tmansnclar posted a comment in response to my earlier post that has really rocked my worldview:
While I support YOUR right to have an abortion, I don't want my taxes to pay for it.
Those of you watching my rss feed could watch my thinking on this issue evolve in real time as I posted and then deleted three different responses. The first one was:
This is not an unreasonable position, but it leads down a slippery slope. Should I be able to opt of paying my taxes for the military if I'm a pacifist?
But this, of course, misses the point because there is universal consensus that maintaining some kind of military is necessary. The disagreements are only over how big it should be and what it should be used for. So it's a false analogy. I then went with:
This is not an unreasonable position. I would support the elimination of taxpayer funded abortions as part of a compromise.
I struggled with this for a while because I really believe poor women should have access to abortions, but I've got this wicked libertarian streak in me, and I just couldn't come up with any principled justification for maintaining taxpayer-funded abortions except that I wanted them.
And then it hit me: there is no justification. Taxpayer-funded abortions are wrong. Absolutely, 100% wrong. If we liberals are going to argue that the right to abortion derives from the right to privacy then we'd bloody well better keep it private. But we don't. We want to put the government's gun to everyone's head and force them to support it financially. It's not so different from the Republican torture bill. We use the government's power to force people to support activities that they find morally reprehensible. So I get it. I understand now, for the first time, on a visceral level, why people vote Republican (or anti-Democrat). There's the little matter of the repeal of habeus corpus that still tilts the evilness scale in favor of the Republicans, but that is not a big comfort to me at the moment.
Gosh, can it really be that simple? If the Dems repudiated taxpayer-funded abortions would that tilt the balance back in their favor? I wonder if this is even on their radar.
To anyone I may have offended by my previous ranting about how evil the Republicans are, I apologize. I get it now. I still think the Republicans are evil, but I no longer think that voting for them is morally unjustifiable.
Shit. Now what do I do?