Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Archbishop Chaput: Thoughts on “Roman Catholics for Obama ’08”

Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, who "Catholic Democrats" recently accused of being part of a right-wing Republican cabal involving Catholic bishops in the Great Plains and Mountain West, writes about his involvement in the campaigns of Bobby Kennedy and Jimmy Carter at the First Things blog. He then fast forwards to how Catholics of today are justifying their support for the current Democrat frontrunner:
... In the years after the Carter loss, I began to notice that very few of the people, including Catholics, who claimed to be “personally opposed” to abortion really did anything about it. Nor did they intend to. For most, their personal opposition was little more than pious hand-wringing and a convenient excuse—exactly as it is today. In fact, I can’t name any pro-choice Catholic politician who has been active, in a sustained public way, in trying to discourage abortion and to protect unborn human life—not one. Some talk about it, and some may mean well, but there’s very little action. In the United States in 2008, abortion is an acceptable form of homicide. And it will remain that way until Catholics force their political parties and elected officials to act differently.

Why do I mention this now? Earlier this spring, a group called “Roman Catholics for Obama ’08” quoted my own published words in the following way:
So can a Catholic in good conscience vote for a pro-choice candidate? The answer is: I can’t, and I won’t. But I do know some serious Catholics— people whom I admire—who may. I think their reasoning is mistaken, but at least they sincerely struggle with the abortion issue, and it causes them real pain. And most important: They don’t keep quiet about it; they don’t give up; they keep lobbying their party and their representatives to change their pro-abortion views and protect the unborn. Catholics can vote for pro-choice candidates if they vote for them despite—not because of—their pro-choice views.
What’s interesting about this quotation—which is accurate but incomplete—is the wording that was left out. The very next sentences in the article of mine they selected, which Roman Catholics for Obama neglected to quote, run as follows:
But [Catholics who support pro-choice candidates] also need a compelling proportionate reason to justify it. What is a “proportionate” reason when it comes to the abortion issue? It’s the kind of reason we will be able to explain, with a clean heart, to the victims of abortion when we meet them face to face in the next life—which we most certainly will. If we’re confident that these victims will accept our motives as something more than an alibi, then we can proceed.
On their website, Roman Catholics for Obama stress that:
After faithful thought and prayer, we have arrived at the conclusion that Senator Obama is the candidate whose views are most compatible with the Catholic outlook, and we will vote for him because of that—and because of his other outstanding qualities—despite our disagreements with him in specific areas.
I’m familiar with this reasoning. It sounds a lot like me thirty years ago. And thirty years later, we still have about a million abortions a year. [ED.: Of course, we all know - as the Obamoloch Democrats are constantly reminding us - that this all the Republicans' fault for not waving their magic wand and bringing an end to abortion. Hardened Democrat opposition that has fought tooth and nail to prevent even the most minimal restrictions on the scourge of abortion has absolutely nothing to do with it.] Maybe Roman Catholics for Obama will do a better job at influencing their candidate. It could happen. [ED.: And monkeys could fly out of my nether regions.] And I sincerely hope it does, since Planned Parenthood of the Chicago area, as recently as February 2008, noted that Senator Barack Obama “has a 100 percent pro-choice voting record both in the U.S. Senate and the Illinois Senate.” [ED.: Actually, it's a 101% voting record since he voted to deny medical care to already-born babies who had survived a botched abortion - even the abortion lobby didn't go that far.]

[ED.: Here comes the "money" quote.] Changing the views of “pro-choice” candidates takes a lot more than verbal gymnastics, good alibis, and pious talk about “personal opposition” to killing unborn children. I’m sure Roman Catholics for Obama know that, and I wish them good luck. They’ll need it.

(emphasis and editorial commentary added)

Previous Pro Ecclesia posts on this subject:
"Catholic Democrats" Attack "Registered Republican Archbishop of Kansas City" for "Using Communion" to "Take Down" Sebelius

Archbishop Chaput Warns Catholics on Supporting Pro-Abortion Candidates

Archbishop Chaput: "Better Citizens, More Faithful Catholics"

John Allen Interviews Archbishop Chaput Regarding Catholic Voting Guides

Archbishop Chaput Not Satisfied With Proposed New USCCB Document on Voting

Archbishop Chaput: The Time for Behind-The-Scenes Diplomacy with Politicians Is Over

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At 5/20/2008 9:30 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

"I began to notice that very few of the people, including Catholics, who claimed to be “personally opposed” to abortion really did anything about it."

Bravo! Additionally I actually have more respect for pro-aborts who think it is a good thing rather than the personally opposed pro-aborts. Better to have someone who simply denies the humanity of the unborn than to have someone who agrees that abortion is the destruction of human life, but will actively vote to keep abortion legal.

At 5/20/2008 9:47 AM, Blogger Paul, just this guy, you know? said...

Well said, Donald!

Can anyone show any effort by any Catholic supporters of Obama to get him to change or moderate his pro-abortion views?

All I've seen are efforts by them to play-down, deny, cover up, or apologize for Obama's pro-abortion statements, votes, positions, and promises, in an effort to get fellow Catholics to overlook them as well.

Is there any sign of concern among pro-abort groups like NARAL that Obama's Catholic supporters might have success in such an effort?

At 5/23/2008 4:25 AM, Blogger Joe of St. Thérèse said...

To allow evil is to particpate in it. Much better to do something about it, rather than letting it go on.


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