After four children I have a fairly good idea about the habits, rationales, and irrationales of ankle biters. Twenty-eight years of university teaching have brought me great savvy re: students, their excuses, their procrastinations, and, of late, their piercings and tattoos, which carry the appearance of ankle bites. But, 33 years of observing Democrats and liberals still find me set agog. I now subscribe to one of their philosophies: their behaviors are pre-encoded. We must forgive them, tolerate them, medicate them, and engage in R&D for some brain staple procedure that will curb their neurodynamics much as the stomach staple curbs the appetite.
My DNA theory came to me one evening as I listened to Greta Van Susteren reporting as we decided. She had a ranting, angry liberal as a guest against the backdrop of the Republican convention. Said liberal complained of white males, Republicans, and the dominance of the former in the latter. Ms. Susteren pointed out that Mr. Bush had Colin Powell, Rod Paige, and Condi Rice in his cabinet. Undaunted, the liberal DNA kicked in, "Bush just picked them and they happened to be black. He didn't pick them because they were black." Blacks who are chosen for their competence don't count as true blacks? Or is it unless you choose someone because he/she is black, your motives are not pure? What is the line of reasoning here? That's DNA talking. Synapses misfire. Reason dissipates.
Equivocation seems to be engrained in the liberal mind, but equivocation is but a symptom of a genetic fear of finality. For folks who want to impose upon us one great social experiment after another, liberals hold an astonishing fear of final decisions. No death penalty because it's too final and what if we made a mistake? Abortion is necessary because what if birth control fails us or we fail birth control, or we just change our minds post-conception? You can almost hear the pens scratching prescription pads in the blue states as the Paxil and Zoloff refills are doubled. Vanquish the very thought of living with consequences of choices!
Mr. Kerry cannot make up his mind. How cruel this flip-flopper moniker for Mr. Kerry! The poor soul is afflicted with liberal DNA. So were Carter, Clinton, and the indecisive Dukakis. All Clinton staffers' books describe Clinton's agonizing decision process of debating, redebating, and generally flogging issues to death. Few CEOs are Democrats because one does not get to that level without being decisive. Who started think tanks? Liberal DNA because you can make a living just debating what to do. Who dominates universities? Liberal DNA because you never have to produce results; you can just think, ponder, and equivocate.
Look what happens when Dems do make rapid decisions. Mr. Kerry was the presumptive nominee after Iowa. Following Kerry's Vietnam record strategic error, the Swift Boat Veterans, and his midnight speech post-RNC, Howard Dean is looking good.
Liberal DNA is endemic in blue blood, but even plebian libs have an aura of aristocracy, a sense of superiority to those who disagree. They mock faith even as they accuse the faithful of being intolerant. Michael Moore asks continually, "Would you send your children off to die in a war?" Let's assume for a moment that the task is indeed one of going off to die. I thought the task was to win, and the odds are fairly high when you sign on with the U.S. armed forces that you will. Why does he ask this question as if it is some curse? For many of us, having a child in the military gives us bragging rights.
Mr. Moore and others think it dramatic that so few members of Congress have children in the military. I would be stunned if any of them did have children in the military. The Beltway mentality has consumed them and even conservatives, via interbreeding, have some liberal DNA. Liberal DNA concludes that a life not spent partially in an Ivy League school is a life not worth living. Out here in red states, we find men who change the course of history in Eureka College (see Ronald Reagan). We find leaders who change nations in log cabins (see Lincoln).
Liberal DNA cannot discern diabolical. Liberal DNA looks at Saddam Hussein's regime and sees children flying kites. It looks at Fidel Castro and sees good medical care. It looks at Yasser Arafat and sees Israel as the problem and then gives Arafat the Nobel peace prize. It looks at 9-11-2001 and the thousands of lives lost and concludes that U.S. foreign policy asked for it. It looks at George W. Bush liberating Iraq and sees Hitler.
The liberal DNA is at once erudite and emotional. Liberal DNA is so girlie-manish. It pledges hope is on the way, but remains pessimistic and cynical. It is mean-spirited in its attacks, but prissy when others cross the lines of political correctness. President Bush is a lying buffoon. Zell Miller is evil for outlining Mr. Kerry's voting record. Al Gore can say Mr. Bush betrayed our country. Mr. Cheney is Darth Vader for pointing out that Mr. Kerry's liveliest disagreement is with himself.
That liberalism is inborn offers some small comfort for we realize it cannot be cured. The inconsistency, the appreciation for the diabolical, the snobbery, and the equivocation are all in-born and in-bred. You cannot reason with them; you can only hope that science finds a cure.
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JWR contributor Marianne M. Jennings is a professor of legal and ethical studies at Arizona State
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