Skip to comments.The Al Smith dinner: the cardinal and the tax collector
Posted on 08/12/2012 4:09:04 PM PDT by Salvation
August 09, 2012 9:36 AM
Jesus ate with tax collectors. And Cardinal Dolan plans to eat with President Obamawho, Chief Justice Roberts tells us, has imposed a tax on employers who refuse to subsidize contraception. But theres a difference.
When Jesus sat with tax collectors, the dinners were private. They were not photo ops for political candidates. The Lord could speak directly to the hearts of his dining companions, and convert them. Remember, St. Matthew left the tax-collecting business to follow Christ. Does anyone believe that after the Al Smith dinner, Obama will decide to rescind the contraceptive mandate?
The annual fundraiser for Catholic Charities in New York is a non-partisan event, the organizers assure us; politics will play no part in the nights events. Non-partisan it may be, but not apolitical. There are no apolitical public events on the schedule of a presidential candidate during the last few weeks of a campaign. Both Mitt Romney and Barack Obama will attend because they expect to gain some political advantage. They know exactly what theyre doing. Can the same be said for the host, Cardinal Dolan?
During the dinner, the Cardinal and Obama and Romney will laugh and joke together. (The cardinal will be the star of the show, because unlike the other two men, he has a detectible sense of humor.) All good fun. But is it really harmless?
On the morning after the dinner, millions of Americans will see, prominently displayed on the front pages of their hometown newspapers, pictures of President Obama and Cardinal Dolan smiling together. What message will they receive? Can these be the same men who are fighting a bitter political battle on a matter of conscience? The same two men who are the principal forces behind opposite sides of a landmark lawsuit? If theyre laughing and back-slapping together, the disagreement cant be all that serious, can it? So maybe that matter of conscience isnt so important after all? Apparently it wasnt important enough to interfere with a night of fun.
In attendance at the dinner, appropriately clad in white ties, will be corporate executives who have donated large sums to the Obama campaign. The Catholic bishops of the USCardinal Dolan prominently among themhave repeatedly told the faithful that it is gravely wrong to support political candidates who promote unrestricted legal abortion, euthanasia, and same-sex marriage. Yet Catholics continue to support Obama, disregarding the bishops warnings. When they see Cardinal Dolan arm-in-arm with a President whose administration has done so much to advance the culture of death, will they be more or less likely to take the bishops seriously?
Cardinal Dolan may be the most gregarious man I have ever met. He seems quite genuinely to take delight in the presence of everyone he meets. Thats a quality that I admire: an enormous strength of his character. However, a man who habitually thinks the best of everyone can fail to pick up on the telltale signs of enmity. Cardinal Dolan seemed genuinely surprised that after promising to accommodate the consciences of Catholics regarding the HHS mandate, Obama did nothing of the sort. Call me a cynic if you want, but I wasnt surprised.
During the past several months Cardinal Dolan has proven remarkably tough in his statements regarding the mandate and feisty in his willingness to do political battle with the White House. Yet now, in the thick of that battleand, not coincidentally, of the presidential campaignhe has offered a temporary truce. Is he making a calculated gesture, as part of some Machiavellian plan? Id like to think so. But the cynic in me fears that the cardinal has slipped back into the naïve belief that political disagreements can be put aside for an evening of joking and backslapping without any adverse consequences. And on political affairs, sad to say, the cynic in me is almost always right.
**Can these be the same men who are fighting a bitter political battle on a matter of conscience? The same two men who are the principal forces behind opposite sides of a landmark lawsuit? If theyre laughing and back-slapping together, the disagreement cant be all that serious, can it? So maybe that matter of conscience isnt so important after all? Apparently it wasnt important enough to interfere with a night of fun.**
Your comments welcomed.
Afraid to make a comment.
I may be accused of Blasphemy.
Itis not up to me a lay person to question the actions of a Prince of the Church. At least not in this forum, but I have my own thoughts and they aren’t far from Blasphemy, believe me.
The good Cardinal should have invited Ann Barnhardt and Michael Voris - those two would have lit the place up faster than obozo could say “choom gang!”
“The Pharisee and Herod”, maybe.
A recurring theme -- even an old one, perhaps, depending on one's age.
I am sickened by Dolan's invitation. He may as well have dropped his pants and mooned those trying to be the Catholic faithful.
Is Cardinal Dolan losing his leadership gut? I thought that was a beer gut.
What we have here in the U.S. is a startling parallel to the political/religious landscape under totalitarian regimes like China. In China, there are two different "versions" of the Catholic Church: an official government-approved church that functions as an arm of the state, and the real Catholic Church that functions underground, faces persecution, and often must carry out its religious activities in absentia through a secret hierarchy that sits in Rome or elsewhere in the world.
It really is this simple. American "Catholic" leaders like Teddy Kennedy, Nancy Pelosi and Kathy Sebelius have played the role of the state-sanctioned "church" even though there's nothing Catholic about them. The Catholic laity face the injustices of radical secularism on their own, with little or no support from the bishops that are supposed to be their shepherds (in fact, most of these bishops are on the same side as the minions of Satan who carry out this travesty).
And Timmy Dolan is just some jack@ss who's going to get dressed up for Halloween and make an appearance at this thing called the Al Smith Dinner to lend the whole farce some credibility in this election year.
Flame away, folks.
That would be fun to watch.
Sorry to say this news is a little demoralizing, if not another scandal outright. To entertain two abortion pushing pols in one more Catholic venue while asking universities for instance to give no platform to the same is confusing coming from an archbishop.
Not LOL! because I had a father in law who was an alcoholic. Sorry to be a sour one here.
I like your comparison of the two levels of Catholcism in China with what is seemingly happening in the U. S.
I don’t agree with your last statement though in obedience to my priest, bishop, Cardinal, Pope.
Good comment to add.
I don’t follow your train of thought on obedience. Dolan is not infallible, and this invitation is hardly a doctrinal statement but rather a show of his own naivety, indifference or arrogance (take your pick).
It's much easier to be appalled, than to understand.
If you're appalled, you're victimized. If you understand, your understanding gives you responsibility to act.
Millions of Christians, and millions of Catholics, are appalled that Obamacare apparently forces them to support abortion. They rightly point out that this is forcing them to choose between obedience to law, and taking part in mass murder against the direct teachings of their religions.
Very little, I think, could create a more dire spiritual crisis for so many people. Satanic forces are literally putting the point of a sword to millions of people's throats, and saying - backed by the full destructive force of the government - choose.
I think most would agree to this summation. That I'm not exaggerating.
So why do so many choose to face the sword in ignorance, and protect their non-responsibility, rather than understand, and accept responsibility for that understanding? Do they hope to fool God, when asked if there was anything they could have done? When asked if they were not given the understanding necessary to stop this atrocity in its tracks? Do they actually plan on lying then? Is that how weak what they pass as their "religion" really is to them?
Because if that wasn't true, this would be being shouted from the rooftops of every church - but it's not:
The guy is basically a political hack, so there's no reason to be any more deferential to him than you'd be to any other jack@ss in government these days.