Bipartisanship Watch

BIPARTISANSHIP WATCH….God knows I don’t want to get in the middle of the endless squabbling between Andrew Sullivan and National Review, but when the man has a point, the man has a point.

Get this: In yet another example of bipartisan comity, George Bush has just appointed a new chief of family-planning programs at the Department of Health and Human Services. His candidate turns out to be the medical director of an organization that regards the distribution of contraceptives as “demeaning to women,” and this strikes many people as an odd choice to head up a federal family-planning organization.

Not Kathryn Jean Lopez, though. In fact, she thinks it’s inconceivable that anyone would disagree with this view of contraceptives:

Passing out contraception without any deeper context or conversation is degrading and disrespectful ? to men and women. Tell me I’m crazy.

Degrading and disrespectful? To refrain from lecturing full-grown adults who want to have sex but don’t want to have children? Only if you think that all sex outside of marriage is inherently degrading and disrespectful.

Which, of course, is the whole point ? and it’s a good example of why the “keep abortion legal but acknowledge that it’s a heart-wrenching choice” school of thought leaves me cold. There’s no question that abortion is a heart-wrenching choice for some women, but encouraging that belief means encouraging people to believe that there’s something morally culpable about getting accidentally pregnant. Not to mention something morally culpable about not wanting a child in the first place, a decision so profound and personal that I have a hard time imagining anyone thinking they have a right to interfere with it.

Tell me I’m crazy.

Washington Monthly - Donate today and your gift will be doubled!

Support Nonprofit Journalism

If you enjoyed this article, consider making a donation to help us produce more like it. The Washington Monthly was founded in 1969 to tell the stories of how government really works—and how to make it work better. Fifty years later, the need for incisive analysis and new, progressive policy ideas is clearer than ever. As a nonprofit, we rely on support from readers like you.

Yes, I’ll make a donation