Monday, June 23, 2008

Deep Thought of the Day: Abortion and Gay Marriage

I may have posted this before, but the situation in California has brought it back to mind. In American history there have been a series of great compromises: the Connecticut compromise which created a proportionally-chosen House and a 2-per-state Senate, the compromise that cut off slavery at the Mason-Dixon line, etc. I am wondering if one more could be possible:

What if we were offered a compromise which would allow individual states to ban abortion, in return for allowing individual states to allow gay marriage?

Could it ever have a chance? Could a "new face" like Obama or a "maverick" like McCain propose such a compromise? Or would this simply radicalize both the Right and Left to make later compromise harder?

Okay, now it your turn to tell me how naive I am.


"Nick" said...

The compromises of the past all had to do with single issues. The Missouri Compromise allowed slavery in territories below the Mason-Dixon Line, but banned it above, to keep the balance of power (slavery was considered a constitutionally protected right, even in the north). It was about slavery. The CT compromise was about government. So I think trying to get your idea to work out would be more trouble than it's worth, more complicated than figuring out how to deal with the single issue.

As with slavery, abortion and gay marriage are viewed as moral issues. Compromise was okay on slavery for many, but some on both sides didn't like it (on one, you are committing sin, on the other, you are keeping me from my rights) and ultimately that compromise was overturned by the SCOTUS, and then we had a war (oversimplification, but you get my drift). I think both issues now have people who are morally outraged with the other on both sides (on one, it's a sin against God, on the other it's a sin against humanity or equality or something like that).

Unfortunately I think both issues are also complicated by others (such as the role of the SCOTUS, the role of government, the role of the states etc.) and can't be compromised on easily.

I think gay marriage is the harder issue by the way. It's harder to formulate a good secular argument against it, whereas finding a good secular argument against abortion seems to be easier.

Or maybe it's just me.

BowHunter said...

The CT compromise led to a strong government... the Mason-Dixon compromise prolonged the US embarrassment of slavery and ended up driving us to civil war... Did you want us to think that compromise was good or bad or just the combining of evil with less evil?

Ok, enough picking. :-) This would never happen because of religion... no, not the standard religions that come to mind when I mention the word... I am talking about the Church of Liberalism. BOTH Gay Marriage and abortion are key pillars in the religion of liberal values. They would not give up one to attain another. Just like a true religion, it is all or nothing.

Nomad said...

Compromise is (by definition) the acceptance of something you do not want in order to get something that you DO want. Small states saw the House as a BAD THING, but accepted it because of the Senate. Free states saw Mason/Dixon has a BAD THING, but accepted it to preserve the Union. Without these compromises, the USA would not exist as it is today. Probably not as a single nation at all.

My thought is this kind of compromise might be in the same vein. Personally, I see the annual "murder" of thousands of babies thru abortion as a MUCH greater evil than gay marriage. Liberals would likely see the freedom of gay marriage as much more important than keeping abortion legal in all states (since some states - NY and CA - would keep it legal). Thus, a compromise that could resolve both issues in the legal arena without requiring any Constitutional amendments.

Seems like a deal that is not unreasonable to me. Although, I realize it won't happen so long as the Left believes abortion is rock-solid protected in the Supreme Court.