The Times Union has a front-page story today, an expansion and rewrite of the AP, headlined Locals greet Komen reversal, concerning reaction to the announcement by "The Susan G. Komen for the Cure, a breast cancer charity, ... that it will continue to fund breast cancer screenings provided by Planned Parenthood, reversing a decision made earlier this week." Three local sources are quoted, all of them Planned Parenthood supporters. Nobody is allowed to put the contrary view, that Komen would be wise to remove itself from the Planned Parenthood connection because that organization is the biggest abortion provider in America, and a lot of people have reasonable moral objections to abortion.
TU blogger Libby Post links the Komen story to the ongoing controversy over the proposed appointment of Thomas Marcelle as Albany County attorney, which Post has led a campaign to derail because of Marcelle's connection to the socially conservative Alliance Defense Fund. While most of the opposition to Marcelle has come from a gay rights perspective, Post also focuses on abortion: "That’s how the erosion of rights always starts. A little chip here and a little chip there and before you know it, we’re back in 1950, women are in the kitchen, barefoot and pregnant and reproductive choice is relegated to the back alley and a hanger."
The TU's news coverage of the Marcelle brouhaha has been more even-handed than today's Komen story, and the anti-Marcelle editorial was predictable. "We would have preferred that [Albany County Executive Dan] McCoy had picked a county attorney with more progressive views," says the editorial, which is considerably more restrained than Metroland columnist Miriam Axel-Lute. She alleges Marcelle "is in the employ of an organization that is specifically devoted to undermining one of the most important tenets of our Constitution. That is completely and utterly unacceptable." The italics are in the original.
Axel-Lute's point is that the Alliance Defense Fund seeks to undermine the First Amendment, and seeks to impose its views on people by "removing their autonomy over their own bodies and their legal right to equal protection for their families under law." I think the First Amendment claim is hogwash, but it's the latter sentence that is more radical. She is asserting that anyone opposed to the most expansive definitions of abortion and gay rights, e.g. "Marcelle, and any other employee or supporter of the Alliance Defense Fund, is not fit to hold public office in the United States of America." That's also the logic of the less extreme language in the TU editorial, and seems to me much more of a threat to liberty than anything proposed by the Alliance Defense Fund or its allies.