Since the DNC theme is centered around the "War on Women," I've put together some counter-arguments for Conservatives to use. I tested them on some blogs this afternoon with rather enjoyable success.
Hope you like them.
Re-Framing the "War on Women"
(For the record, as a married fellow, I’m well aware of the concept, “Groveling submission TO women.” This “War ON Women” concept, by comparison, seems foreign—and strategically unhealthy.)
How do the Democrats frame this debate? Obviously, they frame it in terms of Pro-Life = Anti-women.
What is our worst answer? In this case, the worst answer is avoiding the abortion issue altogether, and rather focusing on the economy. i.e., “Well, look at how many women have lost their jobs under Obama! That’s the real war on women!” Yes, this is true, but by running from the Democrat frame, we only grant validity to it. It looks like we’re trying to change the subject because they’ve got us beaten. Bad, bad move. Emboldened, they’ll simply press their point harder, leaving you eternally on defense.
What is our 2nd worst answer? In this case, it would be trying to convince them to be pro-life. Though I’m strongly pro-life, there’s not enough time to bog down in a huge issue, and this isn’t the real issue anyway. The issue isn’t pro-life versus pro-choice, but whether pro-life is anti-women. And a larger issue is whether the Republican Party is anti-women because it is largely pro-life, and doesn’t want tax dollars funding things like abortions and contraception. So let’s avoid bunny trails and go straight for the jugular. Let’s win.
To go on offense and leave them sputtering, let’s re-frame this debate in terms of Choice versus Control, and at times even, “Female choice versus female control.”
1. First, here’s how I’d address Sandra Fluke’s issue of Contraception: Let’s say one woman wants to use contraception, while another woman does not. According to the Democrats, if the second woman doesn’t wish to help pay for the first woman’s preference, then the second woman is “anti-woman.” In fact, we’re told she’s part of a “War on Women.” Seriously.
Moreover, the Dems say any political party that won’t FORCE this woman to help pay for the first woman’s preference is—as an entire party—at war with women. You can’t make this stuff up, folks.
We Republicans never want one person’s preference to be another person’s law. If you want something, then pay for it. Get coverage. And most importantly, don’t tell women who don’t want the same thing that they’re somehow at war with you. Honor their choices, just as you want yours honored. Don’t control them. Fair enough?
(By the way, some Dems might use the old “pooling” argument—as in we already pool the risk for many things in insurance plans, so this is no different. The answer is simple: 1) Contraception is a choice, whereas things like cancer and diabetes are not, 2) Some carriers charge less for those with healthier lifestyles, including non-smokers, and 3) While Republicans would allow women to choose from different insurance options that pool with or without contraception, Democrats want to eliminate the non-contraception options—hence, Dems want control, while we want choice, so we win again)
2. Second, here’s how I’d address the issue of abortion funding: Let’s say one woman believes the fetus is not a human life until it reaches certain levels of viability, or until birth. Another woman believes it is a human life at conception. So, the first supports a woman’s right to choose abortion, while the second feels that choice would deny a person the choice to live. Both have the right to their beliefs.
According to the Democrats, if the second woman doesn’t want her tax dollars funding the first woman’s preference, then the second woman is at war with women. Seriously. Moreover, the Dems say any political party that doesn’t force the second woman to help fund the first woman’s preference is—as an entire party—at war with women.
We Republicans never want one person’s preference to be another person’s law. Abortion is legal. If you want one, then pay for it. Get coverage. And most importantly, don’t tell women who don’t want the same thing that they’re somehow at war with you. Honor their choices, just as you want yours honored. Don’t control them. Fair enough?
Naturally, the repetitive nature of these arguments helps create retention for those hearing them.
3. Here’s how I’d address the notion that Republicans are anti-abortion extremists: Some Republicans have looked at the evidence and are pro-choice. Most Republicans, however—like at least 50% of Americans—have looked at the evidence and concluded that the fetus is a human life. Therefore, most Republicans hold a position of protecting this unborn child’s right to choose whether to live, but allow for the abortion option in cases of rape or danger to the mother’s life. That is the majority Republican position (for further discussion on the position of forbidding abortion in all cases, I can provide a separate analysis—but for now, space prohibits).
Barack Obama, however, supports:
Abortion even in the latest stages of pregnancy, when a fully-formed child is awaiting birth.
So, here’s my question: Who wants to control people—the Republicans, or Barack Obama? Who is extreme—the Republicans, or Barack Obama?
Conclusion: You get the idea. Re-frame the debate. Don’t let the Democrats choose the framework, and if they do, DON’T RUN FROM THEIR FRAMEWORK AND GRANT IT VALIDITY. Undermine it. In “Re-framing the Debate,” we come off as a lot smarter and more reasonable than the Democrats—which is as it should be.