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Wednesday, May 10, 2006

More liberal policy wonkery

The Anti-Strib takes me to task for the list of liberal policy planks, because I don't include anything on foreign policy or immigration. Fair enough. Let's hit it.

Foreign policy: engage in multilateralism. Promote democracy and human rights around the world: this means stop cozying up to autocratic regimes like the ones in Saudi Arabia, Pakistan, and Egypt, to name a few. They may be allies in the GWOT, but they are not our allies in the realm of human rights.

With regards to Iraq, get out. We shouldn't have gone in there in the first place, and unless we are willing to be occupiers, using brute force to keep everybody in line, we are only hurting things. I don't think the U.S. is ready to be a colonial power, so get out. Iran: we have plenty of time to deal with this, years and years. There is no imminent danger. However, we need to think about what we will do in a world where more and more countries have nuclear weapons. This is inevitable. I have no ideas on that.

Stop being hypocrites. If we support democracy, that means we support democracy even when we don't like the results of elections.

I am a free-trader. This is probably something that many liberals will disagree with.

On immigration: amnesty for illegal immigrants. Sharply increased quotas for legal immigration. No guest-worker program. Severe crackdowns on businesses that hire illegal immigrants. A lot of people will disagree with me on this one too, but this is what I believe.

As for the abstinence issue, I posted a reply in comments over there but I'll repeat it here: abstinence is great. I think that all teens and all people who are not ready for sexual relationships should be abstinent. However, abstinence-only programs do not work, and those who say that they do are lying. Study after study proves this. Moreover, lots of abstinence-only programs are full of lies on methods of contraceptions, such as the myth that condoms can't block the HIV virus because the pores are larger than the size of the virus itself. Blah blah blah.

It is irresponsible and immoral to withhold life-saving information from people. Abstinence doesn't last forever, and once people become sexually active they need to know what to do. I am always confused by this: according to abstinence-only supporters, once a person becomes sexually active where are they supposed to get information on being healthy, on safe sex, on birth control, and the rest?

One thing that I think separates me from lots of religious conservatives is that I don't buy the "Do this because I say so" line of reasoning. While it may work for some, generally people stop listening to that excuse long before they reach puberty. Teens are semi-intelligent young adults. If you give them all the information, teach them that abstinence is 100% effective, condoms are X% effective, and so on, they might just figure out using rational thought that it is better to abstain for a while. Believing in something because you thought it out yourself works a lot better than hearing "Don't have sex because God says so."


At 1:12 PM, May 11, 2006, Blogger Tracy said...

Thanks for taking the time to flesh out the list. I'll respond to it today.

Do you have any interest in a blog debate exchange? We have been looking for another blog to have a conservative/liberal debate with.

At 10:04 AM, May 12, 2006, Anonymous Anonymous said...

You got to be kidding me - abstinence doesn't work? I beg to differ - if people are not having sex, then there is no risk of pregnancy and no risk of STDs (unless of course they are engaging in sexual activity that may not be considered sex).

Abstinence does work. Study after study shows that since the wide use of 'live saving' condoms sexual activity has increased. Why? Could it be because of a false security that these 'life saving' methods bring?

At 11:02 AM, May 15, 2006, Anonymous Jlubby said...

To clarify, abstinence works. Telling people to not have sex doesn't. Besides the 'study after study' you reference doesn't mean any causal link. There's about as much evidence that condoms lead to increased sexual activity as gas prices, global warming, or ratings on American Idol do.


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