Roy Moore, Doug Jones, and Abortion in Alabama

Weirdly, the Senate race between Christian conservative Roy Moore and Democratic shooting star Doug Jones is a close one. The reason why I said “weirdly” is because such a close race between the conservative and liberal candidates is highly unusual for Alabama. One might be tempted to say that this is simply a symptom of the times. Well, sure, but not necessarily at the national level.

A very large percentage of Alabama is “pro-life,” in other words, Doug Jones and his stance on abortion could be the deciding factor in the race. Yes, that means that issues of sexual misconduct are subservient to the looming matter of abortion that seems to rule over Alabama with an iron fist. Doug Jones is in a precarious position, so close to victory, he can practically taste it, and it tastes like abortion. If he softens his position on that issue, he will be seen as a waffling senate hopeful, and could he lose overall voters rather than gain them? Would the people of Alabama care about authenticity? Or would Doug Jones experience a surge in the election if he were to nix the pro-choice rhetoric? I ask too many questions.

But I’m going to try and play devil’s advocate here. I’m going to attempt to enter the mind of a sleepy, pro-life southerner. I think a fetus to them is like a Rorschach test. It is so easily dehumanized that it can be politicized and turned into a weapon–hurled at a man that doesn’t share their broader values. Doug Jones better learn how to duck, is all I’m saying.


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