Giuliani’s obvious absurdities
It is not necessarily contradictory to say that you think that a certain act, namely abortion, is “morally wrong,” and that you think there should be no law against that act; life is filled with things that we think are morally wrong, but that we have no intention of treating as a criminal offense. It is, however, blatantly contradictory to say that you think that abortion is morally wrong, and to campaign heart and soul to protect an absolute right to that “morally wrong” act. And that is Rudolph Giuliani’s position.
While the Republican party is in certain respects pretty far gone, I don’t believe that it is so far gone as to swallow Giuliani’s obvious absurdity.
As a further indication that Rudolph the would-be president will not be able to reconcile his ingrained liberalism with the conservative suit he’s been wearing lately, the New York Times reports:
Mr. Giuliani said that he remained firmly committed to the idea that marriage should be between a man and woman, but that he was equally committed to protecting the rights of gay men and lesbians.Now, we know that by “protecting the rights of gay men and lesbians” Giuliani means that he supports homosexual civil unions. But, as is evident to anyone who considers the issue honestly, once homosexual civil unions are established in law, the resulting “two-tier” system of civil unions for one-sex couples and regular marriage for, uh, two-sex couples will be seen as discriminatory and immoral. There will be a rising demand to “end the injustice of second-class citizenship” for homosexual couples by allowing them to marry. At that point, having already granted moral and statutory legitimacy to homosexual relationships, in the form of civil unions, the society will be hard pressed to oppose the full equalization of such relationships, in the form of marriage. And we can easily predict which side Rudy himself will be on when push comes to shove.
That’s the first thing that’s wrong with Giuliani’s statement that he is equally committed to marriage and to homosexual rights. The second and more fundamental thing that’s wrong with it is that Giuliani is giving the same importance to the “rights of gay men and lesbians” as he is to the most fundamental institution of human society. A man who takes such a position is not remotely a conservative. He is a liberal—that is, he is a person for whom the ruling value of society is the endless expansion of rights and equality, rather than the protection of the morality, culture, and institutions that make the society, along with its rights, existentially possible in the first place.