In our increasingly polarized country there has always been one character trait I could respect in anyone despite any political or cultural differences. If all someone wanted in life was to be the left the hell alone, I admired that. Some of my friends on the political right wonder how it is I can admire Muhammad Ali, Malcolm X, most of Robert Redford’s screen characters, Thelma and Louise, and the characters of Wyatt and Billy in director Dennis Hopper’s “Easy Rider.”
That’s easy — because those are people who just wanted to be left the hell alone. Don’t bother me, don’t harass me, don’t persecute me… Stay out of my life, I’ll stay out of yours. I’m not violating your rights, don’t violate mine. I don’t want anything from you, don’t take anything from me.
Once upon a time left-wing feminists claimed to be bound by the same code. Yep, I’m old enough to remember when the rallying cry of the feminist was, “Keep the government out of my vagina.”
That wasn’t a perfect rallying cry when it came to abortion. There was a separate human life at stake in that regard. But the sentiment was dead on.
Now with the Hobby Lobby Supreme Court decision, though, the Feminist Left (which is made up of men and women) has made a complete 180. Feminists not only want the government in their vaginas, they are demanding the government get into their vaginas and drag a bunch of us along for the ride (with our credit cards).
The feminist ideology is now so warped, pathetic, and totalitarian-minded that in order to be provided birth control from their employer’s health insurance — the same birth control that is widely and cheaply available throughout this great country of ours — this is how the feminist left is justifying their greed:
1. It is not a violation of anyone’s rights for the government to force someone to provide or purchase something that violates their religious conscience.
2. It is a violation of my rights if someone doesn’t provide or give me something.
This is utter lunacy; anti-logic, anti-science. But they are running with it.
An example of someone who I frequently disagree with but still respect is the brilliant Megan McArdle, who wrote of this:
Cards on the table: I think that institutions Hobby Lobby and Little Sisters of the Poor are obviously correct — they are being forced by the government to buy something that they don’t want to buy. We can argue about whether this is a good or a bad idea, but the fact that it is coercive seems indisputable. If it weren’t for state power, the Little Sisters of the Poor would be happily not facilitating the birth-control purchases of its employees; the Barack Obama administration has attempted to force them to do otherwise. The U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that this coercion violates the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, and it must therefore cease.
All this is old ground. The interesting question is why people on the other side view ceasing the coercion as itself coercive while arguing that the original law did not, in fact, force anyone to violate their religious beliefs.
That’s not only old ground, it has been the “no shit” position in this country for decades; the position that helped keep our politics relatively civil.
But left-wing feminists now seem to believe that if others aren’t forced by a coercive government to give them stuff, somehow their rights are being violated. Some even believe that if their company doesn’t provide them with birth control, it means the company is forcing their religion on them.
That’s like saying that a company that doesn’t buy me steak is pushing their vegetarianism on me, or a company that doesn’t buy me a gas guzzler is pushing their environmentalism on me.
Scarier still is the incomprehensible delusion that once you start a business you somehow forfeit all your Constitutional, God-given rights. My guess is that if the government starts shutting down MSNBC, the Daily Beast, George Soros’ and Warren Buffet’s various companies without due process, a whole lot of feminists will argue the First and Fourth Amendments of those multinational corporation have been violated.
You leftist feminists okay with Arizona Sheriff Joe Arpaio shutting down this corporation, which I’m told is okay because corporations have no rights, right?
Sally Kohn conjured up a whole lot of “Founding Father, Constitutional” language together in a Daily Beast column today to make the absurd leap that the Founding Fathers’ legitimate concern over the power of religious and business institutions would somehow translate into them wanting the Constitutional rights stripped of everyone who joins either institution. (Kohn also argues that the Supreme Court allowing people to opt out of unions could violate the right of free association.)
Repeatedly using words and terms like “liberty” and “privacy” and “individual liberty,” Kohn tries to make a case that the definition of all three cannot be achieved until the government has the coercive power to make people do things they don’t want to do.
Only when the government can force you to join a union will you truly be free!
Only when the government can force you to violate your faith and buy me stuff will you truly be free!
God help us, it’s really happening.
Follow John Nolte on Twitter @NolteNC