This is a tremendous article. Truly outstanding.
Our advantage in states like Texas should be GROWING, not withering into contention by 2020, and the one thing really killing us is poor messaging on social issues. No doubt about it. Here are a few of my recommendations:
1. Stake out a solid position supporting “every individual choice that does not remove someone else’s choice” —then apply this standard evenly across the board.
Without this standard, we are left pushing our moral preferences, and that is a guarantee of further dwindling
returns. Understand, our moral preferences aren’t bad—not at all—but we can’t win people to them without first winning people to a common starting point. Otherwise, WE’RE LEFT JUST SHOUTING AT EACH OTHER.
2. Allow this standard to make us the intelligent rival to the Dem’s ruthless emotionalism.
Case in point: Abortion. Once we accept the “every individual choice that does not remove someone else’s choice” standard, abortion stops being baby killers versus women haters (a losing argument for pro-lifers, since women can vote and the unborn can’t), to simply discussing when the unborn become human lives. As soon as they are human lives, our standard prevents one choice from removing their choice to live.
Simple. Unemotional. DEFENSIBLE. And in the case of Ms. Davis’s demand for late-term abortions, EMINANTLY WINNABLE. Very, very few people support late-term and partial birth abortions, and
that number actually appears to be dropping. Applying our standard across Texas would not only bury Ms. Davis, but result in stunning defeats statewide for her party.
You see, this debate heavily favors the pro-life side, since the increasing use of high-tech ultrasounds is making many converts—basically, the more the evidence, the more we win. Pitting baby killers against women haters, however, favors not only the pro-abortion crowd, but more specifically, the pro-abortion DEMOCRAT crowd. Why Democrats? Because they feed off rage and emotionalism, so stoking anger puts the game squarely on their home turf.
3. Regarding abortion, here’s another big advantage with our single standard: It places far greater emphasis on funding and responsibility—big winners for Republicans. Put simply, we can ask, “Why should the government FORCE a pro-life person to pay for the personal decisions of pro-abortion people?” Should the government FORCE one group’s choices to be funded by another? At that point, they’re clearly damaging your choice with theirs—and this violates our standard.
4. I could apply this single standard to several issues like gay marriage, marijuana, gun ownership, etc.—and you’ll find it clarifies each of them—but instead, let me finish with the greatest reason to offer and apply this
standard: EVERYONE AGREES WITH IT.
In other words, no more watching society drift further and further away from our points of view. Instead, they will drift rather quickly in our direction. While merely pushing our moral preferences creates animosity devoid of reason, promoting our single standard creates camaraderie and surprisingly open conversations. The hate decreases; the logic increases. WE WIN.
So in conclusion, let me strongly agree with Amy Miller. Let’s jump off our hopeless path of diminishing returns and embrace a new approach. Let’s get ahead of the game. Let’s win.