In an interview today with Salon about his new book, Liberal Fascism, National Review’s Jonah Goldberg is asked if his claim “that liberalism today sees no realm of human life that is beyond political significance,” could “just as easily be said of the American right.”
Goldberg concedes that “there are lots of places on the right where this is so,” but then argues that “the equation between liberalism and conservatism” doesn’t go so far because “you don’t have conservative groups” dictating people’s personal sex lives:
That said, I don’t think that the equation between liberalism and conservatism goes as far as you would like to take it. You know, you have environmental groups giving out kits and instructions about how to have environmentally conscious sex. You don’t have conservative groups talking about what kind of condoms you should use or what positions you can be in. That kind of thing doesn’t really go on.
Goldberg’s argument is “head-spinningly absurd.” He claims that “you don’t have conservative groups” prescribing “what positions you can be in.” But this assertion ignores the fact that it was conservatives who sought to continue criminalizing sodomy, which is certainly considered a sexual position.
To be fair to Goldberg, he has written in the past that he is personally “against sodomy laws.” But the same can’t be said for the many “conservative groups” who supported the state of Texas in the landmark Supreme Court case, Lawrence v. Texas, which struck down anti-sodomy laws:
The American Center for Law and Justice, American Family Association, the attorneys general of the states of Alabama, South Carolina and Utah, Center for Arizona Policy, Center for Law and Justice International, Center for the Original Intent of the Constitution, Concerned Women for America, Family Research Council, Focus on the Family, Texas legislators, Liberty Counsel, Pro Family Law Center, Texas Eagle Forum; Daughters of Liberty Republican Women of Houston, Texas; Spirit of Freedom Republican Women’s Club, Texas Physicians Resource Council, Christian Medical and Dental Association, Catholic Medical Association, and United Families International.
In Goldberg’s mind, criminalizing a consensual sexual act apparently isn’t the same as dictating “what positions you can be in.”