In those speeches, Miers doesn't sound like someone who has a clear view of the separate roles of the people's representatives and that of an unelected and unaccountable judiciary. She reflects the judicial activism conservatives have been battling for decades and it tells you why so many are in open rebellion against her nomination.
It appears to have escaped Miers' notice that in the case of abortion someone else is involved. It is one thing to self-determine to have sex. It is another to self-determine to kill the baby, which leaves no chance for that other "self" to make any determination about his or her own life. That strikes me as cold, hedonistic and selfish.
Could the president have known Harriet Miers for such a long time and not been aware of her views on the most important moral, religious and political issues of our time? No liberal president would nominate a stealth pro-life nominee to slip through, and none has since Roe v. Wade was decided. If Miers still believes these things, how could President Bush jeopardize his standing as an unyielding pro-lifer, not to mention most of his political base?
A government that allows "self-determination" in most personal matters is one that supports liberty. A government that allows its citizens to engage in behavior that undermines social structures and a sense of morality contributes to its own demise. Watch the HBO series "Rome." It shows where unrestrained self-determination leads.
I have not joined the pack calling for Harriet Miers to withdraw, but I'm getting close. She should be thoroughly grilled on these 1993 speeches and not allowed to get away with "confirmation conversion."
Miers might consult that Bible in which she says she believes and see the disastrous consequences of self-determination when practiced by the ancient Israelites. A good place to start is in Judges 21:25: "In those days Israel had no king; everyone did as he saw fit."
Cal Thomas is co-author (with Bob Beckel) of the book, "Common Ground: How to Stop the Partisan War That is Destroying America".
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