Misguided Arguments Against Obama

Joe Veix

An article at the Heritage Foundation offers twelve administration policies that "undermine civil society."

Over at the Heritage Foundation’s website, there’s an article by Jennifer A. Marshall and Katherine Bradley listing twelve "new policies that undermine civil society." Instead of cocking our guns and sealing ourselves up in fallout shelters, let’s take a look at a few of Marshall’s claims; most are impassioned and misguided attempts at fear mongering.

Her first sentence suggests that the Obama Administration has "advanced a number of policies that will undermine family and religious freedom in America," with a "disregard…for human dignity." Because somehow, allowing people to make informed reproductive choices limits freedoms; somehow, allowing gay marriage disregards human dignity.

Next, Marshall claims that by limiting the amount of deductions wealthy people can make based on their charitable giving "discourages charitable giving." This is a very narrow and negative idea of human nature, that the only reason people give to charities is so that they can get deductions on their taxes.

Marshall then claims that despite reducing abstinence-only funding,  increased family planning funding will be more expensive. Fine, we can give her this much, but it isn’t the expenses that are the problem. It’s widely acknowledged that abstinence-only programs don’t work; so while family planning might be more expensive, we’d be wasting money outright if we spent it on ab-only. In addition to funding family planning initiatives, Obama’s omnibus bill plans on funding Planned Parenthood. Marshall’s only complaint is that this results in cheaper contraceptives. Given how strapped Americans are because of the recession, I can’t see how this is a bad thing.

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Her other complaints include the overturning of Bush’s prohibition tax dollars funding international organizations that provide abortions (her logic is that abortion is controversial, and thus gives us a bad name abroad, yet suspiciously there’s no mention of the Iraq war in her article). Her logic degrades further, when she complains about stem cell research (according to her, since some cures have been found under the previous restrictions, there’s apparently no need to loosen them, even if it means a higher possibility of finding cures to terrible illnesses). No matter the majority of Americans agree with stem cell research.

By the end of the article it’s clear that none of her points actually have anything to do with maintaining a "civil society." If anything, her viewpoints are backwards and uncivil. Like all conservatives at the moment, Marshall is just worried that her ignorant ideology is being challenged, and all of her complaints come off as misguided and desperate.

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