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Bob Barr Is Anti-Liberty

I voted for Bob Barr as the Libertarian (rather than libertarian) candidate in 2008. My vote was symbolic, since I couldn't support either major party candidate. I knew it was a "waste" then, since it wouldn't amount to anything. I didn't know I was the idiot. Today, I am ashamed of that vote.

From Barr's blog at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution, here's his post on the San Francisco ballot initiative that would prohibit non-therapeutic genital cutting on male minors in the city:

San Francisco, a city that has long been a safe-haven for the liberal elite, ...

At least he declares upfront that he wishes to engage in ad hominem rather than logical debate.

... has been on a ban-happy kick of late. But the City by the Bay may have gone a bridge too far with its latest proposed ban . . . on circumcisions!

Don't think, be OUTRAGED!

After a silly bit about the Happy Meal ban, because banning a food product is somehow no more appalling than banning an unnecessary surgical procedure forced on children, he picks up his mockery:

Now the city may be moving toward an agenda of “genital justice.”

Regardless of whether the city’s Grand Pooh Bahs can defend with a straight face the proposed ban on clipping a baby boy’s foreskin, San Franciscans do appear to be serious about the matter.

San Francisco's "Grand Pooh Bahs" had nothing to do with this, as his next paragraph demonstrates. It was a ballot initiative led by a private citizen. If it had been proposed to the city council, it would've been tossed in the trash can with the same unthinking concern Barr shows here.

The Associated Press reports that local activists have gathered enough valid signatures to place an anti-circumcision referendum on the November ballot. What these activists call “genital mutilation,” would be banned for male children, absent meeting the almost-impossible, “medical necessity” exemption provided for in the referendum. There is no religious exemption. Anyone violating the ban would be charged with a “misdemeanor offense punishable by a fine of up to $1,000 or up to one year in jail.”

The fact that the exemption is "almost-impossible" to meet demonstrates why Barr is wrong on this. It is permanent, body-altering surgery on a healthy person who can't consent to the modification's harms or risks involved. California law already prohibits non-therapeutic genital cutting on female minors. What do the Grand Pooh Bahs of California think of that? What does Bob Barr think of that? Is that "genital mutilation," or is it genital mutilation? Can only female genitals be "cut up or alter[ed] radically so as to make imperfect"? Barr offers no explanation for why male circumcision is Teh Awesome, just that those liberal elites - center square on the Conservative Bullshit Argument Bingo board - support it. Obviously Barr called every one of those who signed the petition to confirm that they're liberals and couldn't possibly argue from any defensible or logical position against non-therapeutic male child circumcision.

Barr concludes:

San Francisco clearly has jumped the shark with this proposal. Even some residents who normally would likely shrug off extreme left-wing campaigns mounted by various activist groups, probably are wondering if things are going a bit too far with this one. They are right to question this proposal. It is about as far off the “Bizarro Scale” as you can get; at least, that is, until we see what San Franciscans come up with next year.

That's it. He doesn't include a single word about why parents should be able to continue forcing genital cutting on their healthy sons. There is no argument here. This so-called libertarian doesn't even attempt the flawed argument in favor of parental "liberty". The only conclusion is that Bob Barr is not motivated by liberty.

Update: I've rethought the title to this post. It was originally "Bob Barr is Unethical and Anti-Liberty." His mockery within his blog post demonstrates that he does not understand, but it's something different to state that he is unethical. Hence, my revision.

Comments

I wouldn't feel too bad, each of the other candidates would probably have reacted similarly. Did you actually think any of the other national candidates would have, at the core, had a different opinion of this issue? I certainly don't know for sure but my sense is no.

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