Thursday, June 30, 2005

Votes for Homosexual "Marriage" in Holland, Belgium, Canada and Spain "Legally Binding Precedent" for U.S.?

Tom McKenna at Confutatis Maledictis speculates that recent votes in favor of homosexual simulated marriage in the Netherlands, Belgium, Canada, and Spain will no doubt "be cited soon in a Supreme Court opinion as 'precedent' supporting a hitherto unknown but suddenly discovered substantive due process right to homosexual 'marriage.' "

National Right to Life Committee Endorses Former Attorney General Jerry Kilgore for Governor of Virginia

Below is the text of an email I received from David Rexrode, RNC Director of Conservative Development:
Last week the National Right to Life Committee endorsed Jerry Kilgore for Governor.

"The endorsement reflects our appreciation for the strong stand Jerry Kilgore has taken on behalf of those members of our human family who are least able to protect themselves. He has stood in defense of both unborn children and the medically disabled whose lives are threatened by abortion or euthanasia," said Carol Tobias in the National Right to Life Committee's release.

The National Right to Life's endorsement announcement went on to say "The fact is, Timothy Kaine supports abortion on demand while Jerry Kilgore is pro-life. Currently in Virginia, abortion is being used as a method of birth control, with practically no limits whatsoever on the procedure. If any voter wants to support the candidate who opposes abortion on demand, who thinks parents have the right to be involved in their minor daughter's abortion decision, and who supports a true ban on partial-birth abortion, they should vote for Jerry Kilgore."

The Democrats in Virginia have nominated what could be the most pro-abortion ticket in history; one that shows their party's true belief on abortion.

Both Creigh Deeds and Leslie Byrne have received a 100% rating from NARAL. In addition, both Creigh Deeds and Leslie Byrne's voted against the Partial Birth Abortion law that was recently struck down by liberal Bill Clinton appointed judges. While Jerry Kilgore and Republicans in the General Assembly were working to ban this gruesome procedure, Tim Kaine, Leslie Byrne, Creigh Deeds and other Democrats were working to keep abortion on demand in Virginia. In fact, almost 70% of Democrats in the House of Delegates and 75% of Democrats in the State Senate voted against banning partial birth abortions.

Despite the misleading statements issued by Democrat Tim Kaine and others who are trying to trick voters, only Jerry Kilgore and the Republican ticket of Bill Bolling for Lt. Governor and Bob McDonnell for Attorney General are going to fight to protect the unborn.

(emphasis in original)

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

Confused? Call Justice Breyer

From Cybercast News Service:
( - A conservative advocacy group says Supreme Court Justice Stephen Breyer should set up a toll-free number that city governments can call to find out if a Ten Commandments display is permissible.

Justice Breyer, a Clinton appointee, was the swing vote in both the Kentucky and Texas Ten Commandments cases, the Family Research Council said.

"Justice Breyer's reasoning will further confuse communities that wish to display religious monuments with historical significance -- or is that historic monuments with religious significance?" FRC President Tony Perkins said in a press release.

The difference between the two cases, according to Justice Breyer, was the intent behind the display:

A granite Ten Commandments monument on the grounds of the Texas State Capitol in Austin was deemed to be historical by the court; but framed copies of the Ten Commandments hanging in two Kentucky courthouses could be construed as endorsing religion, the justices ruled.

"In both cases Justice Breyer apparently read the minds of the people behind the displays and decided the Texas case was meant to be historical, while in Kentucky the only intent was to proselytize," Perkins said.

"By guessing the 'intent' of the displayers, Justice Breyer turns displaying the Ten Commandments into a 'thought crime' -- where you can be punished not for what you do but what you intend to do."

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

Supreme Court Split Decision on Public Displays of the 10 Commandments

From Catholic World News:
Washington, DC, Jun. 27 ( - The US Supreme Court split two decisions today on the contentious issue of the display of the Ten Commandments on public property, allowing the display in one case, but ruling that the other is not constitutional.

In a 5-4 ruling, the high court ruled that the display of framed copies of the Ten Commandments in two Kentucky courthouses is a violation of the separation of church and state, but then they also ruled 5-4 that the display of the Decalogue on the grounds of the Texas capital is a legitimate tribute to the legal and religious history of the US.

The two decisions were the first major ruling on the place of the Ten Commandments in public life since a 1980 decision that banned the display of the Decalogue from public school classrooms.

"Of course, the Ten Commandments are religious-- they were so viewed at their inception and so remain. The monument therefore has religious significance," Chief Justice William H. Rehnquist wrote for the majority in the Texas case. "Simply having religious content or promoting a message consistent with a religious doctrine does not run afoul of the Establishment clause," he said.

Justice John Paul Stevens, who voted in the minority, argued it was an improper government endorsement of religion. "The monument is not a work of art and does not refer to any event in the history of the state," Stevens wrote. "The message transmitted by Texas' chosen display is quite plain: This state endorses the divine code of the Judeo-Christian God."

[Full Story]
My Comments:
The Supreme Court's "Establishment Clause" jurisprudence in nothing short of schizophrenic. It has now become even more confusing, not to mention even more ignorant of the original meaning and intent of the 1st Amendment. I ask you, what did yesterday's split decision do for the cause of clarity when it comes to determining what is and what is not an "inappropriate endorsement" of religion?

(Hat tip: Southern Appeal)

From Justice Thomas' concurrence in the Texas case:
This case would be easy if the Court were willing to abandon the inconsistent guideposts it has adopted for addressing Establishment Clause challenges, and return to the original meaning of the Clause. I have previously suggested that the Clause’s text and history "resis[t] incorporation" against the States. If the Establishment Clause does not restrain the States, then it has no application here, where only state action is at issue.

Even if the Clause is incorporated, or if the Free Exercise Clause limits the power of States to establish religions, our task would be far simpler if we returned to the original meaning of the word "establishment" than it is under the various approaches this Court now uses. The Framers understood an establishment "necessarily [to] involve actual legal coercion." "In other words, establishment at the founding involved, for example, mandatory observance or mandatory payment of taxes supporting ministers." And "government practices that have nothing to do with creating or maintaining … coercive state establishments” simply do not "implicate the possible liberty interest of being free from coercive state establishments."

There is no question that, based on the original meaning of the Establishment Clause, the Ten Commandments display at issue here is constitutional. In no sense does Texas compel petitioner Van Orden to do anything. The only injury to him is that he takes offense at seeing the monument as he passes it on his way to the Texas Supreme Court Library. He need not stop to read it or even to look at it, let alone to express support for it or adopt the Commandments as guides for his life. The mere presence of the monument along his path involves no coercion and thus does not violate the Establishment Clause.

Returning to the original meaning would do more than simplify our task. It also would avoid the pitfalls present in the Court’s current approach to such challenges. This Court’s precedent elevates the trivial to the proverbial "federal case," by making benign signs and postings subject to challenge. Yet even as it does so, the Court’s precedent attempts to avoid declaring all religious symbols and words of longstanding tradition unconstitutional, by counterfactually declaring them of little religious significance. Even when the Court’s cases recognize that such symbols have religious meaning, they adopt an unhappy compromise that fails fully to account for either the adherent’s or the nonadherent’s beliefs, and provides no principled way to choose between them. Even worse, the incoherence of the Court’s decisions in this area renders the Establishment Clause impenetrable and incapable of consistent application. All told, this Court’s jurisprudence leaves courts, governments, and believers and nonbelievers alike confused – an observation that is hardly new.

The unintelligibility of this Court’s precedent raises the further concern that, either in appearance or in fact, adjudication of Establishment Clause challenges turns on judicial predilections. Much, if not all, of this would be avoided if the Court would return to the views of the Framers and adopt coercion as the touchstone for our Establishment Clause inquiry. Every acknowledgment of religion would not give rise to an Establishment Clause claim. Courts would not act as theological commissions, judging the meaning of religious matters. Most important, our precedent would be capable of consistent and coherent application. While the Court correctly rejects the challenge to the Ten Commandments monument on the Texas Capitol grounds, a more fundamental rethinking of our Establishment Clause jurisprudence remains in order.

(emphasis added)

Friday, June 24, 2005

My Take on the Kelo Decision

I am the mayor of a small town, and have spent the last 6 years of my life working on a revitalization process for our community. It is a process that has been slow-going, but we have managed to procure over 3/4 of a million dollars in grants to aid in our efforts. I know from first-hand experience how important revitalization can be for the inhabitants of a community.

That being said, I believe Kelo et al v. City of New London to be among the 10 worst Supreme Court decisions in the history of our Nation - not in the same league as Roe v. Wade or Dred Scott, but certainly in the next tier. After the Kelo decision, the 5th Amendment's "takings clause" means absolutely nothing.

So-called progressives will likely hail this ruling because it allows them to move forward unimpeded with their plans for "downtown revitalization", "urban renewal", and "gentrification". What is being ignored by these so-called progressives, however, is the disparate and ruinous impact this ruling will have on low-to-moderate income inhabitants of towns and cities, whose affordable housing stands in the way of "higher use" developments:
"Gee, Grandpa and Grandma in the old downtown neighborhood. Your property taxes are frozen and can't be increased, so we just can't get enough tax dollars from you to justify the level of services we have to provide. Make way for the new downtown Cineplex that our developer buddies have planned."

"Gee, landlord providing affordable housing to several low income families. Your property just doesn't generate enough income, and thus you don't pay enough taxes, to justify the level of services we have to provide. Make way for the new Condominium complex that our developer buddies have planned."
Peter Sean at Lex Communis focuses in on Justice Thomas' dissent, which notes that the Court's decision impacts the poor and minorities most.

From Justice Thomas' opinion:

Allowing the government to take property solely for public purposes is bad enough, but extending the concept of public purpose to encompass any economically beneficial goal guarantees that these losses will fall disproportionately on poor communities. Those communities are not only systematically less likely to put their lands to the highest and best social use, but are also the least politically powerful. If ever there were justification for intrusive judicial review of constitutional provisions that protect “discrete and insular minorities,” United States v. Carolene Products Co., 304 U.S. 144, 152, n. 4 (1938), surely that principle would apply with great force to the powerless groups and individuals the Public Use Clause protects. The deferential standard this Court has adopted for the Public Use Clause is therefore deeply perverse. It encourages “those citizens with disproportionate influence and power in the political process, including large corporations and development firms” to victimize the weak. Ante, at 11 (O’Connor, J., dissenting).

(emphasis added)

What Would Thomas More Do?

Hat tip: Rich Leonardi

Let's make it 3 days in a row for one of my favorite saints.

Father Raymond J. de Souza has a piece in the National Post addressing the relevance of the example of St. Thomas More in Canada's ongoing march toward the legalization of simulated marriage for homosexuals:
On Wednesday, the Catholic Church marked the feast of St. Thomas More, a leading statesman of the 16th century and one of the most noble figures in the history of law and politics. Indeed, so impressive were More's fidelity and courage in opposing England's King Henry VIII that the Anglican Communion, despite an obvious disagreement with his position, recognizes him as a martyr.

As this sorry sitting of the House of Commons draws to an end, St. Thomas More is strikingly relevant. He was executed for treason by Henry VIII in 1535 -- an early victim of what we might call today a "democratic deficit." More opposed Henry's declaration that the King would be the head of the Church in England, not the Pope. And of course he opposed Henry's (first) divorce, the proximate cause of Henry wishing to declare himself the head of the Church. Marriage, freedom of conscience and the democratic deficit are all on our federal agenda today. Would that some measure of More's courage was also in evidence.

There are a handful of MPs for whom St. Thomas More's example is particularly relevant. While a free vote will be held in the House on the homosexual marriage bill, the Liberal Cabinet is being whipped to vote in favour. There are several Cabinet ministers whose opposition to gay marriage is well known -- they voted against it before they entered into Cabinet -- but who are now voting in favour.

Sir Thomas More was, along with Erasmus, the most distinguished humanist of his time. He was a highly-praised chancellor -- what might today be called prime minister. He was a gifted writer. But we don't remember him for all that. We remember him for his willingness to sacrifice all that for his principles. To be sacked from Cabinet for voting one's conscience is not the worst thing that can happen to an MP. The worst thing is to stay in Cabinet by sacking one's conscience.

[Full Story]

Thursday, June 23, 2005

More on More

To continue on the theme of St. Thomas More from yesterday, I have linked to what a few other bloggers have written about this great man of Faith.

First Friday blog highlights the following quote from St. Thomas More:
“If God permits me to perish because of my sins, it is His Justice that will be shown through me. Nevertheless it is my hope that He will show mercy and keep me loyal and allow me to become an example of His loving-kindness rather than of His Justice. Whatever happens is His Will. And whatever He wills, even though it may seem bad to us, is indeed the best.” (While in prison.)
From the Catholicism, Culture, and Politics blog:
Today is the feast day of St. Thomas More, who stood up in the face of the corruption of the Monderno-Protestant Ideological Revolutions at their onset, and said in a clear voice: NO!

More gave his life so that we might have an example of true secularity, an understanding NOT of the so-called 'separation' of Church and State, but the distinction of powers between secular and ecclesiastical Authorities. I use the Vatican's terminology to distinguish authentic secularity from its ideological perversion expressed in contemporary secularism. Secularity asserts the distinction between secular and ecclesiastical Authority which has ALWAYS been recognized in Church Docrine and Tradition; it falls short, though, of marginalizing ecclesiastical Authority to the realm of opinion and elevating the power of secular leaders to that of pontiffs in their own right. This perversion has lead to more bloodshed, oppression, and human degradation than anything inflicted by the worst of so-called 'theocracies.' A secular power without a moral power (particularly the Catholic Church) cannot contain its own natural impulses toward power-hunger, exploitation, and tyranny. Keep in mind that during the so-called 'unenlightened' Middle Ages (or, what I more accurately call Christendom), we had this sort of parity of powers... and certainly there WERE abuses, but there were NO gulags, no concentration camps, no gas chambers, no 'cultural revolutions', no Jacobins, no welfare states, no sweatshops...

Just a bit of food for thought.
Finally, Thoughts from the Right includes the following prayer to St. Thomas More:
"Dear Scholar and Martyr, it was not the King of England but you who were the true Defender of the Faith. Like Christ unjustly condemned, neither promises nor threats could make you accept a civil ruler as head of the Christian Church. Perfect in your honesty and love of truth, grant that lawyers and judges may imitate you and achieve true justice for all people. Amen."

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

A Man For All Seasons: Today (22 June) Is The Feast Day of St. Thomas More

Today (22 June) is the feast day of St. Thomas More, martyr and patron of lawyers, civil servants, politicians, and statesmen (not to mention "difficult marriages").

As he went to his death, ordered beheaded by Henry VIII for refusing to swear the Oath of Supremacy declaring the King head of the Church in England, More humbly stated that he would die "the King's good servant, and God's first."*

From the Patron Saints Index:
Memorial: 22 June

Profile: Studied at London and Oxford. Page for the Archbishop of Canterbury. Lawyer. Twice married, father of one son and three daughters, and a devoted family man. Writer. Friend of King Henry VIII. Lord Chancellor of England, a position of power second only to the king. Opposed the king on the matter of royal divorce, and refused to swear the Oath of Supremacy which declared the king the head of the Church in England. Resigned the Chancellorship, and was imprisoned in the Tower of London. Martyred for his refusal to bend his religious beliefs to the king's political needs.

Born: 1478 at London, England

Died: beheaded in 1535; head kept in the Roper Vault, Saint Dunstan's church, Canterbury, England; body at Saint Peter ad Vincula, Tower of London, England

Canonized: 1935 by Pope Pius XI

Patronage: adopted children, diocese of Arlington Virginia, civil servants, court clerks, difficult marriages, large families, lawyers, diocese of Pensacola-Tallahassee Florida, politicians, politicos, statesmen, step-parents, widowers
What does it avail to know that there is a God, which you not only believe by Faith, but also know by reason: what does it avail that you know Him if you think little of Him?
- Saint Thomas More

Apostolic Letter of Pope John Paul II, naming St. Thomas More the patron of politicians and statesmen

Center for Thomas More Studies
Thomas More Website
St. Thomas More on The Franciscan Archive
St. Thomas More on the Patron Saints Index
The St. Thomas More Web Site
Thomas More Law Center
Thomas More Society
The St. Thomas More Society
The Life of St. Thomas More by William Roper
"Thomas More For Our Season" by Judge Robert Bork
A Man For All Seasons (DVD available from
A Man For All Seasons Study Site

Update (6/23/05)
Hat tip to Amy Welborn for the following link:
Center for Thomas More Studies

* Some accounts have it "... but God's first", and this is the common misconception. However, according to "Cheeky Lawyer" posting over at Amy Welborn's blog:
"The conjunction is actually different from what we so often hear. In the Center [for Thomas More Studies]'s materials you will see that a contemporary Paris newspaper reported that More actually said, “I die the King’s Good Servant and God’s first.” Perhaps it is quibbling, but call it part of the lawyer's vocation. But the difference does point to something important. More saw the advice he gave the king and his ultimate opposition to the King Henry’s actions to be true service the King—precisely because he was following God’s will and trying to show the King and the whole realm the truth of the great matter. In other words, he died both the King's good servant and God's good servant."
(emphasis added)

Jeb Bush Opposes Human Embryonic Stem Cell Research

Hat Tip: Jeff Miller at The Curt Jester:

PHILADELPHIA - Gov. Jeb Bush said Tuesday that he opposes human embryonic stem cell research because it requires the destruction of days-old embryos.

But prominent social conservatives, including President Bush and the Roman Catholic Church, are against the research because days-old embryos are destroyed. On Tuesday, the president's brother said he agreed.

"I'm opposed to it," the Florida governor told a small group of reporters. "Taking a human life to save life is a huge contradiction morally."
My Comments:
"But prominent social conservatives, including ... the Roman Catholic Church ..."

Huh? The Roman Catholic Church is considered a "prominent social conservative"? Does Bishop Gumbleton know about this?

Conservatives in Congress Introduce Birth Control Notification Bill

From Cybercast News Service:

( - Minors would have to give their parents five days' notice before they could receive birth control drugs or devices at federally subsidized clinics, under terms of legislation introduced Tuesday by two congressional conservatives.

A top abortion rights advocate fired back, calling the bill's sponsors "anti-birth control zealots," who were just trying to "score points with the radical right."

U.S. Sen. Tom Coburn, (R-Okla.), who is also a practicing obstetrician/gynecologist; and U.S. Rep. Todd Akin, (R-Mo.) are sponsors of the Parents Right to Know Act, which would affect Title X clinics that provide family planning services to low income individuals.

"This bill does nothing but put parents back in charge of their adolescent daughters," said Coburn. "In almost every area of our children's lives strict parental notification standards and laws are in place," he added.

Full Story
My Comments:
A top abortion rights advocate fired back, calling the bill's sponsors "anti-birth control zealots," who were just trying to "score points with the radical right."

Oooooh. That dreaded "radical right"! Just consider the outrageousness of these sinister politicians trying to keep parents informed of what prescription drugs their minor children are taking.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005

Pope Benedict's Latest Book: Church Can Never Accept Abortion

Pope Benedict's latest book is discussed in this Reuter's story from the Washington Post:
VATICAN CITY (Reuters) - Pope Benedict, in his first book published since his election, says the Catholic Church can never accept laws allowing abortion because there is no such thing as "small murders."

"The Europe of Benedict -- In the Crisis of Cultures," is a compilation of three major addresses he gave between 1992 and 2005, when he was Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger and headed the Vatican department that safeguards doctrinal orthodoxy.

In one section of the book, the Pope asks rhetorically why the Church should not accept that abortion is legal in many countries.

"Why don't we resign ourselves to the fact that we lost that battle and dedicate our energies instead to projects where we can find greater social consensus?" he writes.

Because this, he says, would be a superficial and hypocritical solution.

"Recognizing the sacred nature of human life and its inviolability without any exceptions is not a small problem or something that can be considered part of the pluralism of opinions in modern society," he writes.

"There is no such thing as 'small murders'. Respect for every single life is an essential condition for anything worthy of being called social life."

Michael Schiavo Thinks It's All About Him

See Thoughts of a Regular Guy for Paul's take on how Michael Schiavo thinks that everything that has happened surrounding the death of Terri Schiavo is all about him. Paul's post includes a photo of the grave marker - note (1) the date that Terri is claimed to have "Departed This Earth" and (2) Michael Schiavo's parting shot at the bottom of the marker.

GOP Congressman Calls Democrats Anti-Christian

From today's Washington Post:

Business on the floor of the House was halted for 45 minutes yesterday after Rep. John N. Hostettler (R-Ind.) accused Democrats of "denigrating and demonizing Christians," prompting a furious protest from across the aisle.

The House was debating a Democratic amendment to the annual defense appropriations bill that would have required the Air Force Academy to develop a plan for preventing "coercive and abusive religious proselytizing."

Hostettler, speaking against the amendment, asserted that "the long war on Christianity in America continues today on the floor of the House of Representatives" and "continues unabated with aid and comfort to those who would eradicate any vestige of our Christian heritage being supplied by the usual suspects, the Democrats."

"Like a moth to a flame, Democrats can't help themselves when it comes to denigrating and demonizing Christians,"
he said.

(emphasis added)
My Comments:
When Democrats start squealing like stuck pigs, you know that the truth about their anti-Christian agenda has hit close to home.

I wish I had written what Rep. Hostetler said yesterday on the floor of the House of Representatives.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Jeb Bush Attacks New York Times as "Grotesque"

In a blistering letter to the New York Times, Florida Governor Jeb Bush called the paper's stance on Terri Schiavo a "grotesque and chilling disrespect for the sanctity of life [that] has never been more apparent than in your June 16 editorial."

Bush's letter, published in the Times Saturday, said: "Terri Schiavo was a deeply loved daughter, wife, sister and friend. The fact that her brain was atrophied or that she was blind or could not have been rehabilitated doesn't change that fact."

In its editorial "Autopsy on the Schiavo Tragedy," the Times, while not naming Bush, denounced "opportunistic politicians" who the newspaper claimed had exploited the case.

Yesterday the Times published the governor's letter.

But that was not enough for the liberal Gray Lady. The paper launched another vicious attack on Gov. Bush on its editorial page.

My Comments:
The New York Slimes is perhaps the most insidious weapon that the left has in its arsenal. Posing as "THE newspaper of record", and paid homage by the vast majority of news outlets throughout the world, the Slimes is, in fact, nothing more than the regurgitation of DNC talking points.

Abraham Lincoln on Sen. Dick Durbin's Seditious Guantanamo Remarks

"Congressmen who willfully take actions during wartime that damage morale and undermine the military are saboteurs and should be arrested, exiled, or hanged."
- Abraham Lincoln

Friday, June 17, 2005

Charles Krauthammer on the "Schumer Doctrine"

Hat Tip: Rich Leonardi

In Defense of Certainty
by Charles Krauthammer

"And in [William] Pryor's case, his beliefs are so well known, so deeply held, that it's very hard to believe, very hard to believe that they're not going to deeply influence the way he comes about saying, 'I will follow the law.' And that would be true of anybody who had very, very deeply held views."
- Senator Charles Schumer, during a hearing on the nomination of William Pryor for U.S. appeals-court judge, June 2003
And dare you have any "deeply held views" — a transparent euphemism for religiously grounded views — especially regarding abortion, watch out for Schumer and other Democrats on the Judiciary Committee. They might well declare you disqualified for the bench.

The Op-Ed pages are filled with jeremiads about believers — principally evangelical Christians and traditional Catholics — bent on turning the U.S. into a theocracy. Now I am not much of a believer, but there is something deeply wrong — indeed, deeply un-American — about fearing people simply because they believe. It seems perfectly O.K. for secularists to impose their secular views on America, such as, say, legalized abortion or gay marriage. But when someone takes the contrary view, all of a sudden he is trying to impose his view on you. And if that contrary view happens to be rooted in Scripture or some kind of religious belief system, the very public advocacy of that view becomes a violation of the U.S. constitutional order.

What nonsense. The campaign against certainty is merely the philosophical veneer for an attempt to politically marginalize and intellectually disenfranchise believers. Instead of arguing the merits of any issue, secularists are trying to win the argument by default on the grounds that the other side displays unhealthy certainty or, even worse, unseemly religiosity.

Why this panic about certainty and people who display it? It is not just, as conventional wisdom has it, that liberals think the last election was lost because of a bloc of benighted Evangelicals. It is because we are almost four years from 9/11 and four years of moral certainty, and firm belief is about all that secular liberalism can tolerate.


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Thursday, June 16, 2005

The Sins of the Father: Sen. Mike DeWine's Son Loses House Primary in Ohio

"The Republican's upset is attributed to Christian conservatives and his father's filibuster deal."

The Los Angeles Times has a story about how the mean old "Christian Right" in Ohio ganged up on poor little Pat DeWine and made him pay for the filibuster deal that his father helped forge in the Senate:
BATAVIA, Ohio — Pat DeWine, son of U.S. Sen. Mike DeWine, was considered an easy favorite to succeed newly named U.S. Trade Representative Rob Portman as the Republican congressman from Ohio's 2nd District — until the younger DeWine ran afoul of the Christian right.

In Tuesday's primary, 35-year-old DeWine finished a distant fourth behind Jean Schmidt, a former state representative who ran a traditional-values campaign that motivated conservative voters by staying above the vitriolic campaign fray and using techniques honed by supporters of President Bush in 2004.

Her victory and the defeat of DeWine are a sign that evangelical conservatives continue to hold powerful sway in this solidly Republican part of Ohio.

Although he raised more than $1 million for his campaign, DeWine saw a commanding lead vanish over the last three months, due to objections from Christian conservatives who have become increasingly active politically.

Observers cite two factors: First, DeWine divorced three years ago, and news of the split spread on the Internet and in radio ads. Second, he suffered the wrath of conservative Christian activists after his father helped forge the recent compromise agreement in the Senate to preserve the filibuster for judicial nominations while guaranteeing confirmation of some but not all of Bush's nominees.

"It does speak to the power of the filibuster issue among social conservatives," said Amy Walter, who studies House races for the Cook Political Report. "I think it really turned a pretty sleepy race into a very hard-fought one."

Tim Rudd, chairman of the Clermont County Republican Committee, said the feelings against the DeWines were palpable after the senator helped forge the filibuster compromise.

"The reaction was, 'We've got one DeWine; we sure don't want another,' " Rudd said. Schmidt won with about 31% of the vote. DeWine received 12%.

My Comments:
"... DeWine divorced three years ago ..." I think there was a little more to this divorce that the Times doesn't bother mentioning (and which I will not go into), which caused Pat DeWine to run afoul of social conservatives.

I also think the results of this primary are a warning to Senator Mike DeWine that plenty of Republicans will be RINO hunting in two years when he is up for re-election.

Bono Shocked by Muslim Women's Reaction to Breastfeeding

From Ireland Online:
U2 frontman Bono was horrified during a visit to Ethiopia, when he saw local women pelting a breast-feeding aid worker with stones.

The American woman was oblivious of the offence she was causing, and had to escape the angry onslaught from female Muslims who had no qualms about injuring her or her baby.

Bono recalls: "I remember one vision of the people who are with World Vision, which is an American aid agency.

"One of the women was breast-feeding a child on the horse. She was so comfortable. She didn't mean to be insensitive.

"But the Muslim women did not like this and came out and started throwing stones at her because she was showing her breasts."
My Comments:
Kumbaya. Liberal Bono gets a taste of Islamic reality.

As one poster on FreeRepublic put it, "Good thing they didn't realize the breastfeeding mother was 'uncircumcised'."

Killing Terri All Over Again

"This autopsy changes nothing"

Deacon Keith Fournier weighs in on the Terri Schiavo autopsy results:
I was sickened by all the news reports concerning the autopsy of dear Terri Schiavo. I was repulsed by most of the “commentators” who attempted, in a smug and condescending manner, to try to use these results to not only justify but somehow commend her brutal murder. Terri was killed by dehydration with the full protection of the State, operating through a Judge who was committed to her death.

This autopsy changes nothing.

Let’s take a moment and strip away all the nonsense. Terri’s autopsy appears to have revealed (make no mistake, more “experts” will soon come out of the woodwork) that she was a severely brain injured woman who may have had visual impairment. Further, that she died by the dehydration caused by the intentional denial of water. Apparently, that also added to the shrinkage of her brain.

This is now being used to attempt to now support the indefensible -- her husband’s denial of a cup of water to his thirsty wife to save her life. It is also being used in an attempt to vilify all those who tried to save Terri’s life. Let’s be brutally and painfully honest, Terri was killed. She was dehydrated and starved intentionally because someone else, backed by the unrestrained power of a willing “Caesar” behind their nefarious decision, decided that she was too much of a burden. Those who truly loved her had offered to care for her and to pay for that care. They were denied the right.

So, Terri was killed. God help all brain injured, blind or severely disabled people. God help us all.

Terri Schiavo is dead. Last I looked, we honored the dead. However, she is now being dishonored. This disabled woman was intentionally deprived of food and water, with the force of the raw power of government holding the hands of the executioners. She was killed deliberately, by starvation and dehydration. No Court, Legislative body or Chief Executive had the courage to stop this killing. She was deprived of her substantive due process rights by every branch of government.

The results of this autopsy change nothing. In fact, their mis-use now, by some in the media who want to try to justify this evil act, simply have the effect of killing Terri all over again.


Wednesday, June 15, 2005

Bishops Decry European Hostility Towards Christianity

First, Archbishop Charles Chaput of Denver:
Denver's Chaput Flogs Europe, Saying It Is Forsaking Christianity
By Jean Torkelson, Rocky Mountain News
June 10, 2005

Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput waved a red flag before an -international audience Thursday in Spain, accusing Europe of growing religious intolerance and abusing Christianity.

"Europe has given the whole world the seeds of democracy," he told government ministers from 55 nations, according to a text of his speech. "Today's growing anti-religious and often anti-Christian spirit undermines that witness."

In his address, Chaput traced Europe's Christian roots and decried abandonment of that heritage by the continent's prevailing culture.

Chaput cited legal restrictions of religious expression and open contempt of religious symbols.

"Programs like How To Cook a Crucifix (a show aired on Spanish TV last December), and sacramental confessions recorded without the confessor's knowledge are deeply contemptuous of Catholic believers," Chaput said.

"This is unworthy of Europe's moral dignity and religious heritage. Furthermore, it stands in stark contrast to OSCE commitments to promote religious freedom."

Chaput said "an equally dangerous trend" was state-encouraged ridicule and intolerance of public expressions of faith, often derided as fundamentalism.
And then, Archbishop Antonio Canizarez of Toledo, Spain:
Vatican Envoy Denounces Anti-Christian Bias in Europe

Cordoba, Jun. 14 ( - The Holy See has called for an end to discrimination against Christians, and all other religious believers, in Europe.

At a meeting of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE) in Cordoba, Spain, the Vatican delegation headed by Archbishop Antonio Canizarez of Toledo observed that "intolerance and discrimination against Christians and members of other religions are troubling phenomena." The Holy See's representatives said that such discrination should be rooted out "with the same determination with which we combat anti-Semitism and discrimination against Muslims."

Monday, June 13, 2005

AFL-CIO Urged to Halt Support of "Proud Union Queers"

( - Leaders of more than three dozen family-oriented organizations have sent a letter to AFL-CIO President John Sweeney, urging him and his federation to rescind its support of same-sex marriage and stop using members' dues to advance the agendas of homosexual and transgender activists, including one group that calls its members "proud union queers."

The letter, sent earlier this month, is a response to a resolution entitled "Support for the Full Inclusion and Equal Rights of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgender People in the Workplace," which the AFL-CIO Executive Committee passed unanimously at its March 3 meeting in Las Vegas.

While stating that "families come in all shapes and sizes," the AFL-CIO resolution claimed that the proposed Federal Marriage Amendment and its state counterparts "threaten the rights of working people by creating an environment across the nation that is hostile to the rights of domestic partners, regardless of their sexual orientation."

The measure concluded by stating that the AFL-CIO -- which represents 58 national and international labor unions and more than 13 million workers -- "reiterates its longstanding support for the full inclusion and equal rights of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender people in the workplace and in society."
My Comments:
Gee, it kinda makes you feel sorry for those devout (but clearly misguided) Catholics who continue to labor (no pun intended) under the delusion that the Democrat Party and the AFL-CIO are looking out for their best interests.

Brazilian Bishop: Same-Sex Unions Pose "Serious Crisis in Civilization"

From Catholic World News:
Brazilia, Jun. 13 (FIDES/ - The tendency to equate homosexual unions with the natural family is a sign of a serious crisis in civilization, says the secretary-general of the Brazilian bishops' conference.

Bishop Odilo Pedro Scherer of Sao Paulo, speaking to the Fides news service, added: "Society must resist this pressure and guarantee special protection for the family based on the union of a man and a woman."

“In Brazil militant groups, well articulated and well financed, are exercising strong pressure to approve laws to legalize abortion, same-sex unions, elimination of the abnormal fetus," the bishop told Fides. "One has the impression that this is the work of transnational movements and organizations, not only local.”

My Comments:
"One has the impression that this is the work of transnational movements and organizations, not only local."

Why do I have a sneaking suspicion that the United Nations and its "non-governmental organizations" (aka NGOs) are playing some role in this "well articulated and well financed" effort to eviscerate traditional laws that protect the family?

Italian Referendum Fails; Bishops' Strategy Successful

From Catholic World News:
Jun. 13 ( - Nearly 3 out of 4 eligible Italian voters declined to participate in a nationwide referendum on June 12 and 13, according to early unofficial results. Because of the low voter turnout, the referendum results will not be legally binding, and the Italian bishops appear to have scored a significant political victory.

The referendum was the result of a campaign to overturn restrictive aspects of Italy's "Law #40," which was passed in 2004 to regulate the practice of in vitro fertilization. The Italian bishops - with the support of Pope Benedict XVI - had encouraged Catholic voters to abstain from the vote.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

Peggy Noonan: "Hillary Clinton and Howard Dean Rage Against Republicans."

Hat tip: The Anchoress

Peggy Noonan gives Howard Dean and Hillary Clinton a taste of their own medicine:
President Bush is introduced at a great gathering in Topeka, Kan. It is the evening of June 9, 2005. Ruffles and flourishes, "Hail to the Chief," hearty applause from a packed ballroom. Mr. Bush walks to the podium and delivers the following address.

"Thank you, ladies and gentlemen. I want to speak this evening about how I see the political landscape. Let me jump right in. The struggle between the Republican Party and the Democratic Party is a struggle between good and evil--and we're the good. I hate Democrats. Let's face it, they have never made an honest living in their lives. Who are they, really, but people who are intent on abusing power, destroying the United States Senate and undermining our Constitution? They have no shame.

But why would they? They have never been acquainted with the truth. You ever been to a Democratic fundraiser? They all look the same. They all behave the same. They have a dictatorship, and suffer from zeal so extreme they think they have a direct line to heaven. But what would you expect when you have a far left extremist base? We cannot afford more of their leadership. I call on you to help me defeat them!"

Imagine Mr. Bush saying those things, and the crowd roaring with lusty delight. Imagine John McCain saying them for that matter, or any other likely Republican candidate for president, or Ken Mehlman, the head of the Republican National Committee.

Can you imagine them talking this way? Me neither. Because they wouldn't.
My Comments:
Conservatives wouldn't say these things for at least 2 reasons:
(1) We don't play that way, and
(2) The MSM would never allow conservatives to get away with the kind of rhetoric they wink and smile at when it comes from Howard, Hillary & Co.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Howard Dean's Latest: GOP a "white Christian party"

"They all behave the same. They all look the same"

More from the "mouth that roared" (or was it more like a scream?):
The GOP is pretty much a "white Christian party," said Democratic National Committee chairman Howard Dean in the latest controversial remarks that have prompted increasing criticism from leading members of his own party.

The latest comments came in San Francisco at a forum with minority leaders and journalists.

He characterized the Republican Party as "a pretty monolithic party. They all behave the same. They all look the same. It's pretty much a white Christian party."
My Comments:
Asked about Dean's comments, GOP Chairman Ken Mehlman's response was that "a lot of folks who attended my Bar Mitzvah would be surprised [that I head a Christian party]."

Howard Dean is the gift to the Republicans that keeps on giving.

Texas Governor Signs Abortion, Marriage Bills

From my old home state of Texas, comes this piece of pro-family news:
Fort Worth, Texas, Jun. 07 ( - Two strongly pro-family bills, one of which was passed in the Texas Senate last week, have received the signature of Texas Gov. Rick Perry.

The first bill, which requires the consent of parents in order for a minor to procure an abortion, comes into effect with Perry's signature. It is a stronger law than the previous one governing minors seeking abortion, which only required that parents be notified of their daughter's intentions.

The second bill is a constitutional amendment banning gay marriage. Texas voters are set to cast ballots on the amendment this November 7, making the governor's signature a symbolic approval. "A nurturing home with a loving mother and loving father is the best way to guide our children down the proper path," said the governor in promoting the proposed amendment.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Democrat-Appointed Federal Judges Say Infanticide is Constitutionally Protected

Hat tip: Will Bloomfield

Another example of why it matters who is picking federal appellate court judges: a 3-judge panel of the 4th Circuit ruled that Virginia's law banning the practice of killing infants moments after they are prematurely delivered was unconstitutional because it did not include an exception for the "health" of the mother.

The 2 judges voting to strike down the Virginia law were Clinton appointees; the dissenting judge who voted to uphold the infant protections was appointed by George H.W. Bush.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Pope Benedict XVI Condemns Same-Sex Unions

From the Associated Press:
ROME - Pope Benedict XVI condemned same-sex unions as anarchic "pseudo-matrimony" Monday and reaffirmed the Roman Catholic Church's opposition to abortion.

Benedict repeatedly referred to marriage as a union between man and woman in an address to a conference of the Diocese of Rome on the role of the family held at St. John Lateran basilica.

He said matrimony was not just a "casual sociological construction" that changed in certain times in history but rather an institution that had its roots "in the most profound essence of the human being."

"The various forms of the dissolution of matrimony today, like free unions, trial marriages and going up to pseudo-matrimonies by people of the same sex, are rather expressions of an anarchic freedom that wrongly passes for true freedom of man," he said.

Children, he said, were the fruit of marriage and reflected God's love for man.

"From here it becomes all the more clear how contrary it is to human love, to the profound vocation of man and woman, to systematically close their union to the gift of life, and even worse to suppress or tamper with the life that is born," he said.

Eucharistic Congress Ties Gathering To Current Events

From the Atlanta Journal Constitution:
The 10th Eucharistic Congress in Atlanta drew about 25,000 believers Saturday ...

Bobby Schindler, [Terri] Schaivo's brother, said that his return to being a devout Catholic was inspired by his sister's struggle and by seeing an interview with Caviezel who displayed "unwavering faith. I remember saying to myself, 'I wish I had faith like that.'"

The brother condemned what he called "a culture of death in this country over the last 30 years," citing legal abortion and what he said is the growing idea that quality of life should determine who lives and dies.

Schiavo's brother abruptly ended his speech with a comment that caused all conversation and shuffling to stop in the cavernous room filled with folding chairs and hundreds of listeners.

"The Holy Father [Pope John Paul II] was uniting himself with Terri in her suffering. Even before death, there was a special connection between Terri and the pope. . . . I'm sure they are in heaven today looking down on us."

Friday, June 03, 2005

Ohio Governor Bob Taft: Is He Gone Yet?

From the Ohio State Sentinel:
Campaigning has already begun for Ohio’s next governor’s race. Columbus Mayor Michael Coleman and Ohio Secretary of State Ken Blackwell have left the gates a bit early to try to capture the support of Ohioans. This early campaigning is likely to pay off for the candidates, because no matter who is running in 2006, Ohioans will choose just about anyone who isn’t Bob Taft.

Governor Taft has watched his political career take one of the largest falls from grace in recent history. The state currently holds a $720 million deficit. In a recent approval rating survey, Bob Taft held the bottom spot, making him the most disliked governor in all 50 U.S. states. It is safe to say that Taft has become the most hated man in Ohio—from Democrats to Republicans, Taft just can’t win. In friendly circles, even those with the most conservative influences, just a mention of Bob Taft’s name could result in week-long debates over who dislikes him more.

Taft’s popularity could not be lower, and now it seems he has driven the final nail into his own political coffin. After creating one of the largest deficits in state history, Taft is searching for a way out, and that way out is increasing the consumption tax, better known to all as the “sin tax.”

My Comments:
Is Bob Taft gone yet? Not quite. But just so long as he's gone by the time I get to Ohio, or shortly thereafter. And he can take Ohio's RINO Senators, Mike DeWine and George Voinovich, with him.

Secretary of State Ken Blackwell is my man for Governor of Ohio.

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Rumor Mill: Chaput to Replace McCarrick in D.C.?

From The Rocky Mountain News:
Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput's name is being churned in the rumor mill as the next archbishop of Washington, D.C. - and the noise is so loud that even Chaput is acknowledging it.

"Every other day I hear it from people who like to speculate," Chaput said Wednesday, calling the buzz "ecclesiastical gossip."

He became nationally known for his tough talk to Catholic politicians and voters during the election season, saying they had to follow church teachings when deciding public policy issues such as abortion and euthanasia.

In May, Chaput was portrayed in a lengthy piece in The New Yorker magazine as a pivotal American bishop under the new Pope Benedict XVI. That month he also shared a dais with President Bush at the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast, where he continued his theme that Catholic politicians must practice their faith in their public life.

However, if it came down to being asked whether he would accept a new post, Chaput said he would do what he could to stay in Denver.

"If consulted on the matter, I would say, 'No, I'm happy where I am.' "

"Would he be a splendid and bold and persuasive voice for the Catholic Church in the nation's capital?" [Father Richard John] Neuhaus said. "My answer would be most emphatically, 'yes,' and therefore I would welcome such an appointment."
My Comments:
Boy, I bet Catholic-In-Name-Only politicians like Fat Teddy, John F. Kerry, Joe Biden, and Susan Collins would just love being called to the carpet for their anti-life votes by "Cardinal" Chaput.

For a foretaste of what the above-mentioned politicians might expect from a Cardinal Chaput, see "Chaput Targets Catholic Politicians":
WASHINGTON - Denver Archbishop Charles J. Chaput on Friday reignited his heated criticism of Catholic politicians who "don't conform" their lives to their religious beliefs.

"When public officials claim to be Catholic but then say they can't offer their beliefs about the sanctity of the human person as the basis of law, it always means one of two things: That person is either very confused or they're very evasive," he said.

Chaput made his remarks at the second annual National Catholic Prayer Breakfast, where President Bush also spoke.

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Loss Of Middle Class A "Crisis" For Democrats

From The Washington Times:
The Democratic Party, the self-proclaimed defender of the middle class, was trounced by Republicans among those voters in the 2004 election, according to a Democratic advocacy group that says the party faces "a crisis with the middle class."

A report released yesterday by Third Way says support for Republicans begins at much lower income levels than researchers had expected: Among white voters, President Bush got a majority of support beginning at an income threshold of $23,300 -- about $5,000 above the poverty level for a family of four.

The report says the economic gains of Hispanics have translated into strong Republican gains, as have economic strides across every category, save for black voters.

"As Americans become even modestly wealthier their affinity for Democrats apparently falls off. With middle income voters, it is Democrats -- the self-described party of the middle class -- who are running far behind Republicans, the oft-described party of the rich," the report says.

My Comments:
First Catholics, and now the "middle class".

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