Nicholas Kristof recently wrote a New York Times article entitled: “Scaring the Voters in the Middle.” Mr. Kristof claims that Republicans are scaring voters, capping both ends of his article with a reference to Todd Akin and filling in the middle with horrifying images of women being raped in the U.S. military, the Peace Corps, Darfur, Congo and Somalia.
Someone’s using scare tactics, alright.
He throws in an image of a vacillating, extremist Mitt Romney who has no clue what he stands for. Meanwhile, Kristof lauds Bill Clinton’s “safe, legal and rare” stance, which truly is politics at its finest: coming across as compassionate to both women and their unborn, conceding that no one wants to see rampant abortion, and yet doing nothing to stop it. Yes, let’s applaud the illusion of taking a stand. Is that our ideal?
Mr. Kristof thrusts at Mitt Romney the accusation that he doesn’t know what he stands for while allowing President Obama to mislead voters about what he stands for. In so doing, he fails completely to address the President’s actual extremism on the very same issue.
Despite his campaign rhetoric in 2008 about working together for common sense solutions, President Obama has done everything in his power to stop any attempted restrictions on abortion – even those that Americans overwhelmingly support. Just this summer, we saw him sport an illusion much like Clinton’s when he gave a statement on the Prenatal Non-Discrimination Act. In his statement, he invoked false empathy, asserting concern for gender discrimination while simultaneously rejecting legislation that would protect pre-born girls from it. For the last four years, Obama has gotten away with taking non-positions like this. But he also has gotten away with the extreme policy positions that underlie these non-statements. It’s his support for the Freedom of Choice Act, his historic opposition to the Born-Alive Infant Protection Act, his insistence on bending the will of religious organizations, and his ever-cozy relationship with Planned Parenthood, the nation’s number one abortion provider, that make him an extremist.
As for scaring the voters in the middle, Mr. Kristof should pause for a moment of self-reflection. He uses the horror of rape to scare those same middle voters, placing pro-lifers in a do-nothing zone. Like NARAL and Planned Parenthood, Mr. Kristof equates standard medical procedure – the ultrasound – to state-sponsored rape. He equates a loss of funding to Planned Parenthood to women dying in the streets. Rather than dealing in logic, he uses scare tactics to push Romney and the rest of the pro-life GOP to the extreme, all the while giving President Obama a free pass. For all the talk about women, families, and the hope for our future, the future for the unborn is very bleak indeed if left in the hands of our current President. And that should scare us all.
This post was originally published on ohiolife.org/blog.