As I read through this column I'm struck by a certainty that goes well beyond the farthest reaches of the "religious right" in the US and heads directly into Islamic Fundamentalist "morality". The horrid moralizers of the religious right are only trying to work with the law to control things like infanticide in the service of convienience and to prevent the conversion of a rite that has been between a man and a woman for all of human history into "something new". Those discussions are about using a political system that was supposedly suggested for exactly what it was intended for -- what exactly is the "mechanism" that might be suggested by the columnist below to deal with Americans "not getting their polls right"?:
The rot in our national morality is evident in a June poll by the Associated Press, which found that 52 percent of Americans said torture was sometimes or often justified to obtain information from terror suspects. An April CNN poll found that even though 60 percent of Americans thought harsh techniques including waterboarding constituted torture, 50 percent approved of them. A Washington Post/ABC News Poll was almost evenly split between Americans who say we should never use torture (49 percent) and should use torture in some cases (48 percent).
Whether it is because of the politics of fear that defined the Bush-Cheney years, the recession engulfing the Obama administration, or simply an indifference to foreigners languishing in jail, Americans have displayed scant curiosity about the dark side. A May McClatchy poll found Americans to be almost evenly split on having a “bipartisan blue-chip commission’’ on interrogations, and the CNN poll found nearly two-thirds disapproving of either a congressional investigation or independent panel.
This is a level of apathy, even civic debasement that makes it no wonder Cheney can spout off despite leaving America in a disgraceful place. He feels empowered to defend the dark side, because we have yet to shine a light.
Nobody on the Christian right that I know of expects that the minds of many of those who support Gay Marriage or Abortion on Demand are somehow going to get "educated" to "get it right". The politics is about getting people who SAY one thing (like 70%+ against Gay Marriage and later term abortions) to stand up and be politically counted. We don't expect Planned Parenthood and or the folks that march in the parades in San Francisco to suddenly "see the light".
When faced with people that fly planes into buildings to kill as many civilians as possible with their minds firmly fixed on 72 virgins in paradise, many Americans suspect that prissy Boston Globe columnists might not be the final moral authority on "what's fair in love and war". If they manage to put together some inquisition that puts a bunch of CIA folks and maybe even Dick Cheney in jail, is that going to change their minds.
Maybe. The reality that puts the numbers where they are today is that while the MSM and the Democrats have told us REPEATEDLY that "The policies and methods of the Bush Administration have made us less safe", there hasn't been any obvious evidence of that, such as an attack equivalent or greater than 9-11. If what the MSM and Democrats have said had any foundation in fact, we ought to have been attacked repeatedly during the Bush administration or shortly thereafter. The old low point for the security policy environment left to an administration was 2001 as Clinton handed off to Bush. Eight months later, 9-11. I write this on Sept 1, 2009 -- while BO and the MSM were so very certain that we were made "less safe" by Bush, the Clinton administration saw the first WTC bombing, Kovar Towers, 3 African Embassies and the USS Cole, the Bush Administration saw NONE after changing security policy on 9-11-2001.
We have now changed our policies sufficiently that we ought to be able to see over the next 4 years how much safer we have become with the great and powerful BO at the helm.