Conservatives can never accept a "truce" on social issues

The funny thing is how well socially conservative thinking tracks with the “leave us alone” philosophy that underlies conservative economic thought. Social conservatives vigorously oppose judicial activism and massive government programs that impose uniform “solutions” and undermine self-rule. We seek the freedom to worship without government intrusion, to educate our children without having our values undermined by sex education mandates, to keep more of what we earn and to persuade our fellow citizens to join us in defending marriage and life in the womb.

The last of these freedoms — championing the right to life and traditional marriage — is front and center in the national discourse because elite and unrepresentative institutions have attacked it. Those who call for a truce on these topics are denying the value of mass movements that have arisen to preserve life and marriage, ideas that conservatives — but never conservatives alone — have long embraced.

The only truce that makes sense between the night watchman and the thief is for the latter to find an honest occupation. Politics too can be an honest occupation, but it must begin with accepting that a moral code is always at stake in political decisions — it is only a matter of determining which code belongs to the thief.