WARNING: Do not expect to find here my normal, weekly, insightful, Pulitzer-Prize-worthy column. I have decided, instead, to put my personal opinions aside for one week in order to provide an important public service.
Christine O'Donnell, Republican candidate for U.S. Senate from my home state of Delaware, has said she wants all voters to get to know her before they make up their minds about supporting her. That's fair. I share that goal. So, today, in the true spirit of bipartisanship, I zip my lip and let Christine O'Donnell speak for herself on some of the important issues of the day.
On the role of women in the military. O'Donnell doesn't think they belong, especially not in our service academies. "By integrating women into particularly military institutes, it cripples the readiness of our defense," she told C-SPAN. In fact, she asserted, "West Point has had to lower their standards … in order for men and women to compete."
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On homosexuality. Despite having an openly lesbian sister, O'Donnell calls homosexuality a "deviant sexual orientation," and can't understand why gays and lesbians have a problem with her saying that. In so doing, she accuses them of "attacking the very center of what is America – freedom to have different views." O'Donnell also believes homosexuality is, in fact, an "identity disorder" – a medical diagnosis abandoned by the American Psychiatric Association in 1973.
On stem-cell research and cloning, O'Donnell's against both. She warns of the frightening results such research has already had in this country. In 2007 she told Bill O'Reilly on "The O'Reilly Factor": "They are – they are doing that here in the United States. American scientific companies are cross-breeding humans and animals and coming up with mice with fully functioning human brains." As promised, I will hereby refrain from any cheap-shot comparison with members of the tea party.
On contraception. Whatever you do, don't use a condom. According to O'Donnell, they offer no protection against AIDS: "So to just throw a bunch of condoms over to Africa and say, 'Here, we're helping you with AIDS,' is just going to further the spread of AIDS over there." Again, on "The O'Reilly Factor," she condemned condoms as "anti-human." Besides, she doesn't see the point: "And what … if the population is increasing, so what? People aren't bad. When did humans become a bad thing? Why is it that we have to, you know, stop people from getting pregnant?"
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On telling the truth, according to Christine O'Donnell, it's never, ever, OK to lie – not even if you were hiding Jews in your home in Nazi Germany and Hitler came to your door to round them up. Confronted with this possibility on "Politically Incorrect," O'Donnell said: "I believe that if I were in that situation, God would provide a way to do the right thing. You never have to practice deception."
On sexual morality, no gray areas here. Except for the purpose of procreation by married couples, O'Donnell preaches absolute abstinence. Appearing on MTV's "Sex in the '90s" as head of The Savior's Alliance for Lifting the Truth, or The SALT, she spoke out against all sex outside of marriage. Not only that. "The Bible says that lust in your heart is committing adultery. So you can't masturbate without lust." Therefore, no masturbation, either. And besides, she adds, "You're going to be pleasing each other. And if he already knows what pleases him and he can please himself, then why am I in the picture?"
On her own faith. Today she's a born-again Christian. Before that? Again, on "Politically Incorrect," she admitted: "I dabbled into witchcraft, but I never joined a coven." So what? As she points out, "How many of you didn't hang out with questionable friends in high school?"
True to my promise, I will not mention the fact that O'Donnell was sued by her college for not paying her tuition, had a lien placed against her by the IRS for not paying her taxes, was sued by her mortgage company for not paying her debt, has been accused by her campaign manager of using campaign funds for personal expenses and has a complaint filed against her with the FEC by the Delaware Republican Party for accepting illegal contributions from the tea party.
So now we all know Christine O'Donnell. For her, the danger is: Nobody who really knows her would ever vote for her.