PopeWatch: Lord Patten

 

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An interesting appointment by the Pope:

Seven months after hiring a consulting firm to study the Vatican’s communications structures, the Vatican has set up an 11-member committee to suggest ways to increase collaboration and cut costs and has appointed British Lord Patten of Barnes as its president.

Chris Patten, former chairman of the BBC Trust and former chancellor of the University of Oxford, will serve as president of the commission. The 70-year-old British public servant is a Catholic and was co-ordinator of Pope Benedict XVI’s trip to the United Kingdom in 2010.

Australian Cardinal George Pell, prefect of the Vatican Secretariat for the Economy and a member of Pope Francis’ Council of Cardinals, announced the formation of the committee at a news conference on July 9.

“The objectives are to adapt the Holy See media to changing media consumption trends, enhance coordination and achieve progressively and sensitively substantial financial savings,” he said. Continue reading

The One Thing the World Will Never Run Short Of

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A lady once asked him how he came to define ‘pastern’, the knee of a horse: instead of making an elaborate defence, as might be expected, he at once answered, “Ignorance, Madam, pure ignorance.”

James Boswell, Life of Johnson

 

 

Mollie Hemingway at The Federalist looks at the contemporary media and concludes that the main problem with it,is the arrogant ignorance that abounds among the younger members of the Fourth Estate:

 

The real problem is the arrogance that goes with the ignorance. Take Kate Zernike’s 2010 attempt at an expose of the ideas that motivate tea party activists that ran in the New York Times. She wrote:

But when it comes to ideology, it has reached back to dusty bookshelves for long-dormant ideas. It has resurrected once-obscure texts by dead writers — in some cases elevating them to best-seller status — to form a kind of Tea Party canon.

Who are these obscure authors of long-dormant ideas? She points to Friedrich Hayek, for one. Yes, the same Hayek who won the Nobel Memorial Prize in Economic Sciences in 1974 and died way, way back in … 1992. Whose Road To Serfdom was so obscure that it has never been out of print and was excerpted in Reader’s Digest, that obscure publication with only 17 million readers. The article doesn’t get around to actually providing any insight into these activists’ philosophy and it’s probably a good thing considering that this is what she has to say about “the rule of law”:

Ron Johnson, who entered politics through a Tea Party meeting and is now the Republican nominee for Senate in Wisconsin, asserted that the $20 billion escrow fund that the Obama administration forced BP to set up to pay damages from the Gulf of Mexico oil spill circumvented “the rule of law,” Hayek’s term for the unwritten code that prohibits the government from interfering with the pursuit of “personal ends and desires.”

Oh dear. Where to begin? How about with the fact that “rule of law” is not Hayek’s term. The concept goes back to, well, the beginning of Western Civilization and the term was popularized by a 19th century British jurist and constitutional theorist named A.V. Dicey. It’s not an unwritten code, by definition. The idea that this would be an obscure concept to someone says everything about Zernike and the team at the New York Times and precisely nothing about Ron Johnson or Hayek or that sector of citizens of the United States who retain support for the rule of law.

A few weeks ago, David Brat beat House Majority Leader Eric Cantor in a stunning upset. The media didn’t handle it well. You might say they freaked out. Among other things, reporters sounded the alarm about a phrase Brat used in his writings that, they said, suggested he was a dangerous extremist: “The government holds a monopoly on violence. Any law that we vote for is ultimately backed by the full force of our government and military.” As National Review‘s Charles C.W. Cooke noted:

“Unusual” and “eye-opening” was the New York Daily News’s petty verdict. In the Wall Street Journal, Reid Epstein insinuated darkly that the claim cast Brat as a modern-day fascist. And, for his part, Politico’s Ben White suggested that the candidate’s remarks “on Neitzsche and the government monopoly on violence don’t make a whole lot of sense.”

Unusual, eye-opening, and non-sensical, perhaps, to people who had never studied what government is. But that group shouldn’t include political reporters, who could reasonably be expected to have passing familiarity with German sociologist Max Weber’s claim that “the modern state is a compulsory association which organizes domination. It has been successful in seeking to monopolize the legitimate use of physical force as a means of domination within a territory.”

 

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Illegal Immigration and the Church

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I admit to some puzzlement as to why the Church in this country is so stridently in favor of illegal immigration.  The Church in America being in favor of legal immigration I can understand, with so many Catholics tracing their ancestry to the waves of immigrants from Europe in the 19th and early 20th century.  But until the day before yesterday in historical terms the Church was never in favor of illegal immigration.  I think much of it tends to be that many of the powers that be within the Church in this country tend to favor the political left in most contexts.  They are embarrassed that fights over abortion,  gay marriage and religious liberty aligns the Church with political conservatives.  Being in favor of illegal immigration allows these clerics to align with political forces they find much more congenial.  Jack Cashill at The American Thinker gives us a case in point:

 

 

Motives, however, are rarely as simple as money. On the question of the church’s motives, one local Catholic explained how the noisy “peace and justice” cliques within the church seized a new opportunity to lure the Church leftward. As she explained, these cliques were attempting to negate the rightward drift of practicing Catholics on life issues by elevating workers’ rights to a comparable status. In the 2000 election, she noted, they tried the same tactic with the death penalty. 

The problem for the P&J crowd is that the Catholic Church considers abortion “always morally evil” — “murder” in fact — but has no official position on immigration, legal or otherwise. One can read all four gospels and every encyclical ever written without encountering a single “undocumented immigrant” swimming across the River Jordan. Serious Catholics treat the hierarchy’s showy preference for immigration issues over life issues as some sort of Job-like test of their fidelity.

I had absolutely no intention of saying anything at the press conference. But with the woman’s lucid argument still resonating in my head, I could not resist the urge to inject a note of realism into the Q & A happy talk that followed the speeches.

“Bishop,” I blurted out, “what do you say to those Catholics troubled by your alliance with these left-leaning groups given their historic affection for abortion rights?”

The Bishop looked at me as if I had just peed on his shoe. “What are you talking about?” he scoffed. As respectful as I try to be to my Catholic clergy, I did not appreciate the public dissing. “Let me tell you what I mean,” I answered and elaborated in more detail what I had already said.

“This isn’t about left or right,” he finally answered. “This is about justice.”

“Bishop,” I smiled, “May 1st? International Worker’s Day?”

I had expected the other reporters to give me the evil eye, but they did not. My question seemed to remind them of the role that reporters used to play, “Bishop,” said the next fellow. “You keep saying that the Church is supporting immigration. Isn’t this really about illegal immigration?”  I did not have time to listen to the answer. I had a 12 o’clock appointment across town, and I had already spent $9.00 on parking.

A few months later the unions repaid the Catholic Church for its support in a way that left me feeling much more insightful than I actually am. The Los Angeles Times summarized the issue succinctly enough: “California’s leading union organization, bucking organized labor’s long-standing neutrality on the issue of abortion, is for the first time taking a strong stand in favor of abortion rights.” 

Specifically, the union asked its 2.1 million members to reject Proposition 85. This initiative would merely have required abortionists to honor the standards of ear-piercers and aspirin dispensers and get parents’ permission before going to work on their daughters.

Spearheading the union assault on parental rights was none other than Dolores Huerta, star of the press conference I had attended at the Cathedral. As the Times noted, Huerta, “a Roman Catholic,” had persuaded a pro-choice group to put its many interns to work passing out pro-abortion propaganda to the union delegates before the vote was taken. The union support proved crucial in defeating Prop 85 by a narrow 53 to 47 margin.

Said Tod Tamberg, an Archdiocesan spokesman, “It doesn’t preclude us from working together on those areas where we do share common concerns.” The “it” in question is the union’s decision to sanction what the church considers to be murder. In the battle for the Hispanic soul, the Church hierarchy had already surrendered, and God only knows why. Continue reading

PopeWatch: Culpa

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Pope Francis met with some alleged victims of sexual abuse by Catholic clerics and asked for forgiveness.

“Before God and his people, I express my sorrow for the sins and grave crimes of clerical sexual abuse committed against you,” Francis said during his homily, according to a text released by the Vatican. “And I humbly ask forgiveness. I beg your forgiveness, too, for the sins of omission on the part of church leaders who did not respond adequately to reports of abuse made by family members, as well as by abuse victims themselves.”

In his homily, Francis also vowed “not to tolerate harm done to a minor by any individual, whether a cleric or not,” and declared that bishops would be held accountable for protecting minors. He said the abuse scandals had had “a toxic effect on faith and hope in God.” Continue reading

Scandalous Priest and Glorious Martyr

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(This post is from 2012.  I will be reposting it each July 9.)

 

When July 9 rolls around each year I am always reminded of my personal belief that before our end, perhaps especially for those of us sunk deep in sin, God gives us an opportunity to atone and turn aside from the downward path.

In Sixteenth Century Holland one of the longest wars in history began between Spain and Dutch rebels.  The war was waged on both sides with sickening atrocities.  Among the most violent were the Sea Beggars, Dutch patriots or pirates depending upon one’s point of view.  In June of 1572 the Sea Beggars took the Dutch town of Gorkum, and captured nine Franciscan priests, Nicholas Pieck, Hieronymus of Weert, Theodorus van der Eem, Nicasius Janssen, Willehad of Denmark, Godefried of Mervel, Antonius of Weert, Antonius of Hoornaer, and Franciscus de Roye, of Brussels.  Two Franciscan lay brothers were also captured:   Petrus of Assche and Cornelius of Wyk.

The Sea Beggars also captured the parish priest of Gorkum, Leonardus Vechel of Boi-le-Duc, and his assistant, Nicolaas Janssen.  Also imprisoned were Father Godefried van Duynsen and Joannes Lenartz of Oisterwijk, director of the convent of Augustinian nuns in Gorkum.  Later imprisoned was a Domincan priest Joannes van Hoornaer who bravely came to Gorkum to minister to his imprisoned colleagues and joined them in their captivity,  Jacobus Lacops of Oudenaar, a priest of Monster, Holland, Adrianus Janssen of Brielle, and last, and no doubt he would say least, the subject of this post, Andreas Wouters of Heynoord.

To be blunt, Andreas Wouters had been a lousy priest.  A drunkard and notorious womanizer,  he had fathered several children.  Suspended from his duties  he was living in disgrace when the Sea Beggars captured Gorkum.  This was his cue to run as far away as possible, based on his past history.  Instead, perhaps understanding that God was giving him maybe his last chance to redeem himself, he volunteered to join the captive priests and brothers. Continue reading

July 9, 1864: Battle of Monocacy

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In early July 1864 Washington was in something of a panic.  Jubal Early fresh from his victories in the Shenandoah Valley was driving north towards Washington.  The extensive fortifications of Washington had been stripped of men, sent south to participate in Grant’s Overland Campaign.  Grant on July 6, ordered two veteran brigades of the VI Corps to be shipped to Baltimore by sea.  Until they arrived, all that stood between early was Major General Lew Wallace and 6300 Union troops, many of them recently recruited 100 day men, short term enlistees mustered into service in the Spring of 1864.  Few of Wallace’s men had ever seen combat.

The future author of the block buster novel Ben Hur, the West Point trained Wallace had not had a good war up to this point.  Unfairly made a scape goat after Shiloh, Wallace had been shunted aside to non-combat assignments, his most notable achievement being his preparation of Cincinnati for a Confederate attack that never came during Bragg’s invasion of Kentucky in 1862.

Now the commander of the Mid-Atlantic region, the War had come to him.

Wallace decided to stand and fight at Monocacy Junction three miles south of Frederick, Maryland.  At Monocacy the Georgetown Pike to Washington and the National Road to Baltimore both crossed the Monocacy River there as did the Baltimore and Ohio Railroad.  Delaying Early here would give at least one more day for reinforcements to get to Washington.  Wallace was in luck and VI Corps troops from Baltimore reached him before the battle.  The odds were still long however, 5800 Union troops facing 14000 Confederates, with Wallace’s men defending a six mile front to guard the Georgetown Pike, the National Road and the Baltimore and Ohio.

The Union beat off two attacks by Confederate divisions attacking along both the Georgetown Pike and the National Road.  An attack by Gordon’s division on the left forced a retreat of Wallace to Baltimore beginning in the late afternoon.  However, he and his men succeeded in delaying Early just long enough to save Washington, as Early noted in his memoirs:

Some of the Northern papers stated that, between Saturday and Monday, I could have entered the city; but on Saturday I was fighting at Monocacy, thirty-five miles from Washington, a force which I could not leave in my rear; and after disposing of that force and moving as rapidly as it was possible for me to move, I did not arrive in front of the fortifications until after noon on Monday, and then my troops were exhausted…

Union casualties were 1294 to some 700-900 Confederate.

Wallace proposed that a memorial should be built at Monocacy to the Union troops who died there stating:

“These men died to save the National Capital, and they did save it.”

Such a memorial has never been built, but it should be.  The report of Lew Wallace on the battle: Continue reading

We Agree About There Being Shame Sister

 

 

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Sister Mary Ann Walsh, press flack for the Catholic Bishops of  our country, has written a column entitled Busloads of  turned back immigrants, an image of shame, in which she attacks all Americans foolish enough to think that the immigration laws of our country should be respected.  Go here to read it.  Here is her column with my commentary:

Sometimes a picture says it all.

Consider the 1963 picture of fire hoses and snarling police dogs in Birmingham, Ala., used against African-American students protesting racial segregation. Surely not our civil servants at their best.

Yep, Sister, we get it.  Those who do not agree with you on immigration are racist bigots.

 

Or the 1972 picture of the little girl in North Vietnam running terrified and naked with burning skin after South Vietnamese planes accidentally dropped napalm on Trang Bang, which had been occupied by North Vietnamese troops. The world then saw how war could hurt children.

I think the world already understood that Sister. Kim Phuc, the girl in the picture, tired of being used as a symbol by the Communists, converted to Christianity, and later was granted asylum by Canada.

“Now, in 2014, we see citizens of Murrieta, Calif., turning back buses of women and children headed for a federal processing center, a day after Mayor Alan Long told them to let the government know they opposed its decision to move recent undocumented immigrants to the local Border Patrol station.”

Undocumented immigrants?  Do you mean illegal aliens Sister?

The first two images helped turn the tide when they awakened U.S. citizens to a shameful tragedy. We know the aftermath. The U.S. Congress 50 years ago passed civil rights legislation to guarantee basic human and equal rights for minorities that civil rights workers fought (and some died) for. We pulled out of Vietnam, a war we could not win.

The persecution of the Catholic Church in Vietnam, the million put in Communist re-education camps, the summary execution by the Communists of at least 100,000, the 900,000 boat people, do you regard that Sister as an acceptable result of the American people “awakening to a tragedy”?  I think for some people the year will always be 1968. Judging from the “social justice advocacy” page of Sister Mary Ann Walsh’s order, go here to view it, I’d say that their views have been frozen in amber since that time. 

We now await a moral conscience moment in the welcoming of children and others escaping the violence in such countries as Guatemala, El Salvador and Honduras. Parents and children from these countries have made the difficult decision to leave their homes and have endured dangerous journeys to cross the U.S.-Mexican border. They risk it because the possible horrors of the treacherous migration, such as trafficking, abuse and even death in the desert, still look better than possible death by gang violence at home.

Actually Sister, I agree with you that we await a moral conscience moment, but I think that was provided by the American protestors, sick at the mass violation of their immigration laws, with the active collusion of their government.  The ills of Central America will not be cured by the parents of Central America paying $12,000.00 a head to Coyotes who then transit Mexico by bribing Mexican officials, with kids in tow subject to every type of exploitation.  This farce came about because the Obama administration sent a signal south of the border that they were no longer going to face the enforcement of the immigration laws.  Now the Catholic Church in this country, that has faced persecution from the Obama administration, joyfully links arms with this same administration in giving a one fingered salute to every American who believes in the rule of law in regard to immigration.    Continue reading

War on Women Clinton Style

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As faithful readers of this blog know, for my sins no doubt, for the past 32 years I have been a member of the bar.  In that time I have defended hundreds of people accused of misdemeanors and felonies.  Criminal law is not a major portion of my practice, but like most small town attorneys I do take on criminal defense work both from private clients and by appointment by the Court.  Criminal defense work is not for the faint of heart, as it involves often defending people de facto guilty of the crimes they are accused of, even if the State is not eventually able to prove them de jure guilty.  Everyone is entitled to a defense, and not just the innocent, and my conscience has never been bothered by giving the best defense I can under the Law.  Having said all that, even I am shocked by recent revelations of the defense by Hillary Clinton of a man accused of raping a 12 year old child back in 1975:

 

 

 

The prosecutor called me a few years ago, he said he had a guy who had been accused of rape, and the guy wanted a woman lawyer,” said Clinton in the interview. “Would I do it as a favor for him?”

The case was not easy. In the early hours of May 10, 1975, the Springdale, Arkansas police department received a call from a nearby hospital. It was treating a 12-year-old girl who said she had been raped.

The suspect was identified as Thomas Alfred Taylor, a 41-year-old factory worker and friend of the girl’s family.

And though the former first lady mentioned the ethical difficulties of the case in Living History, her written account some three decades later is short on details and has a far different tone than the tapes.

“It was a fascinating case, it was a very interesting case,” Clinton says in the recording. “This guy was accused of raping a 12-year-old. Course he claimed that he didn’t, and all this stuff” (LISTEN HERE).

Describing the events almost a decade after they had occurred, Clinton’s struck a casual and complacent attitude toward her client and the trial for rape of a minor.

“I had him take a polygraph, which he passed – which forever destroyed my faith in polygraphs,” she added with a laugh.

Clinton can also be heard laughing at several points when discussing the crime lab’s accidental destruction of DNA evidence that tied Taylor to the crime.

From a legal ethics perspective, once she agreed to take the case, Clinton was required to defend her client to the fullest even if she did believe he was guilty.

“We’re hired guns,” Ronald D. Rotunda, a professor of legal ethics at Chapman University, told the Washington Free Beacon. “We don’t have to believe the client is innocent…our job is to represent the client in the best way we can within the bounds of the law.”

However, Rotunda said, for a lawyer to disclose the results of a client’s polygraph and guilt is a potential violation of attorney-client privilege.

“You can’t do that,” he said. “Unless the client says: ‘You’re free to tell people that you really think I’m a scumbag, and the only reason I got a lighter sentence is because you’re a really clever lawyer.’” Continue reading

PopeWatch: Company Man

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Rorate Caeli gives us an example of the new careerism which seems to be a salient feature of the new Pontificate as prelates race to get in line with the new bossl

 

 

From the official news website of the Catholic Bishops’ Conference of the Philippines:

Pope Francis’s papacy ‘biggest challenge’ to PH church—Villegas

MANILA, July 6, 2014–The papcy (sic) of Pope Francis is by far the “biggest challenge” faced by the Philippine Church, the president of the Catholic Bishops Conference of the Philippines (CBCP) said. 

Lingayen-Dagupan Archishop Socrates Villegas on Saturday said that the pastoral approach of the Supreme Pontiff in leading Catholics all over the world has transformed the church from being a “self-engrossed” institution into an “outreaching” community. 

“(Pope Francis) shakes up our old belief systems about spiritual shepherding. He jolts us from our complacency and status quo attitude. He humbles us with his simplicity. He disturbs us to make us better,” Villegas said in his speech opening the 109th CBCP Plenary Assembly at the Pius XII Catholic Center. 

“He has slowly moved the Church from being a dogmatic, self engrossed and authoritative [sic] sick institution to being a gentle, outreaching, compassionate and persuasive Church through the power of love and mercy,” Villegas added. 

He reminded the role of pastors as shepherds who will “go before his people, pointing the way and keeping their hope vibrant,” “being in their midst with his unassuming and merciful presence” and “walking after them, helping those who lag behind.” 

Villegas reminded the clergy to always be humble, noting that the loss of humility in Church ministry can pose “costly” consequences. 

“When we lose humility, we lose perspective. When we lose perspective, we also become too reactive. When we become too reactive, we become less effective and less credible as pastors,” he said. 

With Pope Francis set to visit the Philippines early next year, Villegas urged the members of the clergy to serve with humility and happiness, speak with honesty from the mind and to listen patiently with the heart, and see the goodness in everyone and live the mercy of the Gospel. 

“This is the example of Pope Francis. Living by this example will make us good shepherds like the Good Shepherd,” he said. (Jennifer M. Orillaza)

 

The statement comes only three months after the Philippine Supreme Court had upheld the “Reproductive Health Law” of their country as “not unconstitutional” after its constitutionality was challenged by various pro-life and Catholic groups. The law had stipulated massive funding for contraception and “reproductive health” promotion and the integration of “sex education” into the Philippine curriculum from primary school onwards. When the Supreme Court decision came out Archbishop Villegas issued a statement that among other things called on Catholics to respect the decision and to “move on from being an RH-law-reactionary-group to a truly Spirit empowered disciples of the Gospel of life and love.” Rorate is told that the irony was not lost on Filipino Catholics who recalled that a little more than a year and a pontificate ago, the same prelate had issued on behalf of the Philippine hierarchy a firm condemnation (including a reference to “divine wrath”) versus that same law.

Continue reading

PopeWatch: Forests

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Pope Francis made some unprepared remarks over the weekend that might have been better left unsaid:

 

 

In an address at the university of Molise, an agricultural and industrial region in southern Italy, Francis said the Earth should be allowed to give her fruits without being exploited.

“This is one of the greatest challenges of our time: to convert ourselves to a type of development that knows how to respect creation,” he told students, struggling farmers, and laid-off workers in a university hall.

“When I look at America, also my own homeland (South America), so many forests, all cut, that have become land … that can no longer give life. This is our sin, exploiting the Earth and not allowing her to give us what she has within her,” the Argentine pope said in unprepared remarks. Continue reading

July 6, 1535: Martyrdom of Saint Thomas More

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Imagine facing death and being able to escape it by signing your name to a bit of parchment.  By your signature you would also be released from jail, the fortune of your family restored and you restored to your family.  Now imagine that all your friends and family are begging your to sign your name.  Such was the dilemma confronting Saint Thomas More.  It took clearly superhuman courage for him to go to his death in spite of all of this, and in spite of all evidence that his act was simply an act of futility that would not stop Henry from building his new church.

I have always thought that martyrdom, never easy, is simpler when it comes suddenly and one’s blood is hot with adrenaline pounding through your veins.  Then heroism can stand out as the sudden culmination of one’s life, with one passing swiftly to eternal reward.  How much harder is the type of cold martyrdom suffered by Saint Thomas More, a gradual thing spanning over a year, with every second Saint Thomas More having to fight off the temptation to simply sign his name and save his life.

In his Dialogue of Comfort Against Tribulation, written while in the Tower, Saint Thomas explains the source from which he drew his strength:

When we feel us too bold, remember our own feebleness. When we feel us too faint, remember Christ’s strength. In our fear, let us remember Christ’s painful agony that himself would for our comfort suffer before his passion to the intent that no fear should make us despair. And ever call for his help such as himself wills to send us. And then need we never to doubt but that either he shall keep us from the painful death, or shall not fail so to strengthen us in it that he shall joyously bring us to heaven by it. And then doeth he much more for us than if he kept us from it. For as God did more for poor Lazarus in helping him patiently to die of hunger at the rich man’s door than if he had brought to him at the door all the rich glutton’s dinner, so, though he be gracious to a man whom he delivereth out of painful trouble, yet doeth he much more for a man if through right painful death he deliver him from this wretched world into eternal bliss.
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July 6, 1864: Ransom of Hagerstown, Maryland

Brigadier General John McCausland, Jr.

On July 5, 1864, Early’s Corps marched into Maryland in an attempt to take the pressure off Lee.  As part of this invasion Early sent Brigadier General John McCausland, Jr. to occupy Hagerstown, Maryland and demand a ransom from the town of $200,000.00 in recompense for the destruction wreaked in the Valley by Union General Hunter.  McCausland took the town without fighting early in the morning of July 6.

For some unknown reason McCausland demanded only $20,000.00 and 1500 suits of clothes for the ragged Confederates.  The dismayed citizens of Hagerstown raised the sum from three local banks and the clothes were provided.  McCausland and his men rode off at 1:00 AM on July 7.

Hagerstown got off lightly.  Frederick, Maryland during this campaign paid a ransom of $200,000.00.  The city of Frederick would be paying off this debt to local banks for almost a century, with the last payment made in 1951. Continue reading

America: A Review

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The family and I went out and saw America, the latest film of Dinesh D’Souza.  I enjoyed the film and found it an intriguing step in the development of a new form of conveying conservative messages.  My review is below and the usual caveat as to spoilers is in effect. Continue reading

Child trafficking: The political left’s silence borders on the outrageous…

 

In a previous post concerning the topic of human trafficking and the political left’s seeming lack of interest in it, The Motley Monk observed:

This iteration of the global war on human trafficking is doomed to failure. Fueled by their hearts and not by their minds, the very people who decry human trafficking can’t seem to figure out whose policies sent an open invitation for human traffickers to practice their trade in the left’s own front yard…at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.

With that in mind, The Motley Monk overheard U.S. Representative Louis Gohmert (R-TX) state on Saturday’s “Fox and Firends” that a federal judge had accused the U.S. Department of Homeland Security (DHS) of participating in human trafficking.  That statement caught The Motley Monk’s ear, so he did a little investigating, finding that Representative Gohmert was 100% correct. His source was an article over at Townhall.com, written by Katie Pavlich and published nearly seven months ago on December 19, 2013. The headline: “DHS Complicit in Cartel Human Trafficking of Minors to Illegals Living in the United States.”

Hmmm…isn’t DHS responsible to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue?

“But wasn’t that a long time ago?” many on the political left might ask.

Yes, it’s true that was a very long time ago.

Some might even protest: “What…does…it… matter…now?”

It matters very much now because DHS continues to participate in enabling cartel trafficking of minors, delivering them to illegals who live in the United States, and completing criminal transactions on behalf of illegal immigrants. This, despite a filing written by U.S. District Judge Andrew Hanen of the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Texas on December 13, 2012.

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The case before Judge Hanen concerned Patricia Elizabeth Salmeron Santos, the mother of a 10-year-old El Salvadorean girl, who had been living illegally in Virginia after being denied legal entry into the United States in 2001. Salmeron Santos hired Mirtha Veronica Nava-Martinez, a resident alien living in the United States while travelling to and from Mexico, to smuggle the girl from Matamoros to Virginia. Nava-Martinez was caught at a Brownsville, Texas, border checkpoint.

Judge Hanen wrote:

Salmeron Santos admitted that she started this conspiracy by hiring alien smugglers to transfer her child from El Salvador to Virginia. She agreed to pay $8500 (and actually paid $6,000 in advance) for these human traffickers to smuggle her daughter). The criminal conspiracy instigated by Salmeron Santos was temporarily interrupted when Nava-Martinez was arrested. Despite this setback, the goal of the conspiracy was successfully completed thanks to the United States Government. This Court is quite concerned with the apparent policy of the Department of Homeland Security completing the criminal mission of individuals who are violating the border security of the United States.” (italics added)

According to Pavlich, what’s going on is that illegal immigrants who are living in the United States are paying human traffickers connected to Mexican cartels to smuggle their children into the United States.  How so? Judge Hanen writes:

Although Nava-Martinez [the smuggler] was arrested and charged, the minor was delivered to her mother living illegally in Virginia by DHS, automatically making the minor eligible for the President Obama’s DREAMers program. Further Salmeron-Santos, who illegally hired a human trafficker to smuggle her daughter across an international border, isn’t facing charges.

The DHS officials were notified that Salmeron-Santos instigated this illegal conduct. Yet, instead of arresting Salmeron-Santos for instigating the conspiracy to violate our border security laws, the DHS delivers the child to her—thus successfully completing the mission of the criminal conspiracy. It did not arrest her. It did not prosecute her. It did not even initiate deportation proceedings for her. This DHS policy is a dangerous course of action.

How dangerous? In his order, Hanen notes:

  • DHS encourages parents to “seriously jeopardize the safety of their children”;
  • DHS policy enables violent drug cartels, undermines efforts to deter criminal activity or further violations and lowers the morale of law enforcement agents working to enforce the law on the border.
  • Aliens being smuggled are “assaulted, raped, kidnapped and or killed.”

Obviously, the people running and working for these cartels are not the kind of people who staff the local Catholic Charities office. Hanen continues:

The cartels control the entire smuggling process. These entities are not known for their concern for human life….The Government is not only allowing them to fund the illegal and evil activities of these cartels, but is also inspiring them to do so. These men and women [law enforcement], with no small risk to their own safety, do their best to enforce our laws and protect the citizens of the United States. It seems shameful that some policymaker in their agency institutes a course of inaction that negated their efforts. It has to be frustrating to those that are actually doing the work of protecting Americans when those efforts are thwarted by a policy that supports lawmakers.

Judge Hanen likens the logic of the DHS policy to their agents seizing illegal drugs or weapons from smugglers and delivering those drugs or weapons to the criminals who initially solicited their illegal act of importing or exporting those drugs or weapons. Judge Hanen concluded: “DHS should enforce the laws of the United States—not break them.”

Unfortunately, as the number of immigrant children smuggled illegally into the United States by criminal cartels has increased exponentially since Judge Hanen filed his brief seven months ago, the President of the United States has evidently done nothing to direct his DHS to cease from participating in cartel human trafficking of minors to illegals living in the United States.

How’s that for social justice?

Why hasn’t the United Nations, the Holy See, and the Catholic Religious Orders and Congregations—all of whom who have be uniform in their condemnation of child trafficking—protested and condemned the Obama administration’s policy? After all it tolerates—if not requires—DHS to be complicit in cartel human trafficking of minors to illegals living in the United States.

Perhaps their silence is simply due to the mainstream media’s blackout concerning Judge Hanen’s filing.

 

 

 

To read The Motley Monk’s previous post, click on the following link:
http://the-american-catholic.com/2014/06/25/human-trafficking-in-the-usa-wheres-the-catholic-lefts-outrage/

To read Katie Pavlich’s article at Townhall.com, click on the following link:
http://townhall.com/tipsheet/katiepavlich/2013/12/19/dhs-complicit-in-cartel-human-trafficking-of-minors-to-illegals-living-in-the-united-states-n1765920

To read The Motley Monk’s daily blog, Omnibus, click on the following link:
http://richard-jacobs-blog.com/omnibus.html

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