Boinkie's Blog

Universalis

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Deconstructing Marriage

The philosophical error behind allowing marriage to include two people of the same gender is the idea that gender is merely a "social construct".

In other words, it is a rule made by society, and a lot of those rules stop our freedom, so need to be destroyed.

This goes back to Rousseau, who along with other enlightenment intellectuals, decided that if we got rid of rules, we could be free like the mythical "Noble savage"of ancient times, who they saw as a man free and happy.

Mary Anne Glendon once pointed out the logical problem with that idea: That these philosophers didn't bother to ask what the women or children were doing at the time.

For the dirty little secret is that ancient man, whether he be a "hunter gatherer" or a farmer, usually lived in a communal society. The free and primitive man could only do these hard and dangerous jobs because he had a wife at home to cook the food, grow or gather plant food, and care for his children (who would care for him in his old age or if the sabre tooth tiger bit him in the leg and left him crippled).

So we have two errors: one, that being an isolated individual makes one happy (not true) and more free (only true if one is young and healthy).

But the second error is biological.

No matter how much academia insists men and women are interchangable, it's not true.

Men don't have babies.

So the only way for a woman to be "free" as the Noble savage described above would be if she didn't have any children, and indeed remained single.

Yes, women have careers, but the dirty little secret is that they have to compromise to do so. Either the children suffer or the career suffers. Which is why so many in academia or research are single women (often lesbians), have only one or two children, or have a househusband, a full time nanny, a live in grandmother, or another childcare worker to do the hard and dirty work of caring for the home.

In the US, marriage has been under fire for years.

It started with "no fault" divorce, where the wife could not keep her husband against his objections, and often was denied alimony.

It then went to living together without marriage. You often heard "we don't need a piece of paper to stay together", but after twenty years of this, we see the result: almost half of children born out of wedlock, and many early marriages ending in divorce the first time things get rough.

I am leaving religion out of this: we are talking about biology. Biology says women are different, and because of that difference, every society has customs to protect her when she gets pregnant and protect her children while they are small and weak.

But for too many years the idea of interchangable gender remains, and so we see that homosexual sex is equated to heterosexual marriage, even though only techology or adoption allows them to have children, and even though sexual fidelity is not part of the "marriage" agreement for male homosexuals.

Andrew Sullivan once defended gay marriage by saying it would open heterosexual marriage to be more "open" (i.e. tolorate flings).

What's wrong with this picture?

No one is looking what the woman wants.

Women throughout history have had to compromise to live.

In poor countries, and in the past, this often meant marrying the (rich) old guy your father wants you to marry. Or it might mean staying with a husband who brings home a new young girl to marry, and you now have the "choice" to leave and starve to death, to go back to your family (who often doesn't want you), wait for your oldest son to get a good job so you can leave, or to grit your teeth and put up with the fact your husband no longer loves you and the reason why is in the next bedroom.

That is why Mohammed insisted that the husband treat all his wives equally, and wrote limitations on the local customs of wifebeating, female circumcision, honor killing, and female infanticide. A lot of folks criticize Islam, without realizing he was trying to make thing better for women of his day.

So there is a paradox in all of this: women can only be truly "free" if they have a husband or family to care for them.

But since we are destroying the family bit by bit, this means replacing it with a welfare state.
That paradox is seen in liberal Catholicism, who substitutes "Catholic social teaching" to replace the Church's strict sexual ethic. Their emphasis on one in place of the second ignores that they are causing more social problems than solving them.

So what brought on this tirade?

Well, some Canadian writer has a book about the Native Americans. It's a rewrite of the "Noble savage" myth, and showed that the Native Americans were happy with all sorts of sexual combinations, including "gay marriage" and polygamy, and only the bad Europeans

"..."Politicians, social reformers and judges widely agreed that marriage was a sacred institution that supported the whole social fabric and was essential to peace, order and good government in Canada."

The problem was, however, that prairie First Nations people had lived with diverse forms of marriage-including monogamy, polygamy and same-sex marriage-for centuries, to happy and harmonious effect. Divorce was easily obtained, remarriage was common and accepted, and, as Carter discovered, almost everyone had a spouse except those who didn't want to be married. In fur-trader society, many Métis marriages also followed this more flexible pattern. "

Let's deconstruct this passage.

I've worked with the prairie tribes. They didn't live happy and harmoneously. They were too busy fighting each other, killing each other, and stealing each other's women.

The reason that "everyone had a spouse" was that if you didn't have a spouse, who would prepare your food?

Of course, if you wanted sex, you could grab one of those women slaves any time you wanted.

The women in the Sioux and Objibwe tribes were taught to be obedient and passive. (after menopause, this changed, but that's another story). Yes, you could easily divorce her, but how could she eat if she divorced you?

As for those "easy going Metis". Did it ever occur to the author that the woman was given to the French traders? She didn't have much say in the matter.

Sacajawea got into history as the third wife of the Frenchman who guided Lewis and Clark. She was bought by him. She was a Shoshone, captured from her family by a war party, and although a teenager when she "married", does anyone think that she preferred marriage to an abusive dirty (i.e. few baths) alcoholic Frenchman than to have to give sexual favors to any male in the village who grabbed her?

History doesn't tell the whole story.

But feminists who are so busy destroying marriage need to realize that the replacement might very well be single motherhood, abortion, or back to the good old days when you grit your teeth and put up with the low status of being a second or third wife because the alternative is not being a mother at all...

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Newspeak

One phrase in the Notre Dame speech by our beloved president continues to haunt me:

"Let's honor the conscience of those who disagree with abortion, and draft a sensible conscience clause, and make sure that all of our health care policies are grounded in clear ethics and sound science, as well as respect for the equality of women."

Sounds straightforward, right?

Actually, the conscience clause is a civil rights law that goes back long before the Bush regulations (which merely placed a stricter burden of proof on the employer).

So if that is the goal of the President, he will have to get congress to revoke the 1973 Church amendment , that forbids forcing physicians and medical facilities from being forced into doing abortions or sterilizations. It also forbids discrimination in hiring such people.

There are also amendments and laws passed in 1997 that go further in protecting medical facilities and personnel, and protected training programs that refused to teach "how to do abortions" from losing their ability to train doctors and nurses.

But you have to understand this is "newspeak".

Newspeak is a word from the book "1984" where words are changed so they don't really mean what they say.

Pregnancy begins at conception, right?

Well, more recently some scientists and ethical leaders have redefined pregnancy as starting with implantation.

Voila, with a little change in vocabulary, the abortifactant "morning after pill" becomes a contraceptive pill.

So it is possible to argue that if a pharmacist refuses to dispense the "morning after pill" to your 17 year old, he might not be covered.



But it goes further than that.

Fellow Chicago writer and supporter of the president, Clarence Page, interprets this phrase as "charging that the Bush rules unfairly reduce access to abortions for women in rural or otherwise underserved areas."

Ah, but the President doesn't have to change the conscience clause to do that. All he has to do is encourage pro abortion doctors to work in underserved rural areas.

But the dirty little secret is that if a pro abortion doctor worked in such rural areas, he would soon lose his other patients, and feel unwelcome at the country club.

And another dirty little secret in medicine is that a lot of doctors who were taught all their lives to think there is nothing wrong with abortion, after seeing an abortion often change their minds and want nothing to do with it once they are out of training.

That;s why there are always bills trying to get nurses or physician assistants to run abortion clinics. As for the "abortion pill", don't think that this is an easy way to get around the messy reality of having to confront that you are taking life: because some of these women will need surgical abortion anyway, because the pill didn't work properly, or they will end up bleeding or infected.

So if Clarance Page is correct, that leaves a new "conscience clause" that will be rewritten to mandate -physicians/nurses/pharmacists much supply all "legal treatments" for their patients if there is no one else around.

This actually is nothing new. Thirty years ago, I looked at a job at a Catholic hospital that was in a long lawsuit because it refused to do tubal ligations, but was the only hospital in the region. The suit essentially said that because it was getting federal money, it was being paid to serve the local people, and should provide all legal medical services.

I ended up working elsewhere, so never did hear what happened.

But the question that no one asks is: What will happen if the doctors/nurses/hospitals/pharmacists refuse to go along? What if even ten percent of them quit?

One last thought: If you think this is only about abortion, you're wrong.

A single judge in Montana "legalized" all sorts of euthanasia in a lawcase, but now the pro death people are complaining that they can't find local doctors to prescribe lethal medicines.

Much of modern medical ethics is about being an "apologist for death", to use the phrase of Nat Hentoff.

Modern medical ethics is able to explain why you are ethically required not to give "futile care" to the handicapped or elderly (because it uses the money better spent on the young and fit),

As for euthanasia,modern medical ethics has rewritten euthanasia as an ethical choice by the patient (not, as often is the case, as a decision under the duress of poorly treated pain or worry about burdening one's family).

All one has to do is remove the "conscience clause", and establish in law that physicians must counsel patients in "all alternatives" (no matter what) and to prescribe all "legal treatments" (despite their personal ethical objections) and you can see where this all is going.

Monday, May 18, 2009

quotes and reference for below story (Draft)

http://www.businessday.co.za/articles/healthnews.aspx?ID=BD4A709223

is original link, story removed.

From secondhand smoke blog:



The assertions made by Soros in this feature about his philanthropy around issued of death and dying, are, I think, quite telling about his ultimately disdainful perspective about people who are approaching the end of their lives:
"Death has replaced sex as the taboo subject of our times," said one of the world's richest men and leading philanthropists, George Soros, when he launched the Project Death in America fund at Columbia University's College of Physicians & Surgeons in 1994. It promotes euthanasia or assisted suicide, and has been succeeded by the Open Society Institute's International Palliative Care Initiative . Soros's mother committed suicide, as a member of the Hemlock Society. His father died a lingering death from cancer, and Soros was "disappointed" at the way the old man clung miserably to life.
------------------------------

from Life News:


....

Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good and Catholics United have been working overtime to mask Obama's pro-abortion views. The groups have called him pro-life even though he supports unlimited abortions throughout pregnancy for any reason.

...

In 2006, Soros’ Open Society Institute gave Catholics in Alliance $100,000 (double the amount he gave in 2005), Donohue indicates. In the same year, Catholics in Alliance listed Catholics United on its 990 as an organization with which it has a formal relationship.

Donohue says John Podesta, who runs the Soros-funded organization, Center for American Progress, admits that he works closely with Catholics in Alliance and Catholics United.

...

"“The reason Soros funds the Catholic Left is the same reason he lavishly funds Catholics for Choice, the pro-abortion group that has twice been condemned as a fraud by Catholic bishops: they all service his agenda," the pro-life Catholic leader indicates.

----------------------------------

From Life News:

By Kathleen Gilbert

WASHINGTON, D.C., December 18, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The Catholic Health Association (CHA) has praised President-elect Obama's health administration picks...

CHA, which has often been at odds with the Vatican and U.S. bishops' directives on sound Catholic health care, issued a statement last week lauding the confirmation of Tom Daschle for the position of the head of HHS. The statement included a nod of approval to Jeanne Lambrew, another abortion advocate, who was appointed deputy director of the White House Office of Health Reform.

... (To see the CHA press release, go to: http://www.chausa.org/Pub/MainNav/Newsroom/NewsReleases/2008/r081211a.htm)

(this article is about approving of Daschle, who has a book on health care reform that approves of rationing...of course Daschle had to drop out because of ethical issues).

-------------------
Archbishop Chaput on above. He wrote a book on christians in politics


I believe that Senator Obama, whatever his other talents, is the most committed ''abortion-rights'' presidential candidate of either major party since the Roe v. Wade abortion decision in 1973. Despite what Prof. Kmiec suggests, the party platform Senator Obama runs on this year is not only aggressively ''pro-choice;'' it has also removed any suggestion that killing an unborn child might be a regrettable thing. On the question of homicide against the unborn child - and let's remember that the great Lutheran pastor Dietrich Bonhoeffer explicitly called abortion ''murder'' - the Democratic platform that emerged from Denver in August 2008 is clearly anti-life.

Prof. Kmiec argues that there are defensible motives to support Senator Obama. Speaking for myself, I do not know any proportionate reason that could outweigh more than 40 million unborn children killed by abortion and the many millions of women deeply wounded by the loss and regret abortion creates.
===========

from Evangelium vitae

On a more general level, there exists in contemporary culture a certain Promethean attitude which leads people to think that they can control life and death by taking the decisions about them into their own hands. What really happens in this case is that the individual is overcome and crushed by a death deprived of any prospect of meaning or hope. We see a tragic expression of all this in the spread of euthanasia-disguised and surreptitious, or practised openly and even legally. As well as for reasons of a misguided pity at the sight of the patient's suffering, euthanasia is sometimes justified by the utilitarian motive of avoiding costs which bring no return and which weigh heavily on society. Thus it is proposed to eliminate malformed babies, the severely handicapped, the disabled, the elderly, especially when they are not self-sufficient, and the terminally ill. Nor can we remain silent in the face of other more furtive, but no less serious and real, forms of euthanasia. These could occur for example when, in order to increase the availability of organs for transplants, organs are removed without respecting objective and adequate criteria which verify the death of the donor.

--------------

also from EVitae


This reality is characterized by the emergence of a culture which denies solidarity and in many cases takes the form of a veritable "culture of death". This culture is actively fostered by powerful cultural, economic and political currents which encourage an idea of society excessively concerned with efficiency. Looking at the situation from this point of view, it is possible to speak in a certain sense of a war of the powerful against the weak: a life which would require greater acceptance, love and care is considered useless, or held to be an intolerable burden, and is therefore rejected in one way or another. A person who, because of illness, handicap or, more simply, just by existing, compromises the well-being or life-style of those who are more favoured tends to be looked upon as an enemy to be resisted or eliminated. In this way a kind of "conspiracy against life" is unleashed. This conspiracy involves not only individuals in their personal, family or group relationships, but goes far beyond, to the point of damaging and distorting, at the international level, relations between peoples and States.

----------------

sigh.


I wrote the previous essay because I was feeling paranoid, but now I remember the saying:

Just because you are paranoid doesn't mean they aren't out to get you...




Placing politics over God (Draft)

George Weigel's column on the Notre Dame controversy correctly points out that the Obama political operatives are doing a full court press on trying to ridicule the 70 bishops and other Catholics for opposing honoring a president who has changed by decree policies so that abortions overseas will be funded, embryos will be killed for research, and medical personnel will lose conscience protection.

Excuse me for being paranoid, but why is a group using a 'catholic" name being funded by George Soros, whose Open Society promotes euthanasia ("The Project on Death")?

This last is the most worrisome for me, since it could lead to pro life physicians pharmacists and nurses losing their job if they refuse to cooperate with abortion and euthanasia.
Yes, I said euthanasia, because there is a perfect storm coming:

One: where the government will take over the health care system, so that private hospitals and doctors will have to obey government policies or not be paid.

Catholic hospitals might not be allowed to have moral objections as they do now, indeed they might be subsumed into the system and lose their independence.

Two: The government will decide what is the best treatment for a patient, not allow your physician to make the decision. This could lead to the widening of "futile care" laws, meaning if certain people decide you are going to die anyway, or if your "quality of life" won't be improved by the treatment then that treatment will either be withheld by mandate or will not be paid for by the system.

This means if your Down's syndrome child has a treatable disease that is fatal without treatment (e.g. leukemia) the regulations might decide that the care is futile, since his IQ and quality of life won't be helped by curing him.

Three: Withholding treatment often is permitted under church laws if the treatment is extraordinary. But not giving treatment doesn't always mean a nice clean death as the alternative.

For example, President Obama said when his grandmother was dying of cancer, she broke her hip, and he had to decide to let the doctors fix it or let her die. They fixed it, and she died anyway, but he used that decision as an example of the "hard decisions" that might be faced by heath care rationing in the future.

Yet has he seen the alternative?

We had a distant cousin here in the Philippines break his hip, and didn't go to the hospital here for a week. By that time, he was dehydrated, had bed sores and pneumonia.
The surgeon said if he operated right away, the patient might die, or we could treat him with bedrest until the fracture healed. (This usually takes three to six months, but few patients ever walk again. Even with hip surgery, many patients remain disabled in wheelchairs).

But the patient refused to get surgery at the public hospital in Manila, and by the time his daughter sent money to cover the surgery, he again was too sick to operate. By the time he was well enough for surgery, the money was gone and had to be raised again, but this time his bedsores were so bad that the surgeon refused surgery.

So he went home, and lived in pain for three months before he died of sepsis from his bedsores.

Imagine this in the US.

At least in the Philippines, his extended family could care for him. In the US, this might mean quitting your job.

So in the near future, expect medical rationing and futile care laws to stop life saving treatment from the sick.

Ah, but if you lived in Oregon, the patient could be offered suicide as an alternative.

Just like abortion became the convenient answer for unexpected pregnancies, expect soon that patients will be scared into choosing death over suffering, and anyone who cares for such a patient be ridiculed and lambasted as a fanatic who doesn't care about suffering.

That is my worry.

There is another worry: That the "Am church" liberals will devise a way to take over Catholic institutions.

We see Father Jenkins disobeying the bishop and receiving accolades for it.

Will we also see accolades for administrators and boards of Catholic hospitals going against the church?

In these days of hospital mergers, it is already happening, although most of the mergers have an agreement that the secular institution will not permit procedures that go against Catholic teaching.

But if the government passes the Freedom of choice act, the takeover of Catholic medical institutions could come quite quickly.

Monday, May 11, 2009

The Little ones of God

Reading my bible today I ran across the funeral announcement for George Black.

Ah, I do remember George.

You could smell him before he entered the clinic.

And if he was with his brother and father, it was even worse.

The first time I met George and his brother, they came in for a check up because their mother was worried they had diabetes. And indeed George was diabetic, obese, and had high blood pressure.

He also hadn't bathed for awhile.

Yes, this was on an Indian reservation in northern Minnesota where sometimes the pipes freeze during the winter, but this wasn't winter time, and George also smelled of beer.

But he and his brother were cheerful, so we started treatment and arranged for a follow up appointment in a month, along with appointments for podiatry to check his feet for proper shoes and with the dietician.

The AA referral was done too, but declined by the brothers.

We knew George's mother, who was a nurse. She married a logger, a hard worker who tended to drink heavily when not working (logging season tended to be in winter time). She raised the boys, but left the father on and off when he became abusive.

His older brother was also a logger, and tended to drink at times, but George the little brother lacked something: perhaps intelligence, perhaps ambition. For George was easy going but a severe alcoholic at age 30, and now, with diabetes and high blood pressure, we worried about his health.

So George became a regular at our clinic, sometimes coming in with his father, and sometimes with his brother.

And we could tell when they weren't working, because we'd have to disinfect the room afterward.

Then things changed the home life.

Their mother, who had left years earlier to live off the reservation, now needed dialysis for her diabetic kidney disease. That meant someone had to stay with her to drive her to and fro, and check that she ate correctly.

So George's brother left to care for his mom; and he grew up. Now when he came in he was neat and clean and sober.

But George, without his brother's help, was left alone with his father, and sank more deeply into alcoholism.

It wasn't much later that we heard that George had died. The coroner said heart disease, but it could have been any number of problems. He was only 38.

Yet all of us were sad. His funeral, at the local Episcopal church, was full. And the priest, like most of the priests and pastors in the area, was a gentle man wise in the ways of grief.

So he did not preach of a useless life lost to alcohol: because in a land of despair sometimes alcohol is the only solace left to the living.

Instead he told us of George and how we all loved him for his gentleness and shy smile, and he reminded us that God loved him.

The prayer card for the funeral had the 23rd psalm on it: The Lord is my shepherd.

Yes, the shepherd that searches and finds and carries back the small sheep who get lost.

George was one of God's little ones, the ones who were only given one talent to work with, and didn't do well with what he was given.

But I'm sure that God lifted him up in death and carried him in his arms to his final home.


I always think of God welcoming George to heaven, because God loves his little ones: the lost children who never quite cope with life,

Sunday, May 10, 2009

How strict should bishops be in confronting politicians?

One of our relatives caused a fuss at the Mass during the local fiesta a couple weeks ago here in the Philippines

You see, one bigshot politician a couple years ago had his family arrange to intimidate his opponent into withdrawing. Nothing new about that. Except that the ex communists they hired to shoot up his business as a warning ended up shooting a bunch of people inside, and when they had finished, two of the man's sons, and a couple of bystanders, including our nephew, were dead.

Right now, the politician is back out, awaiting a trial, and there he was, in the front of church at a place of honor with a lot of other bigshots who are Catholic.

So, when the Offertory came and our cousin took up her gift, she had to pass in front of him: she stood in front of him, and looked him in the eye... and he lowered his eyes in shame.

Now, the bishop who was visiting, and the priests at the mass all know the story.

Question: Should they have prevented the politician from attending mass? From receiving communion?

Should they have shamed an unconvicted man in public? A man who may have repented his loose words that set off the murders? A man who is publicly trying to do his best for our city, and who has always been generous in his donations to the poor and the church?

You see the dilemma.
-------------------------------

Some of our Filipino bishops are openly critical of politicians who are suspected of taking bribes and suspected of ordering "extrajudicial" murders like in the Sopranos.

But other bishops try quietly to make these politicians reform, knowing that being overcritical could alienate the entire family from the church.

Bishops in the United States face a similar dilemma.

This is why many American priests and bishops are less than critical when divorced people receive the sacraments or politicians brag about being Catholic while openly supporting abortion.

The dilemma goes deeper, into what is preached on Sunday: Too many pastors fail to instruct their people on the basic morality of the church: including such obvious and common dangers to the soul such as alcohol/drug abuse, spousal abuse, adultery, artificial birth control, and abortion.

For politicians, the line is even more delicate, since the church in the US cannot interfere with politics, yet is responsible for the state of the soul of politicians who claim to be practicing Catholics.

The irony is that many of these politicians were once "pro life", but changed their mind when they realized that certain groups would withdraw support and funding from them if they remained prolife, but that there would be no political harm to them from bishops if they "changed their mind".

Well, finally some American bishops are getting on record that they are admonishing politicians under them that voting for policies that support, pay for, or encourage killing unborn infants is wrong.

The result, however, has only increased confusion, since the mainstream media too often misreports what was said by the bishop, or slants it in a way to make the bishop look absurd.

So the kerfuffle on President Obama going to Notre Dame is being spun in the main stream media and in the Jesuit journal "America" as politics as usual, and those supporting life are being branded as far right extremists (as if half of practicing Catholics and one third of the American population who oppose abortion can be ignored simply by name calling).

But can a bishop ignore a public sin? Or will being too strict merely harden the heart of those publicly shamed?

Does one chose to refrain from giving out communion to such politicians? Ironically, the answer is no: because the priest has no way of knowing if the politician repented and went to confession the night before.

But the bishop has the responsibility to quietly arrange a meeting to tell the politician that supporting the murder of the innocent means he or she should not receive the sacrament until they repent, because they are living in a state of mortal sin.

As one pesky blue collar worker put it: what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world but loses his soul?

That is the dilemma of our bishops.

One wishes that every bishop would ask for private meetings and discuss these thing with those under their jurisdiction.

And, while they are at it, one wishes that the bishops would also discuss other issues of morality that politicians need to be reminded of.

A lot of politicians are rumored to be diverting funds or jobs to family members or close "friends", and a good pastor should bring up such an issue, to see if it is true and offer repentance.

Has any religious watchdog bothered to call Congress to task for failing to do their job ethically?

Such issues include oversight of government policies that are immoral, such as approving of torture even in times of war, or supporting dictators who are guilty of human rights abuses, or failing to do one's job by voting the party line instead of judging a bill according to it's actual contents, or taking money for one's political campaign, with the understanding that you will help them in a vote after you are elected.

Americans are becoming increasingly cynical about their representatives because of a culture of corruption, and yet one longs for a moral leader to point out that ethical rules transcend campaign finance laws.

There is an old Testament story where a prophet was told to warn those in sin: if they remained in sin, they would be punished. But if the prophet stayed silent, he would be punished with them, because he did not warn them of the danger.

Right now, bishops and others standing up against killing children in the womb are merely facing ridicule and name calling. But one can easily see that "same sex marriage" and "full reproductive health" in a government run medical system could result in more widespread legal sanctions against the church and church institutions.

So what is needed now is prayer for our shepherds.

It is not easy trying to balance compassion and correction for the sinner; it is even harder trying to know that the moral laws you preach, which right now bring you ridicule, may result in lawsuits and convictions for hate crimes in the near future.

Saturday, May 09, 2009

Polls on Notre Dame

Fifty-two percent (52%) of Americans nationwide say the University of Notre Dame should have followed guidelines set by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops and refrained from awarding an honorary degree to President Obama.

A new Rasmussen Reports national telephone survey found that 25% believe the university should issue the degree and 19% are not sure.

In 2004, the bishops issued a statement saying, "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."

By a 60% to 25% margin, U.S. Catholics say the university should not award an honorary degree to the president. Sixty-six percent (66%) of Evangelical Christians share that view along with 52% of other Protestants.

However, a plurality (45%) of those who do not have Christian affiliations say the university should give the president the honorary degree.

...

Fifty-six percent (56%) of Catholics say it’s at least somewhat important for graduation speakers to share the university’s views at schools with religious affiliations. Eighty-seven percent (87%) of Evangelical Christians hold that view as do 63% of other Protestants. Among non-Christians, 42% agree.

It is interesting to note that the discomfort on the issue is focused on the university decision rather than on the president. Just 30% of voters believe the president should cancel his appearance at Notre Dame. Most (52%) say he should not. Among Catholics, just 34% think Obama should cancel.

It is also worth noting that the response is tied more closely to the violation of the bishops’ guidelines than to the policy issue concerning abortion. [?] Those who describe themselves as pro-choice on abortion are evenly divided as to whether or not the university should award an honorary degree to the president.




via Father Z

Destroying marriage in the name of equality (draft)

Insight blog writes how anyone opposing the Obama adminstrations full court press against life will be ridiculed:

• A Republican hack, hit-man, enforcer, drone, errand boy.
• An arrogant, out-of-touch, power-hungry, anti-choice Church leader fearful of losing power.
• An ultra-right-wing, hyper-traditionalist Catholic stuck in the 1950s.
• An enemy of moderation, dialogue, and respectful conversation about issues that divide Catholics.

The Vatican objections can bbe found at chiesa



Through these channels, and with the support of the Blairs, the president-jurist Obama is preparing to launch a new American messianism, in a totally secularized form. He is supported in this by his faithful colleague, a presumed candidate for the presidency of the European Union. The supreme will of the president of the United States will ratify the law of nations and the law concerning relations among nations. In his footsteps, the "Thirty-Nine Articles" of the new religion will be promulgated by his British colleague.

From the summit of this pyramid, the will of the Prince is destined to circulate through the international channels of the UN to the individual national channels. In perspective, this process, as can be guessed, extinguishes the authority of the national parliaments, abolishes the authority of the executive branch, and ruins the independence of judicial power. These are the reasons why, in Obama's thinking, an international criminal court should have a larger role, and must be armed in order to coerce the recalcitrants – for example, the Catholics – who reject this view of power and law, of law as a servant of power. How can one not see this blinding truth: that we are witnessing the emergence of an unprecedented form of political-legal terrorism?

and then there is Archbishop Chaput:

America cannot survive without being predisposed and welcoming to religious faith, the archbishop insisted.

“[W]e were founded as a religious people, but with public institutions that avoid religious tests. American public life depends for its life on Jews and Protestants and Latter Day Saints and Catholics and all religious believers vigorously advancing their convictions in public debate. We need to do that peacefully and respectfully, but we need to do it -- without evasions or apologies or alibis. Otherwise we’re stealing the most precious things we have – our religious faith and our moral character – from the struggle for the common good. And the God who loves us will nonetheless hold us accountable for that cowardice.”

Noting that freedom of religion is “woven” into foundational U.S. documents and “hardwired” into Americans’ assumptions, the archbishop explained he had not truly understood this religious freedom until he served on the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom. There, he said, he witnessed “the systematic abuse of religious believers” in foreign countries.

“Some of that same contempt for religious faith and disdain for serious religious believers is now part of our own national dialogue. And we underestimate it at our own great cost,” he warned.

While Americans take religious freedom seriously, the archbishop said “times change, and nations change.”

“The freedom of faith we all enjoy in this country needs to be earned and defended by all of us, again and again, or we’ll lose it… Freedom needs to be purchased with a constant witness of courage, intelligence and action.”

-

Marginalizing people of faith (draft)

A couple days ago, an entertainment story reported that some beauty queen may or may not have gotten a breast implant. Their photo "proof" was sketchy--the difference was no more than a good Victoria secret wonder bra could enhance--but I was wondering what was the big deal. The "hit" job was on a girl who didn't win, and surgical enhancement is nothing new in show business.

But later, googling around, I found that the girl had committed an unpardonable sin: She said she believed marriage should be between a man and a woman.

Nor are the boobie charges the only ones mounted to destroy the girl's reputation: apparantly a topless photo she gave to a boyfriend are now being placed in major newspapers.

So much for privacy--or maybe for photoshopping.

Yet the whole episode is disturbing.

When major news outlets like the Chicago Tribune go along with trashing a person with private photos, you know that no one is safe.

Yet no one has bothered to publish photos of the beauty pagent judge who detroyed her chance of winning because she reaffirmed her religious beliefs. Indeed, one of the censored stories in the debate on "gay marriage" is the promiscuity of the male homosexual community, where "marriage" would mean tax and social benefits from living together without the responsibilities of marriage: sexual fidelity to one's spouse, allowing one's spouse to stay home while with child and unable to work, and of course caring for the spouse "for richer or poorer in sickness and in health".

This is, of course, a broad generalization, and doesn't apply to gay women, who do tend to be faithful and raise children.

Yet even gay men who try their best to be faithful have a fearful burden of temptation that stands in the way of friendship with other men, and the resulting choice: loneliness or sin-- is not a burden most of us would share.

Yet the push for "gay marriage" is not really about domestic partnerships. If it was, there would be no problem for those who disagree.

The confusion at the heart of the legal argument is a rejection of the dea that biological differences exist between men and women.

A "sex without the idea of sin" is an old problem for societies, and every society has tried to solve it in it's own way.

But modern feminism rejects the idea that women have children, or that this biological fact is the reason for marriage. You can see many role models for women praised in movies TV or in your newspapers, but how often do you read of stay at home moms as role models? For example, how much of the spew of hatred against Governor Palin is because she did not abort her youngest--and that she is supporting her daughter as a single mom while waiting to see if her finance decides to grow up. How gauche.

Much of feminism rejects the idea because of the "sins" of the patriarchal marriage. Yet one only has to look at the US to see that destroying marriage through easy divorce (where the woman gets no alimony and the innocent spouse has no way to impede the marriage) has resulted in people not marrying at all, and nearly one half of children being raised by stepparents or single mothers: a situation not good for raising well balanced children. Yes, in the past,often parents died, but in the past, the child was also raised by the extended family. Indeed, in poor rural areas where I have worked we still see grandmom and relatives caring for children when mom has to work, but in the inner city too often it means a child in daycare with strangers, while mom brings home a "new dad" every couple of months.

So the problem is not so much "gay marriage" as the slow destuction of the idea of marriage, and a rejection of the idea of women as mothers.