Democrats could not afford to lose a powerful issue to use against Republicans and would never give Bush any credit for solving anything. They called Bush’s order a “ban on stem cell research”, when it was nothing of the sort. In the meantime, the ridiculous right criticized Bush for not doing more, inventing the questionable argument that funding any sort of stem cell research encouraged killing more embryos. Sometimes, you just can’t win.
President Bill Clinton was caught in a similar trap. Patriotic homosexuals have long wanted to serve their country in the military, but many in the military were understandably concerned that there might develop certain social problems in the military subculture, possibly even damaging combat readiness and morale. President Clinton instituted the “don’t ask, don’t tell” policy. Homosexuals could now serve as they had always wanted, but as long as nobody discussed sexuality, nobody would know who was who. Thus, there could be no resultant social problems. Clinton gave each side what they said they wanted. Was he hailed as a hero? Of course not. Homosexual activists insisted on serving openly and the right used this issue to paint Clinton as a far left loon trying to destroy the family.
These compromises should have worked, but a few stood in the way and refused to let them work. How long will we let the most extreme elements of our society sabotage it?
By the way, much of the above is an excerpt from my new book. Learn more here.