Saturday, May 21, 2005

Eleanor Clift: Making Flippy Floppy

Perhaps in a bid to impress the New York Times Editorial Board, Eleanor Clift has written a column in the most recent Newsweek so dismissive of the rights of the religious conservatives that one is forced to wonder if Clift is just another pen name of Frank Rich's. Clift paints a scenario of (you guessed it) a theocracy on the march, holding up the specter of (gasp!) Israel as a warning for the path we may be heading down. The lynchpin of Clift's argument is a ridiculous piece of legislation proposed by Alabama Republican Richard Shelby.
The Constitution Restoration Act of 2004 [would] acknowledge God as the sovereign source of law and threaten judges with impeachment should they uphold separation of church and state.
Anyone see any problems with that? Like, perhaps, that it is so blatantly unconstitutional that it couldn't survive the judicial review of a three-year-old? Shame on Shelby for proposing such a, well, you know what, and shame on Clift for pretending it's a real threat.

Clift assures us that the judicial showdown is the first step of a nefarious agenda that culminates in an attack on gay marriage...uh, wait, no, that couldn't be right..oh, yeah, so it is...hmm. Doesn't the opposite scenario in fact ring truer? Wouldn't it fit reality better to say that liberal activist judges are implementing a radical social agenda against the wishes of the majority of the populace, knowing full well that such actions of judicial fiat are not democratic and could not be achieved through legislation? Is gay marriage, regardless of one's view on it, an enshrined institution that one attacks with a secret plan, or is it in fact traditional marriage that is under siege?

I still fail to see, despite all the mighty efforts of Rich, Dowd, and Clift, how it is that lobbying by religious conservatives is any different than lobbying by abortion supporters, gun owners, business groups, or any other collective entity. Those who think that merely allowing Christians into the political debate will threaten the very anchors of our society have a lot less faith in the durability of the American Constitution than I do.

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