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"A lot of time is being wasted"
October 1, 2002 2:41 AM   Subscribe

"A lot of time is being wasted" Nancy Reagan lobbies for stem cell research. Some things never change.
posted by magullo (28 comments total)

 
I'm not saying the issue is right or wrong but it's a shame right-wing thinkers tend to only be able to see something when it starts to affect them. And that's their thinking when they vote - I'm better off this way. To hell with the poor/sick/uneducated.
posted by funkuncle at 3:23 AM on October 1, 2002


funkuncle: Yeah I agree but it's not always the case. We have yet to see Jeb Bush come out in favour for a more treatment based response to drug addiction even though his daughter got busted (for the 3rd time if I recall) and should be doing a few years in the clink.
posted by PenDevil at 4:10 AM on October 1, 2002


I say, Don't look a gift horse in the mouth.
Whatever the source, if the cause is just... etc. et

And as Ronnie might say, Thank you Nancy whoever you are.
posted by donfactor at 4:33 AM on October 1, 2002


PenDevil, why should he? It's much easier just to hold Noelle Bush to a different standard and allow her the treatment she needs while shipping others with the same problems off to jail. Will Jeb's daughter ever see the inside of a jail cell?
posted by UnReality at 4:44 AM on October 1, 2002


right-wing thinkers tend to only be able to see something when it starts to affect them.

no, we all do, to a certain extent.
it's a painful fact of life, and of human nature
posted by matteo at 5:42 AM on October 1, 2002


It is quite funny, these extremely conservative and 'moral' politicians quickly change their tune when the issue comes close to home. Cheney supports gay rights because his daughter is gay, Reagan supports stem cell research because her husband is looney.
posted by batboy at 6:09 AM on October 1, 2002


"It is quite funny, these extremely conservative and 'moral' politicians"

Bah. All politicians have some sort of morality by which they run their campaign. It's just that conservative politicos don't seem to cater to your morality, batboy.

"no, we all do, to a certain extent.
it's a painful fact of life, and of human nature
"

I agree. What would any of you expect from Nancy Reagan? She never ran for the office, she's just desperate for some way out of the incredible emotional pain she is probably suffering, watching her husband decay.
posted by insomnyuk at 6:18 AM on October 1, 2002


Reagan supports stem cell research because her husband is looney.

That's nice. Alzheimers="looney"

Also, although I know it doesn't fit in with most MeFi members' knee jerk response, the stem cell and therapeutic cloning issues do not break down cleanly along party lines. One of the biggest supporters of both is Republican Senator Arlen Specter. And Orrin Hatch introduced legislation supporting therapeutic cloning. On the flip side, the legislation introduced to ban such cloning and research was co-sponsored by Democratic Senator Mary Landrieu of Louisiana.

The "gift horse" point is a good one. Would you have preferred Nancy Reagan to oppose stem cell research?
posted by pardonyou? at 6:20 AM on October 1, 2002


What would any of you expect from Nancy Reagan? She never ran for the office, she's just desperate for some way out of the incredible emotional pain she is probably suffering, watching her husband decay.

I disagree. If stem cell research were approved today, there is no way Ronald Reagan would benefit from anything. The man is 91 yrs. old. Nancy Reagan is using her husband's disease to promote the issue. I don't think she's looking for a quick fix.
posted by pallid at 6:42 AM on October 1, 2002


What pardonyou? said.

Let's give everyone from all their various positions on the political spectrum credit for some complexity of thought - until specific individuals provide ample proof to the contrary, at least. Debate is not furthered by such caricaturing and baseless assumptions.

I noticed that one of the articles said that Nancy Reagan was "equivocal" on the issue of abortion, saying that she doesn't believe in abortion but does believe in a "woman's choice". I feel there isn't necessarily a contradiction here. Mrs. Reagan may have felt that although she personally would not have an abortion she does think it should be a safe and legal option for all women.

And yes, as pallid said, it's wonderful that she would be lobbying for this issue and evidently, making some impact, when she can't have much hope that Ronald will benefit thereby.
posted by orange swan at 6:50 AM on October 1, 2002


Or maybe it's just a sad fact that people are willing to compromise their logically formed beliefs when faced with a highly emotional influence. This happens to all people, not just right-wingers of course. Emotions often overrule our decision making abilities.
posted by Wingy at 7:04 AM on October 1, 2002


For once, I'm not going to waste time on recriminations. Go, Nancy, go.

Or maybe it's just a sad fact that people are willing to compromise their logically formed beliefs when faced with a highly emotional influence.

I'm not sad about it. Logic doesn't exist in a void, it should be tempered by emotion, at least sometimes.
posted by RylandDotNet at 7:17 AM on October 1, 2002


Arg. How can you not "believe in" abortion, but support a right to choose. The "right to choose" is just that, to choose what's right for you, not to have it dictated by another, whether that other is forcing to have have an abortion or to not have an abortion. Choice. Mine.

And the point of Bush banning this procedure, according to this article and conventional wisdom, was to appease the conservative chistian groups, not a few dems in Louisiana.

So, yes, in general I see conservatives being very cold hearted about individual people's needs, until it happens to them. Again, in general, liberals, who are frequently accused of being too soft-hearted and of giving too much away, do support social welfare, individual rights for personal liberties, civil rights, etc, even if they haven't suffered those hardships themselves. Conservatives more generally support the rights of companies to do as they please to maximize profits, even if they treat employees poorly, the right of the wealthy and landed to keep more of their money and land, and for minimizing tax-supported welfare for individuals and maximizing it for corporations. (To be personally clear, I think that optimal gov't is a healthy mix of things from both sides.)

And so when I see Lee Atwater's deathbed conversion ("gush, maybe I was too harsh on all those people I harassed in my political career") or Nancy Reagan's sudden support for stem cell research now that she has personally experienced the need, I see hypocrisy. (as opposed to her non-supportive I don't "believe in" abortion, etc)

Do I welcome their support? Yes. But I am saddened at how self-centered so many people are of all political persuasions, but to my view, most often and most vocally by people who call themselves conservative.
posted by Red58 at 7:20 AM on October 1, 2002


Or maybe it's just a sad fact that people are willing to compromise their logically formed beliefs when faced with a highly emotional influence.

Not really sure what you're saying here. Has she ever come out publicly against stem cell research? If not, then I'm not sure how you can assume that her "logically formed beliefs" are being "compromised". Supporting stem cell research can be entirely logical. And people are allowed (and should be encouraged) to change their minds when the data (emotional or otherwise) warrants it, adhering rigidly to beliefs by turning a blind eye to new information is illogical.
posted by biscotti at 7:20 AM on October 1, 2002


Cheney supports gay rights because his daughter is gay, Reagan supports stem cell research because her husband is looney

Best laigh I've had thus far today.

How can you not "believe in" abortion, but support a right to choose

Very easily, one would imagine. It would be called being a civil libertarian.
posted by Yelling At Nothing at 7:24 AM on October 1, 2002


Arg. How can you not "believe in" abortion, but support a right to choose.

That's not a hard one at all. What a person personally believes and what they feel a government should be able to prohibit can easily be two different things. I would never want my wife/girlfriend/significant other to have an abortion. But that doesn't mean I believe the government should be allowed to say what I or anyone else should or should not be allowed to do inside their own bodies.
posted by pardonyou? at 8:02 AM on October 1, 2002


I think it's silly to look at this as "oh, look at the hypocrisy of those conservatives!" People often change their opinions (often radically) when faced with new experience. Remember the old joke: A conservative is just a liberal who's been mugged.
posted by gwint at 8:30 AM on October 1, 2002


Maybe my definition of "believe in" is different. To me the appropriate statement is "I don't feel right/comfortable having an abortion, but I believe in the right to choosing for myself".

But, my dears, that is a pro-choice position, not an anti-choice/pro-life position. Ms. Reagan has been hanging with the anti-choice crowd.
posted by Red58 at 9:05 AM on October 1, 2002


Reagan supports stem cell research because her husband is looney.

That's nice. Alzheimers="looney"


No, Reagan has been looney since long before his diagnosis. A good twenty or thirty years before, and that's being conservative. Does the phrase "I don't recall" being muttered a few hundred times ring a bell?

[tangent]So he was either a liar (which can't be, he's a conservative hero, a minor deity even) or he was already loosing his faculties while in office. Either way the man should have CERTAINLY not been allowed to continue in office.[/tangent]

To get back on track, Red58 really hit the nail on the head. And Jeb Bush probably would be more willing to consider alternatives if there was a prosecutor with a backbone and a conscious who would actually prosecute Noel and get her sentenced to prison, where then Jeb would have to publicly pardon her. Of course, they can't even have a fair election much less due process down in FL.

It also gets so frustrating when people refute well-known traits of certain groups because they can find an example to the contrary. Elephants are grey. Just because there may be an albino elephant somewhere does not mean elephants are not grey. It means there is a rule, with exceptions.

I wonder if Ronnie were able to speak for himself and made a similar announcement if it would sway any of his old base. All these right wingers would be in a really tough position. But since it's just Nancy they can wave it away.
posted by Ynoxas at 9:23 AM on October 1, 2002


Ms. Reagan has been hanging with the anti-choice crowd.

Her husband was anti-abortion, and yes, that's significant because he was the elected official, not her. But I don't think it's fair to assume she is also anti-abortion - that's projecting her spouse's opinions on her. Nancy Reagan gets to have her own opinions, and she gets to change her mind.

George Bush Sr. was against tougher gun control while his wife Barbara was emphatically and sincerely on the other side. Which must have made for interesting dinnertime conversation in the Bush residence.
posted by orange swan at 9:29 AM on October 1, 2002


it's a shame right-wing thinkers tend to only be able to see something when it starts to affect them
Cite me someone who promotes a cause that they're NOT directly affected by. Where was Reeves on spinal damage BEFORE his accident? Where was M.J Fox on Parkinsons BEFORE he got it? Where was John Walsh on kidnapping BEFORE his son was killed? And so on.. That's just human nature, on BOTH sides of the political spectrum. Few people ever get deeply involved until they had had a direct contact.
posted by HTuttle at 10:26 AM on October 1, 2002


Actually Ms. Reagan has not changed her mind about abortion. As I recall she has always been pro-choice. It was the Mr.'s tactical decision to become pro-life in the 70's and she made it very clear that although she disagreed with him on this issue she would respect his opinion and stand by her man.

This is an example of something couples do all the time.
posted by filchyboy at 11:22 AM on October 1, 2002


As I recall she has always been pro-choice

Got any links?
posted by matteo at 11:41 AM on October 1, 2002


Nope just my memory from ancient history. I seem to recall her saying "No more wire hangers." But I can't find a quote or rather I don't have time for such a search.
posted by filchyboy at 12:00 PM on October 1, 2002


Whoops here you go from 1994. Nancy Reagan expressing her views.
posted by filchyboy at 12:04 PM on October 1, 2002


Again my point is that she did nothing to support her belief in the past because it didn't affect her - she thinks. But now, for this man who openly and with vehemence believes that abortion is wrong (I'm speaking of Ron here) she's gonna ask for this.

Hypocrisy. If she's "standing by her man" as asserted here, shouldn't she continue to stand by him here and follow the principles (agreeing with him despite her "avowed" belief to the contrary) she hewed to so closely in the past?

She has so little compassion for individual rights (as I defined them in my previous post), this just seems too convenient.
posted by Red58 at 12:11 PM on October 1, 2002


Again my point is that she did nothing to support her belief in the past

What did you expect Nancy Reagan to do to support her pro-choice beliefs? She wasn't an elected official, she was the wife of one. Abortion was legal during her time in the White House and is still legal today - there was no lobbying required. People can believe very strongly in something and yet take no public action to demonstrate that because they are busy taking action on other issues, or simply living their own lives. I do not see that she has personally contradicted her belief on this issue, and that's the important thing.
posted by orange swan at 12:36 PM on October 1, 2002


filchy,
it's very careful language ("I’m against abortion--I don’t believe in abortion." She added, "On the other hand, I believe in a woman’s choice...")
And it came 5 years after her husband left the White House
posted by matteo at 1:33 AM on October 2, 2002


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