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Overheard (August 2020)

The phrase “But Gorsuch” is shorthand for how conservatives justify all the moral compromises they’ve made in supporting Trump; controlling the Supreme Court makes it all worth it. So there’s a special sweetness in Gorsuch spearheading the most important LGBT rights decision since the 2015 ruling in Obergefell v. Hodges, which established a constitutional right to same-sex marriage.

Columnist Michelle Goldberg, in her column, “Surprise! Justice on LGBT rights from a Trump judge.”

The New York Times, 6-15-20

The new culture war is not abortion or same-sex marriage, the new culture war is about preserving a white, Christian America.

Robert Jones, founder of Public Religion Research Institute.

The New York Times, 6-18-20

A former member of the administration (one of the few who did decide to resign) told me that both [Vice President] Pence and [Secretary of State] Pompeo “have convinced themselves that they are in a biblical moment.” All of the things they care about — outlawing abortion and same-sex marriage, and (though this is never said out loud) maintaining a white majority in America — are under threat. Time is growing short. They believe that “we are approaching the Rapture, and this is a moment of deep religious significance.” . . . If you are convinced we are living in the End Times, then anything the president does can be forgiven.

Anne Applebaum, in her article “History will judge the complicit.”

The Atlantic, July/August 2020 issue

The problem is here she [Education Secretary Betsy DeVos] is again standing up for private schools, and public school folks feel like she’s never protected or cared about them. As far as I can tell, she’s pretty much played to type.

Michael J. Petrilli, president of the Thomas B. Fordham Institute, a conservative education think tank.

Washington Post, 6-15-20

Michelle Goldberg

It’s only a moment, for sure, but the Roberts court, against all expectations, has made this battered country a better, safer place. For now.

Columnist Linda Greenhouse, writing about the Supreme Court’s recent decisions on abortion, DACA and LGBTQ rights.

The New York Times, 7-2-20