(Samantha Stone) – It’s timely, though the timing is probably accidental, that Republican candidate for U.S. Senate Sue Lowden’s record on abortion is being combed for inconsistencies.
The anniversary of Roe v. Wade is about a month away. It’s always highlighted by the media. The Reasonable Reporter uses the occasion annually to recommend a visit to Netflix to order “Citizen Ruth,” a hilarious and dark send-up of both sides.
The brilliance of Citizen Ruth is that every character in it is thoroughly unlikable, including the protagonist Ruth, a crude and anti-social pregnant addict (played by Laura Dern), who is arrested and tossed into the same holding cell with a group of pro-life demonstrators. Zaniness ensues. Grim zaniness, but zaniness all the same, as each side of the abortion fight tries to recruit Ruth to be its emblem, stooping lower and lower in their successive bids to win her.
Citizen Ruth illustrates a bitter truth, which is the futile nature of prolonged public debate on an irreconcilable question. The film also caricatures, in cruel shades, adherents to the absolute, emotion-stirring positions.
For more than a decade the true points of public contention on abortion have been taxpayer funding, parental notification, and late-term procedures. Nonetheless, candidates are under pressure to adopt an absolute pro-life or pro-choice position, at least in a tough primary. What does a candidate do if he or she is inclined with most of the American public?
(Ms. Stone writes The Reasonable Reporter blog)