Friday, March 2, 2012

Ayatollah Santorum: a rant

Apparently, for many, to get to know Rick Santorum is to despise him. He lost his Senate seat in 2006 by a huge margin -- he went down still claiming that George Bush (then at about 38% approval rating) was a great president.

Like the early puritans in New England, Santorum's version of "religious freedom" means freedom to trample on the rights of other religious people as well as the non-religious. Although he claims to be a conservative favoring a much smaller role for government in general, and the federal government in particular, he believes that government has the right to legislate what goes on in the privacy of peoples' bedrooms. He is not only against gay rights and abortion, but even against birth control as well -- a "Catholic" position pretty much confined to Santorum and the hierarchy of the Catholic church -- you know, the same hierarchy that turned their eyes the other way while priests were raping young children. (Yes, the word is rape not just the vague and milder term "abuse"; nearly every state defines what many of those priests were doing as rape.)
 
Polls indicate that Santorum's fellow Catholics are firmly in favor of birth control coverage under the national healthcare plan -- by nearly a 2 to 1 margin; in fact, a huge majority of sexually active Catholic women use birth control methods other than abstinence or the "rhythm method" (the only two approved by the old men who lead the church). This majority is at least 2 to 1 and perhaps as high as 9 to 1 (depending on how you split semantic hairs).

Santorum is also against "separation of church and state" (Jefferson's phrase); of course, for him, "religion" and "church" mean mostly the Catholic religion and Catholic church; failing that, he means "Christian" church. He is, however, really worried about "Islamic fascism" and thinks that is one of the greatest threats facing our country. I don't think he's interested in letting Sharia Law have much to do with our state, or even laws about Halal or Kosher food.

The idea of real religious freedom, according to which no religious belief can have ascendency over another, is an elusive concept for Santorum. It is one thing to argue against abortion by claiming it is murder, or to argue against contraception by claiming that it is obvious that sex is for procreation. It is entirely another thing to legislate against these things because your god has told you they are wrong.

Santorum is also upset that colleges are teaching students to read, think about, and discuss these issues. While the vast (and I mean vast) majority of Americans, while enjoying the benefits of birth control, also want their kids to enrich their lives -- as well as enhance their employment prospects -- by going to college, Santorum thinks that advocating some post high-school education is "elitism."

Has anyone ever so missed so many points?

Just as we should be calling the Republican Party the Party of The Rich (PTR) instead of the GOP, we should be referring to the lobbyist and former Senator from Pennsylvania as Rick "The Ayatollah" Santorum (or worse).

1 comment:

  1. And all Howard Deane had to do to be written off was to be caught yipping enthusiastically. With all their baggage and bizarre statements imagine if Santtorum and Romney were Democrats.

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