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« Thought Experiment 451 | Main | March Of The Burn Victim Towel Animals--Parte Deux »

May 11, 2007



We are praying there is a good turn out.


It's family day Where? :)

From the guy who can't Speel.

Jim Whall


The comments are surprising. I don't know the website, but at least some of the commenters have a bit of a chip on their shoulder.

The Archbishop is 'provoking' a bullett????

The National Catholic Reporter is essentially Cafeteria-Catholics-R-Us.


Sounds like the Church of the Holy Mirror's newspaper.


Isn't amazing that the comments drag out the same old chestnuts? Believing that same sex couples should not be given the same rights as married couples becomes "planting of seeds of a "dictatorship"" and the writer rails that the church should be working against war and poverty, as if they are not.
The Archbishop is in real danger, as Christians proclaiming the Gospel often are. He is in my prayers.


From one of the comments on the article:

"Perhaps the contentious efforts that our church leaders are engaged in ought to be described as 'struggle' rather than 'war.'"

Does anyone else find this ironic, given that the literal translation of the word "jihad" is "struggle"?

Perhaps the contentious efforts that our church leaders are engaged in out to be described as "jihad". Oh, wait...the Muslims already have dibs on that one.

Did you guys hear? Apparently it was a huge success! Praise the Lord.


You know, we are working for peace by promoting freedom through living out our natural God given roles as men and women, working for peace that begins in the womb, and encouraging choice before conception.


To Krista: Peace that might be, but hardly freedom. Promoting freedom means *also* to promote the freedom to do something *you* dislike, as long as it doesn't harm anyone else. To require that others assume roles in which they may do not believe is pretty much the textbook definition of violating their freedom.

Some Day


But you cannot infringe on other's freedom as well.


Of course. That's what "as long as it doesn't harm anyone else" means.

Tim J.

"...as long as it doesn't harm anyone else"

Sin harms everyone. What you call freedom is license, and slavery to one's own desires and passions. It is not real freedom.


Promoting freedom means *also* to promote the freedom to do something *you* dislike, as long as it doesn't harm anyone else.

This is the kind of subjectivism we are up against folks. What on earth can our opposition to homosexual behavior mean, other than that we "dislike" it? The commenters handle is apt: Nihil(ism). There is no moral truth, only likes and dislikes.

Franklin Jennings

So Nihil has no basis to criticise anything. After all, no one is harmed by me advocating that marriage remain as it has always been.

He can only rely on force to see that his will be done. And there are only two kinds of nihilists in this world, those who worship the will to power and those who lack the guts to do so.


I'd like to say something in Nihil's behalf: In all the time he has been posting here, although I have sometimes disagreed with him, he has always impressed me as being honest and sincere.


Tim J: Well, dictionaries seem to more or less share my definition of freedom (example: http://www.m-w.com/dictionary/freedom). However, that isn't very interesting - it's just a lexical clash. What I am interested in is: what do you think should be done when two people disagree on the notion of "sin", and yet wish to live in the same society?

Kirk: You've summed up my position pretty well (and the etymology of my nickname, too). But I do not in any way ask that you share my amorality (although I would like you better if you did). The criteria by which one judges others are his own concern; however, the steps he is willing to take to influence others are not.

Franklin Jennings: I will have to disagree with you on a couple of points. Firstly, the fact that I do not believe in any moral system only means that I do not expect my judgements to hold any value from another person's point of view; I can choose very well what I love or hate. Secondly, advocating that marriage be between a man and a woman does harm someone: gay (or polygamous, polyandrous, etc.) lovers who wish to marry, and because of your words are denied the ability to perform this action (which doesn't affect anyone else, as long as it doesn't involve coercion or taxes).

Regarding your second paragraph, I must say I honestly failed to understand the meaning of your claims. Would you care to rephrase? I could try to take a guess, but I'm afraid of putting words in your mouth.

bill912: Thank you. I'll return the compliment by telling you that the fairness and honesty of these comboxes' inhabitants are actually the reasons I comment here now and then (while Jimmy's expertise and wit are the reason I read this blog), even though I pretty much oppose nearly everything orthodox Catholicism stands for.


"...advocating that marriage be between a man and a woman does harm someone..."

No more so than advocating that 2+2=4.


Since when has any sane society defined "freedom" as "everyone gets to do whatever they like"? There have always been restrictions on activity, determined by those who give the law to what they think is acceptable behavior.

You just wish to change "acceptable behavior" to "everything you cannot immediately prove to be physically harmful to someone else", at least be honest about that. I wonder if you've reached the next step yet, the "everything I want, and to hell with you" part?


bill912: It would, if 2 and 2 had free will, and wanted to play in base 4 and thus add up to 10 (sorry - math geek :D).

Jarnor23: Well, scratch "immediately" and "physically" and you're getting my stance, yes. It's been the basic tenet of classical liberalism (not to be confused with modern American liberals) for about 300 years. Do you find it such a horrible criterion? If so, why? Personally, I'm not entirely comfortable with entrusting the government to determine what is good for me.

Tim J.

"what do you think should be done when two people disagree on the notion of "sin", and yet wish to live in the same society?"

The truth is, we don't wish to live in the same society, we both wish to transform society into what we think it ought to be... you would like to live in a society where two people of the same sex can be recognized as "married", and I do not.

Right now the "nots" have the edge, because even from the most rudimentary natural law standpoint, gay "marriage" is a lot like proposing that we pass a law declaring the sky "green", or that we make it illegal for it to rain on second Tuesdays. Most people just are not so ennervated as to allow the wool to be pulled over their eyes to quite that extent, yet (clearly they are STILL not watching enough television).

So, I reject your premise that we really want to live in the same society. I believe in a society of responsibilities as well as rights. When people fail to live up to their responsibilities, it harms others. Also, laws are not meant solely to protect individuals, but also to protect society as a whole. At times the two conflict, and the individual does not win by default. There are many restrictions on individual behavior that are based not on potential harm to any particular person, but on the potential harm to society if everyone were permitted to act like that. These laws have eroded in recent decades though, allowing us to leave the inspiring legacy of no-fault divorce, among others.

Look at it this way, if the state I live in -by democratic vote - wants to keep to traditional marriage law, can't we justly complain, "Look, we just want to be left alone to define marriage the way we understand it. We're not hurting anyone. Why can't you Nihilists leave off your moralizing and let us be?".


Fair enough. Splitting the world according to ideological position *does* seem a more sensible idea than splitting it according to borders established by a thousand meaningless wars through the centuries. Although, on the other side, it's quite a recipe for nuclear holocaust, whereas the current arrangement mostly generates annoyance and frustration for everyone.

PS: if we manage to set up these mass migrations, though, I'm calling dibs on Scandinaviai ;)

Jamie Beu

On another note, I was just wondering: where is Italty? Is that the country shaped like a boott? :-)

Fabio P.Barbieri

Estimates of the number of people present at the Family Day vary from as few as half a million (from political enemies) to one million seven hundred thousand (organizers). The great open space of St.John Lateran can easily hold two million people, and aerial photographs show it pretty much full though not bulging, so I would say that the organizers have it probably right enough.

In spite of Mr.Allen, whose sources seem biased against the Church, it was not only the Italian bishops who worked hard in this demo. All of Italy's Protestant denominations were there and made sure that they were visible, with placards and banners showing their identity. So were a lot of Jews: on the eve of the demonstration, the current Chief Rabbi, who is absolutely no friend of the Catholic Church, wrote two uncompromising articles against "gay marriage" in any form, placing the Italian Jewish community squarely against it. So were a good deal of secular figures such as the atheist journalist Laura Annunziata, formerly chairperson of RAI, the state broadcasting corporation. So was a number of Muslims, led by a Moroccan woman (whose name I forget, apologies to her) who has been prominent in the struggle against Islamist extremism. And conversely, the conservative newspaper Il Giornale complained about resistance to the Pope's message, amounting to genuine sabotage, by a large amount of left-wing Bishops.

This is actually the second display of overwhelming strength by Catholics in Italy in the last two years. Two years ago, the Church opposed a referendum on artificial insemination, and encouraged people to void it by abstaining. Against all precedent, 75% of the electorate did so.

Yet these clear displays of popular will have done nothing but harden the resolve of the minority left - currently in power thanks to a kind of deal with some left-wing Catholics - to force their will on the nation no matter what. The best of them (such as the intelligent and courageous, though perverse, Foreign Trade Minister, Emma Bonino) insist that they have to stand for something clearly, or else people will be confused; the worst just think that the people are confused - by the wiles of the terrible Church, of course - and that once their betters have imposed their utopian notions on them, they will recognize their excellence. Either way, the left will use any weapon to force some form of "gay marriage" down the country's throat. Which is suicidal. They only won the last election by some twenty thousand votes, not counting a dodgy pseudo-party that stole some fifty thousand votes on their behalf; local elections are delivering defeat after defeat; and one can hardly doubt that the next national elections will see then soundly trounced.

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