Digest of Today's Posts (31 July 2008)
(Digest of Yesterday's Posts (30 July 2008))
Labels: Digest of Posts
Labels: Digest of Posts
(Hat tip: Brian Burch at Fidelis)
A Quinnipiac poll out today shows that the presidential race is surprisingly tight in Ohio, Florida, and Pennsylvania, given the unpopularity of President and lingering anti-Republican sentiment. One of Obama's biggest vulnerabilities: white Catholics. These are many of the same voters who kept Hillary Clinton going for so long during the Democratic primaries.
In both Florida and Ohio, Obama's losing white Catholics to McCain by 52-percent to 40-percent. That's not an insignificant gap. (In Pennsylvania, white Catholics are evenly split between the Democratic and Republican candidates.) It's not as dramatic as the gap in 2004, when John Kerry lost white Ohio Catholics (one in four Buckeye State voters) to President Bush 59-41 and lost Florida Catholics 59-41. But the difference from 2004 says more about Catholic uncertainty about John McCain than any increase in Catholic support for Obama.
That means Obama has an opening. But also that he hasn't seized it yet. For all the attention lavished on evangelical voters, Catholics are the swing voters who could decide the election with how they cast their ballots. Evangelicals, who vote overwhelmingly Republican, are more likely to decide the election by whether they go to the polls or stay home on Election Day.
Jean posted this at Catholic Fire a couple of days ago:
Feddie highlights this outrageous story:
You can’t make this stuff up, folks: Senate dems are actually filing ethics complaints against Senator Tom Coburn because he delivers babies free of charge.
Does anyone believe that this complaint would have been filed against Senator Coburn if he had been performing free abortions?
Labels: Digest of Posts
(Hat tip: Feddie)
Via the Progressive Revival blog, I learn of a new Vote the Common Good initiative by a collection of Catholic leftie organizations. Here's their platform. It's fairly long, and there are some things a religious conservative like me supports, e.g.:we need infrastructures and programs to build up local communities and businesses and to provide access to education, jobs, needed services and green space. Local businesses are important in developing strong communities that support families.It's a long platform, and fairly comprehensive. They even come out in favor of the United Nations. But search the whole thing, and the one word you won't see is...
They can't say it, can they? In fact, there's nothing in that entire platform taking the slightest issue with gay marriage or any other fruit of the sexual revolution, about which the Roman Catholic church has said a few things.
The "common good" in this case is a euphemism for "things left-wing Catholics support." Nothing new here, just another organizing tool for the Democratic Party...
[Read the whole thing]
(Hat tip: Rich Leonardi at Ten Reasons)
Ecumenicalism is good.
Working with evangelicals on pro-life and other causes in support of the traditional family is bad.
... until the start of college football.
Details at InsideCatholic.
Catholics Fear Obama Considering Pro-Abortion Catholic Veep(Hat tip: Feddie)
CHICAGO, July 29, 2008 /PRNewswire-USNewswire via COMTEX/ -- Kaine, Biden, Dodd or Sebelius Could Prompt Backlash
Catholic voters attuned to speculation over possible vice presidential candidates are expressing concern over reports that Senator Barack Obama is seriously considering a pro-abortion Catholic as his running mate. According to Fidelis, a national Catholic based advocacy group, such a choice would represent a major insult to Catholic voters who are still evaluating his candidacy.
"The choice of a pro-abortion Catholic for vice president would deal a major blow to any efforts by the Obama campaign to reach out to Catholic voters," said Brian Burch, President of Fidelis. "Both the bishops and the laity continue to wrestle with the scandal of prominent Catholic politicians who support abortion, and the choice of a pro-abortion Catholic running mate would amount to scratching at a deep and festering wound in the American Catholic Church."
Most recently, Virginia Governor Tim Kaine has been discussed as a good fit for Obama given his Catholic faith and purported "pro-life" views.
This comment, by itself, is reason enough not to vote for Sen. Obama:
"I have become a symbol of the possibility of America returning to our best traditions."Got Humility?
Simple assignment for the press corps: ask the senator to name three specific traditions to which America will return upon his election and why his election will prompt their return. No teleprompters allowed.And follows up with:
Pop quiz for the press corps. Which of the following phrases is not attributable to Sen. Obama?:
—"People of the world — this is our moment."
—"We are the change we've been waiting for."
—"I have become a symbol of the possibility of America returning to our best traditions."
—"I am the way and the truth and the life."
—"I am absolutely certain that generations from now, we will be able to look back and tell our children that this was the moment... when the rise of the oceans began to slow and our planet began to heal."
—"I am a ..Citizen of the World."
The Cranky Conservative has the details.
Matthew Archbold, writing at Creative Minority Report, lists "a few reasons pro-lifers will win...eventually":
1) Pro-aborts can't call themselves what they are. They call themselves pro-choice. It's a not-so-subtle nomenclature shift meant to appeal to freedom-loving Americans. But in the end, I believe, if your rallying cry is a lie your supporters are going to figure it out after a while. They're not pro-choice. They're pro-abortion. But they can't admit to that. If you have to lie about what you're for, you're going to lose...eventually.
2) Improvements in science continues to enhance our knowledge of what's going on in the womb, putting pro-aborts on the side of being "anti-science." When Roe first became the law of the land pro-aborts argued that the baby wasn't a baby at all but just a clump of cells. Most people know that's not true anymore. People have seen 3-D Ultrasounds. People have seen the photo of the baby reaching out during an in-utero surgery. The numbers of the ignorant are dwindling and that aids our cause.
Labels: Digest of Posts
(Hat tip: HotAir)
Mr T's Snickers ad deemed offensive to homosexualsMy Comments:
An advert featuring the A-team actor Mr T has been pulled after complaints in the US that it is offensive to homosexual men.
Deal Hudson reports at InsideCatholic:
After I published my Window about the August 16 event hosted by Rick Warren with Obama and McCain, I got an interesting phone call. I was told that Warren is under "tremendous pressure" not to put Obama on the hot seat about abortion and marriage.
In other words, there isn't a "chance," I was told, Warren will raise those issues in a way that could make Obama squirm.
HotAir reports on a Gallup poll regarding belief in God in America.
(Hat tip: Donald McClarey via email)
Labels: Digest of Posts
Sad news about yet another Catholic journalist. Columnist Robert Novak, a Catholic convert, has been diagnosed with a brain tumor:
Robert Novak was admitted yesterday to a Boston hospital where he was diagnosed with a brain tumor. In a written statement given to his publisher, Novak said:My Comments:
“On Sunday, July 27, I was diagnosed with a brain tumor. I have been admitted to Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston, where doctors will soon begin appropriate treatment.
“I will be suspending my journalistic work for an indefinite but, God willing, not too lengthy period.”
From Catholic News Service (via the Diocese of Toledo's Catholic Chronicle):
WASHINGTON (CNS)—State by state, Catholics and others in the pro-life community are accomplishing a mission that they hope will give pregnant women considering an abortion the clearest proof yet that their action would still an unborn child's beating heart.
So far in 2008, four states — Ohio, Oklahoma, South Carolina and South Dakota — have passed legislation or strengthened earlier laws requiring abortion providers to offer women considering an abortion an opportunity to view the ultrasound image of their unborn child.
In addition to the four added or expanded in 2008, states with ultrasound laws include Alabama, Arkansas, Georgia, Idaho, Indiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Utah and Wisconsin. Louisiana requires an ultrasound if a pregnancy has reached 20 weeks and says the woman must be offered an opportunity to view it. Florida and Arizona laws compel the use of ultrasound for any abortion after 12 weeks, but the woman has to ask to see the images.
At the federal level, the Ultrasound Informed Consent Act was introduced in both the House and Senate in the 110th Congress but neither bill made it out of committee.
Shame on them:
Comerica Bank called $11 million loan, demanding liquidationComerica chairman, Henry F. Potter, was unavailable for comment. But a spokesman said that Mr. Potter would be willing to take on many of the Norwalk Furniture employees thrown out of work as tentants in his rental properties in "Potter's Field". The spokesman also noted that Mr. Potter was looking forward to the renaming of Norwalk as "Pottersville".
Thursday July 24 2008, 1:38 pm
The acting CEO for Norwalk Furniture said Comerica Bank, which holds $11 million in loans for the company, has refused to even talk to several investors interested in buying out the loans and taking over the company.
Aversa said he finds it suspicious that Comerica would call in a loan in Ohio in which the company had paid back $2 million within the past 60 days shortly after the bank closed their Ohio offices.
“I don’t think its an accident that Comerica closed their Cleveland offices (recently), they stopped making loans in Ohio and then they show up on our doorstep and say liquidate,” Aversa said. “They know they’re never going to do any banking here. If this was in Detroit, it would not be this way.
“What’s happening here is a crazy, panicked world. The dynamics are almost like a depression,” he said. “If this company was located in Detroit or Texas, would they be treating us like this?”
Friday July 25 2008, 1:40 pm
In just 16 hours, Norwalk Furniture employees gathered about 50 employees and headed up in a caravan to Comerica headquarters in Detroit with one message "Norwalk Furniture Calling, Answer Your Phone."
After Dominic Aversa, acting CEO in the company's reorganization, released details about Comerica's refusal to consider buyout offers and the bank's insistance on liquidation, employees finally saw a way they could join in the battle.
"I don't think they have any idea what they've done," said Kim Gross, an employee who helped organize the caravan. "We're going to show Comerica what we do for a living."
Company officials gave the employees several pieces of furniture made in Norwalk to take along to set on the sidewalk in front of the bank.
"Hopefully we can get Comerica to answer their phone," Gross said. Aversa said Thursday that bank officials wouldn't even respond to phone calls from the company or several groups of investors interested in buying out the loan and putting workers back in the factory.
The bank called company officials late last Friday afternoon insisting on full repayment of the company's $11 million loan and line-of-credit or immediate liquidation. The bank insisted the company shut down immediately, leaving about $1 million worth of unfinished orders sitting on the factory floor and finished items waiting undelivered in trucks.
After they rally in front of Comerica's headquarters, the Norwalk employees will head to Comerica Park, the home of the Detroit Tigers, for tonight's game against the Chicago White Sox at 7.
Gross said they will hold up their signs and talk to anyone who will listen about Comerica's treatment of businesses and employees in Ohio.
"Comerica paid $66 million for naming rights to Comerica Park," she said. "I guess that's their vision of community support, a little different from ours."
Gross also pointed out that Norwalk Furniture was the first account Comerica ever got in Ohio.
News reports are indicating that Sen. McCain may name his running mate within the next couple of weeks rather than holding off until the traditional period leading up to the Republican Convention. The question I have is why?
A reader writes in to inform me that a group of law students at Marquette Law School have refounded the St. Thomas More Society at that school.
(Hat tip: Feddie)
The Anniversary of Humanae Vitae by Joseph Bottum at On the Square
Pro-life liberal Nat Hentoff writes:
Amid the speculation regarding John McCain's choice to complete his presidential ticket, I offer my unsolicited suggestion for his vice president: the first woman — and youngest — governor of Alaska, Sarah Palin, who is an unstereotypical and effective Republican.My Comments:
During her first year in office, as reported by the Associated Press on May 10, she "distanced herself from the old guard, powerful members of the state GOP (and) stood up to the oil interests that hold great power in Alaska, and with bipartisan support in the statehouse, she won a tax increase on the oil companies' profits." Last December, this mother of four children, Mrs. Palin, four months' pregnant, found she was going to have a child with Down syndrome — a condition characterized by moderate-to-severe mental retardation. A school friend of one of my sons had Down syndrome; I have also known functioning adults with the extra chromosomes of that syndrome.
Mrs. Palin's first reaction to the diagnosis was to research the facts about the condition, since, as she said, "I've never had problems with my other pregnancies." As a result, she and her husband, Todd, never had any doubt they would have the child.
"We've both been very vocal about being pro-life," she told the Associated Press. "We understand that every innocent life has wonderful potential." In an age when DNA and other genetic-selection tests increasingly determine who is "fit" to join us human beings, we are witnessing the debate between sanctity of life vs. quality of life being more often decided in favor of death. This is a result welcomed by internationally-influential bioethicist Peter Singer. He is now a celebrated Princeton University professor, who, in July 1983, wrote in Pediatrics, the official Journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics: "If we compare a severely defective human infant with a nonhuman animal, a dog or pig, for example, we will often find the nonhuman to have superior capacities, both actual and potential, for rationality, self-consciousness, communication, and anything else that can plausibly be considered morally significant." And there are bioethicists who point to the continuing costs of rearing a "defective infant."
By inspirational contrast, Mrs. Palin, says of her new son, Trig: "I'm looking at him right now, and I see perfection. Yeah, he has an extra chromosome. I keep thinking, in our world, what is normal and what is perfect?" Three days after she gave birth, Mrs. Palin was back in her Anchorage office with her husband and Trig. "I can think of so many male candidates," she tells the AP, "who watched families grow while they were in office. There is no reason to believe a woman can't do it with a growing family. My baby will not be at all or in any sense neglected." Says the governor of Alaska: "I will not shirk my duties." Taking her stand for life as a holder of high political office is all the more valuable in the face of the termination of fetal lives as not worth continuing before they can speak for themselves. Mrs. Palin's stand also puts a searching light on the growing "futility" doctrine in hospitals which is affecting people of all ages.
She would be a decided asset: an independent Republican governor, a woman, a defender of life against the creeping culture of death and a fresh face in national politics. She was described in "the Almanac of National Politics" as "an avid hunter and fisher with a killer smile who wears designer glasses and heels, and hair like modern sculpture." Moreover, I doubt that she would engage in such campaigning, as Sen. McCain's strongly implying that a Hamas terrorist saying he would like Barack Obama to be president thereby damages Mr. McCain's opponent (though Mr. Obama has totally condemned Hamas). Still unknown is whether Mrs. Palin would be as flip-flopping as Mr. McCain on the Bush torture policy that has so blighted our reputation in the world. But we would find out: If chosen as his running mate, she would create more interest in this already largely scripted presidential campaign.
And her presence could highlight Mr. Obama's extremist abortion views on whether certain lives are worth living — even a child born after a botched abortion.
WASHINGTON, D.C., July 22, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The US Catholic Bishops are now entering the political fracas over a Bush Administration plan to protect the conscience rights of health care professionals that object to abortifacient contraception, crossing swords with Sen. Hillary Clinton and other abortion-supporters in the process.(emphasis added)
"This issue provides self-described 'pro-choice' advocates with an opportunity to demonstrate their true convictions," stated Cardinal Justin Rigali, chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops' Committee (USCCB) on Pro-Life Activities.
"Or is the 'pro-choice' label a misleading mask for an agenda of actively promoting and even imposing morally controversial procedures on those who conscientiously hold different views?"
Clinton and abortion advocates are apoplectic over a draft proposal from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) that defines abortion to include "any of the various procedures - including the prescription, dispensing and administration of any drug or the performance of any procedure or any other action - that results in the termination of the life of a human being in utero between conception and natural birth, whether before or after implantation."
The proposed HHS regulations would ban individuals and entities receiving federal funds from discriminating against health care professionals and institutions that have moral or religious objections to abortion and abortifacient birth control.
Sen. Clinton along with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and 104 Congressman have objected vociferously to the proposed HHS rules, saying health care professionals would then be free to refuse to dispense IUDs, the morning-after pill, emergency contraception, and other abortifacient forms of birth control.
"The draft regulation could have a disastrous effect upon access to safe and effective birth control for millions of women across the country," one protest letter states, adding the regulation would "threaten virtually any law or policy designed to protect women's access to safe and effective birth control...by defining 'abortion' in a way that could sweep in many common forms of birth control."
Representing the USCCB, Rigali stated in a letter written to all members of the US Congress that abortion advocates are being mendacious in claiming that pro-life doctors and nurses - a group they have derided for years as "a tiny minority of religious zealots" - would devastate women's access to abortion and contraception by having their conscience rights protected. The Philadelphia Archbishop added that even if that were the case, it would indicate that the medical community does not regard abortifacient services as essential to "basic" health care as abortion advocates have made it out to be.
"Patients with pro-life convictions, including women who require a physician's care for themselves and their unborn children during pregnancy, deserve 'access' to health care professionals who do not have contempt for their religious and moral convictions or for the lives of their children," he added.
The proposed HHS regulations would ban individuals and entities receiving federal funds from discriminating against health care professionals and institutions that have moral or religious objections to abortion and abortifacient birth control. The HHS pointed to conscience violations by state laws (such as New York and Connecticut) that force abortifacient emergency contraception on Catholic hospitals or threaten the loss of funding as compelling reasons for a stronger federal regulation.
Deacon Keith Fournier writes as Catholic Online:
... We witnessed another example of the powerful abuse of loaded language in a sad chapter in our own American history - when slavery was “legal”, even called a “right” and protected by the United States Supreme Court. The lingering effects of this social evil still cry out for remedy!My Comments:
Human Persons whose skin pigmentation was darker than those who then held the reigns of power were treated as property and allowed to be “legally owned” and used by others - all with the approval of a Supreme Court which had sacrificed Natural Law and Justice.
A very similar jurisprudence is found in Roe v Wade and its progeny; an entire class of persons, children in the womb, have been relegated to the status of “chattel”, personal property, who can be disposed of by those more powerful than they.
They have no voice that can be heard except our own.
These human children, our first neighbors in the first home of the whole human race, their mothers’ womb, are being killed by chemicals and surgical strikes - all of which is currently protected by the power of a State.
They have no power to resist this new form of slavery without our help. They are subject to use, abuse and destruction by those with more power. Medical science has simply confirmed what our conscience already knows; the child in the womb is our neighbor.
In 1973 the U.S. Supreme Court struck down abortion bans across the country. In so doing, they “legalized” the killing of the unborn in all 50 states throughout all nine months of pregnancy, at least in the positive law. Fifty million lives have been taken since then in procured abortions.
The Court “created” a new “right”, somehow discovering it in a “penumbra” around the so called “right to privacy” in the U.S. Constitution. Even many of the legal scholars who support legal abortion now acknowledge that the legal opinion is a disaster. It was poorly reasoned, based on junk medical science, inaccurate history and is on a collision course with itself.
Each time Juan Williams used the phrase “anti-abortion rights”, I cringed in my car seat. I asked him aloud in my car the following question:
“Juan, if you had been alive during the last round of slavery, would you have referred to those who rightly opposed it, even though it was called a “right” and protected by the then Supreme Court, “anti-slavery rights activists”?
Human Rights activism always requires an asymmetrical approach. The choice is not “either/or”, it is always “both/and”.
I have long supported incremental efforts geared toward the limitations and curtailment of abortion. I was a practicing pro-life lawyer for a very long time. For seven years in the last decade I led the American Center for Law and Justice which used such incrementalism in securing the protection of pro-life speech.
However, pitting these complimentary strategies against one another is wrong. It also fails to comprehend the gravity of the moral evil that is legal abortion.
That is why I have now chosen to use a new term to characterize my own opposition to legal abortion. It is time for a new abolitionism. It is time to end abortion!
Labels: Digest of Posts
(Hat tip: Opinionated Catholic)
Archbishop Chaput of Denver has long been a clear and reasoned voice when it comes to the intersection of faith and politics. Now it appears that he will be releasing a book next month on just that subject, titled Render Unto Caesar: Serving the Nation by Living Our Catholic Beliefs in Political Life, well in time for November's election...
We've had voting guides before, of course, but this sounds as if it will go well beyond a simple checklist of items Catholics must (or must not) vote for, and rather delve into an understanding of why they should do so, and why it is necessary and proper for Catholics to bring their faith into the political sphere in the first place.
Notwithstanding my criticism of the tone of one of Mark's posts yesterday, I am usually in general agreement with him. And Mark's description of those who decry the alleged "wealth" of the Catholic Church is dead on accurate:
... I've never quite gotten the whole "The Catholic Church is rolling in dough" thing. Where exactly? Every parish I know is always scrambling to pay the light bill. From all I can tell, the Church operates on a shoestring.If the Church were to "sell off her treasures", things like this would be impossible.
Dorothy Day, not exactly a friend of the GOP fatcat type thought one of the dumbest things her fellow lefties wanted to do was demand that the Church "sell off her treasures" because churches were one of the only places that the poor could experience beauty. All that plan would result in would be a modest boost in revenue that would almost instantly evaporate (what with the Church being the largest charitable institution on the face of the earth) and the world greatest art would hencefort and forever be the inaccessible property of a few rich people. The whole "Why were these things not sold?" deal is the wisdom of Judas Iscariot. It's most often heard in the countries, like the US and Canada, that have vast sums of wealth dwarfing the rest of the world. It's the complaint of greedy people.
Kathryn Jean Lopez writes at The Corner on National Review Online:
"I am not against Catholics in office following the moral teachings of the Church"
Today the Catholic blogger on the Washington Post's ridiculous religion blog has generously announced the above. How big of him. The topic is bishops denying communion to politicians and he's glad to see that there haven't been any new incidents in the last few weeks. Bishops, you see, shouldn't shepherd the faithful publicly, is his position. Mercifully, giving aid to scandal isn't a Church position.
From Jay Nordlinger at National Review Online:
A reader writes,Jay:Oh, yes.
I know you’re always interested in chronicling the wonders of our bumper-sticker culture. so here you go: I was tooling about Bloomingdale, Ill., when I stumbled across the following very slight modification of Scripture: “Faith . . . Hope . . . Obama.”
Yes, and the greatest of these is Obama, right?
Peter Kirsanow writes at The Corner on National Review Online:
Fwiw—talked with some veteran Ohio politicos yesterday who relate that the number one concern among the state's voters is (no surprise) gas prices. Focus group data supposedly shows one of Obama's top vulnerabilities is his record of voting "present" 100+ times in the Illinois state senate—blue collar voters expect senators to work, not straddle. Sleeper issue is Obama's Induced Birth Infant Liability Act vote. Almost nobody knows about it but when informed the reaction is nearly always the same: momentary incredulity followed by revulsion.(emphasis added)
From The Art of Manliness: "Are the Suburbs Killing Your Manhood?"
Labels: Digest of Posts
I don't know the answer (but tend to think perhaps not, while nevertheless remaining open to hearing the arguments either way), but Mark Shea seems to think the issue is a slam dunk "NO":
I eagerly await the finely parsed exegeses in my comboxes explaining, not only that castration is acceptable for rapists, but that hand amputations are suitable for thieves, tongue branding or removal is justice for slanderers, and foot removal is the due penalty for prison escapees.One thing we NEVER have to "eagerly anticipate" is sanctimony and moral preening from certain bloggers regarding what someone MIGHT say in a combox about an issue that doesn't seem to be as cut and dry as the blogger tries to make it out to be.
I don't think a reasonable request is to ask sex offender to castrate himself. While one can construe the chemical castration as voluntary, that would ignore the coercive elements of the act. I think we do a disservice to the quandry when we don't evaluate this.Now THERE'S a response that actually examines the moral issues involved without devolving into questioning the motives or moral judgment of those who might struggle with the moral and religious implications of a particular act (which don't seem so clearly defined as one might make them out to be).
You run into dangerous territory when you attempt to deem moral or immoral those acts related to an immoral act. A question often arises if it is worse for a boyfriend and girlfriend to have relations with a condom rather than without. Going deeper the question arises whether it is licit for two gay men to use a condom. The first question I would answer in the negative and the second I would answer in the negative, but there are those who would debate those answers, particularly the latter. There are any number of circumstances and qualifiers that would affect people's answers. And before someone mentions it, yes the acts remain objectively evil, but I was addressing subjective culpability. Such will never make an evil act righteous, but is can reduce the actor's culpability.
As to the general case over medical treatments that may cause a reduction in libido or impede procreation, HV makes clear one may do so as long as the intention is treatment of the medical condition and not contraceptive. I'm not aware - meaning that literature could indeed exist and be plentiful, you're reading this in a combox after all - of literature addressing psychotropic drugs that would reduce illicit desires. I'm not aware of literature addressing the liciety of hormone modification to lessen illicit desires.
Actually, I'd say the difference between chemical castration and physical castration is the difference between anti-psychotic drugs and a lobotomy. Does the fact that one is opposed to lobotomy require one to be opposed to the use of anti-psychotic drugs? I would think not.If we were talking about physically castrating someone, I'd be the first in line behind Mark in unequivocally condemning that act. But I'm not so secure in the superiority of my own moral reasoning that I can state unequivocally that the use of drugs in treating the sick compulsion of perverts by inhibiting libido (i.e. "chemical castration") is morally illicit.
Anti-psychotic drugs correct an imbalance that should not be there. Lobotomies destroy healthy tissue that should be there. All legitimate medicine is about helping nature do what it is designed by God to do. Whacking of somebody's balls or zapping them with chemicals so they no longer work is not assisting nature, but thwarting nature [ED.: Apparently, it's "natural" for pervs to have a compulsion to use their equipment to rape little kids?]. I have no problem incarcerating a rapist. But chemically or physically destroying part of his body so that it does not function anymore is, I think, pretty hard to square with the tradition.(emphasis added)
My understanding is that Depo-Provera works not by rendering men impotent, but by reducing the sex drive, along the lines of an appetite suppressant. So describing it as "destroying part of his body" isn't really accurate.Again, I'm NOT saying that "chemical castration" is morally licit. I've yet to be convinced, and believe it's perhaps not - at the very least, we ought to be putting up some big 'ol "CAUTION" and "DANGER" signs. Indeed, there are certainly moral and religious issues that are raised by this (as M.Z. points out). But I'm just not so cocksure (no pun intended) that it's a slam dunk from the perspective of Catholic teaching.
Perhaps its the term castration that is the problem. Perhaps hormone treatment would be less incidiary though might not satisfy everyone.(emphasis added)
The National Catholic Bioethics Center has 41 articles on the topic. I can't access them as I am not a member. However, it seems there might be some disagreement on the matter if there are 41 articles.
"Hormone treatment" sounds downright diabolical in its euphemism. It's not a "treatment." It's practically a mutilation.(emphasis added)
Why? If it's a more accurate description than "chemical castration"?Although by using the term "cocksure" a second time, I suppose the pun has, at that point, become intended.
Perhaps it's "downright diabolical in its euphemism" if your intent is to sanctimoniously demonize or ascribe bad motives and/or poor moral judgment to those who might not be so cocksure (no pun intended) about the moral illicitness of administering these drugs.
Labels: Crime and Punishment
Today, I received the following email from the McCain people:
It's pretty obvious that the media has a bizarre fascination with Barack Obama. Some may even say it's a love affair. We want you to be the judge. We've compiled two videos of the more outrageous moments of this not so secret love affair. Follow this link to watch the two videos and vote on which one you think is better. Your vote will determine which video we put on the air.Cry me a river, Maverick, you hypocrite! You've spent the last 8 years or more courting the media and basking in a media love affair of your own to the detriment of your fellow conservatives, who were the unwilling victims that you routinely sacrificed in order to attain such media adulation.
The media is in love with Barack Obama. If it wasn't so serious, it would be funny.
The McCain Campaign
Our favorite stone-age Marine spells out the main reason he (and I) cannot support John McCain:
... I'll wholeheartedly agree that the Obamanation is a first class baby-butcher. After all, in regards to children who survived the abortion procedure, he's the same guy who did not want to concede -- as he explained in a cold-blooded speech on the Illinois Senate floor -- that these babies, fully outside their mothers' wombs, with their hearts beating and lungs heaving, were in fact "persons."(emphasis in original)
All that aside, it's time for an integrity check... there's no getting around it - John McCain is also in favor of murdering children.
Anyhow, unless McCain fully, sincerely and substantially renounces his stance on ESCR, there simply is no way I can vote for him. We all know what the five non-negotiables are. We can't pick-and-choose. We either abide by them all, or throw them all out the window. Period, end of story.
National Catholic Register has now made available online Fr. Neuhaus' response (originally published in the July 13-19 issue of the Register) to Prof. Doug Kmiec's pro-Obama sophistry:
... The question is that of justice for unborn children. When one candidate supports the unlimited abortion license and another wants the abortion question returned to the states, it is disingenuous to suggest that they are equally pro-choice. And to say that the first candidate’s position is closer to a Catholic understanding of subsidiarity is, I am sorry to say, risible. Catholic teaching and the mandate of justice is that all members of the human family, born and unborn, be protected in law. To deny that protection is a grave injustice.
The candidate who would return the abortion question to the states so that citizens working through their elected representatives can enact laws protecting the unborn is, in taking that position, pro-life. The candidate who, by supporting Roe v. Wade, would deny to citizens that opportunity is pro-choice. It is a great disservice to try to obfuscate such an obvious distinction.
It is deeply regrettable that Mr. Kmiec cites Archbishop Chaput’s 1976 support of President Carter, who endorsed Roe v. Wade, as evidence that one can rightly support his preferred candidate today. Archbishop Chaput can speak for himself, and he has, both on the First Things website (May 20) and in his new book Render Unto Caesar. He makes it unequivocally clear that he regrets that 1976 decision, which he rationalized at the time along lines very similar to those now employed by Mr. Kmiec.
The archbishop says that he does not believe there is a proportionate reason — a reason he will one day have to give to the aborted babies — to justify support for a pro-choice candidate. Nor has Mr. Kmiec indicated such a proportionate reason. Mr. Kmiec claims his candidate wants to reduce the number of abortions by reducing the incidence of unwanted pregnancy, and he will do that by encouraging “responsible sexual behavior.” One may be permitted to point out that four decades of sex education, including the massive promotion of contraception, has not been a great success in reducing unwanted pregnancies or abortions.
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David Aaronovitch writes in The Times of London:
It amuses me that some of those who criticise the present US Administration for its Manichaeism - its division of the world into good and evil - themselves allocate all past badness to Bush and all prospective goodness to Obama. As the ever-improving myth has it, on the morning of September 12, 2001, George W. and America enjoyed the sympathy of the world. This comradeship was destroyed, in a uniquely cavalier (or should we say cowboyish) fashion, through the belligerence, the carelessness, the ideological fixity and the rapacity of that amorphous and useful category of American flawed thinker, the neoconservative. They just threw it away.(emphasis added)
This week you could hear the author Andrew O'Hagan on Radio 4, reading from his collection of self-conscious essays, The Atlantic Ocean, in which - despite his own claims - every impact of American life on Britain is somehow configured negatively. He writes of an exported popular culture “born in the suburbs of America” and defined as “Spite as entertainment. Shouting as argument. Dysfunction as normality. Desires as rights. Shopping as democracy.” This in the country that has sent Big Brother, Pop Idol, Wife Swap and Location, Location, Location over the Atlantic in the other direction, while taking delivery of Curb Your Enthusiasm and The Wire.
I should admit that I am irked by O'Hagan's dismissal of the “idiots who supported that bad and stupid war (ie, Iraq)” and am willing to match my idiocy against his intelligence in any debating forum that he cares to name. More interesting, though, is the desire to blame America. For all that O'Hagan claims that the US has lost its purchase on the world's affections, it remains the chosen destination for the most ambitious of the planet's migrants. For all that he claims that this change in sentiment is recent, I can't help recalling those - the most honest - who commented, in journals he writes for and on the very day after September 11, that the Americans had had it coming.
In part I think that anti-Americanism is linked to a view of change as decline. The imagination is that dynamic capitalism, associated with the US, is destroying our authentic lives, with our own partly willing connivance. It is a continuing and - at the moment - constant narrative, uniting left and right conservatives, which will usually take in the 19th- century radical journalist William Cobbett (conveniently shorn of his anti-Semitism), and end with an expression of disgust over the Dome, the Olympics or Tesco. Just as bird flu is a disease from out of the East, runaway modernity is a scourge originating to the West.
So Barack Obama, en fête around the world, will one day learn that there is no magical cure for the envy of others. What makes America the indispensable power (and even more indispensable in the era of the new China), is precisely what makes anti-Americanism inevitable.
So, Sen. Obama voted against giving medical treatment to babies born alive during botched abortions, and how do the sycophantic Democrat talking heads respond? Surely you recall the drill from the Clinton years, don't you?