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Scorpion, Frog

I notice something curious: we are constantly told by pro-SSM activists that conservative/religious fears of significant curtailment of religious liberty as the result of gay rights are paranoid. And yet, when things like this happen, we are told by these folks that it’s not really that big a deal, and besides, Christians deserve it for being bigots.

It’s a nasty little mind game. As I said, in the US, we have a First Amendment that will protect American religious schools in ways that the Canadian religious schools cannot be protected. But I do not doubt that in the years to come, gay-rights activists and their fellow travelers are going to put the screws to religious institutions as far as the law will allow, and that Barack Obama will give them pretty much what they want. He has shown in the HHS mandate case that religious liberty does not matter to him as much as satisfying the culture-war priorities of the left. I very much wish this fall’s election would be fought on the economy and foreign policy, but this president, by his move on the HHS mandate and his subsequent endorsement of gay marriage, has moved this issue to the forefront, at least for conservatives and others who are not confused by the game our opponents play, and who perfectly well understand what’s going on here.

Just keep all this in mind. The way the game works, they mount an attack across culture-war lines, then accuse conservatives of being culture-war aggressors. They even believe their own propaganda, which is as crucial to successfully prosecuting the culture war as getting non-combatants to believe it.

I too am tired of the culture war. But the culture warriors of the left are manifestly not tired of me and the people and institutions I care about.

UPDATE: The server crashed this morning as I was trying to update and expand this item. I tried to bring up the story of the Scorpion and the Frog. If you look at what’s happened to the Episcopal Church, you can perhaps see the same thing happening to society on SSM. First the Episcopal left asked for dialogue and tolerance, in the name of fairness. When they got that, and gained a foothold, next thing you know they were all about stamping out any kind of orthodoxy, because we cannot tolerate bigotry. Same deal is going to happen with SSM. What started out as a call for tolerance and fairness is going to end with attempts to suppress any thought or practice contrary to its orthodoxy, because to do any less would be to give quarter to bigotry, and unsafety.

about the author

Rod Dreher is a senior editor at The American Conservative. He has written and edited for the New York Post, The Dallas Morning News, National Review, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, the Washington Times, and the Baton Rouge Advocate. Rod’s commentary has been published in The Wall Street Journal, Commentary, the Weekly Standard, Beliefnet, and Real Simple, among other publications, and he has appeared on NPR, ABC News, CNN, Fox News, MSNBC, and the BBC. He lives in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, with his wife Julie and their three children. He has also written four books, The Little Way of Ruthie Leming, Crunchy Cons, How Dante Can Save Your Life, and The Benedict Option.

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