With his speech at the Reagan Presidential Library last year, Florida Republican Sen. Marco Rubio cemented his reputation as a particularly able spokesman for social conservatism — and, even as his name is repeatedly tossed out as a potential vice presidential nominee, he fearlessly addresses issues that many political strategists would argue are best left off the table in an economy-dominated election cycle like this one.
Today, at the Susan B. Anthony List fifth annual Campaign for Life Gala, for example, Rubio reminded his pro-life audience that the question of whether we as a society will allow abortion to continue has ramifications far beyond politics. It is, he said, a “definitional” question, determinative of our vision of the human person and society. Do we think people are usable and dispensable or do we think they are inherently lovable and irreplaceable at every stage of development?
“The way we look at [human rights atrocities] in history and condemn them — this era will be condemned for this, I have no doubt about it,” Rubio said. “Our job is to accelerate the process of getting there, to ensure that sooner rather than later — God willing, in our lifetime — we can arrive to a consciousness in this nation that this is wrong, that the right to life is a fundamental one that trumps virtually any other right I can imagine, because without it none of the other rights matter.”
Rubio compared today’s pro-life movement to abolitionism, the civil rights movement and women’s suffrage.
“At the end of the day our nation can never truly become what it fully was intended to be unless it deals with this issue squarely,” he said. “America cannot truly fulfill its destiny unless this issue is resolved. It’s that important.”
Rubio is to be commended for not mincing words, for stating clearly what is at stake in this question. As sex and the embrace or nullification of its consequences go, so goes the family. As the family goes, so goes the culture — and, as pundits love to say, culture is upstream from politics.