Liberals discover the value of families

  • 28 June 2018
  • NormanL

The spectacle, subsequent outrage, and scramble to end the separation of children from would-be immigrants along the nation's southern border continues to drive much of the nation's political narrative. But there is one very interesting, if unintended, development: the left is now positioning itself as a vocal defender of the traditional family, and parental rights. As Jonah Goldberg writes:

I’ve been amazed at the way so many liberals have fully embraced what is often a very conservative view of parental rights. Implicit in the revulsion over family separation is a belief in the sacred or holy or pre-political right of parents to be with their children. Some of the Catholic critics of the separation policy, such as Sohrab Ahmari (in a recent Commentary podcast), have been good at articulating the idea that the bond between parents and their children is prior to any regime or ideological commitment.

Few liberals state it outright but a great many allude to, or simply assume, that such a bond exists. It is the fuel for the fire of the outrage.

And that’s a good thing. I just hope they hold onto that conviction the next time someone floats “the communal ownership of children” or coughs up some hairball about “children’s rights.”

And we can extend that to other areas, such as parents wanting to ensure their children get the best possible education -- and do so by backing school choice. Or we could go further, and wonder whether this might take some of the wind out of the pro-abortion forces that dominate the Democratic party. If family bonds are now so important, then surely the life of every child is, too.

Nah...that would require not just a total re-think of progressive thought going back more than 100 years, it would also be politically inconvenient for a party that only values famlies when they are useful political props.