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Opening Arguments

I've looked at life from both sides now

The "religious freedom" act heading to the governor's desk provides a good case study of how polarized we've become.

If you doubt the press is left-leaning, check out this Goggle listing of mainstream press stories about the bill, and see how many you can find that don't treat this as a massive blow to equal rights' hell, it's a rettur to 1950s Alabama. Indiana is telling gays they're aren't as good as everybody else!

Here's the Indy Star's Matt Tully, for example, with a column in which he mentions religion just once, in which he calles the bill's title a clever, market-tested name:

It's sickening. It's pathetic. And for a moment this week, before I decided I would not allow some misguided politicians to define the state I love, it made me ashamed to be a Hoosier.

Wow. Ashamed to be a Hoosier. Close to hyesterical, that.

On the other hand, if you wander through the righty blogosphere, as I frequently do, you get not so much about discrimination against gays and a whole heaping helping of poor florists driven out of business for refusing to serve a gay wedding and demands for Christian caterers tio ignore their religious beliefs. The main meme here seems to be that this is all part of the gay agenda to force people to accept them on their terms and their terms alone. Sue and humiate, then sue again!

The point is, if you're still trying to make up your own mind and won't to read a lot of opinions from all sides, it can be daunting. the stuff's all there, somewhere, but it takes time and you have to be serious about it.

So I found interesting this symposium, at the Federalist. Its focus is not specifically the religious angle butthe overall subject of gay marriage. Five people on the right with differing views of gay marriage were asked to name "the best reason I'm wrong on gay marriage." In other words, what one thing about your own position gives you the most pause?

Gathering a group of people who disagree on a really important question and asking them to admit which of their opponent’s arguments they find most convincing is the beginning of an exercise likely to result in good policy. Or, at least, bad policy with reasonable conciliations for the losing side. It’s just too bad key players in the debate over marriage didn’t do it ten years ago.

Indeed. I'd like to see this approach taken more often, on a host of complicated and "divisive" issues.


Larry Morris
Fri, 03/27/2015 - 8:38pm

I for one think we need a national conversation on this issue.  In fact, I think Starbucks should host it ...