is in decline as the Republican's economic mismanagement and anti-worker bias results in low-wage, anti-family jobs.

Yet dispite all this, too many people have been distracted by the Republican's scapegoating effort. Their only lip-service to marriage is - get this - to use the government to tell churches who they can and cannot marry. Why they think the government should order your church around is beyond me. It certainly shows all their rhetoric about getting the government out of your life is nothing but hot air.

By the way, in 1 Corinthians 7: 25-31, 36-40 Paul opposes homosexual marriage, but decides to allow it because (unlike the Republicans) he has a realistic view of human nature. Surely the same logic applies to all marriage: "if his passions are strong, and so it has to be, let him marry as he wishes" -1 Corinthians 7:36

The Scapegoating of Science

Republicans have another scapegoat for the increase in divorce, teen pregnancy, abortion, crime, and so on thats come about because of their dominance of every branch of government.

Their scapegoat is the scientific community, who ever since they re-discovered that the world is round more than half a milennium ago, have been accused by demagogues of undermining the Bible. That the New Testement in 1 Timothy 1:4, Titus 3:9, and Titus 1:14 urges us to ignore "Jewish Fables" (ie talking snakes) "and endless geneologies" [ie those used to claim the world is 6,000 years old] shows how the Republicans pick and choose their scripture to suit their desperate need for scapegoats.

The rest of the developed world teaches evolution, and contrary to the predictions of people behaving like apes, the evolution-teaching nations of the developed world have less divorce, teen pregnancy, abortion, assault, murder, and crime in general. You can't argue with results - it looks like the New Testement has it right.

The Divisive Wedge Issue of the Day

The Republicans constantly invent new issues for people to fight over, in hopes of using religion to divide America. Once one attempt at causing division is rejected, they simply invent a new one. Jesus saw it coming:

  • Jesus supports separation of Church and State: Matthew 22:21, Mark 12:17, Luke 20:25
  • Jesus doesn't want "under God" in any oath, as he opposes all oaths, period: Matthew 5:34

That Other Moral Value

It's sometimes quite shocking to open up a Bible and be reminded that it doesn't match the Republican portrayal of a 1,500 page rant against gays, scientists, and the unemployed.

If I recall correctly, in some corner of the Bible there's a little footnote saying something about greed and poverty or something. Come to think of it, there's thousands of passages on the subject, some of the more memorable being that you can't serve both wealth and God, that God judges us by how we treat the most marginalized, and that in a world filled with poverty the rich can't get into heaven any more than a "camel can go through the eye of a needle" - an old middle eastern expression meaning "utterly impossible".

What can we do about global poverty?

  • We can cancel a lot of the third world's debts, most of which have been payed back repeatedly in interest payments. These loans that were made to dictators, so it's unfair for the the democracies that replaced them to be punished with the interest payments. It's also unfair that a bank that loaned to a dictator be rewarded for that. For example, Iraqis are still paying interest on loans made to Saddam Hussien. Why punish Saddam's victims while rewarding the banks who loaned him money?
  • We can rewrite the trade laws and reform the trade organizations which both have a bias towards rich corporations.
  • We can push for workers rights abroad, and force American companies that invest abroad to pay fair wages. Did you know that Nike once paid the same amount of money for one single celebrity endorsement as the annual wages of all their workers combined? They could have chosen to live with one less endorsement each year, and double the wages of their entire workforce instead, without adding a penny to the price of their shoes.

Now, notice how whenever anyone talks about That Other Moral Value, the Republicans suddenly accuse us of "class warfare". They won't even deny that they serve mammon rather than God. Even they can't deny that voting Democratic is the true way to show you value patriotism over profits.

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