Frank Bruni has been using his New York Times op-ed column to defend the institution of the family. Isaac Chotiner at The New Republic does not seem to like it one bit. In fact, he has even compared Bruni’s recent columns to rhetoric found at the “right wing religious group” Focus on the Family. In order to be cute, Chotiner lists eight statements about the family and asks his readers which ones came from Bruni and which ones came from the Focus website. (Did I mention that Chotiner calls Focus a “right wing religious group?”). Please notice that these statements have nothing to do with abortion, gay rights, the “traditional family,” or anything else that might be construed as culture war rhetoric.
The most disturbing thing about this post is that Chotiner’s world view is so narrow that he does not seem able to admit that an organization like Focus on the Family could have anything positive to say about the place of the family in American life. Moreover, he is so embedded in a culture-war narrative that he just assumes his readers will scoff at Bruni in light of the mere mention of James Dobson.