"Voters are hearing a very united voice," Duncan said, pointing to corporations, Hollywood, President Barack Obama's recent shift and the silence among most Republican leaders. Even among religious groups, like the Catholic Church, where the leaders are, Duncan added, there is enough emphasis on dissenting voices to muddle the message.
"It's not surprising that voters would think, 'Everyone is going down this road.'"
"I don't believe in inevitability," George said. "I remember from 1971 through about 1980 when we were told that the pro-life position is dead. 'Young people are against it. It's just a few old priests who support it. They'll die out soon. It's a generational thing.'
"What do we find 40 years later?" George asked. "Abortion didn't go away, didn't stop being an issue. The pro-life position has greater support now than it did in the 1970s. Young people are more pro life than their parents."
"There are no inevitabilities in history," George said. "There are no Hegelian laws that dictate that it is going one direction or another."
The long-term prognosis? "It depends on how effectively the competing forces make their case before the people," George said.
The difficulty, Duncan acknowledged, is that the arguments for traditional marriage are complicated: "We have to recognize that we are playing on a different field that will call for creativity that we haven't developed yet."
Eric Schulzke writes on national politics for the Deseret News. He can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
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