A fascinating question was posed to the candidates at the end of last night's vice presidential debate. Paul Ryan and Joe Biden were asked to tell Americans the degree to which their faith informs their politics, particularly on the issue of abortion. While Ryan gave the answer one would have expected, I was somewhat shocked to hear Vice President Biden's response.
Biden began by acknowledging that he agrees with the Catholic Church's teaching that life begins at conception, but he clarified that he believes that only "personally." Amazingly, on live national television, the vice president then went on to state that though he thinks infants in the womb are living human beings, he does not believe in using the force of law to protect them. Notice that Biden is not saying the unborn are not human, and therefore it is okay to destroy them. He is implicitly acknowledging his belief that those children are in fact human beings, and then giving tacit approval for them to be legally dismembered. The vice president of the United States just made a moral case for murder. Shocking.
But while that was the most astounding part of Biden's answer, it wasn't the only thing worth noting. Right before he expounded on his belief in legalized homicide because he "just refuse[s] to impose [his personal views] on others," Biden had announced, "My religion defines who I am, and I've been a practicing Catholic my whole life. It has particularly informed my social doctrine."
Uh...wait a second. Biden is proudly touting the fact that the aggressive government redistribution schemes he favors are motivated by his church's teachings on caring for the needy. In other words, he has no problem "imposing his personal views on others" when it comes to the welfare state.
It's an interesting worldview, isn't it? Government-sponsored theft is legitimate on moral grounds, but government protection of innocent, defenseless life is unreasonable. That's the modern Democrat Party.
Peter is a public high school government teacher and radio talk show host in central Indiana. Email firstname.lastname@example.org, visit www.peterheck.com, or like him on Facebook.