Report from Boston: Inconsistencies Abound at Dems' Nat'l Convention
by Bill Fancher and Jody Brown
July 27, 2004
(AgapePress) - One pro-family activist detects numerous inconsistencies -- not to mention, biting anti-Bush commentary -- emanating from the Fleet Center in Boston, where the Democratic Party faithful are preparing to bestow upon John Kerry and John Edwards their long-expected designation as presidential and vice-presidential candidates.
Democratic National Committee Chairman Terry McAuliffe called the convention to order on Monday night, saying the Party will offer Americans ideas based on enduring values, including "family and faith." That proclamation was followed by a high-profile lesbian from the Clinton administration and a woman whose name is synonymous with legalized abortion.
Roberta Achtenberg, who was assistant HUD secretary under Clinton, told the delegates that the Democratic Party reflects her values. "I am a lawyer, a mother, and a lesbian," she stated. "I am proud to be all of those things -- and one thing more: I am proud to be a Democrat." Achtenberg also says she is proud to be part of a party that opposes the Federal Marriage Amendment and seeks "equal responsibilities, benefits, and protections" for families of same-sex couples.
Then Gloria Feldt of Planned Parenthood said that presumptive presidential nominee John Kerry would not appoint Supreme Court justices who oppose abortion or believe that "women must submit themselves to their husbands."
But the spotlight on the first night of the convention in Beantown belonged to former presidents Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter. The Party's "big guns" took aim at the Bush administration from the podium, taking credit for ending the Cold War and criticizing President Bush for using budget policies established by the Democratic Party itself.
Dr. Janice Crouse of Concerned Women for America (CWA) says she found the evening a bit confusing. "That sort of inconsistency, talking out of both sides of the mouth, has seemed to me to be pretty widespread," she observed.
Crouse says she went to a Democrat pro-life meeting earlier in the day and found the same thing there. "They were talking about how this is the party that left them behind; that they hadn't left the party, but this is the party that left them behind," she says.
Crouse has noticed an inconsistency as well in the Party's expected presidential nominee. Senator John Kerry has stated his belief that human life begins at conception. But when asked recently by ABC's Peter Jennings that, in that context, would not a first-trimester abortion be murder? -- Kerry responded: "No, because it's not a form of life that takes personhood in the terms that we have judged it to be in the past."
The CWA spokesman says the senator from Massachusetts cannot have it both ways. "If Kerry truly believes life begins at conception, then abortion at any stage is taking a human life," she says, adding that Kerry is playing with words.
"Apparently Kerry believes he can win the votes of both pro-life and pro-abortion constituents by distorting the English language to avoid the issue," Crouse says. "Pro-life voters will not be fooled by Kerry's irrational statements." According to Crouse, Kerry's pro-abortion voting record is "far clearer" than his verbal statements.
Auschwitz in Boston?
Meanwhile, groups of pro-life and pro-family protesters at the Democratic National Convention are finding it difficult to get their messages across. They have found themselves relegated to a fenced-in area with two layers of cyclone fencing with razor wire at the top and a net overhead attached to a catwalk with armed snipers. It is the only place they are allowed to demonstrate, so the various groups are going to challenge the arrangement.
Pat Mahoney of the Christian Defense Coalition explains the plan. "We're going to have a prayer vigil outside, then [each of us] is going to put on a gag around [our] mouth. Then we will walk in there and we have 50 signs and five 20-foot banners which say messages like 'Senator Kerry, tear this wall down,' [and] 'The DNC stands for Democratic National Censors.'"
The protest pen is being referred to as "Auschwitz" by the police given the task of guarding it. Mahoney says it is an "eerie" and "stifling" situation. "It literally is like an internment camp; it's like a jail," he says. "You really get the sense that you're in a concentration camp."