Pro-Lifers Invade the Pro-Abortion City of San Francisco

Tuesday, February 2, AD 2010

Recently the City of San Francisco got to experience a peaceful and powerful Pro-Life march on January 23.  In what is being billed as the largest gathering of Pro-Lifers in San Francisco ever, an estimated 40,000 volunteers from all ages, cultures, and nations descended on what is known to be the most egregious community of new Carthaginians in the country.

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6 Responses to Pro-Lifers Invade the Pro-Abortion City of San Francisco

Are You Listening Madame Speaker?

Friday, January 15, AD 2010

Archbishop George H. Niederauer of San Francisco addressed on January 13, 2010 a free will defense of abortion by Nancy Pelosi, Speaker of the House:

In a recent interview with Eleanor Clift in Newsweek magazine (Dec. 21, 2009), House Speaker Nancy Pelosi was asked about her disagreements with the United States Catholic bishops concerning Church teaching. Speaker Pelosi replied, in part: “I practically mourn this difference of opinion because I feel what I was raised to believe is consistent with what I profess, and that we are all endowed with a free will and a responsibility to answer for our actions. And that women should have the opportunity to exercise their free will.”

Embodied in that statement are some fundamental misconceptions about Catholic teaching on human freedom. These misconceptions are widespread both within the Catholic community and beyond. For this reason I believe it is important for me as Archbishop of San Francisco to make clear what the Catholic Church teaches about free will, conscience, and moral choice.

Catholic teaching on free will recognizes that God has given men and women the capacity to choose good or evil in their lives. The bishops at the Second Vatican Council declared that the human person, endowed with freedom, is “an outstanding manifestation of the divine image.” (Gaudium et Spes, No. 17) As the parable of the Grand Inquisitor in Dostoevsky’s novel, The Brothers Karamazov, makes so beautifully clear, God did not want humanity to be mere automatons, but to have the dignity of freedom, even recognizing that with that freedom comes the cost of many evil choices.

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5 Responses to Are You Listening Madame Speaker?

  • So what next? Nice statement and all, but what hapens, in the highly probable event that this goes in one Pelosi’s ear and out the other (there being nothing in between to catch it)? What will he do when she comes back with some form of I politely disagree but must follow my own reason and conscience which tells me campaign fund– I mean, a women’s right to choose, is an inviolable right necessary for her dignity?

  • To answer the question posed by the title of this post: No.

  • What a great statement by the bishop! And thanks for posting it in its entirety, Donald.

  • Thank you Pinky!

  • Even though Speaker Pelosi may not take the archbishops instruction, this is a positive sign that many bishops in America are finally defending life in a public manner in the correct circumstances.

    Especially from this archbishop who is breaking the stereotype of a “personally orthodox” but “episcopally lax” mold a la Archbishop Wuerl of Washington DC.

Bishops Call Reid Health Care Bill Worst of the Bunch

Friday, November 20, AD 2009

Extremist Democrats and liberals are hailing Harry Reid’s Health Care bill as a victory for pro-abortion activists.  Though the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has called it “completely unacceptable“.

…Richard Doerflinger, associate director of the bishops’ conference Secretariat of Pro-Life Activities, said Reid’s “is actually the worst bill we’ve seen so far on the life issues.”

He called it “completely unacceptable,” adding that “to say this reflects current law is ridiculous.”

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7 Responses to Bishops Call Reid Health Care Bill Worst of the Bunch

  • I have always been pro-life and frankly, this bill is really scary.

  • Well this is what you get when you support a party that has abortion, gay Marrage and stem cell research as part of their party plank…Is it not Polosi is Catholic?,,Kennedy’s all Catholic…Yep.. This is the same group that voted to limit tax deductibility of donations to the church…Their only church is the church of government

  • It’s not over yet! If the bill goes back to the House without pro-life provisions, I am going to have a little faith in the pro-life Dems to hold the line and kill the bill. They said they would.

    It only passed last time by 5 votes in the house. Surely there at least 6 Stupak Democrats who will switch their votes if federal funding for abortion is back in.

    And for those who hate the whole bill, 40 progressive Dems say they will vote against it if abortion funding ISN’T in – so either way, this thing could be dead.

  • Joe,

    From my understanding, Rep. Cao of Louisiana only voted for the bill after he saw that it couldn’t be defeated. So in theory you’ll only need four votes to switch.

  • Precisely. The bill barely survived the House because the Stupak language superseded the Capps amendment.

    We should also be conscious of the fact that the Senate operates differently than the House. We aren’t going to have a closed rule amendment. Moreover, I do not think Nelson would vote for final cloture to vote on a final legislation that had less-than-acceptable language on abortion. Reid has absolutely no room for margin of error. I think the Democrats will have to sacrifice the Planned Parenthood wishlist to some extent in order to pass something.

    It must be said that I think much of the conference speculation is missing the mark. In conference, yes, there is no reason to keep the legislation as is. In fact, in conference the entire health care bill can fundamentally be re-written with no regard to any amendments that passed or the original provisions of the bills. However that is not going to be the case with health care. Say that pro-life provisions pass in the House and in the Senate as well. The Democrats will find it incredibly difficult to strip that language at conference. A brand new bill that is markedly different than the originals will likely fail in one or bother chambers. A bill that reverses the abortion language in one or both chambers will fail in one or both chambers. The Stupak amendment clearly took the bill over the top. It will die in the House without it. Less than acceptable language on abortion will surely not allow the final conference bill to reach cloture in the Senate. Perhaps I have too much faith in Senator Nelson, but I cannot see how he will not hold out. He is incredibly consistent and principled on this issue. I will not blindly trust such a hope, but I have every reason to have this hope.

    Moreover, an incredibly liberal “robust” public option that leaves out opt-out and opt-in clauses is sure to die in the Senate. So again, the theorists speculating that this is a game of “bait” and “switch” — give in to the pro-life Congressmen to win their votes and then remove it, give in to the more moderate members and “water down” to the public option to win their votes only to switch it blatantly and manifestly in conference is absurd.

    After conference there are no amendments. It is a closed-rule vote entirely in both chambers. The moderate and pro-life Democrats will be needed again, to motion to vote on the legislation and to vote for the final legislation. I don’t think it reasonable to conclude that a hyper-liberal bill will come flying out of conference because in what world could it possibly pass?

    If anything, the Senate legislation will have the greater influence. The final conference legislation must conceivably be able to pass in the Senate which is a much more difficult task — in that, it must gain 60 votes before it only needs 51.

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Doug Hoffman Takes Lead in Poll

Tuesday, October 27, AD 2009

Take this with more than a grain of salt, since the Club for Growth supports him, but in the latest poll by the Club for Growth Doug Hoffman, the pro-life Conservative Party candidate  in the special election in the New York 23rd Congressional District endorsed by Sarah Palin and other Republican Party luminaries, leads with 31.3% of the vote to 27% for Bill Owens the Democrat and 19.7% for the pro-abort leftist Republican Dede Scozzafava., with 22% undivided.

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10 Responses to Doug Hoffman Takes Lead in Poll

  • If anything Mr. Hoffman’s support has gone up. The question is, is it enough to lead the polls?

    I’ll believe it when I see a more credible poll. Though a 5% margin of error isn’t bad for the Conservative Party candidate.

  • “Maddeningly the Republican National Committee is pumping money into Scozzafava’s campaign and running adds against Hoffman. This is an excellent way to alienate the conservative base of the party. Idiocy, sheer idiocy.”

    THE GOP is doing what it is suppose too. At least some of them. The GOP is a party that has “moderates” too and we shall see what can of worms have been opened up by this.

    The problem is in New York and people would be much better off changing the leadership there in the party. THE prob;lem is not the National GOP.

    I hope I don’t wake up and see Republicans for Free Choice and the Olympia Snowes of the world campaigning for conservative yet pro choice “independents” against GOP pro-lifers we picked in our primary. If they do then a lot of people will not have a moral arguement against it

    I think in the long run this will backfire but again the GOP has no choice here. Unless we are taking a stand that local control of the party should be micromanaged from Washington?

  • My Lord! No other phrase captures what I am thinking other than “Idiocy!” How could the republicans be stupid? This is a telling display of how the republicans are losing voters. Pro life is 98% of the reason I vote at all yet alone republican. I wish they would get that through their heads…

  • It sounds a lot like the kind of craziness the GOP pulled on Congressman Paul in the 14th District of Texas. In ’96 they recruited the DEMOCRAT to switch parties and run as the G.O.P. -backed candidate. Paul was able to survive into the run-off , and then won by simply reminding everyone how liberal his ‘establishment’ opponent really was.

    If the Republicans insist on choosing ‘winners’ over their principles, I hope more and more people defect. They have not learned their lessons after 2006 and 2008.

  • Robert I agree with you in the need to keep the GOP as Pro-life as possible. But the problem here is not the National GOP but the New York GOP. Again do we really want the National GOP to decide what races it will fund and not fund. The local party in New York needs to change

  • jh is right. The national GOP cannot be expected to overrule the state GOP; that is just not realistic. NY conservatives cannot bolt from the GOP in favor of the NY Conservative Party and then feel entitled to get angry when the National GOP supports the GOP candidate over their own party candidate.

  • I’m nervous about the 23% that are undecided. Expect more of Scozzafava’s numbers to migrate to Hoffman and then hold your breath for the next 7-8 days!

  • The Republicans are showing their true colors – this is another momment of decision. Will the Republican party hold to authentic conservative and traditional values or will they be run by liberal, establishment Democrat-lite insiders?

    This is not a political question – it is a question of culture. Are conservatives and traditionalists strong and principled enough to rout the liars or will we be left with the choice of speedy progressives and not-so-fast progressives again?

    Goldwater, Reagan, Paul and Hoffman (and Palin) are examples of the people choosing principles over political-pragmatism. You can either change the Republican party or migrate to another. Perhaps the Conservative Party will grow and the Republican party die, or publically merge with the Democrats, rather than keep up the farce that they are two different parties. In fact, the Republicans and the Democrats are just slightly different factions of the same oligarchy.

  • NY conservatives cannot bolt from the GOP in favor of the NY Conservative Party and then feel entitled to get angry when the National GOP supports the GOP candidate over their own party candidate.

    Once more with feeling. Mr. Hoffmann is an enrolled Republican. Ten county chairmen in the North Country selected Mrs. Scozzafava as a candidate by a weighted vote among themselves per the Election Law of New York. There was no petition process or primary. The North Country is not the east side of Manhattan or Westchester. Common-and-garden Republicans can and do poll well there. The county chairmen have been playing an obscure insider game and expected (as New York pols do) that the electorate would suck it up (as that electorate generally does if you do not poison the water table or forthrightly and transparently raise their property taxes). These ten individuals cannot legitimately complain if their own committeemen flip them the bird, much less if everyone else does.

  • Art, I agree, and admit that you have a far better grasp of the facts than me. My only remaining point would be that it is difficult to expect the national GOP to ignore or overrule the decisions of the local GOP, regardless the mechanisms or machinations behind those local decisions. It would be different if the national GOP were complicit in such insider games, but no one has suggested that, but instead some seem to want to count deference to local decisions as complicity. That just strikes me as unfair and unrealistic.

The Flames of Dissent and Discord

Saturday, October 24, AD 2009

Patrick Kennedy

Politicians make asinine statements all the time, but sometimes there is one that stands out from the crowd for its sheer cluelessness, duplicity and perversity.  Patrick Kennedy, yep, one of Teddy Kennedy’s sons, a Democrat member of Congress from Rhode Island, lambasted the Church for not falling into line behind ObamaCare. Here is a statement that he made  to CNSNews.

“I can’t understand for the life of me how the Catholic Church could be against the biggest social justice issue of our time, where the very dignity of the human person is being respected by the fact that we’re caring and giving health care to the human person–that right now we have 50 million people who are uninsured,” Kennedy told when asked about a letter the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) had sent to members of Congress stating the bishops’ position on abortion funding in the health-care bill.

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9 Responses to The Flames of Dissent and Discord

Pro-Abort Catholic Politicians and the Church

Wednesday, September 9, AD 2009

Pro-abort Catholic PolsFather Roger J. Landry concludes here that the strategy of the Church to privately persuade Catholic pro-abort pols of the errors of their ways has been a flat failure.

“Let us take an honest look at the numbers. When we survey the long list of pro-choice Catholic politicians from both parties — Kennedy, Kerry, Giuliani, Schwarzenegger, Daschle, Dodd, Durbin, Leahy, Mikulski, Pelosi, Delahunt, Capuano, Markey, McGovern, Meehan, Granholm, Sebelius, Pataki, Richardson, Cellucci, Cuomo, and Biden to name just a handful — is it possible to say that the strategy has worked with any of them? Over the last three and a half decades, can we point to even one success story?

Another way to assess the results of the education-alone strategy is to measure the direction that pro-choice Catholic politicians have moved over the years. Even if they haven’t experienced a total conversion, have they moved closer toward limiting abortions or toward making abortions easier to access? The facts show that the vast majority of personally opposed, publicly pro-choice Catholic legislators have become far less personally opposed and far more publicly in favor over the duration of the strategy.

In the initial years after Roe versus Wade, publicly pro-choice Catholic legislators generally whispered their support for abortion. They displayed a palpable sense of shame, letting their abortion position out just enough so that it wouldn’t cost them the votes of abortion supporters. That discomfort began to dissipate after Governor Mario Cuomo’s 1984 pro-choice defense at Notre Dame. We’ve now come to a situation when pro-choice Catholic legislators vigorously curry the favor of Planned Parenthood, NARAL Pro-Choice America and Emily’s List;  scores of Catholics in Congress have the chutzpah to co-sponsor the Freedom of Choice Act, which would eliminate almost every abortion restriction ever passed at the federal or state level; and 16 out of 25 Catholic Senators vote against conscience protections to prevent their fellow Catholics in the medical field from being forced to participate in abortions and sterilizations.”

Father Landry ends by suggesting a new approach, perhaps we might call it the “more than hot air” approach:

“Jesus spoke of a different way in the Gospel (Mt 18:15-18). It involves not merely general educational statements that we hope offenders will apply to themselves in conscience, but the type of one-on-one instruction traditionally called fraternal correction. If that fails, and fails repeatedly, Jesus enjoined us to regard the offender as someone who no longer belongs to the community, who is no longer a member in good standing. This may seem harsh, but we should remember that Jesus always seeks nothing but the best for his Church and for individual sinners, even obstinate sinners. Implied in Jesus’ strategy is that education involves not just information, but formation, and that you can’t form disciples without discipline. This is a lesson that, after four decades of the undeniable failure of another approach, we need to consider anew.”

Hattip to my friend the ever vigilant Jay Anderson at Pro Ecclesia,  and please go here to read his comments on Father Landry’s argument.

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17 Responses to Pro-Abort Catholic Politicians and the Church

  • Finally, someone has the courage to state what must be done.


  • Yes, I agree with the idea of not considering them part of the community anymore but I think we need to voice that more. We need to let our congregation, the nation and the world know that we do not tolerate abortion support….and that Catholics who support and advocate it are excommunicated. We need to literally stand up and state what our Catechism says:

    “Formal cooperation in an abortion constitutes a grave offense. The Church attaches the canonical penalty of excommunication to this crime against human life. “A person who procures a completed abortion incurs excommunication latae sententiae,” “by the very commission of the offense,” and subject to the conditions provided by Canon Law. The Church does not thereby intend to restrict the scope of mercy. Rather, she makes clear the gravity of the crime committed, the irreparable harm done to the innocent who is put to death, as well as to the parents and the whole of society.”

  • Well stated Simon. I was disappointed that Caroline Kennedy was pro-choice, repulsive, it’s incompatible with Catholic beliefs. Isn’t their someone in the Kennedy clan who bolts from this philosophy and ideology? Isn’t it good to know, of course, that Alveda King, Martin Luther King’s niece is pro-life.

    I have never wavered being pro-life though I have considered the question in full when younger, I respect an argument. Now, I consider how central and pivotal of an idea is it for the Church to be pushing.

    It was an interesting editorial in the UK, by a spokesman for the Tories I believe in the Daily Telegraph that grilled Ted Kennedy for voting for the partial birth abortions. England, can’t speak for the total UK because abortion is still illegal in Northern Ireland like the Republic of Ireland, but one would think England is a bit like the USA in this regard. However, many in England find our “partial birth” abortions very evil. Okay, I would find fault with all abortions but I have met others from England who do not accept the late terms abortions that occur in the USA even though they are pro-choice. The Tories by the way in the above articles did not want Ted Kennedy to get Knighthood since basically, he’s had long term ties to supporting the IRA or something of this nature. I apologize for any of this being offtopic.

  • Don:

    Totally agree with your post and the comments of Jay Anderson and the good Father. People forget that there were even limits to Christ’s spirit of charity and inclusiveness such as when he tossed the money changers out of the temple.

    That being said how can one justify actions by other “Catholic” laity and politicians in promoting other activity that runs contrary to Catholic teaching, i.e. torture, pre-emptive war, the death penalty, divorce? How can one be a “Catholic” divorce lawyer? How can one be a “Catholic” judge or prosecutor that encourages or enforces the death penalty? How can one be a “Catholic” public official that allows or attempts to justify torture and pre-emptive war?

  • Like most things in life awakaman you deal with each issue on its own merits. The Church has spoken with one voice on abortion since the time of Christ.

    On the issue of preemptive war on the other hand, well, I assume some of the popes have had interesting discussions on that topic in the next life. For example John Paul II and Urban II on the First Crusade. I would love, and I mean that sincerely, to listen to that discussion.

    On divorce John Paul II seemed at one point not to want Catholic attorneys involved in them, but then in a clarification said that Catholic attorneys could be involved if their aim was to secure a good custody outcome for any minor children involved. That is one area where I personally would like some clarification since, although it makes up a miniscule portion of my practice, like most small town attorneys I am confronted with these cases from time to time.

    In regard to the death penalty we have the problem of Church teaching basically being reversed on that question under John Paul II, with a great deal of confusion now as to when the death penalty is licit and when it is not.

    I have no problem with holding the feet of Catholic pols to the fire on any number of issues, but I believe that Church teaching is the clearest on abortion, it is the issue that involves the greatest death toll each year for the innocent, and for me, as it has been since 1973, abortion will always be the overriding moral issue of our time.

  • Don:

    In regards to the 1st Crusade it is debatable as to whether it truly was pre-emptive war. First, it went beyond its initial objective of defending the Byzantine Empire and the West from the expansion of Islam and became more of a war of aggression with the reconquest of Jerusalem. Secondly, saying the 1st Crusade was fought by those exclusinvely seeking to protect Christainity is like saying the Civil War was fought exclusively over the issue of Slavery – total nonsense. It was extremely interesting that Jerusalem was a major trading center as well as an important city to Christians – just as it was an amazing coincidence that Iraq happened to have a lot of oil as well as a nasty dictator. Finally, even if we regard it as a pre-emptive war to prevent the spread of Islam given the current status of Islam in the middle east (and Europe) I would hardly say that it speaks well for pre-emptive war.

    In regard to the Death penalty did church teaching on the death penalty reverse or did it develop as a result of the growth or evolution of the modern prison system? Your argument reminds me of those offered by the Church of Christ as to why they do not have instrumental music at their services – because the early Christians did not – of course they didn’t have air conditioning or heating either. As prisons have become relatively “escape proof” and we have developed systems of rehabilitation (as I assume you agree that it is our Christian duty to do) the death penalty has become less necessary unless you want to engage in pure retribution. I know, I know . . . the deterance argument . . . but given that countries and states without the death penalty generally have less crime then those with the death penalty this is not a very good argument.

    Finally, given that JPII was rather adament in his denunciation of Catholic lawyers being involved in divorces “Roman Catholic lawyers should refuse to handle divorce cases, Pope John Paul has said.
    He said divorce was ‘spreading like a plague’ through society, and lawyers should refuse to be part of the ‘evil’.”

    Yes, one can engage in some self rationalization such as one is doing some good such as getting children into a good custody situation, but isn’t that the type of rationalization used by pro-choice politicians and those who vote for them, i.e. ignoring the great evil you are doing by pointing ut the small amount of good that may result.

  • well, we as catholics are so stupid. If you work, for example for Pepsi, but you don’t like Pepsi, and talk the whole day about the wonders of Coke, and try to sell Coke at every chance you have … what would your boss do? Fire you!!

    Off course, if you were coherent and a normal and rational person, you would leave Pepsi and move to Coke asap.

    This is how ratio works, this how the world is, this is how everybody in this planet feels. And what does the hierarchy do, not only in the States but anywhere else, without some honorable exceptions? They are SCARED, because the sheeps will leave the flock.. so WHAT?

    It is better to be fewer but real,rather than have many who disturb, who don’t leave us do the work of our Heavenly Father!

  • I believe the Catechism [2383] expresses well the Church’s position. Separation [divorce] is not immoral. Indeed it may be for the benefit of both parties.

    It is remarriage which is wrong.

  • Exactly, Gabriel. No off the cuff statement, even by a pope, even by a saint, can change that.

  • TomSVDP,
    The late Eunice Kennedy Shriver was notable for her pro-life advocacy within the Democratic party and her activism outside it. Her passing several weeks ago was noted on this blog and elsewhere, though there was little mention of her pro-life associations outside pro-life sources.

  • Awakaman in regard to divorce cases and Catholic lawyers this is where the ambiguity enters in:

    “Lawyers, as independent professionals, should always decline the use of their profession for an end that is contrary to justice, as is divorce. They can only cooperate in this kind of activity when, in the intention of the client, it is not directed to the break-up of the marriage, but to the securing of other legitimate effects that can only be obtained through such a judicial process in the established legal order (cf. Catechism of the Catholic Church, n. 2383). In this way, with their work of assisting and reconciling persons who are going through a marital crises, lawyers truly serve the rights of the person and avoid becoming mere technicians at the service of any interest whatever.”

    In this area I wouldn’t mind at all if the Pope told me that I could never take such a case again as it would give me an excellent reason not to do so when clients press me for my services in these types of matters. These cases are time consuming, emotionally draining, and, as I noted in my earlier comment a miniscule portion of my practice, and the only reason I get involved with them now is when a client convinces me that the kids would be better off with them, or they are being denied visitation, or they want an increase in child support, or they wish to attempt to change custody because the kids are begging to live with the client, etc. I would cheer a papal ban as giving me a good conscience deafness to their pleas, but I do not think the Pope has done that yet.

    More on your other points in a day or so when I am no longer shackled to my desk in my law office.

  • But how can civil divorce really be “contrary to justice” in cases where an innocent spouse is merely trying to remove herself or himself and any children from a situation that gravely endangers their physical, mental, or spiritual health or safety?

    I don’t think even JPII would have argued that it was “evil” for a woman to divorce a husband who was beating her or molesting their children, or a man to divorce a wife who was shooting up drugs and prostituting herself to get the money for them, or had taken up witchcraft or Satan worship, etc.

  • On the other hand, if it’s just a case of a man or woman having fallen in “love” with someone else and wanting to divorce their spouse to marry their partner in adultery, that’s another story, and a case in which I would think no observant Catholic lawyer would want to get involved.

  • You can also add into the complexity mix Elaine that clients are often less than forthcoming in this area of the law, and will frequently tell their attorney all about the misdeeds, real or imagined, of their spouse while not mentioning their own. Not infrequently this is being done in a high state of emotion, especially when the custody of children is at stake, and quick decisions often have to be made by the attorney. In hotly contested custody cases sex abuse allegations regarding the kids not infrequently enter into the case, and often the attorney has no way of knowing if the allegations are true. This is a difficult area of the law for an attorney concerned about following a moral path, and, unfortunately, not difficult at all for an attorney completely unconcerned with the morality of what is going on.

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  • Elaine,

    I don’t think even JPII would have argued that it was “evil” for a woman to divorce a husband who was beating her or molesting their children, or a man to divorce a wife who was shooting up drugs and prostituting herself to get the money for them, or had taken up witchcraft or Satan worship, etc.

    divorce is still an “evil”, but it is the guilty party who is culpable. In the same sense, war is an “evil”, and the unjust aggressor is culpable.

  • And what of Catholic priests and bishops who encourage divorces when they know that one of the parties is opposed to the divorce and they, the Catholic priests and bishops, flatly refuse to listen to them as they plead for action to support their marriage? What when this goes on for twenty years and the Holy see has completely ignored the same please?

    Some of us have seen this and have chosen to leave the Catholic Church over this. Why is there no support among “rank and file” Catholics for the plight of abandoned spouses who have to defend their marriage against both civil courts and marriage tribunals? And why, when one has defended one’s marriage before the highest courts in the Catholic Church, and watched those courts uphold that marriage, is their no action on the part of priests, bishops and the Roman Curia to canonically hold to account a spouse who has abandoned, wrongly, a faithful spouse, when the evidence is clear and in the possession of the Catholic Church(and has been for twenty years) that the marriage was usurped with the full cooperation of priests(to this day) and bishops(to this day)with mostly complete disregard for the valid, sacramental marriage?

    I think the politicians should receive a bye on this divorce/annulment issue while the Catholic Church tends to the clergy whose actions are far more harmful in this regard. Only after the Catholic Church has tended to its own, in house, facilitators of adultery and all the crimes that unjust divorce entails should it take the time to attempt to call to order catholic politicians. the house should be in order before that house attempts to call others to order.

    Just my two cents.

Democrats for Life of America Are Serious

Wednesday, July 15, AD 2009

pro-life democrats

Hattip to the ever alert Jay Anderson of Pro-Ecclesia.  Because Congressman Tim Ryan (D.Ohio) abandoned his pro-life position, Democrats for Life of America removed him from their national advisory board. This news story demonstrates Ryan’s transition to voting pro-abortion.  Interesting that Ryan abandoned the pro-life cause after the Democrats took control of the House in 2006.  I suspect that he is ambitious and decided that in a House run by pro-abort Democrats being a pro-lifer was not a career enhancer.  At any rate, as a pro-life Conservative Republican I salute the action of these pro-life Democrats.  It would have been better to boot him in 2008 after his changed voting record had become clear, but the main thing is that Democrats for Life have acted now.  Their action lends credence to the seriousness with which they view the issue of abortion.  Bravo!  (Two articles praising Democrats in two days by me?  I’m going soft!)

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3 Responses to Democrats for Life of America Are Serious

Obama on Abortion

Thursday, April 30, AD 2009

Probably the most interesting part of the press conference last night.  Ed Morrissey at Hot Air has an interesting take on it.  Obama remains an ardent pro-abort, but I think he is beginning to realize that while that position may be popular among a majority of his supporters, it is much less so with the country at large.  I daresay all the upcry over Obama Day at Notre Dame is also having an impact upon him.  The Freedom of Choice Act* has tumbled from the “first thing he would sign” at the White House to “not the highest legislative priority”.   The message to the pro-life movement is clear.  Stay active, stay noisy and expose every pro-abort move that this administration makes to the public at large.  Obama is paying attention and he will back down in the face of determined opposition.


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25 Responses to Obama on Abortion

  • “Obama is paying attention and he will back down in the face of determined opposition.”

    I agree with this sentiment. But maybe I am just naively hopeful.

  • Wow. One thing I really find striking is how the rhetoric — the run down is so consistent each time he talks about it. 1. Abortion has a moral and ethical component. 2. Women don’t make these decisions casually. 3. They are better positioned to decide the morality of the matter. 4. We should seek “common ground” and reduce the number of abortions — in other words, not the debate the issue itself directly.

    Every video, every speech I have ever seen or read, this is the precise ordering and talking points. And the “ums” almost indicate he’s trying to remember his lines.


    Well, I’m glad FOCA is not a legislative priority. I wonder how Emily’s List feels about that.

  • I appreciate President Obama’s pragmatism on the subject. It also helps that he has good command of the English language (I cringed each time ‘W’ spoke) as well as a fluid speaking style.

    Though I disagree with his pro-choice/pro-abortion stance, he can easily identify the (and by name) the strong opposition from the pro-life camp.


    Excellent observation. He clearly is trying to remember his talking points, but it sure does help.

  • I hate to rain on this parade, I really do, but some of us were pointing out all along that the whole “first thing he would sign” business was nothing but campaign hype, and that it was a little silly to get so worked up about it.

    It’s better to come late to the party than not at all, and I’m obviously not pointing the finger at anyone here since I wasn’t posting here during the campaign. But the plain fact is that Obama has always been willing to have a reasonable discussion about abortion, even if he will, in the end, not be moved to accept the entire pro-life argument.

    Meanwhile some on our side make it seem as if one of the pre-requisites for being considered authentically pro-life is to hold as an article of faith that all pro-choice Americans are intolerant fanatics who cannot be reasoned with and who have no redeeming qualities.

    We can and must oppose abortion on all fronts, but we must also remember that we live in a world where the majority does not totally agree with us.

  • Couldn’t disagree more Joe. Obama is a total pro-abort. His idea of a reasonable discussion is abortion being legal forever. If he had the power FOCA would be passed tomorrow. That he hesitates is only because of strong pro-life opposition.

  • Donald,

    Well Obama has to be lying to someone here, and from everything I’ve seen and heard from him, I think it is more reasonable to conclude that he was feeding hype to the PP crowd than conclude that he is lying to us today. He’s elected now, he doesn’t need to be the politician on the campaign trail anymore.

    For better or worse, I do think that he has a sincere belief in trying to ‘find common ground’. I’ve never seen him fail to acknowledge at least the bare bones argument of the side he disagrees with, and pay them a minimum amount of respect.

    In today’s political world, where the politics section at the bookstore is filled with titles reflecting anger, cynicism, and hatred, where the pundits have nothing but one-sided takes on important issues, I have to say, I appreciate his approach.

  • I cringe each time I hear 0bama speak. A lie a minute. Um…Err…um…Fluid speaking style? I never understood this assessment of him. He’s looking for the next word like a drunk fumbling for the light switch. All this with a teleprompter. Feh.

  • Such a winning way of approaching the intelocutor/person with which you must deal, as the key political figure pertaining to so many important issues of human life and dignity…

  • Don’t get me wrong Joe. I fully expect Obama to throw the pro-aborts under the bus if it is to his political advantage, in that he will not fight for pro-abortion legislation if he believes that the political backlash will harm him. That is why it is so important for all pro-lifers to assert clearly that there will be a high political price to pay for pro-abortion legislation.

    As for pro-lifers, all we would ever get from Obama would be substanceless bloviating as Dr Frank Page on Obama’s Faith Council has learned:

    Obama is only interest in dialogue with us in hopes of making us toothless in our opposition. He will fail in that hope.

  • Joe is right. What I find weird about Donald and his link is that they clearly have not listened to Obama speak on this before. They seem to think this is something new. Instead, the parrot the old FOCA line ad nauseam, clearly influenced more by the right’s talking points than what Obama himself says. No, his answer last night is the same answer he gave whenever asked about this through the whole campaign (with its 254 debates…).

    I might be biased (!), but I’m rather partial to this take:

  • Tony, I quote what Obama himself said to Planned Parenthood regarding the Freedom of Choice Act. Horse’s mouth and all that. Since you voted for Obama perhaps it helps get you through the night to assert that he is a moderate on abortion. He is not and to pretend otherwise is to engage in pathetic self-deception. If it is to his political advantage, since he is above all a narcissist, he will betray the pro-abort movement, but only if he is confronted with a strong pro-life movement, and not with “pro-lifers” who will vote for him no matter what he does in regard to abortion.

  • Why do you assume Obama is a narcissist? Really, what is the foundation for that belief?

    I’ve known real narcissists in life, and Obama is nothing like them.

    It is true that political concerns will check his ambitions on abortion. I think Obama understands political reality, and is willing to accept compromise on the issue.

    Essentially Donald I agree with you that our stand must be strong and unwavering, and that this will have an impact on Obama. I just don’t think it will have the kind of impact that archetypal heroes have on archetypal villains, but rather the kind of impact that concerned and active citizens have on politicians who have a modicum of interest in serving their constituency.

    In other words, not only is there no need to make Obama out to be something worse than what he really is, it may actually be counter-productive. Until he proves himself unwilling or unable to listen and respond, I’m going to continue giving him the benefit of the doubt.

  • As to his narcissism Joe, the man wrote two autobiographies, the first when he was thirty-four; he has allowed a bizarre cult of personality to develop among some of his followers; his constant use of the royal “we”; his willingness to throw people he claimed were close personal friends under the bus in order to advance his rise to power; his thin skin to any criticism; his belief that he can charm our enemies through personal diplomacy; his reliance on a teleprompter to get every word of a speech perfect; the Obama “presidential” seal that he used during the campaign. Obama is not the first narcissist we have had for President, Bill Clinton this is your cue, but I think he has the worst case of it.

  • From a tactical standpoint on the abortion issue I think it is good that Obama is a narcissist. If he were a true believer above all in the pro-abort cause that would make him a much more effective opponent of the pro-life cause. Narcissists always prize self-preservation, in the case of Obama political self-preservation, and I think that is key in coming up with strategies to counter-act him on abortion.

  • Does the sign on Mr. McClarey’s business shingle read “attorney of law’ or “clinical psychologist”?

    I always thought he was a lawyer.

  • Mr. DeFrancisis the law has more narcissists than any other profession I can think of off hand so I have had plenty of time to observe them in action! In regard to Obama I do not think one needs any professional credentials to conclude that he is a narcissist, merely eyes to see and ears to hear.

  • Donald,

    I don’t buy the narcissist argument. Obama is a self-promoter, yes, but I actually get the sense that he is more insecure than he lets on. That’s the ‘thin skin’ you’re talking about. Narcissists by contrast are immune to criticism.

    Narcissists are almost incapable of simulating what it is like to hold another position or be in the shoes of another person. That’s just not Obama. Obama is able to look at things from other points of view and at least understand the basic principles of his political opponents. Narcissists can only do that with the most excruciating difficulty. Obama does it effortlessly.

    He’s just not a bad guy, and certainly not a narcissist. And, for the record, I don’t think Bush was a bad guy either. When I was a young leftist I hated him like everyone else did on the left, but the older I got the more tiresome all the jokes about his intelligence and speaking abilities became.

  • Mr. McClarey,

    My statement was more a poor attempt at humor than an argument about professionalization as a necessary condition in the discernment of psychological disorders.

  • Agreed Mr. DeFrancisis, and I took it in a humorous way. I took 20 hours of psych as an undergrad and remember mice in mazes and Freud in Vienna, or perhaps it was Freud in a maze and mice in Vienna.

    Joe, I sincerely hope you are right and I am wrong.

  • As has been pointed out many times, Obama’s genius is his ability to use such thoughtful and moderate-sounding rhetoric even while his actions tell a completely different story.

  • Joe, I agree with you insofar as we’re in agreement — I imagine you are — that dialogue is not at the expense of true progress. One of the immediate tragedies with the horror of abortion is strategy. The gravity and scope of the evil doesn’t lend itself to a timely cultural dialogue, particularly a false one — I’ll clarify this point momentarily. Though, it seems that given the situation, we are obliged to a win-some, lose-some strategy and it requires compromise. But, again, this is hard particularly if the result is generational perpetuation of abortion with the fruit of very slow social and cultural progress on the matter. Again, I’m reiterating so we’re clear, I’m not asserting you’re making this error. I’m just saying it for the sake of clarity.

    It seems to me and this was my reasoning: if the Democratic political machine can win Catholic, even pro-life votes, without any sort of meaningful criticism or opposition, there is no reason for them to change or even rethink their position on legal abortion. Rather, they’ll continue to play “word gymnastics” and say let’s reduce abortions. Now while abortion reduction is a good in the short-term, it cannot be confused as the long-term goal.

    I’m not saying this is your position — you haven’t made it your position — but I’ve encountered too many minds that think we’re going to reach zero abortions through socio-economic means, which is an absurdity. Poland illegalized abortion except in cases of rape, incest, and life of the mother. They went from six figure abortions to a much smaller, but still unfortunate, 300 abortions in a year. That is such a profound difference.

    In some sense, if you look at Catholics United, Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good, and Catholic Democrats, you get the idea that the pro-life position is solely and only “reducing the need for abortion” and not abolitionist. It’s no more intellectual incoherent than trying to solve the issue of slavery by subsidizing slave-owners so they won’t need slaves and giving contraception to slaves in order to reduce the number of slaves in the country. Now, I know and am fully aware you already agree with this. I just think “dialogue” is such a fine line between relativism and civil debate within a pluralistic society. That’s number one.

    Number two and this is for Don:

    “Don’t get me wrong Joe. I fully expect Obama to throw the pro-aborts under the bus if it is to his political advantage, in that he will not fight for pro-abortion legislation if he believes that the political backlash will harm him. That is why it is so important for all pro-lifers to assert clearly that there will be a high political price to pay for pro-abortion legislation.”

    Well, while I don’t deny this at all, here’s my problem. This mentality lends so much energy and focus toward the “enemy” that when we have a pro-life Congress or Administration, we don’t hold them too the fire in regard to their accomplishments, or lack thereof. This is unequivocally my opinion as a Democrat, so you are free to contradict me, but it seems to me that Republicans really in a lot of ways get a license, or a free pass, to get under the radar of scrutiny.

    If George Bush veteos health care for children it isn’t so much of an outrage. In regard to the wars in the Middle East, we need not even presuppose whether or not they’re just, but rather the management — I think from any perspective — has been far from ideal. So wherever the GOP may be lacking, they have a sort of “immunity” because of the pro-life label.

    It’s clearly more a label than an ethos because I just don’t see evidence for the contrary. If you have nine new Justices that weren’t on the court during Roe, with seven of them being appointed by pro-life Republican presidents (the majority of the pro-choicers appointed under Reagan) with only four of them being pro-life, it’s rather telling.

    I honestly don’t think Catholics should trust a political machine so blindly, let alone think it’s — or its politicians — are our allies. At least, in any sort of complete sense. Now, surely, I don’t think this is your view, but it’s more my concern about a “tendency.”

    Now surely abortion is an issue with very few, if any equals on the moral plane. The whole issue of “non-negotiable” issues is that Catholics cannot disagree on them, remain Catholics, and receive the Eucharist. Now in regard to all other issues, there is room for disagreement among Catholics. However, this (to me) seems to be indicative that these other issues do not regard activity that in and of themselves are objectively evil, therefore, a position on these other issues do not in themselves constitute grounds to bar Catholics from receiving communion.

    In regard to such matters, we aren’t all right (as much as we’d like to be). There isn’t a sudden moral neutrality. We can intellectually disagree, but arguably some position, some consideration is more fully (objectively) in accord with the Gospel, more reasonable, and more rational — it is truthful and most plausible in the context of a situation.

    I’m not sure why there is this sort of relativism that is prevalent because of the issues that call for “prudential analysis”, e.g. abortion is a paramount evil; Catholics can disagree about the war in Iraq and, say, capital punishment. This sort of talk almost paints the latter two issues as “non-issues.” Just in language, it can come across as saying, “Well, that’s not relevant right now. Abortion first.”

    I don’t think it’s entirely a matter of different degree of issues. I can’t recall any talk in the Catholic blogosophere [perhaps I simply overlooked it] about the massive spending increases and “big government” policies of the last eight years in any substantial way.

    So, admittedly, I think there’s a double standard and a bias. I don’t think it’s fair and I’m not sure if it really helps Catholics, of all political perspectives, to find a solution to our moral and social challenges. Rather it sort of puts us in camps and I think that’s what we’re watching play out.

    Just my two cents. Not sure how coherent it is.

  • Well, now that Justice Souter is retiring… I can’t wait to see who Obama thinks will be wonderful black-robed priest of the Constitution.

    Of course, maybe he’ll make a “mistake” just like Bush I did with Souter!

  • He’ll use a pro-choice litmus test and say he didn’t.

    Are there any pro-life judicial activists? I’d like to strike a deal…

  • On the narrow issue of Obama’s alleged “first thing” promise, I have to side with Joe, that it was somewhat overblown by the pro-life side.

    That statement to Planned Parenthood was made in response to a direct question about what he would do to protect abortion rights. I always took his reply to mean that signing FOCA was the “first thing” he would do in relation to abortion — not necessarily a literal promise that it would be the very first bill he would sign after taking the oath of office. His answer, taken in context, did not rule out the possibility that other issues (e.g. the economy) would take precedence over abortion.

    That being said, I do still believe that Obama is the most pro-abortion president since Roe, and if not for the determined and vocal opposition of pro-lifers, he probably would have gladly signed FOCA by now.

    I also partly agree with Joe with regard to Obama’s level of narcissism. Ex-Gov. Blago was and is a textbook example of hard-core narcissism (he too had ambitions of running for president). Obama is not nearly as far gone as he was. However, just about any successful politician is narcissistic to some extent.

  • Eric,

    Here’s the thing. Ideally, I would love for the US to do what Poland did, and just ban it, no ifs, ands, or buts. On say, 95% of issues, I’m more than willing to follow our Constitutional procedures. When it comes to protecting the right to life, however, my first preference would be an outright ban with or without the approval of individual states. This is a philosophical question, an ontological question, that cannot be decided by a majority vote.

    But that just isn’t going to happen. No president will do it, no Congress will do it. Thanks to the Blackmum court, we are now in a situation where we have no choice, ironic as it may seem, but to be politically pro-choice while being philosophically pro-life.

    What do I mean by that? I mean even the states rights, overturn Roe v Wade approach is ultimately a pro-choice position, no matter how anyone tries to spin it. You can say that you’ll vote pro-life when the time comes to decide whether abortion should be legal or illegal on a state to state basis. And that’s great! It’s certainly what I will do.

    But we’re still forced to accept that the ontological status of a human being can be decided by majority vote, if we’re going to stay within the confines of the political system. That is, in its essence, pro-choice, even if we personally choose pro-life.

    When presented with this undeniable logic a lot of ‘states rights’ pro-lifers admit that their position is a pragmatic one, and they think it is the best one. That’s fine. But the pro-life Obama voters also have a pragmatic approach – to reduce abortion through economic policy. There’s little if any moral difference between these positions, but the illusion is that there is a great difference.

    I think we should do the following: a) continue to work on overturning Roe, b) continue to work on reducing abortion through economic policy, c) continue what I see as the more valuable and effective work of building the culture of life, and d) strive for pro-life unity and recognize that both the anti-Roe and abortion reduction pro-lifers are pragmatists doing their best within the political system and the prevailing culture of death.

    I hope that makes sense.

Irony Alert

Friday, April 24, AD 2009


Hattip to The Catholic Key BlogComments of President Obama at the Holocaust Memorial in Washington.

“It is the grimmest of ironies that one of the most savage, barbaric acts of evil in history began in one of the most modernized societies of its time, where so many markers of human progress became tools of human depravity: science that can heal used to kill; education that can enlighten used to rationalize away basic moral impulses; the bureaucracy that sustains modern life used as the machinery of mass death — a ruthless, chillingly efficient system where many were responsible for the killing, but few got actual blood on their hands.”

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5 Responses to Irony Alert

  • Good post.

  • Two posts ago (the Colbert Report post) has 0bama lecturing us about losing our moral bearings. This is one sick dude.

  • I don’t know which possibility is scarier: that he may be completely oblivious of the obvious parallel, or that he is perfectly aware of it and doesn’t care.

    The major challenge for Catholics in the next four years will be to mount a credible opposition without allowing it to be characterized as “partisan politics.” Won’t be easy.

  • Great post Donald!


    The major challenge for Catholics in the next four years will be to mount a credible opposition without allowing it to be characterized as “partisan politics.” Won’t be easy.

    not with his communications department in bed with pretty much the whole of the media, and liberal Catholics like Kmiec shilling for him.

4 Responses to Send Him Some Mail

  • God said no one shall judge but him…Let’s stop judging like all the anti abortionists do..
    I am Catholic and I am pro-choice like 75% of all Catholics… The church needs to enter the 21st century and realize that we are not evil but reasonable people. that realize that there is more than giving birth to a child

  • Jim C.,

    You fail to recognize that the Catholic Church is not a democracy. That the teachings of Jesus are timeless.

    There are those that don’t follow the teachings of Jesus and have drifted from the Church.

    If you feel that you’re “right” in your “opinion” just because 75% of misguided Catholics think as you do, then think again.

    You need to be right with God, not with man.

    We are to be “in this world”, not “of this world”.

  • I think the statistic that 75% of Catholics are pro-choice is nonsense. That would mean that Catholics as a whole are more pro-choice than Americans in general!

    Here’s some more recent info:

    “59 percent of practicing Catholics say they are pro-life while just 29 percent of non-practicing Catholics say so.”

    To me “non-practicing Catholic” is a nonsensical statement – this is not a cultural club, it is a profession of faith. I’m sick of the psychotic arbitrariness that can declare, “Oh, I’m a Catholic – even though I believe in nothing the Church teaches, never go to Mass, and am a pro-abortion atheist.” That’s yet another Orwellian abuse of language. You aren’t a Catholic because you’re Irish or Italian, because your Mom was Catholic, or some other nonsense. Technically, I suppose, if you’re baptized you’re a Catholic but you don’t deserve to be called one and certainly don’t deserve to be included for demographical considerations.

    As for this disgusting rationalization for child murder, thank the Lord in heaven that the immorality of abortion has been established ex cathedra, as intrinsically evil now and for all time.

The Bishop and the President

Monday, March 23, AD 2009


Bishop John M. D’Arcy of the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend is planning to release a statement tomorrow, March 24, on the intention of Notre Dame to pay homage to Obama on May 17, 2009.  Assuming that the Bishop condemns the visit this would not be his first clash with the powers that be at Notre Dame.  On February 24, 2004 he condemned the annual presentation at Notre Dame of the Vagina Monologues.  Notre Dame ignored him, and, under President Jenkins, the department sponsored Vagina Monologues performances continue, with his about face on that issue indicating Jenkins’ complete lack of willingness to defend Catholic teaching and morality.  On  April 30, 2006 and again on March 2008, Bishop D’Arcy released statements about the ongoing performances of the Vagina Monologues, highlighting his intense disagreement with Jenkins.    The Bishop has also condemned the “Queer Film Festival” sponsored by Notre Dame.

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20 Responses to The Bishop and the President

  • This case is akin to that of our American Catholic politicians who consistently ignore Church teaching, our bishops, and most recently (in Madame Pelosi’s case) our pope.
    Unless God changes their hearts, nothing will happen until the bishops start laying down excommunications, or in this case revoke ND’s Catholic affiliation.

  • I’m sure it will be deleted at some point, but why does this idiot troll keep posting these comments on this website? Is this some sort of Hot Air offshoot that I am not aware of?

  • Because you are a bigot Jim as amply demonstrated by your obsession with attacking the Catholic Church. I have deleted your comment as I will delete any comments of yours that appear in future in any of my threads.

  • Correct Paul. Follow this link please and you will see what has Jim up in arms:

  • Okay, now that you’ve deleted jim’s comment, I hope Blue Shoe doesn’t think I am calling him a troll 🙂

  • In regard to jim, I shouldn’t allow myself to be drawn off topic, but this is just one of many anti-Catholic comments that he posted at Hot Air:

    “If God had thought abortion was murder, then why didn’t He say so more clearly in the Bible? He apparently thought it was significant enough in the Old Testament to tell people what types of clothes they could wear and what types of food they could eat, yet no explicit mention of abortion?

    As to you Orthodox Catholics, if you don’t like what’s going on in the US, why don’t you move to Vatican City?

    jim m on February 18, 2009 at 11:19 AM”

    Needless to say, I have no intention of providing a platform to a person of this stripe.

  • And Sydney is right. Every HA comment thread that alludes to the Church in some way always seems to draw some anti-Catholic kook. I’ve recently registered to comment there, but it’s hard to dig through the morass on such a highly trafficked site.

  • In addition to being a bigot Jim you are dense. As I stated earlier I will delete all of your comments in my threads, just as I deleted your latest musing. I will not give you a forum to vent your hatred of the Catholic Church.

  • I’m a lawyer too Jim, and even a bad attorney should know that you cannot libel or defame a pseudonym. Your threat is as meaningless as your bigotry against my Faith is repulsive, and your comment is deleted.

  • Pingback: The Bishop Speaks « The American Catholic
  • Thank you Dale for sharing that link. You and Donald are just as sensitive to this issue as I am and I appreciate your proclivity in sharing this information in a timely fashion.

    The best we can do as Catholics outside of prayer is to disseminate this information as quickly as possible to inform Catholics everywhere of the culpability that the University of Notre Dame, in specific, Father John Jenkins, shares in endorsing the slaughter of innocents.

  • My pleasure. Thanks for the hat-tip.

  • …of the culpability that the University of Notre Dame, in specific, Father John Jenkins, shares in endorsing the slaughter of innocents….

    Fr. Jenkins has made no such endorsement. Tito veers toward calumny again.

  • You are correct Mr. DeFrancisis, I think the sentence would better read as follows: “shares in honoring a politician who has fought to keep legal the slaughter of innocents.”

  • Thank you.

  • Thank you Donald.

    You wrote exactly what I was attempting to convey.

    Glad to see that Mark DeFrancisis is astute to catch that, but it fails me to comprehend why he is incapable of catching the errors of Father Jenkins in inviting a pro-abortion president. Or condemn President Obama’s policies of promoting abortion on demand. Or ever condemning any action that is unCatholic.

    Instead he wriggles in his dungarees reading through various pro-life and pro-Catholic websites trying to find anything that would undermine the Catholic message to relieve his anxiety that there are people that love their faith and actually stand up for their beliefs in God and His Church.


    One can only dream of having a warrior such as Mark on the side of good, rather than an enabler of excuses and dissent.

  • Just don’t forget, Christ has come to save President Obama. Does his work to save Obama mean he supports him? Obviously not. Yet, he worked for his salvation despite what Obama has, and will, do.

  • Indeed He has Mr. Karlson, and I hope He succeeds.

  • Pingback: Third Bishop Reproach’s Notre Dame Decision « The American Catholic

50 Responses to Notre Shame

  • Mark,

    You crossed the line one too many times with me. I had to delete your comments for the first time ever. I’ve tolerated your obtuseness for far too long.

    Please, if you can’t be constructive don’t comment.

  • Tito,

    You see no presumption and lack of charity in the cartoon you chose?

  • I think Rick Garnett’s take is the best I’ve read so far. In particular, I like the mild tone:

    Most institutions don’t, in the big picture, really matter. There are workable substitutes available, and lots of other players doing pretty much the same thing in pretty much the same way.

    The University of Notre Dame — which is, obviously, flawed and fallible in many, many ways — does matter. Truth be told, it is the only real hope left for a great university that is meaningfully Catholic. The Church and the world — all of us, Catholic or not, football fans or not — desperately need such an institution.

    This great need imposes a weighty burden. To paraphrase Peter Parker’s Uncle Ben, with Notre Dame’s matter-ing comes a great responsibility to be true to her calling and worthy of her mission. Unfortunately, by honoring President Obama — who has, in recent weeks, taken steps that are glaringly in conflict with his bedrock moral obligation to respect and protect the equal dignity of unborn children — Notre Dame has clouded what should be clear, and deeply disappointed not just her usual critics, but also those of us who want very much for her to succeed (and work hard to help her succeed).

    To say this is not to say that a Catholic university should only invite speakers or engage leaders and thinkers whose views and records are consistent with the Church’s teachings. It is not to question President Obama’s accomplishments or to deny that his election was, in many ways, historic. Certainly, a Catholic university should engage, challenge, learn from, and “dialogue” with, the wider world.

    Still, to do these things, to be what the world needs her to be, Notre Dame has to be distinctive — not weird, “sectarian,” narrow, or nostalgic, but authentic, courageous, integrated, and . . . interesting. Here, I am afraid she failed.

  • I’m not sure I understand the 30 pieces of silver bit. How is Jenkins profiting from having Obama as a commencement speaker?

  • Mark,

    It represents the mood of the country quite well among Catholics.

    John Henry,

    Good article. Yes, she has failed us.


    It’s a reference to Judas selling out Jesus for silver, ie, Fr. Jenkins sells out the relatively good name of Notre Dame worldly adulation.

  • It’s a reference to Judas selling out Jesus for silver

    I get that. My question was whether the reference had any basis in reality. I take it the answer is no.

  • BA,

    It can be interpreted any which way you wish.


    This is your last warning.

    Anymore ad hominem’s from you and you will be placed back on moderation. That is my way of dealing with someone who does not practice his Catholic faith by showing a lack of charity in the comm-boxes. The rest of your actions will be left up to God to judge your lies and deceit.

  • I am sure Obama was not invited because of his position on abortion. He was invited because he is president of the United States.

  • “That is my way of dealing with someone who does not practice his Catholic faith by showing a lack of charity in the comm-boxes.


    Where is your charity to Father Jenkins? I would bet my eternal soul that he did not intend his invitation as an endorsement, condonement or acceptance of Obama’s abortion position. And do not hide behind the “mood of Catholics in the country spill, used already above!

  • Tito,

    You compared Notre Dame’s president to Judas. That’s an ad hominem. I think Professor Garnett is right to express some disappointment; but I think some of the commentary has been excessive.

  • Henry Karlson,

    You are now on indefinite moderation.

    Do not ever threaten me again.

    You are a very sad human being.

    May God have mercy on your soul.

  • John Henry,

    I made an analogy, not an ad hominem.

  • ….Jenkins made clear the University is not honoring the president for his stances on these issues, but for his leadership.

    “The invitation of President Obama to be our Commencement speaker should in no way be taken as condoning or endorsing his positions on specific issues regarding the protection of life, such as abortion and embryonic stem cell research,” Jenkins said.

    These “crucial differences” in positions on the protection of life are not being ignored in extending the invitation to the president, Jenkins said, but rather can be used as a catalyst for dialogue.

  • Mark,

    Fr. John Jenkins has repeatedly crossed the line as president at Notre Dame. First with pushing the V-logues on campus and now with the invitation to President Obama.

    If Fr. Jenkins is the president, wouldn’t he have anticipated the uproar that this would cause? If he didn’t then he needs to be fired. If he did, then he is thumbing his nose at God.

    Either way, it was a grave mistake and to come out and say that he doesn’t endorse Obama’s abortion policies is incorrect. He knows full well the contentiousness of abortion in the country, especially as a Catholic priest. He was fully aware what his actions would do, create the scandal that has now hit Notre Dame.

    He bears full responsibility and he has damaged the reputation of Notre Dame and has marginalized himself from Catholic orthodoxy for the forseeable future.

  • John,

    It is certainly creating a lot of ‘dialogue’.

    [ed.] Henry Karlson is besides himself in profane and explicit verbal attacks on anyone who would dare try to protect the lives of the most vulnerable and innocent, the unborn children of God.

    Par for the course for alleged and dissenting Catholics.

  • Henry Karlson,

    Keep digging your hole and I’ll keep deleting your un-Catholic comments.

    You and your fellow dissenting Catholics can bad mouth the Church, Her teachings, and Her followers, but God will have the final say on how you have pushed the agenda of the Culture of Death.

  • Tito,

    As you are well aware, Henry and Mark are not dissenting Catholics. I think Henry’s rhetoric (although it’s been deleted now, so he can’t defend himself) was ill-advised and intemperate. That happens to most people from time to time on comment threads. But he is not a dissenter.

  • John Henry,

    That is where you and I disagree.

    When one leads others away from the faith with lies and deceit, ‘dissenting’ is one of the few kind words I can think of that is allowable in the comm-boxes.


    And if you consider lies, deceits, and threats to me a form of ‘defense’, then so be it.

  • Tito,

    I am defending abortion in no way, shape or form.

    How do you expect to advance the culture of life, if you do not provide forums to charitably engage with those who have influence, but disagree with you in the public square?

    What if some good comes out of this engagement?

    Perhaps Obama may–albeit ever so slightly–see things with another perspective in mind. He is not pure evil. He is a human being on his way, just like the rest of us, who now has the responsibility of being the leader of the free world. Cannot this be an opportunity?

  • Henry Karlson, [ed.]

    Beware of false prophets, who come to you in sheep’s clothing but inwardly are ravenous wolves. You will know them by their fruits. Are grapes gathered from thorns, or figs from thistles? So, every sound tree bears good fruit, but the bad tree bears evil fruit. A sound tree cannot bear evil fruit, nor can a bad tree bear good fruit. Every tree that does not bear good fruit is cut down and thrown into the fire. Thus you will know them by their fruits. “Not every one who says to me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven.

    — Holy Gospel of St. Matthew 7:15-21

  • Tito,

    For heaven’s sake, calm down.

    And you cannot insult me personally, because I think very little of myself apart from Christ, so don’t waste your energies about my false prohecy deceptive clothing et al. I did not know, for one, that wolves wore T-shirts and dungarees as sheep’s clothing. What if I were wearing my blue blazer and grey flannels? A sweater and khakis? Would that be different?

    Please answer my questions.

  • Jenkins said that Notre Dame was “honored” by the President accepting their invitation. Is there any political position that a President could hold which would cause Jenkins not to be honored by the President accepting such an invitation? Being in favor of the legality of kids being killed in the womb is rather an extreme example I would think. Perhaps if he were in favor of infanticide Jenkins would draw the line? Although considering the fact that Obama raised campaign funds based on his opposition to banning the disguised infanticide known as partial birth abortion I guess that line has been crossed. Perhaps if a President were in favor of cannibalism Jenkins would draw the line?

  • The irony: I’ve been called a “dissenting Catholic” because I said our Lady deserves to be shown respect.

  • Mr. McClarey,

    That is mere social politeness.

  • Greetings,
    Obama deliberately chose the Notre Dame invitation out of dozens of private schools he could have chosen. It is part of his re-election campaign in which he seeks to deceive the ill-informed Catholic voter into believing the rhetoric about “abortion reduction” and him being some sort of “moderate” on abortion. He is using Notre Dame and Jenkins is letting him do it.

    Obama has sized up the Catholic bishops and decided that they are too weak and too cowardly to hurt him. He is basically spitting in their eye to see if he gets any reaction. If he does not get a reaction, he will go further next time. Next up is the removal of conscience rights. Then it will be Catholic hospitals. Eventually it will be FOCA.

    The Catholic bishops need to speak together and Notre Dame needs to lose its right to call itself a Catholic university. If Jenkins had thought that would happen, he never would have invited Obama.

  • No Mr. DeFrancisis, Jenkins extended the invitation to Obama. Obama accepted and Jenkins says Notre Dame is honored by the acceptance. Considering that the invitation was extended in the first place, I take Jenkins at his word. So I repeat my query, what political position would a President have to take before Jenkins would draw the line at inviting him to give the commencement address at Notre Dame and receiving an honorary degree?

  • Just a little thought experiment. Does anyone wish to argue with a straight face that Notre Dame would extend these honors to a President who publicly stated that blacks were an inferior race? I assume that Jenkins would prefer to eat ground glass, and rightly so, before he would honor such a man, President or not. In what way is the moral offense of honoring an overt racist greater than honoring a President who, throughout his career, has fought vigorously for abortion on demand? Could it be because in academia white racism is rightfully regarded as evil, while abortion is regarded as a sacred right? Isn’t the explanation for this decision painfully obvious? The administration at Notre Dame fully subscribes to the beliefs and prejudices predominant in American academia, and opposition to abortion is anathema to these beliefs and prejudices. By inviting Obama they are defending their faith and it has little in common with the Catholic Faith.

  • Mr. McClarey,

    Are you prone to believe in conspiracy theories too?

  • I guess Joseph Cassano wasn’t available to initiate a dialogue on greed and unrestrained speculation.

  • The question (for me, at least) isn’t whether inviting Obama to deliver the commencement is a good idea. I think it was a big mistake. The question is whether comparing Father Jenkins to Judas is a proper way of expressing one’s disapproval of the decision.

    I don’t know Father Jenkins personally, but he was the spiritual director for a friend of mine. She speaks very highly of him.

  • “Are you prone to believe in conspiracy theories too?”

    Mr. DeFrancisis, you can do better than that. Anyone who has dealt with any colleges or universities in the past few decades will readily concede that abortion is viewed as a sacred right, not to say rite, by the powers that be in most of those institutions.

  • If one was serious about thinking Fr. Jenkins to be on a par with Judas because of the decision to invite Obama, I think one would pretty clearly be unhinged. But then, the political cartoon is a genre in which William Jennings Brian was portrayed as a Christ figure for supporting the gold standard (or was it the silver standard?) Overstatement would seem to be the nature of the genre.

    I think it was a very poor decision on ND’s part, but it hardly strikes me as surprising. They’ve had a great deal of difficulty over the years trying to decide how to balance being Catholic with fitting in with the rest of elite academia. And this seems to fit their overall pattern.

    I’d be curious to know why they didn’t invite (or at least didn’t get) Clinton, yet did invite Obama. Was the reasoning for not inviting Clinton anything to do with moral issues, and if so what was seen to be different with Obama?

  • William Jennings Bryan was an advocate of bimetalism often called the “Free silver” policy. The cartoons followed his speech at the 1896 Dem convention where he said “You shall not press down upon the brow of labor this crown of thorns, you shall not crucify mankind upon a cross of gold.” His rhetorical style was prone to hyperbole.

  • BA,

    I appreciate your genuine concern on the comparison, but Darwin and largebill have expressed my sympathies quite eloquantly on the matter.

    Go in peace.

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  • Christ Himself was given to hyperbole when He felt it appropriate. He had pretty harsh words for the Pharisees whom He called “whitewashed tombs” and “blind fools.” He said things that obviously were not meant to be taken literally, such as “If your hand causes you to sin, cut it off.” He even had harsh words for His own apostles at times. Yet He can hardly be accused of lacking charity!

    We fallen human beings are going to have a harder time telling the difference between righteous indignation and just plain being insulting. Some of us are going to draw the line in different places that others.

    It is a well known principle of media law that public figures are pretty much fair game for satire, parody and editorial cartooning. Fr. Jenkins, being the president of the nation’s best known Catholic university, should know this. He is not some innocent private citizen being held up to ridicule after being sucked into a controversy not of his own making. He HAD to know this would tick off a lot of people. Since he stands accused of ‘selling out’ one of the most important values his institution is supposed to stand for (right to life from conception to natural death), the comparison to Judas in an editorial cartoon is not, in my opinion, inappropriate. (If it were, you would hear Bill Donohue of the Catholic League screaming about it all the way from NYC.)

  • ” John Henry Says: ….Jenkins made clear the University is not honoring the president for his stances on these issues, but for his leadership.”

    Yeah, promoting the killing of innocent babies not just in the U.S. but globally is a notably excellent leadership quality.

    Heck, might as well hail Hitler for his leadership quality as well given how he raised Germany from the ashes of the first World War — you’ll just have to ignore the fact that he had wanted to exterminate an entire people, which according to some Catholics, unborn babies are not actually.

  • e.,

    That was a quote from the link in the update, not my opinion. I am disappointed by Fr. Jenkin’s decision, but he has at least made it clear that the University does not endorse Obama’s position on abortion on ESCR.

  • Here, apparently, is the cartoon I was thinking of, or at least a similar one:

    William Jennings Bryan was an advocate of bimetalism often called the “Free silver” policy.

    Of course, I can never hear of bimetalists without thinking of Evelyn Waugh’s Scott-King’s Modern Europe in which the bimetalists play a memorable (though off stage) role.

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  • Tito,

    You seem to be embarrassing your co-contributors more and more each week. It’s amusing to watch.


  • Catholic Anarchist, don’t you have better things to do in the wee hours of a Saturday morning other than to spread bile?

  • Michael,

    You are too old for that type of juvenile taunting.

  • Not taunting at all. Just an observation. Do you disagree?

  • Michael,

    Yes. It’s one thing to have a strong reaction to topics related to abortion; quite another to play the troll (as, I believe, you are). The former is understandable; the latter, to use your phrase, ’embarrassing’.

  • I see. Defend “your own” at all costs. Very american of you.

  • I would have to say it’s a human characteristic, rather than an American characteristic. There seems to be some sort of ridiculous fallacy floating around VN that because a character trait is exhibited by some Americans, it’s unique to Americans or distinctively American.

    As far as whether defending one’s own or a desire to be fair is on display here, that’s for others to judge. As this is not my thread, and we are rather far afield, I will not comment on this any further. I would appreciate it if you did not as well.

  • I think we tend to try to take each case individually, which may or may not be characteristically American — though it does seem to be something Michael can congratulate himself in being quite free from.

    I, for one, am certainly not embarrassed by Tito. He at times makes statements that I disagree with, and when that happens I sometimes ignore it and sometimes tell him so. However far from being embarrassed by him I have a lot of respect for Tito. Among other reasons, because he far surpasses me in the ability to take fraternal criticism honestly and humbly.

  • mong other reasons, because he far surpasses me in the ability to take fraternal criticism honestly and humbly.

    I have seen absolutely no evidence of this.

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Notre Dame Honors Pro-Abort

Friday, March 20, AD 2009


The University of Notre Dame announced today that President Obama will be the commencement speaker this year and receive an honorary degree.  Leaving aside the spit in the face insult to Our Lady that this invitation constitutes, the bishops of this country* spoke on this point in 2004:

“The Catholic community and Catholic institutions should not honor those who act in defiance of our fundamental moral principles. They should not be given awards, honors or platforms which would suggest support for their actions.”

I hope that faithful Catholics will do their best to persuade the administration of Notre Dame to rethink this invitation.  If the administration does not, I hope that enough faithful Catholics show up on May 17, 2009 to make the protest of the speech a memorable one.  I also trust that the students of Notre Dame who take their Faith seriously will also find means during the speech to express their displeasure over the choice of speaker known.

* United States Conference of Catholic Bishops or USCCB

Update I:  As usual, Ed Morrissey at Hot Air is on top of the story.

Update II:  Totus chimes in.

Update III:  For those of you who would like to make your views known to the president of Notre Dame, click here.

Update IV:  Good.  There is a website set up to organize resistance to this invitation.

Continue reading...

38 Responses to Notre Dame Honors Pro-Abort

  • “Leaving aside the spit in the face insult to Our Lady that this invitation constitutes…”

    I think Our Lady can endure it, as she has loving birth-pangs for all God’s children to be saved…

  • Yep she can Mr. DeFrancisis. Why any faithful Catholic would endure for a second such an insult to Our Lady is another matter.

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  • Mr. McClarey,

    Your conception of the Church sounds more lihe a bastion than the sacrament for God’s universal salvific will.

    BTW, I wonder if you protested President Bush’s commencement at Saint Vincent College, 2 years ago. You know, he instigated an unjest war and ordered torture.

  • I don’t think it has anything to do with politics. Abortion is such a paramount evil — analogous to and well beyond in death count — the genocide of the Jews in the holocaust. The fact that a Catholic institution, apart of the Catholic Church, would invite someone who supports such a horror, even in ignorance, to deliver a speech and to commission the students to go engage the world presents itself as a scandal.

    Now, granted, I ardently oppose the war in Iraq and I think we need to re-think our strategy on Afghanistan. My views on torture as just the same. However, the scope and gravity of these evils, is a pale comparison to abortion. Now, I’m not advocating a proportionalist trap of condoning or “watering” down the lesser evils, to totally oppose the greater one; I’m just saying, one cannot make the comparison as if the two sides are morally equal because the scope and gravity in and of itself attests to that.

    I do not think President Obama should be given the opportunity to speak at any Catholic institution or receive any award. In the same way, I would have opposed President Bush speaking at a Catholic institution or receiving any award.

    Rather, I think that Catholic institutions should avoid all together giving the privilege of speaking at such ceremonies to politicians who represent a political platform and a realm of bias and division (politics) instead of the breadth and all-embracing truth of the Gospel. At this point, I cannot name many Catholic politicians who are a “sign of contradiction” that bring to life Catholic Social Teaching in their political office who could truly be a uniting figure at a commencement ceremony.

    That’s my two cents.

  • Totally disagree with you in regard to President Bush Mr. DeFrancisis. I believe he waged just wars. As to the torture issue, I disagree with waterboarding, but I can understand how reasonable people would disagree with me.

    As to President Obama, giving an honorary degree at a Catholic institution to a man who has raised campaign funds on the basis of his support for that barely disguised infanticide known as partial birth abortion is a capitualtion to the culture of death and a despicable, I would say calculated, insult to the Blessed Virgin who brought our Redeemer into the World through her womb. This is tantamount to a synagogue giving an award to a neo-Nazi politician. The administration of Notre Dame should be deeply ashamed.

  • Bravo Eric, always the voice of reason and faith!

  • Good call Eric! It really does help to have a range of viewpoints, especially in the face of Mark’s attempt at moral equivalency. Your defense of orthodoxy is all the more poignant considering your opposition to the Iraq war.

    Mr. DeFrancis,

    do you really think it’s just as bad to pour water on the face of 3 avowed terrorists as it is to murder a million babies a year? That is just sick.

  • “That is just sick.”

    Matt, I’d appreciate it if you would refrain from that type of comment. I enjoy your vigorous defense of Catholic teaching, but Mr. DeFrancisis has said nothing of a personal nature in this thread against anyone else and he should not be attacked personally. You made your point well without your final sentence.

  • Matt,

    I made no attempt at moral equivalency. You are reading into my remarks. Try harder.

  • Mark,

    You comment here often enough you should plug AC in your name, ie, place the http address as the link to your name.

    You’re part of the tapestry here, mind as well go all the way!


  • Mark D.,

    are you unfamiliar with the term, “moral equivalency”?

    When we decry the honoring of a pro-abortion president at a Catholic university, and you ask:

    I wonder if you protested President Bush’s commencement at Saint Vincent College, 2 years ago. You know, he instigated an unjest war and ordered torture.

    You are clearly implying that the acts, even if we accept your analysis of them, are equivalent, or at least on the same moral scale.

    Do you accept that abortion is far more grave a situation, as the Church teaches, or not?

  • Matt,

    The Church opposes instrinsic and grave moral evils. Unjust wars and torture are both.

  • Ah, Catholic Anarchist, with your penchant for name calling as a substitute for analysis and argument, it is always good to have the delete button ready when you come calling, and I deleted your last comment for personal insults.

  • Once again Mr. DeFrancisis I simply disagree with you about the wars being unjust. However, this entire thread is about Notre Dame honoring a pro-abort, and the Church puts abortion and euthanasia in a special category of evil as Cardinal Ratzinger noted in 2004:

    “3. Not all moral issues have the same moral weight as abortion and euthanasia. For example, if a Catholic were to be at odds with the Holy Father on the application of capital punishment or on the decision to wage war, he would not for that reason be considered unworthy to present himself to receive Holy Communion. While the Church exhorts civil authorities to seek peace, not war, and to exercise discretion and mercy in imposing punishment on criminals, it may still be permissible to take up arms to repel an aggressor or to have recourse to capital punishment. There may be a legitimate diversity of opinion even among Catholics about waging war and applying the death penalty, but not however with regard to abortion and euthanasia.”

    Here is a link to the entire memorandum:

    What the administration of Notre Dame is attempting to do should be anathema to all believing Catholics.

  • I was shocked and disappointed by this. One (small) mitigating factor, however, is that Notre Dame has a long-standing tradition, going back at least 50 years, of ALWAYS inviting each sitting president to be its commencement speaker. Most, if not all, presidents since Eisenhower have accepted the invitation at some point. They did not go out of their way to do this for Obama because they thought he was especially great (which was the impression I had at first)

    Perhaps they (ND administration) felt they could not back out of this tradition now without it appearing to insult the presidential office. You all know how we’re supposed to respect the office, no matter who happens to occupy it?

    That being said: given Obama’s particularly egregious efforts to promote the destruction of unborn human life, combined with the earlier controversies over Bush 43’s appearance, now would have been a good time to drop this particular tradition simply because of its potential to be a source of scandal.

    I doubt very much that a Jewish university would invite, say, Pat Buchanan or another well-known critic of Israel to be a commencement speaker, or that Brigham Young University (Mormon) would invite a vocal opponent of Proposition 8, even if they had a “tradition” of inviting similar public figures in the past.

  • Also, the argument that this is somehow going to promote “dialogue” and “openness” doesn’t wash. This isn’t a debate, a question and answer session, a panel discussion or a forum with multiple participants, which does not imply endorsement of any particular participant’s views. (If it were, there MIGHT be some justification for having him there.) No, this is a speech by ONE man to a captive audience, at which he gets to express his views to them (and to the nation via press coverage), and at which he is personally honored with an honorary degree. Not a “dialogue” but a one-way conversation.

  • Good comment as usual Elaine. I would note that Bill Clinton never gave a commencement address to Notre Dame. I do not know if he received an invitation. As far as I can tell no pro-abortion President has ever before delivered this address.

  • The invitation needs to be rescinded once and for all.

  • Donald – You can’t delete the truth, friend.

  • Correct Catholic Anarchist. Your comments are only deleted when they involve personal insult or are not on topic. Your most recent comment is not on topic, but you are responding to a prior comment by me so I will not delete it.

  • Notre Dame has made a grave error by inviting the abortionist to speak at their commencement. He is openly anti-Catholic and anti-God.

    What possible reason would ND have for asking him above all of the many qualified, intelligent, Catholic or at least pro-life speakers from which they could have chosen? This is the question. Even if they have invited every sitting president throughout the years, this guy is like no other president in his outrageous disrespect for human life. He resembles Hitler more than a president of the United States.

    His presence at ND will be an insult to the Catholic faith. Let us hope that through public outcry that they have the guts to un-invite him ASAP.

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  • Mark,

    The Church opposes instrinsic and grave moral evils. Unjust wars and torture are both.

    war is not intrinsically evil, water boarding is not intrinsically evil, though given circumstances it is reasonable to conclude that these acts in particular circumstances are, or even in almost every circumstance.

    Are you suggesting that ALL intrinsicly evil acts are morally equivalent? That telling a lie is as grave an evil as abortion?

    Do you even understand what “intrinsically evil” is? It bears no relation to the severity of an act. It’s not that abortion is intrinsically evil that which makes it so heinous.

  • It’s interesting to see just how ridiculous the arguments are over at Vox Nova. MZ’s argument, such as it is, is “grow up.” Thoughtful, that. Morning’s Minion “doesn’t care,” although not for any reason that he can explain.

    Henry takes the cake for the dumbest argument, though, as usually is the case. He says that this is like Jesus being criticized for hanging out with sinners. Yeah, except for the part where Jesus said that he was calling the sinners to repentance, and except for the fact that Jesus was specifically explaining why he was hanging out with the lower classes of society rather than the powerful and prestigious (precisely the opposite of what Notre Dame is doing), and except for the fact that Notre Dame is just sucking up to power rather than calling it to repentance. Other than that, it’s a great analogy, worthy of

  • Should be a period after “analogy.”

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  • I graduated from Notre Dame in 1977. President Carter was our commencement speaker and he was pro-choice.

  • President Ford also gave a speech at Notre Dame. Here’s what he wrote on abortion. Looks like his need for exceptions shouldn’t have sat well with Notre Dame back then.

    “Abortion on demand is wrong,” he said, adding that every state should have a constitutional right to control abortion and expressing his belief that such laws need to “recognize and provide for exceptional cases.”

  • Well Jim Notre Dame won’t have to worry about Obama having exceptions. He is 100% pro-abortion. Of course the Catholic Church is 100% against abortion. Even a pro-abort like yourself should be able to see why this might be a wee problem for Catholics who actually believe what the Church teaches, especially since what the Church teaches is that an innocent human life is destroyed in every abortion.

  • Mark – Did I miss something? Did the Catholic Chuch, i.e. Our Holy Father, declare the Iraqi War an “Unjust War.”

  • This is truly hypocritical. If Notre Dame wants to stay “true’ to its beliefs, then NO U.S. President should ever be invited to speak at a commencement. ALL OF THEM would be guilty of violating Catholic doctrine. As mentioned, George W. Bush was criticized by his holiness Pope John Paul II for his “unjust” war in Iraq. How many innocent lives, including children, were lost in that conflict? How are those innocent lives any different from the unborn? What about Bush’s immoral actions of torture and imprisonment? Did Notre Dame rescind his honorary degree as a result? The church needs to be consistent with its criticism. You can’t viciously attack one person’s views while ignoring the sins of others. This is why people are leaving the church. They are inconsistent. The church should be fighting on ALL issues where innocents are harmed, not just select one. What about the homeless people in this country that were ignored by the prior Republican administrations? Are their lives insignificant? Of course we don’t need to mention the scandals in the Catholic Church itself.

    I would have one thing more to say to all these people that are upset with President Obama speaking:

    Romans 14:10 “But you, why do you judge your brother? Or you again, why do you regard your brother with contempt? For we will all stand before the judgment seat of God.”

  • ” You can’t viciously attack one person’s views while ignoring the sins of others.”

    That is a recipe for doing nothing Mr. Miller and allowing evil to flourish. We have almost a million unborn kids put to death each year in this country and President Obama is vigorously in favor of this policy. For a university dedictated to Our Lady to honor such a man is an obscenity.

  • ?????????? ????, ?? ???? ?? ???????? ? ?????????? ?????? ?? ?????. ??-????? ?? ??????? ????? 🙂 ????, ??????? – ??? ?? ??? ???? 🙂

  • ????????? ?? ??????????? ????????? ??????????? ?? ????? ????????!

  • ?? ???????!

One Response to Tiller the Killer Goes on Trial

  • Don, you have dug out one of the factors that will bring revulsion and ickiness to the abort industry. Not just that Tiller The Killer is on trial. But also one of his prime specialties- abortions for underage females due to pressure from their older boyfriends. Let the feminists wiggle out of that little trap. Let a few of these girls cry on Oprah’s couch or get special treatment on a newsmagzine program. Then the whole It’s My Body issue gets turned inside out. Not to mention how the T-Man operates during the trial. Whether ideology will get in the way of a likely long prison sentence. And no Kitty Kat Sibelius or other highly-place lib to bail him out this time. I could complain about the highly biased AP story- biased toward Georgie- that made the rounds over the weekend. But people have better things to do and it hides in plain sight. Have fun, Georgie. Be nice to large men named Bubba in the slammer.

6 Responses to Congratulations American 'Catholics'

  • Do I see little pentagrams on the altar tablecloth? How appropriate.

  • By the way, Casey cast a pro-life vote in the last week. Perhaps he heeded his Bishop’s advice and repented.

    Just in continuity with my already mentioned (I think) desire to be more optimistic, I think we should spend twice as much time praying fervently for these people than we do criticizing them because the latter involves a huge temptation of succumbing to internal negative energy and focusing on the faults, however grave, of others and doesn’t reap as much good for humanity as the other option.

  • Perfect example of why this blog cannot be taken seriously.

  • Michael,

    Please, if you cannot find anything positive to say, none whatsoever, perhaps you should refrain? What does it gain you? It only manifests as negative energy and people fight and argue, throwing ad hominem attacks and calling each other pseudo-Catholics while we all say we’re so in love with Jesus.

    Resist the temptation. If it’s so horrible, then pray.

    I also think that you should potentially reflect on your words — for if they were true, ask yourself, why then do you frequently visit and feel compelled to not only engage, but occasionally — not always — do so in a manner that is negative, which seems to be something that you’re condemning at the moment.

    I would happily discuss criticisms with you constructively.

  • Eric – I don’t know what you mean. My comment was positive.

  • I agree. They are all Republicrats first. For Brownback, being from Kansas is 2nd. Catholic is so far back in distant 3rd place, it doesn’t register unless it’s election year.

    We’ll know Brownback is running for national office again when he shows up at a pro-life rally.

Obama's New Politics and Abortion

Friday, January 23, AD 2009

Yesterday was the anniversary of the Roe v. Wade ruling by the Supreme Court, and also the day of the annual March For Life. It was also the anniversary of the day on which President Clinton had reversed Reagan’s Mexico City Policy, which denies US funds slated for international family planning services to any organization which provides or refers people to abortions. And the anniversary of the day on which President Bush reinstated the policy.

Given that President Obama had promised to move quickly to rescind the policy again as Clinton had, news organizations ranging from Lifesite News to NPR reported that he would probably follow his predescessor’s lead by issuing an executive order on abortion on January 22nd as well. It was thus mildly surprising when the Christian Broadcasting Network broke the story that Obama would not rescind the policy on the day of the March for Life. A few Catholic progressives got carried away and scolded their anti-Obama bretheren for jumping the gun, and it was more widely suggested this was a sign of the sort of approach Obama would take to moral issues more widely: treading slowly and granting respect to his opponents views.

Continue reading...

11 Responses to Obama's New Politics and Abortion

  • Another interesting note is that Obama was invited to speak or send a message to the march but declined to do so (in his defense, Republican presidents have always sent messages, but never appeared). It seems like he isn’t interested in talking to let alone listening to the voices he claims to respect, 200,000 of them…


  • Informative essay by Dick Morris in The Hill- quoted extensively by Prof. Dr. Limbaugh on Thursday broadcast. Speculating on likely modus operendi of Obama Administration in association with Dem allies on Capitol Hill. Burying messy controversial stuff- Fairness Doctrine, etc.- on page 474 of Bank Bailout Aid To Kumquat Growers And Other Stuff Bill. Maybe how FOCA will be sent forth, buried under language even the most dedicated legislator will not read in advance. Or as Roberta Flack sang in 70s- killing me softly with his song. Beware soft singers with big authority.

  • but I suspect this is pretty much the compromise that we will get from President Obama on the abortion issue throughout his presidency: He will consent to avoid humiliating us in the most obvious ways, but will not actually change his agenda in the process.

    Exactly. We’ll get token nods that he “respects” our views, will not go out of his way to poke his finger in our eyes, and then he will go ahead with policies that our anathema to us.

    In this way, Obama may prove to be the polar opposite of GWB. Whereas Bush’s rhetoric left pro-lifers looking for more, the actual policies related to abortion were what we wanted.

    I really hope no one is naive enough to be taken in by Obama waiting an extra day to implement pernicious policies.

  • I’m pleased that President Obama recognizes that we can defend ourselves and respect the dignity of those who mean us harm, but I wish and hope that one day he recognizes that we can defend women’s rights and respect the dignity of those not yet born.

  • Kyle,

    You should write a letter to the President making that very point. Excellent observation.

  • For a while, I was skeptical, but somewhat optimistic that I had judged Obama too harshly and maybe he was capable of being bipartisan and pragmatic. Then again, I realized why I have a tendency to be skeptical. This is horrid; expected, but still very very terrible. This is not “common ground.”

    And yes, Kyle — I’m a paying member of FFL (Feminists for Life of America) and that’s one of the mottos: to be pro-woman is to be pro-life.

  • I’m not sure why it seems to be expected that pro-lifers should be grateful to have their noses rubbed in the President’s hard-core pro-abortion policies on the day after the Roe v. Wade anniversary instead of on it. The implication is that abortion is really no big deal and not “humiliating” pro-lifers (as if not being humiliated were what the movement was about) is a more-than-acceptable “compromise”–so now won’t you irritating Bible thumpers please acknowledge our new President’s magnanimity, then go away quietly?

    Not too long ago I came across an article by Jill Stanek in which she described some of her exchanges with the President regarding the Illinois BAIPA. As she told it, after her testimony about infants being left to die after late abortions, Christ Hospital sought to avoid embarrassment by outfitting a “comfort room” where that parents of those infants could, if desired, sit comfortably and hold their aborted babies until death. When she mentioned the room disparagingly during subsequent testimony, she was scolded by Obama for not really caring about the comfort of these dying children.

    I don’t know what the facts of that story are, but judging from the evident attitude that “We will do what we will, and you must thank us for any scrap we may toss your way, however cosmetic” I have to conclude that it at least has the ring of plausibility.

    Killing third-world babies and imposing forced abortion on powerless women is no big deal, and we accomplished it while being nice to the pro-lifers, too. What a prince of a guy.

    –Yet another FFLer

  • Further proof that there is a God and that clear minds prevail. How scary it must be to the religious radicals on the right that Obama actually puts serious thought into how a policy actually impacts women’s health and their right to make their own reproductive decisions.
    Strengthening pro-choice positions—check
    Next up; stem cell research and true separation of you [censured] from government!

    [Ed. Keep the comments civil, keep the name-calling to zero. This isn’t the Daily Kos]

  • Obama-Can,

    As a male why is it that I have no rights whatsoever as a father to my unborn child that I co-created with my wife? What if men took a similar attitude to challenge child support? What right does anyone decide how my money is spent that i work for. Is my paycheck protected by the right of privacy? OK, I see now. First I loose any chance to protect my unborn child and now I can expect a true seperation from me and government. I should just keep paying my taxes and shut up. Now this is change and the dawn of a new kind of politics.

  • Hello, I want to apologize for not recognizing the Moloch post was satire. There are some pro-aborts that admit abortion is a religion to them, but now I see that you and I are on the side of life. Please accept my apology.

Obama taps pro-life Catholic for DNC Chair? — Guess again.

Tuesday, January 6, AD 2009

“A Pro-Life DNC Chair!”, crows an apparently elated Michael Sean Winters in America, at the news that President-elect Obama has tapped the Virginian governor for DNC chair:

I never thought I would live to see the day. If anyone had any doubts about Barack Obama’s willingness to listen to pro-life Democrats, his selection of Virginia Governor Tim Kaine to head the Democratic National Committee should settle those doubts. Obama means business.

Perhaps, perhaps not.

Continue reading...

2 Responses to Obama taps pro-life Catholic for DNC Chair? — Guess again.

  • What Kaine said can be seen here. Indeed, in his own words, he is not in favor of overturning Roe, and should not be counted as a pro-life Catholic.

  • Here is a politician who straddles the fence like the rest. What he supports has not stopped nor will it stop the killingof the unborn til Roe vs, Wade is gone. Its like claiming to be a little being a “little bit” pregnant.