Milton Community Discusses Social Issues in the Election
by The Milton Measure on Friday, November 2nd, 2012
Over the course of this year’s presidential election, perennial social issues, such as abortion and marriage equality, have arisen as controversial topics.
On abortion, President Obama has taken a pro-choice stance. According to his official website, “[He] believes a woman’s health care choices are personal decisions, best made with her doctor—without interference from politicians.”
On the other hand, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney is pro-life. According to his campaign website, “he believes that the right next step is for the Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade.”
Chimene Cooper (I), who is unable to vote but considers herself a Democrat, admits that she “does understand the pro-life argument for the most part, except in cases of rape and incest.” Republican Katherine Flaherty (III) believes that a child’s life begins at conception: “We do not have the right to make decisions for those who are not there to have a say. Our country has finally ended…discrimination [on the basis] of color, religion and socio-economic class, and now we are discriminating against age, location (in a womb), and lack of voice.”
Concerning marriage equality, President Obama’s stance is consistent with that of the Democratic Party, which supports gay marriage. In an interview with ABC news on May 9, 2012, Presient Obama clearly stated, “personally, it is important for me to go ahead and affirm that I think same sex couples should be able to get married.” Over the past four years, President Obama has worked with the LGBT community on initiatives like the repeal of the military’s “Don’t Ask Don’t Tell” policy.
Governor Romney, on the other hand, believes that marriage should be between one man and one woman. According to his campaign website, “as president, Mitt will not only appoint an Attorney General who will defend the Defense of Marriage Act – a bipartisan law passed by Congress and signed by President Clinton – but he will also champion a Federal Marriage Amendment to the Constitution defining marriage as between one man and one woman.”
Hari Patel (III), whose beliefs are more aligned with those of the Democratic Party, thinks that “it is wrong to deny any humans civil rights…and I believe that the right to marry is a civil right. America on occasion lags behind the developed world when it comes to acceptance, and this is definitely one of those cases.”
Duncan Bowden (I), who considers himself a Republican, believes that both gay marriage and abortion “should be fully legalized, allowing those who wish to take advantage of that legalization to do so.” Acknowledging that his opinion on these controversial matters is not consistent with the views of the Republican Party, he adds that he “can begin to understand why people oppose legalizing abortion and gay marriage on a religious sense, and that is their decision to make, but I believe it should be legalized and those people should personally abstain from taking advantage of that legalization.”
Republican Dar Anastas, a member of the performing arts department, also differs from many in the national GOP on key social issues. “Outside of protecting the weak and poor, social issues involving personal choice and religion have no business in politics,” she says. “Topics of abortion, marriage rights, and health care are divisive and should be left to the individual to decide what is right for themselves and their families.”
Clearly Milton Academy’s conservatives and liberals can find common ground on social issues, even if the country as a whole remains largely divided.
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