Sunday, March 2, 2014
Marketing To Children, Bigotry and Hidden Law
There's a cartoon program, "Dinosaur Train", which targets children in the 2-5 year-old age group. Apparently the creators of the show figured they could attract kids by featuring two subjects fascinating to kids - trains and dinosaurs. This is a cartoon appealing to preschoolers, so the ridiculous premise, a Pteranodon family learns about the world while traveling on a train, can be excused.
Less excusable perhaps is a similar two-in-one approach taken by the left wing propaganda magazine "Mother Jones" which headlined an article,
Study: Global Warming Will Cause 180,000 More Rapes by 2099
As Mark Steyn notes : "Perfect: The grand convergence of 'climate denialism' and 'the war on women'."
One can imagine a leftist turning to the page, shaking in child-like anticipation thinking, "Oooohhh, this is gonna be goooood!"
Also - National Review Online presented a two decades old speech by a loony right-wing senator which it titled "Hate Speech By An Anti-Gay Bigot". (Follow the link for the complete speech and to learn who the speaker was). Excerpts below.
This is the text of (the)Senator's opening statement before the Committee on the Judiciary at the hearing on the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, September 18, 1992, the model for the Arizona law which has been so controversial.
"...The brave pioneers who founded America came here in large part to escape religious tyranny and to practice their faiths free from government interference. The persecution they had suffered in the old world convinced them of the need to assure for all Americans for all time the right to practice their religion unencumbered by the yoke of religious tyranny.
That profound principle is embodied in the two great religion clauses of the first amendment, which provide that Congress “shall make no law respecting the establishment of religion or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.” But in 1990, the Supreme Court’s decision in Oregon Employment Division v. Smith produced a serious and unwarranted setback for the first amendment’s guarantee of freedom of religion.
Before the Smith decision, Federal, State, and local governments were prohibited from interfering with people’s ability to practice their religion unless the restriction satisfied a difficult two-part test — first, that it was necessary to achieve a compelling government interest; and, second, that there was no less burdensome way to accomplish the goal.
...The Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which Senator Hatch and I, and 23 other Senators have introduced, would restore the compelling interest test for evaluating free exercise claims. It would do so by establishing a statutory right that adopts the standards previously, used by the Supreme Court. In essence, the act codifies the requirement for the Government to demonstrate that any law burdening the free exercise of religion is essential to furthering a compelling governmental interest and is the least restrictive means of achieving that interest.
The act creates no new rights for any religious practice or for any potential litigant. Not every free exercise claim will prevail. It simply restores the long-established standard of review that had worked well for many years and that requires courts to weigh free exercise claims against the compelling State interest standard. Our bill is strongly supported by an extraordinary coalition of organizations with widely differing views on many other issues. The National Association of Evangelicals, the American Civil Liberties Union, the Coalitions for America, People for the American Way, just to name a few, support the legislation. They don’t often agree on much, but they do agree on the need to pass the Religious Freedom Restoration Act because religious freedom in America is damaged each day the Smith decision stands."
Related to the issue of how to manage compelling and competing national and private interests, (not that subsidized contraception for the self-sufficient or coerced cake baking for gay weddings are in any way compelling national interests), are thoughts on hidden law by Jonah Goldberg. Along the way, Goldberg explodes the idiocy of Obama's "Government is the one thing we all have in common" conceit.
Assuming you’re not a congressman, a mattress-tag cop, or a mutant telepath held captive in an underground research facility in New Mexico, your interactions with government are extremely limited. This is so despite the ever-metastasizing role of government — all government — in our lives. Indeed, the main role the state has in our lives doesn’t involve interventions we can see, but restrictions we can’t. The state limits the range of choices available to us until, very quickly, we forget we ever had the choice in the first place.