Skip to comments.How can Catholics for Obama rationalize their support for the pro-choice candidate?
Posted on 07/13/2008 1:24:13 PM PDT by library user
In his column of June 24, Wall Street Journal writer William McGurn looked at the mostly NARAL-friendly Catholics named to the Obama campaigns National Catholic Advisory Council. Noting that Obama enjoys a NARAL approval rating of 100%, and that while in the Illinois State Senate he voted against a measure similar in intent to the unanimously approved 2002 Federal Born Alive Act, McGurn wonders how the council and other Catholics for Obama can rationalize support for a candidate who stands in such profound contrast to the churchs firm teaching that abortion is an intrinsic evil.
The line of argument is the Theyre-Just-As-Bad-As-We-Are defense. Thus the Web sites that go on and on about Catholic social teaching on war and poverty and greed and the death penalty the implication being, of course, that simply by enumerating all these concerns, you can somehow balance out the Democratic Partys singular commitment to abortion on demand. [link and emphasis mine]
On the surface, that argument seems reasonable so reasonable, in fact, that the ardently pro-life Archbishop Charles Chaput, of Denver, writes of forming his own conscience in just such a way in 1976:
I knew Carter was wrong in his views about Roe and soft toward permissive abortion. But even as a priest, I justified working for him because he was right on so many more of the Catholic issues than his opponent seemed to be. The moral calculus looked easy.
The moral calculus does look easy until one considers that war, torture, the death penalty, poverty, racism, and even the excesses of capitalism those evils so well defined in Catholic social teaching, and of concern to Catholics of all political persuasions are fully present in the act of abortion.
War is a struggle between two evolving powers over who will have dominance; whether just or unjust, it involves the murder of the innocent and the disruption of families. War introduces pain, fire, violence, savagery and torture into societies.
Abortion is a struggle between two evolving powers over who will have dominance; whether justified or not, it involves the murder of the innocent and the disruption of families. A vacuum abortion, saline abortion or a D&C introduces pain, fire, and a limb-shredding, relentless violence deep into the very being of a womans body, within her very womb. A partial birth abortion, which involves inserting a scissor into the base of the skull of a partially delivered fetus, then suctioning out its brain before fully withdrawing the fetus from the birth canal, embodies the sort of savagery and real torture which is the most abhorrent part of any war.
The death penalty is a legal execution of an individual judged guilty of heinous acts against the larger society; convicts are sometimes discovered to have been innocent of the charges made against them only after their lives have been taken. Many consider even the most humane means of execution to be cruel and inhuman, and even when the convict is guilty beyond a shadow of a doubt, it may be well-argued that killing a murderer does not bring back the victim and that two wrongs do not make a right.
In an abortion, the fetus is as subject to the death penalty as anyone ever so ordered by a jury; the fetus is always innocent. Even the most humane means of abortion whatever that might be involves cruel and inhuman measures. And even if the fetus in its innocence is the product of a violent and guilty conception, it may be well-argued that one merciless violation cannot be healed by a second equally merciless violation and that two wrongs do not make a right.
Poverty steals hope, exposes the helpless to political, sexual, and economic exploitation (from friend and foe) and defers dreams. It breaks rather than builds and reduces human beings to the status of mere votes or workers or things.
Abortion destroys a hopeful life, exposes the mother and fetus to political, sexual, and economic exploitation (from friend and foe) and defers dreams. It destroys what is being built and reduces a thriving being, species human, to the status of mere products of conception and blobs of tissue.
Racism is the superficial and unjust rejection and/or exploitation of another human being or group of people based on race. Racism works to suppress; it denies opportunity and feeds stereotypes (your kind are not good enough!) Racism has inspired exclusionary rhetoric and genocidal movements, as may be found in the supremacist literature of the KKK. Racism exists to diminish another human.
Abortion providers such as Planned Parenthood have been observed agreeing to a superficial and unjust request to apply donated money toward the destruction of fetuses of a specified race. Abortion works to suppress; it denies opportunity and feeds stereotypes (your kind are too good/too poor/too promising to be punished with a baby!). Abortion has inspired exclusionary rhetoric and genocidal movements as may be found in the elitist literature of Margaret Sanger. Abortion exists to diminish another human.
Capitalism in the imperfect enterprise system by which free markets provide jobs, goods, and services in order to stir economic growth. Its excesses often result in among other things unlicensed or unscrupulous practices and the exploitation of the worker, in pursuit of maximum profit.
Abortion providers are capitalist enterprises that often indulge in among other things unlicensed and unscrupulous practices and the exploitation of women in difficult circumstances, in pursuit of maximum profit.
A Catholic conscience is a complex thing that must rely on more than bumper stickers and impassioned rhetoric. Catholicism does not reject reason for faith but demands integration of the two, and prayerful discernment, before taking any action. It serves both prayer and reason to consider that abortion is not separate from the evils of war, torture, poverty and the rest, but of a piece with them. In fact, abortion supersedes those issues by dint of its personal nature. Government policy affects war, poverty, and the rest, while abortion is like the casting of a vote a personal choice. But it is a personal choice for the physical and intellectual internalization of war, and of torture, and of the death penalty, and of poverty, and of racism, and of capitalistic exploitation.
Thus weighed, the only counterbalance is life.
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1 Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion,
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2 Formal cooperation in an abortion constitutes a grave offense. The Church attaches the canonical penalty of excommunication to this crime against human life. "A
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2 From its conception, the child has the right to life. Direct abortion, that is, abortion willed as an end or as a means, is a "criminal" practice (GS 27 § 3),
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gravely opposed to the moral law when this is done with the thought of possibly inducing an abortion, depending upon the results: a diagnosis must not be the equivalent
Notice the Catechism about a grave sin and excommunication. Those Catholics who support Obama are basically excommunicating themselves.
How can Catholics for Obama rationalize their support for the pro-choice candidate?
Obamas director of Catholic Outreach dodges opportunity to reach Catholics
Barack Obama Slams John McCain For Opposing Abortion, Activist Judges
Catholics and Obama
COMMENTARY: Quandry for Catholics At Election Time
The Latest Refinement (Obama on Abortion)
CNN Runs Biased News Story Covering Up Barack Obamas Pro-Abortion Record
Jill Stanek: Obama's biggest lie about supporting infanticide
The Battle for Catholic Voters
New Report Indicates Voters Most Interested in Barack Obamas Position on Abortion
Deal Hudson: Obama and Infanticide?
Ad asks Obama: If fatherhood begins at conception, when does life begin?
Embryonic stem-cell research immoral, unnecessary, bishops say
Catholics should not vote for Obama
Catholic Caucus: It is a sin to vote/support Obama/DNC [abortion]
More Catholics leaning towards Democrats, poll reports (really not Catholics)
The Catholic-Obama Problem (Pope Benedict XVI instructs Catholics about pro-abortion candidates)
Obama's Abortion Bombshell: Unrestricted Abortion....
NARAL Catholics Line Up for Obama
Editorial: Disagreeing with Doug Kmiec One More Time
State-Funded Embryo Research "Makes Taxpayers Complicit in Killing", say Bishops
McCain Meets Privately with Fr. Pavone - Says Constitutional Right to Life Applies to Unborn
Faithful Citizenship: Catholic Vote is very sought after
Has Obama dissolved his Catholic advisory council?
Commentary: Faithful Citizenship and the Formed Conscience
Catholic League: Where's Obama's 'Catholic Advisory Council'? [Not to be found!]
Right-wing Christians beginning to lean left (Misleading headline)
Catholics Debate Obama Vote
US Bishops Urge Voters to Give Priority to Life [Ecumenical]
Corralling the Catholic vote: Political necessity or pipe dream?
DOUG KMIEC: Catholic Reasons for Hope in the General Election
EDITORIAL: Why This Catholic Dreads the Campaign
The Catholic-Obama Problem (Pope Benedict XVI instructs Catholics about pro-abortion candidates)
Thoughts On Roman Catholics For Obama
How Obama's Catholics Will Dodge the Infanticide Question
Catholic Pro-Life Leader Feuds With Barack Obama's "Catholic" Backers
McCain and the Pope: McCain cannot win in November without the Catholic vote (Reagan re-visited?)
Catholics Cannot Vote for Pols Who Support Abortion, Except for Morally Grave Reasons: KY Bishops
Powerful graphic. Thanks.
Seems to me there are people who can rationalize anything.
Catholics who are pro-abortion feel that the Vatican is behind the times. They feel that abortion is a “social justice” issue, in that people shouldn’t be “punished” with a child if they don’t want one. They think Jesus would approve of abortion for these “social justice” reasons. Truly progressive Catholics feel that abortion would be approved of by God because of the concept of “creation care” - Jesus would not want the planet to be too overpopulated and polluted.
Excellent links! Thank you for posting these.
I’m a practicing Catholic and while abortion has never been a campaign changing issue for me in elections, hussien obama’s stance FOR live birth abortions, FOR partial birth abortion and FOR fedreally funded abortion should scare the life out of any anti-abortion voter...
and PLEASE!!!! hussien IS NOT PRO CHOICE- he is PRO ABORTION!!!
Catholics in Name Only.
Because they are just nominal Catholics, and their religion really doesn't mean anything to them anyway.
The Bible isn’t a like the Constitution is (or as they claim it to be), a living document. It doesn’t change with “the times”.
In other words, I want to get into heaven, but I want to get in doing whatever I please.
“I knew Carter was wrong in his views about Roe and soft toward permissive abortion. But even as a priest, I justified working for him because he was right on so many more of the Catholic issues than his opponent seemed to be. The moral calculus looked easy.”
This is the argument of a weak intellect and an even weaker soul. It is not in any way Catholic.
A good question but I don’t think it’s particularly relevant to just Obama. A whole array of Catholic politicians who support abortion have been hugely popular among their constituents - Kerry, Kennedy, Durbin, etc. What to me is most egregious is those who have supported “late term” abortions which are clearly nothing other than infanticide. The real point is not just how a Catholic but any CHRISTIAN can justify this. I think the probable answer is that liberalism, not Christianity, is their ultimate belief system.
And as a direct result of Catholic Support for Dems, abortion continues.
Carter's gone, abortions not.
Like the Jewish vote being 90+% in favor of Dems, many of whom are not friends of Israel.
Or the feminist vote for a rapist and serial sexual harasser.
Liberalism seems to trump all.
A picture is worth a thousand words!
Last September, I effortlessly registered within the Obama campaign website and as a “member” and joined a blog titled “American Catholics for Barack Obama”
By joining, you obtain access to all of the email addresses of the other Obama supporters. Yes, you guessed right - I sent all of them a “groupwide” letter.
After they threatened me and kicked me off their email distribution, I rejoined all of the remaining Catholic blogs for Obama under a different alias and simply posted the same message directly on these blogs. Last I checked, it was still there posted as a blog entry. Below is the original email message that was sent to the members of the 1st blog I joined before getting booted:
To the American Catholics for Barack Obama,
As a devout Catholic Christian, I could not help but
to be immediately drawn to this organization after
stumbling onto this particular group. My immediate
concern for this group of Catholic Christians involves
the ongoing struggle with the holocaust of abortion.
My question to all members of this organization is
simply, how, in good conscience, could any person who
claims to be a Christian, especially of the Catholic
faith, support a candidate running for president of
the United States that is so stridently pro-abortion?
For all who are official members of this organization,
I would like to pose a series of questions:
1. Do you understand the unquestionable, scriptural
evidence against the crime of abortion?
2. Do you study the Word of God?
3. What is the order of your moral priorities? Do you
place God’s Word above that of your political
4. Do you accept the Catholic Church’s teaching
regarding abortion and the complete rejection of the
taking of an innocent, human life, formed by God, in
the womb, and known by God before being conceived?
5. Do you believe that a Catholic can be in good
standing in the Church, while holding a
6. Have you ever viewed the photographic realities of
7. Despite what the Church has taught, based strictly
on scripture, do you personally feel that a fetus is
not a human being with a person hood?
8. Are you aware of the fact that in the United States
alone, approximately 3,500 to 4,000 babies are killed
through the act of abortion every day?
9. Are you aware of the fact that the Catholic Church
welcomes anyone who has been involved in a decision to
abort a child with open arms and can offer assistance
for spiritual and emotional healing?
10. Are you aware that no other human tragedy
throughout the history of mankind can compare to the
loss of life through abortion, just in the 20th
If you are truly a devout and committed Catholic
Christian, I simply cannot fathom the possibility of
proactively supporting any candidate, regardless of
party affiliation, who so stridently supports
abortion. Especially a candidate who claims to be a
believer and follower of Jesus Christ.
It is my prayer that each and every one of you, as
Catholic Christians, reconsider your support for any
candidate whose personal belief along with his
particular Church supports the worst offense to
innocent and defenseless human life.
It is my prayer for each and everyone in this
organization to give your Catholic Church an
opportunity to present the facts regarding this
gravest of all matters in our world today. Please open
your hearts and minds to the need for not separating
your personal moral values from that of your political
life. These two aspects of our lives are inseparable.
And we must also all live with the reality that no
political choice will ever be the perfect one.
If the most defenseless and innocent of us is denied
the most basic civil right to life, then all of our
rights and liberties are in serious jeopardy.
For more insight into the issue of abortion from a
Catholic perspective, the following link would be very
A Concerned Roman Catholic Christian
Needless to say, these hypocrites immediately responded like a swarm of flies from hell.
I have archived all of the exchanges. The replies from these people were, to say the least, completely insane. None of them could ever be considered devout or practicing Catholics. They simply hijacked the name of the Catholic Church in an attempt to decieve weak Christians for their votes - yes, another Captain Obvious conclusion here.
Yet sadly, most probably do.
I am converted Catholic (so I’m an Uber Catholic LOL).
I absolutely do not understand how anyone who calls themself Catholic can support any candidate from the Party of Death.
And Obama? He’s a radical abortion activist. He effectively VOTED FOR INFANTICIDE when he voted against the Born Alive Protection Act in Illinois.
Because the Bible, The Word of God, is a transitional thing like our Constitution. Yes, God was against murder at one time but things have changed. (heavy SARCASM)
ANSWER: Only by lying and completely distorting the truth. Only by ignoring the scientific fact that life and personhood begins at conception.
What does modern science conclude about when human life begins? (Excerpts)
By Dr. John Ankerberg and John Weldon
http://www.ankerberg.com/Articles/apologetics/AP0805W3.htm The complete article is available in print friendly PDF format at: http://www.ankerberg.com/Articles/_PDFArchives/apologetics/AP3W0805.pdf
The scientific authorities on when life begins are biologists. But these are often the last people consulted in seeking an answer to the question. What modern science has concluded is crystal clear: Human life begins at conception. This is a matter of scientific fact, not philosophy, speculation, opinion, conjecture, or theory. Today, the evidence that human life begins at conception is a fact so well documented that no intellectually honest and informed scientist or physician can deny it.
In 1973, the Supreme Court concluded in its Roe v. Wade decision that it did not have to decide the “difficult question” of when life begins. Why? In essence, they said, “It is impossible to say when human life begins.” The Court misled the public then, and others continue to mislead the public today.
Anyone familiar with recent Supreme Court history knows that two years before Roe V. Wade, in October 1971, a group of 220 distinguished physicians, scientists, and professors submitted an amicus curiae brief (advice to a court on some legal matter) to the Supreme Court. They showed the Court how modern science had already established that human life is a continuum and that the unborn child from the moment of conception on is a person and must be considered a person, like its mother. The brief set as its task “to show how clearly and conclusively modern scienceembryology, fetology, genetics, perinatology, all of biologyestablishes the humanity of the unborn child.” For example,
In its seventh week, [the pre-born child] bears the familiar external features and all the internal organs of the adult.... The brain in configuration is already like the adult brain and sends out impulses that coordinate the function of other organs . The heart beats sturdily. The stomach produces digestive juices. The liver manufactures blood cells and the kidneys begin to function by extracting uric acid from the childs blood.... The muscles of the arms and body can already be set in motion. After the eighth week everything is already present that will be found in the full term baby.
This brief proved beyond any doubt scientifically that human life begins at conception and that “the unborn is a person within the meaning of the Fifth and Fourteenth Amendments.”
Thus, even though the Supreme Court had been properly informed as to the scientific evidence, they still chose to argue that the evidence was insufficient to show the pre-born child was fully human. In essence, their decision merely reflected social engineering and opinion, not scientific fact. Even during the growing abortion debate in 1970, the editors of the scientific journal California Medicine noted the “curious avoidance of the scientific fact, which everyone really knows, that human life begins at conception and is continuous whether intra- or extra-uterine until death.”
In 1981, the United States Congress conducted hearings to answer the question, “When does human life begin?” A group of internationally known scientists appeared before a Senate judiciary subcommittee.
The U.S. Congress was told by Harvard University Medical Schools Professor Micheline Matthews-Roth, “In biology and in medicine, it is an accepted fact that the life of any individual organism reproducing by sexual reproduction begins at conception....”
Dr. Watson A. Bowes, Jr., of the University of Colorado Medical School, testified that “the beginning of a single human life is from a biological point of view a simple and straightforward matterthe beginning is conception. This straightforward biological fact should not be distorted to serve sociological, political or economic goals.”
Dr. Alfred Bongiovanni of the University of Pennsylvania Medical School noted: “The standard medical texts have long taught that human life begins at conception.”
He added: “I am no more prepared to say that these early stages represent an incomplete human being than I would be to say that the child prior to the dramatic effects of puberty... is not a human being. This is human life at every stage albeit incomplete until late adolescence.”
Dr. McCarthy De Mere, who is a practicing physician as well as a law professor at the University of Tennessee, testified: “The exact moment of the beginning [of] personhood and of the human body is at the moment of conception.”
World-famous geneticist Dr. Jerome Lejeune, professor of fundamental genetics at the University of Descarte, Paris, France, declared, “each individual has a very unique beginning, the moment of its conception.”
Dr. Lejeune also emphasized: “The human nature of the human being from conception to old age is not a metaphysical contention, it is plain experimental evidence.”
The chairman of the Department of Medical Genetics at the Mayo Clinic, Professor Hymie Gordon, testified, “By all the criteria of modern molecular biology, life is present from the moment of conception.”
He further emphasized: “now we can say, unequivocally, that the question of when life begins is an established scientific fact . It is an established fact that all life, including human life, begins at the moment of conception.”
This Senate report concluded:
Physicians, biologists, and other scientists agree that conception marks the beginning of the life of a human beinga being that is alive and is a member of the human species. There is overwhelming agreement on this point in countless medical, biological, and scientific writings.
In 1981, only a single scientist disagreed with the majoritys conclusion, and he did so on philosophical rather than scientific grounds. In fact, abortion advocates, although invited to do so, failed to produce even one expert witness who would specifically testify that life begins at any other point than conception.
Again, let us stress that this is not a matter of religion, it is solely a matter of science. Scientists of every religious view and no religious viewagnostic, Jewish, Buddhist, atheist, Christian, Hindu, etc.all agree that life begins at conception. This explains why, for example, the International Code of Medical Ethics asserts: “A doctor must always bear in mind the importance of preserving human life from the time of conception until death.”
This is also why the Declaration of Geneva holds physicians to the following: “I will maintain the utmost respect for human life from the time of conception; even under threat, I will not use my medical knowledge contrary to the laws of humanity.” These statements can be found in the World Medical Association Bulletin for April 1949 (vol.1, p. 22) and January 1950 (vol. 2, p. 5). In 1970, the World Medical Association again reaffirmed the Declaration of Geneva.
What difference does it make that human life begins at conception? The difference is this: If human life begins at conception, then abortion is the killing of a human life.
To deny this fact is scientifically impossible.
I hope you don't get tired of seeing this as this is the fourth "Abortion" thread that I have posted it on. PRAYER FOR THE UNBORN Lord I pray this Sunday morn for those souls that are not yet born still a fetus in the womb souls of love that You would groom Keep them from man's every whim whose abortion rates are dismal grim destroying those that you create playing God with children's fate They name it "choice" to soothe their guilt dissolving that which you have built to live and love in You abide is ended in infanticide Of all the sins that man has wrought this is the worst one of the lot Lord, of this evil we repent for killing of the innocent Woe to those on judgment day who stand before You when You say, "I judge you not, but to these I give, these souls that you denied to live Will judge you now at heaven's gate and hold the power of your fate so hope their mercy will abound for in you was not mercy found." poem by Fish Hawk
Any Catholic Or Orthodox or Protestant Christian who supports the deadly positions of Obama and his ilk is a Christian in name only-——a CINO
My aunt,who passed last winter at the age of 95 was as Catholic as they get.Mass *every* day (until a few years before her death when she became very frail)...rosaries always on hand,etc.But she voted RAT 100%.When I told her what today's RAT Party is all about (in great detail) I suggested to her that voting RAT was a foolish thing to do."Oh,but Gay State Conservative",she replied,"the RATS are the ones who give me Social Security".
At that point I knew it was hopeless.
They don’t need to, they are pro-choice.
They can’t but they vote for Kennedys, Daleys, and every bum on the Dem ticket here in Cook County.
I’m Catholic, and for the life of me (and the unborn children), I do not understand it. I guess patronage trumps human life in the big city.
BUMP for post #s 3 and 4!
Only CINOs would support a pro-”choice” candidate!
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Oh yes, they are CINOs all right, but they do not believe themselves to be so.
I’d be a rich girl indeed if I had a dollar for every OBAMA 08 bumper sticker I’ve seen in the church parking lot every Sunday. It makes me want to throw up.
How can they?
Because they “interpret” the Bible in the same way they “interpret” the Constitution—neither of which has anything to do with the way the original documents were written.
Amazing isn’t it....
I guess CINO could also be a Christian In Name Only...so may people I see who wear the ‘Christian’ moniker without living according to Christ’s words.
Wrong on both counts.
Some claim to be Catholic when in fact they aren’t. Some claim to be Christian when they aren’t really. Some claim to be Jewish when they aren’t, in that they don’t follow the Bible. Some claim to be Greek/Eastern Orthodox when they aren’t in that they don’t live the teachings.
How can any Lutheran, Presbyterian, Baptist, Southern Baptist, COE, Episcipalian, Assembly of God, Pentecostal, etc. vote for someone like Obama? I don’t know but there are plenty who claim they are yet they will vote for Obama.
Obama is getting me to do what I swore I would not do. Vote for McCain.
Beautiful fish, post it every chance you get.
Obama is obviously not prolife no doubt.
But McCain is also not prolife either, make no mistake.
There are plenty of sources on the net to point this out.
So for me, McCain is also out, I’ll write in a candidate.
they adopted an abandoned baby. That's a very pro-life thing to do.
Simple - they are not following the command to live their faith as a light to the world. Period. Thus bringing their "faith" into question...
John, in the First Epistle of John, saw these poseurs coming: They went out from us, but they were not of us; for if they had been of us, they would have continued with us. But they went out that it might become plain that they all are not of us.
Chaput was young and very naive then. Today Chaput is older and still naive about a lot of things.
“they adopted an abandoned baby. That’s a very pro-life thing to do.”
I’m sorry, that’s only one piece of the puzzle. As I have said, the net has plenty of sources indicating McCain is NOT prolife, including criticism from Alan Keyes.
Besides, even crooks donate to charities sometimes, so some good work does not render a candidate as overall prolife.