Roger L. Simon takes issue with the conventional wisdom lumping so-called “social issues” together:

The preeminent social issues – gay marriage and abortion – are quite separate. Lumping them together, as is often done by the media and by ideologues on both sides, is insulting to our intelligence.

It certainly is. What’s even worse is to lump them together with other unrelated issues, like gun control, stem cell research, creationism, pornography, media censorship, or even taxation. The crazy logic which politics and political coalitions produce drives me nuts — and has been a major driving force behind this blog.
In general, my philosophy is the less government, the better.
Roger said “I remain pro-choice because I would prefer the government not be involved in these highly personal decisions.”
I’d prefer the government not be involved in a lot of highly personal decisions. But the people who go into government go into it because they want to tell people what to do, and the people who get excited by politics often have the same motivation.
As Roger says, the social issues are not the same. But the people who want to manipulate social issues to gain power benefit from saying they are. Thus, they come up with phrases like “family values” and repeat them so often that they start to believe that if you disagree with them, you are “anti-family.” (Or at best, not “family friendly.”)
Fortunately, the “social issues” are not part of the president’s job, which is simply to uphold the Constitution and carry out the law of the land. If voters understood that, the social issues would not be election issues, but would remain personal issues.
But many voters don’t understand that, and there aren’t many votes to be earned in telling them that.
Which is why politicians insult the intelligence of those who do understand, and why they struggle to make personal matters political.