Wednesday, February 15, 2012

On birth control (and sex), it's Santorum (and the crazy, theocratic right) against America


As Michael Scherer reminds us at Swampland, Rick Santorum had the following to say last October about birth control:

One of the things I will talk about that no President has talked about before is I think the dangers of contraception in this country, the whole sexual libertine idea. Many in the Christian faith have said, "Well, that's okay. Contraception's okay."

It's not okay because it's a license to do things in the sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be.

Etc., etc. Santorum wants sex to be purely conjugal, and specifically procreative. He acknowledges that pleasure is a part of it, but he wants it to be "special." So sex should only be between a man and a women, with no birth control, and with procreation in mind. (No word on what he thinks of the rhythm method.) "That's the perfect way that a sexual union should happen."

America -- not to mention human nature -- would seem to disagree.

As Scherer notes, a Guttmacher Institute survey found that "[v]irtually all women (more than 99%) aged 15–44 who have ever had sexual intercourse have used at least one contraceptive method." And "[a]mong the 43 million fertile, sexually active women who do not want to become pregnant, 89% are practicing contraception."

I'd say that's a decisive majority -- a big reason why President Obama and the Democrats are winning the contraception coverage mandate issue handily. Scherer:

In politics, it is generally not a good thing to characterize something nearly every adult in the country has happily used as "a license to do things in the sexual realm that is counter to how things are supposed to be." According to a more recent Pew poll, 85% of the country believes that contraception is either "not a moral issue" or "morally acceptable." Eight percent view contraception as "morally wrong."

Of course, Santorum is wooing the conservative Republican base, not the general electorate, and while it would seem that even most conservative Republicans use birth control, coming out against "licence," and more generally presenting oneself as a moralizing theocrat seeking to take down freedom (particularly for women), can be a vote-winner on the right, where retrograde social conservatism continues to thrive. That is obviously what Santorum is banking on, though he also obviously also sincerely believes this madness.

That makes him insane as well as out-of-touch.

Not to mention the dream choice for Democrats.

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