Tuesday, December 8, 2009

And don't forget the bridges to nowhere

As the health care bill gets hacked up in Congress, I read today that abortion is once again the hot-button issue. It's the same argument we've heard for the past few weeks: a lot of people don't like abortion, and therefore they shouldn't have to pay for it, even as indirectly as paying taxes to a government that partially subsidies to private insurance plans which happen to cover abortions.

The problem with that argument is that in a varied democracy (as America is), people pay for things they don't like all the time. I'm morally opposed to the death penalty, yet I'm forced to pay taxes to a federal government that allows it; I'm not calling for the end of our judicial system. I'm morally and pragmatically opposed to our wars in Afghanistan and Iraq, yet I'm forced to pay taxes to a federal government that wages them; I don't advocate dismantling the DOD. I'm morally opposed to state lotteries, denial of gay marriage, our incomplete separation of church and state, and a host of other things. Point is, I don't consider any of those issues to be veto-worthy for their respective agencies.

I'm alright with pro-lifers putting out their opinions; abortion is a complex issue with valid points on both sides. But taking such a hard line on it, and vetoing anything which brushes tangentially against it, is counterproductive. It's a recipe for disaster in as large a democracy as we have.

No comments:

Post a Comment