1. Virtually every news report about President George W. Bush's support for a constitutional amendment defining marriage as the union of a man and a woman describes it as "pandering" to the "far Right," the "radical Right" or, less pejoratively, "social conservatives" of the Republican Party.
2. Democrats regularly describe the amendment as enshrining "discrimination in the Constitution." In the words of Sen. Ted Kennedy, D-Mass., "A vote for the amendment is a vote for bigotry -- pure and simple."
3. Republicans are attacked for "diverting" attention from far more important issues, such as, according to every Democratic leader, Iraq and gas prices.
Regarding the news reporting: This is another example of how the news media present news. First, Democrats are rarely, if ever, described as "pandering" to the Left, let alone "radical Left." Why not? For one thing, the news media do not believe there is a "radical Left," only a "radical Right." Second, liberalism regards positions held by Democrats to be sincere and noble, therefore, Democratic positions can never pander to anyone.
This is part of the larger liberal view of Republicans and conservatives: They are not merely wrong; they are either phonies or bad. It is inconceivable to most liberals that a Republican politician can sincerely oppose redefining the most important social structure of society. And if that Republican's opposition to redefining marriage is deemed sincere, it is inconceivable to most liberals that the person is anything but a bigot.
That most liberals cannot understand conservatives' views about marriage as anything but bigotry and/or pandering is part of a narcissism that characterizes much of the Left. The very definition of narcissism is an inability to see the world through the eyes of another. Whatever conservatives' flaws, far more conservatives understand liberals' views on same-sex marriage. Most opponents of same-sex marriage appreciate that liberals feel bad about gays' inability to marry a person of the same sex. In fact, as a proponent of a marriage amendment, I not only understand the liberal desire to enable people to marry someone of the same sex, I feel genuine compassion for gays on this matter.
Dennis Prager is a SRN radio show host, contributing columnist for Townhall.com and author of his newest book, “The Ten Commandments: Still the Best Moral Code.”