Even when he's taking a conservative's side on a particular matter, Times' "Ethicist" columnist Randy Cohen manages to slide in his liberal opinion. In thisSunday's edition of the Times Magazine, he responded to a teacher fretting over a pro-life club at a school in Sarasota Springs, New York. The teacherasked:
At the public high school where I teach, a school-sponsored student club, Sharing Our Spirit, staged a "Pro-Life Day of Silent Solidarity" during school hours. Students wore red armbands and did not speak. The club's faculty adviser sent an e-mail to the entire faculty, including this: "They will be standing on behalf of the one-third of their generation that have been innocent victims of abortion." Was the students' activity legitimate? The adviser's?
Cohen, who donated to the left-wing anti-Bush group MoveOn.org in 2004, defended the student action as legitimate expression but still felt the need to denigrate the pro-life teacher:
The teacher, too, has an ethical right to free expression, but because she is in a position of authority, she must be sure all students, regardless of their views, are welcome in her class and treated fairly. Nothing in your account suggests that this wasn't the case. And it is noteworthy that she sent her (to me, nutty) e-mail message to her colleagues; she did not declaim it in class.