- The Washington Times - Tuesday, October 1, 2002

Artful dodger
"Al Gore's bitter and negative speech in San Francisco [Sept. 23] contained any number of clashes with his previous positions. After all, regime change in Iraq was a policy endorsed by the Clinton administration. Two years ago, Gore said, quite simply, that Saddam must go. Earlier this year, he said that a 'final reckoning' with Iraq was essential in any war on terror and that Iraq represented a 'virulent threat in a class by itself.'
"Now, he's not so sure. What has changed? Saddam, after all, is closer than ever to having weapons of mass destruction. What's changed is that Gore senses a political advantage if he shifts tack and opposes the Bush administration. Once again, in a speech in which he condemns the Bushies for playing domestic politics with the war, Gore is clearly guilty of projection. It's Gore not Bush who is putting his own short-term political interests above his long-standing principles and positions.
"But he's not even honest about that. Gore, it's important to remember, is fundamentally a political coward. Just like his fellow Democrats, who have long refused to take a position either for or against war with Iraq until the administration 'makes its case,' Gore wants to get all the credit for taking on the administration from the left, while distancing himself artfully from the topic of war altogether."
Andrew Sullivan, writing on "The Opportunist," Thursday in Salon at www.salon.com
The 'L-word'
"That lesbians play softball is a terribly old stereotype, but few outside of college athletics have heard what it's like for the non-gay girl who wants to play the sport. If you're not crazy about your daughter showering in a very-far-away-from-don't-ask-don't-tell gym shower, high school and college softball might not be for her. In 'Diamonds are a Dyke's Best Friend: Reflections, Reminiscences and Reports from the Field on the Lesbian National Pastime,' Yvonne Zipter makes a compelling case that softball teams have long been the best way to meet lesbians.
"Of course, when it's a recreational softball league for adults, that's no one's business. But it is an issue on high school and college teams. Zipter cites another experienced player: 'I met my first lover through softball. My daughter she's 18 she plays softball. She has a girlfriend too. They met playing softball in high school together.'
"With the exception of a few small lesbian publishing houses you're not going to find too many people wanting to talk about the issue. In fact, whatever your morality and whatever your lifestyle, hardly anyone wants to touch the topic. As a result, few coaches especially male coaches are willing to talk about the L-word for fear they will be construed as enemies of women's sports."
Kathryn Jean Lopez, "Leagues of Their Own" in the Oct. 14 issue of National Review
Laughable guardians
"The [Catholic] bishops' meeting [in Dallas] bore all the marks of a media event. From Bishop Wilton Gregory's dramatic address, to lay liberals Margaret Steinfels' and Scott Appleby's chiding, to the gut-wrenching stories shared by victims, to the so-called zero-tolerance policy adopted on the last day.
"Establishment of a high-profile national review board headed by Gov. Frank Keating of Oklahoma only confirmed the suspicion. While the board drew media kudos as 'impressive,' (troubling in itself coming from that bastion of anti-Catholicism), savvy Catholics shook their heads over the naming of Leon Panetta, Bill Clinton's former chief of staff, and Robert Bennett, Clinton's lawyer. Their connection to the lascivious and predatory former president makes their involvement as guardians against sexual abuse almost laughable, not to mention their support for the most pro-abortion team ever to occupy the White House."
Mary Ann Kreitzer in "After Dallas, What Now?" in the current issue of the Truth, a newsletter of Les Femmes, a Catholic women's group

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