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Why Politicians Don't Understand Ideology

By Deal W. Hudson
3/27/2014 (2 years ago)
Catholic Online (www.catholic.org)

Cantor does not understand he is preparing to spend taxpayer money on a celebration of feminist ideology, not a tribute to the broad spectrum of American women and their -feminine genius.

Make no mistake, the National Women's History Museum will use its historic account of women's "equal rights" to glorify and propagate the abortion movement with all the bad arguments that have been used to justify it.  There are far too many Americans who reject this narrative of the American woman, and Rep. Eric Cantor should know that. It will take informed, articulate women to keep this museum from being funded: Leaders such as Penny Nance, president of Concerned Women of America, or Marjorie Dannenfelser,  president of the Susan B. Anthony List, and Lila Rose, president of Live Action, can make the kind of arguments the men in Congress must listen to.

Highlights

WASHINGTON,DC (Catholic Online) - When House Whip Eric Cantor (VA, R) announced his intention of bringing to the floor legislation funding the National Women's History Museum,
I shook my head in disbelief.  Cantor's intention, transparent to all, is to make the GOP brand more "centrist" and, thus, the argument goes more appealing to women voters. 

It's surprising that Cantor does not understand his support for this museum, 17 years in the making, will have no impact at all on women's attitude toward his political party.  Even more surprising, Cantor does not understand he is preparing to spend taxpayer money on a celebration of feminist ideology, not a tribute to the broad spectrum of American women and their "feminine genius."

Rep. Cantor, like many fellow politicians, does not understand ideology. Why? Rep. Cantor has not lived the "real world" of the Academy. Anyone who has spent years in a college or university, as a graduate student and professor, will admittedly be shielded from some aspects of life, primarily having to do with keeping an institution financially sound. 

But, the Academy is the one place where you learn firsthand what an ideology means.  I'm referring not only to the principles informing movements such as feminism, multiculturalism, gay studies, postmodernism, and so forth, but also the cauldron of passions that drive them. 

Having spent seven years as a graduate student and 15 years as a college professor, I have long been aware of this lack of understanding.  I first noticed it during the Carter presidency when his form of liberally-based evangelicalism was widely misinterpreted, followed by an inability to grasp the vast ideological difference between Bill and Hilary Clinton, the latter being the ideologue.  But, most glaringly, it was during the first Obama presidential campaign that the political class demonstrated its lack of "real world" experience of grappling with a deeply held ideological motive. 

There were two basic facts about Barack Obama that revealed his entire ideological story; his support for infanticide and his years of sitting at the feet of Rev. Jeremiah Wright.  Obama's willingness to stand before the Illinois Senate and argue against the Born Alive Infant Protection Act was appalling, but it was the kind of comment commonly heard in the classrooms, corridors, and conference rooms of our nation's universities.  "It's just a clump of cells," I remember one colleague saying to me when we argued about abortion.  Another colleague told me sternly, "I support abortion because I love children, and these children are not going to be wanted or loved."

From Rev. Wright, Obama absorbed Afrocentricism, multiculturalism, anti-Semitism, anti-Catholicism, and a permanent distrust of white America. Blend all this together into what could be termed "Obamaism," and you have a veritable postmodern cocktail of all the ideologies of the far Left that hold America, its Founding, history, traditions, and values in contempt. 

Neither infanticide nor Jeremiah Wright gained any traction as issues in the 2008 campaign. A few conservative commentators, familiar with the Academy, attempted to strip the moderate, compassionate mask from Obama's face. No one listened.  Meanwhile the press busily created the myth about Obama's greatness as a speaker, which was patently false at the time but has gradually died a slow death behind the teleprompter.  

Obamaism, however, relies on deception and the willingness of the media to cooperate in promulgating the lies.  The unvarnished ideology of an academic cannot be exposed to the light of day without suffering the fate of a vampire who misses his curfew.  The postmodernism menage of Obama's passionately held convictions have to be re-branded and marketed under the banner of the Western values he and his fellow ideologues have long ago "deconstructed" as products of a white, patriarchal society.  

We have long thought of museums as impartial arbiters of what is worth knowing from the past, a trusted reservoir of remembrance, a place we come face to face with those artifacts, narratives, groups, and faces who built our civilization, including those who have prospered and those who have suffered.

Make no mistake, the National Women's History Museum will use its historic account of women's "equal rights" to glorify and propagate the abortion movement with all the bad arguments that have been used to justify it.  There are far too many Americans who reject this narrative of the American woman, and Rep. Eric Cantor should know that.

It will take informed, articulate women to keep this museum from being funded: Leaders such as Penny Nance, president of Concerned Women of America, or Marjorie Dannenfelser,  president of the Susan B. Anthony List, and Lila Rose, president of Live Action, can make the kind of arguments the men in Congress must listen to.

© Deal W. Hudson, Ph.D

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Deal W. Hudson is president of the Morley Institute of Church and Culture, Senior Editor and Movie Critic at Catholic Online, and former publisher and editor of Crisis Magazine.This column and subsequent contributions are an excerpt from a forthcoming book. Dr. Hudson's new radio show, Church and Culture, is heard on the Ave Maria Radio Network.

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