David French Nails the Faustian Bargain of the “Prolife” Cult of Death

Failing to learn the lesson of the temptation of Christ when he was promised all the kingdoms of the earth, of Gollum’s and Boromir’s seduction by the One Ring, and of half the Twilight Zone episodes ever made, the “prolife” move whored itself out to the biggest con man in American history with the promise that he would give them their heart’s desire without ever facing the fact they were making their hearts into temples of evil. As David French surveys the wreckage of cult’s attempt to impose its will in Ohio:

… Trump’s movement dismisses the value of personal character. It mocks personal restraint. And it’s happy to inflict its will on others if it achieves what it wants. Libertarianism says that your rights are more important than my desires. Libertinism says my desires are more important than your rights, and this means that libertines are terrible ambassadors for any cause that requires self-sacrifice.

I don’t think the pro-life movement has fully reckoned with the political and cultural fallout from the libertine right-wing response to the Covid pandemic. Here was a movement that was loudly telling women that they had to carry unwanted pregnancies to term, with all the physical transformations, risks and financial uncertainties that come with pregnancy and childbirth, at the same time that millions of its members were also loudly refusing the minor inconveniences of masking and the low risks of vaccination — even if the best science available at the time told us that both masking and vaccination could help protect others from getting the disease.

Even worse, many of the same people demanded that the state limit the liberty of others so that they could live how they wanted. Florida, for example, banned private corporate vaccine mandates.

This do-what-you-want ethos cost a staggering number of American lives. A 2022 study found that there were an estimated 318,981 vaccine-preventable deaths from January 2021 to April 2022. Vaccine hesitancy was so concentrated in Republican America that political affiliation was more relevant than race and ethnicity as an indicator of willingness to take the vaccine. Now there’s evidence from Ohio and Florida that excess mortality rates were significantly higher for Republicans than Democrats after vaccines were widely available.

And this is the party that’s now going to tell American women that respect for human life requires personal sacrifice?…”

This cult of naked nihilist power long ago abandoned its interest in the unborn as anything other than human shields for its own radical, predatory selfishness and hunger to dominate others. And now it will face the backlash from the 87% of Americans who will not be dominated by these stupid, stupid would-be tyrants.


4 Responses

  1. That is a possible take.

    Personally, I’d be more worried about the trajectory of a nation that is willing to protect abortion with the exact same framework as religious expression. That also suggests a certain libertine, don’t-give-a-shit-about-others mindset at work, but no matter.

    Trump *is* a corrupt turd, no argument here.

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