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August 06, 2007

Comments

Ed Peters

I'm open to contrary evidence, but, does anything any Republican says make any difference? Their party is in chaos, and the Democrats can now nominate just about anyone and still win. Or do I misread the evidence?

SDG

I'm witchoo, Ed.

paul zummo

Or do I misread the evidence?

That's a tad extreme. Politics is always in flux, and events can very quickly change the political calculus. Add to that the general unpopularity of Ms. Clinton, and she's no shoo-in.

Mike Koenecke

Many pro-lifers quite often lose sight of the principle: "Do not allow the perfect to be the enemy of the good." The interviewer here has a very muddled understanding of our government. The President cannot simply "decide not to follow Roe v. Wade." He cannot unilaterally declare abortions to be illegal. Only legislatures can do that, and we need a Supreme Court that will uphold such laws and reverse Roe v. Wade and its progeny. While Romney is not my favorite candidate, he is certainly no Ted Kennedy, who has actively championed abortion rights for decades.

The Recusant

If the election were today, I'd agree with Dr. Peters. But it is not. It is still 14 months away. Once the nominations are settled, then it will get interesting. Both Hillary and Obama could make serious mistakes and someone like Fred Thompson could come on strong. Still way too early in my opinion.

The Recusant

Make that 15 months.

andy

meh did you watch the video? It was the comentator that I wonder about that apparently wants to dictate Romney's views. Never at one point in the video did he say anything about not being pro-life.

John

Does it really matter if the politician is pro abortion or not to be honest? We have had the majority of congress as Christian with the house leader a Catholic in Pelosi and you still cant get abortion overturned

For that matter the very own USCCB cant even come to a consensus to deny communion to pro-abort Catholic politicians so the church is really not to be one to judge until they can get their own house in order on this subject, which amazes me to be honest something so simple as the killing of human life the Bishops cant agree on, but possibly they know something I dont (contributions made by these politicians to their various diocese?)

Blackadder

What about the exchange would make one wonder how pro-life Romney really is? He says over and over that he is pro-life, favors a prohibition of abortion, wants to see Roe overturned, etc. That sounds pretty pro-life to me.

Ken Crawford

Eh... I think what we saw on the video was a heated discussion on how to play the politics game. Never once did Romney sway from being pro-life as a politician. Is he right that the LDS standpoint on abortion is just about Mormons and not about legislation? I don't know. From a Catholic view point that's ridiculous because it's a life that is being killed and that's a level of morality that should be forced on others, but lots of things Mormon are ridiculous from the Catholic vantage point.

The important thing is what he's actually going to do as President.

What I saw was a politician who wants to discuss political issues, not his faith or how his faith affects his political decisions. While I'd prefer to hear about that as well, I can understand that Romney has to make decisions about what the major themes of his candacy are because he only gets so much air time. As long as he's willing to stand behind the political issues that are important to me (and those issues are driven by my Catholic faith), whether or not those positions are motivated by HIS faith, I'd feel comfortable voting for him, particularly in the baren landscape of today's presidential candidates.

And Ed, I think it's VERY long time to Nov. 2008 to be calling the race over for Republicans.

Ed Peters

Agree with all posts sofar, in sofar as what they actually say. Btw, I'm hardly alone among conservatives in calling the race for Hilary already. See http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=18446

Tim J.

The GOP deserves to get spanked this time around.

Weasels.

Of course, the Dems ALWAYS deserve it more. This is the first election since I turned 18 where I'm really considering just staying home, and I have voted solidly Republican for nearly three decades.

Marcel LeJeune

I don't think you can call the presidential race this far out. But, it doesn't look good for the Republicans, esp. when the front runner of the party is as squirmy as Romney in that clip.

J.R. Stoodley

Dang dialup. It's one of the only disadvantages to being in Middle of Nowhere, NY. It almost makes me look forward to going back to civilization this fall. Almost.

Havn't seen the video, but I'm with Ed and Tim J. Hillary is a virtual shoo-in unless she does something monumentally stupid (not likely, unlike Obama), and assuming this is a Rudy vs. Hillary race (which is even more certain) I may just stay home, or vote for a third party candidate if there is a good one. Or maybe I'll write in Jimmy Akin or somesuch person.

Russ

http://www.humanevents.com/article.php?id=18446

Tom DeLay trying to be provocative 9 months ago to generate buzz for his new website. You can do better than this Ed.

Shane Coombs

Actually, the numbers so far indicate that Hillary Clinton is virtually unelectable. Polls show that 48% of the nation will not vote for her under any circumstances. Now that doesn't sound like that big a deal, but those who follow politics closely will tell you that that is a tremendously huge number to have giving that response on these sorts of polls this early. It's big enough that even if a fair number of those answering this way change their minds, the number of persons not voting for her who gave some possibility that they would would far outweigh them. That's bad enough, and then you add on the fact that the numbers who "won't vote for under any circumstances" don't tend to change that much at all. (It makes sense if you think about it... you've got to have a pretty firm position against someone to be confident enough to say that *nothing* could make you vote for him or her).

Sean Gallagher

Ok, so Gov. Romney compares how his church comes down on use of alcohol with how it comes down on abortion.

He says that because his church forbids its members to drink alcohol, he can't then, as president, propose legislation that brings back prohibition.

That makes me wonder if acknowledges the difference between an intrinsic truth and prudential judgment on matters that don't involve intrinsic truth.

Abortion is a moral evil at all times and in all places. That isn't true because the Catholic Church (or any other religious body for that matter) says its true. It's true because of the natural law.

Use of alchohol, however, isn't instrinsically wrong. It can be wrong, and gravely so, under certain circumstnaces. But not at all times and in all places.

There's a big difference there.

And it also points to how one can allow (and should allow) one's faith to inform public policy and laws without make the state into a theocracy.

There is a big difference between a Catholic president proposing laws that would restrict or ban abortion altogether and proposing laws that would prohibit the consumption of meat on the Fridays of Lent.

http://youtube.com/watch?v=Eh_qZBAQqDk

Mitt Romney - 24 Hours On The Trail.

JohnD

I think most republicans would be pleased if the all of the current GOP contenders were barred from running. Let's have a do-over.

J.R. Stoodley

I suppose you can come up with whatever you want from polls depending on what questions you asked. The polls I've seen show Hillary with a lead in any circumstance, and I have a strong feeling that will continue to increase.

What does everyone think of Sam Brownback? He seems pretty darn good from what I know. Not perfect but no one is. Still his is pro-life, pro-family, pro-religious liberty, pro-boarder security, conservative generally, Catholic. Not bad. A bit too intensely pro-Israel, I'm skeptical about his federal plan for Iraq, and I'd like a stronger plan regarding health care, among other things, but you can't expect any candidtate to fit your views perfectly.

Perhaps we should pray that by some miracle he beats Rudy and then Hillary.

horatio

What I found interesting was the host advocating for a sitting President to disregard Supreme Court decisions as though he has the Constitutional right to do so (because one scholar who he exclusively cites says so - which is usually the sign of someone with a radical viewpoint that cannot be substantiated beyond the one reference). The President can - in that he is the executor of law and commander in chief of the military - but that is pretty much the argument of a dictator like Chavez or Castro.

It is such a radical view point to make me wonder about everything else the host claims - including making the rather annoying and incredibly arrogant decision to lecture someone on the tenants of their faith.

I had no sense that the host was a biblical scholar or a religious studies doctorate. Sounded to me like an arrogant fool with a microphone in his face.

Yet another radio host who has no interest in the answer unless it is, "Yes, I agree with you. Your intellect is unsurpassed." Though he laments its absence from the exchange - I doubt there is ever any room for nuance in a conversation with that guy.

JohnD

//What does everyone think of Sam Brownback?//

His role in the amnesty debacle caused him troubles with conservatives. That said, I don't think it'd be enough to cause people to stay home on election day when faced with Clinton or Obama.

paul zummo

I had high hopes for Brownback, but he has disappointed. His debate and media performances have left me with the impression that he's not really ready for the big stage. And his actions during the final vote on comprehensive immigration reform were embarassing. He votes for it, then votes against it . . . ten minutes later. No matter what side you were on during that debate, he managed to annoy you. He has a lot of nerve to castigate Mitt Romney for changing his views on abortion when he can't hold the same view on an in issue in the time it takes to eat lunch.

J.R. Stoodley

I looked up more on Brownback after writing that and found more stuff I didn't like, including the amnesty/guest worker program stuff. Lots of other issues too, like environmnental, where I am much less conservative.

It is still true though that he is solid on those issues that are indisputable from a Catholic viewpoint than any other major candidates.

I don't think by the way that his changing his views on immigration, if that is indeed what happened, can be compared to such a massive thing as changing your views on abortion. Romney did change his views the right way, but it is suspicious.

Also I don't care if someone calls me a bigot, but I think Romney's holding Mormon religious views (some of the least respectible nonsense out there) does not suggest good personal judgement to me. I don't want someone who could fall for that, even if he was raised in it, to be in any position of power. Flip-flopping on something as basic as abortion just confirms the idea that he is not intellectually or morally stable.

Maureen

Why couldn't Romney propose legislation against alcohol and caffeine? I mean, it wouldn't have a snowball's chance of passing, but it certainly wouldn't be wrong for a president to propose such a thing. The executive branch can propose legislation all it wants.

Now, if he instituted a sort of Mormon sharia law enforcement organization on an executive order, or got the FDA to declare alcohol and caffeine controlled substances by executive order, then we could talk. But frankly, it wouldn't be the connection with religious beliefs that would be the problem; it would be the highhandedness of it being done by fiat in a free country.

Esau

What does everyone think of Sam Brownback?


Excerpt:

The current tensions stem from an e-mail message sent to two Brownback supporters by Rev. Tim Rude, the pastor of an evangelical church in Walnut Creek, Iowa. In the message, Mr. Rude, a Huckabee volunteer, compared the religious backgrounds of Mr. Huckabee, a Baptist pastor, and Mr. Brownback, who is Roman Catholic.

I know Senator Brownback converted to Roman Catholicism in 2002,” Mr. Rude wrote. “Frankly, as a recovering Catholic myself, that is all I need to know about his discernment when compared to the Governor’s.


Link:
Two GOP contenders duel over religion

Blackadder

Maureen,

There's no reason Romney couldn't propose such a law. The point is just that the fact the LDS Church opposes a practice doesn't mean that it's members have to favor making that practice illegal. Catholics believe that it is immoral to use artificial contraception, but few Catholics, I think, would favor making it illegal to use contraceptives.

Shane

I suppose you can come up with whatever you want from polls depending on what questions you asked. The polls I've seen show Hillary with a lead in any circumstance, and I have a strong feeling that will continue to increase.

The polls I'm referring to are specific ones used each election to find things out like what chunk of folks a candidate either has no chance to get or has no chance to lose. They're extremely accurate. Even if you can't take my word for it, you just have to consider the logic of it. You're right that you can get a poll to say anything you want depending on the questions asked, but in this case we're talking about something of a different beast because of the extreme nature of the response. "Never, under any circumstances, would I vote for so and so" is a really hard line to get someone to sign onto if they don't have an extremely firm conviction.

On the other hand, the polls you're referring to that show Hillary leading are more the kind you've got to worry about, because the question of who you'd be most likely to vote for is an extremely ambiguous question at this stage of the game. Not only are the numbers watered down by having a bunch of candidates on them that will be gone halfway through the primaries, but you'll get a lot of people just throwing the first name that comes to mind out there, it being over a year ahead of the actual election.

Essentially, the point I am making is that questions about who one would vote for out of X Y and Z is a far, far more tenuous statement for someone to make than "I'll never, ever vote for this person no matter what circumstances or who this peson runs against."

Mary

I note that much depends on the situation in Iraq. If the signs of the surge working pan out, things will look much better for the Republicans.

DPK

The only thing consistent about ol' Mitt is his lust for power. "I wanna be governor of Massachussets, I am pro-choice. Now I wanna be Republican nominee for president, I am pro-life"

francis 03

Blackadder, I'd bet that most of those Catholics who actually personally believe that contraception is immoral wouldn't be opposed to making it illegal. Many of them probably haven't considered it much, since it just would never happen. But in a world where it was possible, I think most of them would favor the right kind of ban-- probably on the sale and advertising of contraceptives instead of on their use.

J.R. Stoodley

At the risk of driving the comments off topic...

I agree with banning advertising for contraceptives. I would actually be quicker to support banning use (quite like the old sodomy laws) than sale of them. I'd be even more conflicted about that than about illegal drugs (at least marijuana). Sure the act is wrong, but will we just make the problem worse by creating a black market that finances gangs and makes the practice even less safe? Then again legalization seems to give government approval to an immoral act and societal ill.

Brownback, incidentally, apparently opposes government funding for contraption education.

J.R. Stoodley

Make that contraception education not contraption. Freudian slip?

frank

Edwards in 08!

Tim

"The only thing consistent about ol' Mitt is his lust for power. "I wanna be governor of "The only thing consistent about ol' Mitt is his lust for power. "I wanna be governor of Massachussets, I am pro-choice. Now I wanna be Republican nominee for president, I am pro-life"

To say his only consistent true virtue is a "lust for power" is a personal misrepresentation. Things common to many Democrats is a love for labels and trashing others. Hillary Clinton now is no longer "liberal" she is "progressive". Romney in this video is showing his frustration from being labeled the "Mormon" candidate. He thinks is off air and shows his frustration. Crap happens! But he is not Ted Kennedy. He knows his faith and he stood up for it off -air. Unfortunately for us it’s not Catholic.

Patris Katholos

Mitt Romney: "Ya gotta wear boots to talk to this guy!"
Obviously, the same sentiment could be applied to the rest of the pantheon. The very nature of politics is to say what people want to hear, when they want to hear it, or to obfuscate and say that you aren't being given amlpe opportunity to make your point - and when given it, you have no genuine point to make!
"Say 'yes' when you mean 'yes' and 'no when you mean 'no'..."
I cannot honestly say what I intend to do come '08. I can no longer delude myself into believing that the political system in this country actually works. Must it always be a choice of lesser evils?
There is but one solution to any issue, political struggle or disharmony: to live humbly as Christ teaches us; no more, no less.

bill912

"Must it always be a choice of lesser evils?"

It has been for most of my life. The only exceptions wer 1980 and 1984, when the choice was between good and bad. The choice between bad and worse is much more important than the choice between good and better.

Ed Peters

bill912 is right (again). 80 and 84 were no brainers (even tho the steam was already going out of the Reagan Rev by 84), and the rest have been choices between ugh and ughier.

as for the main question, my informal sampling of solid conservative friends shows a very dark mood, a sense of real betrayal by GW to form the next set of leaders for his party. and as to the "it's a long time till 08 and a lot can happen," lines, golly, do folks think I don't know that? my only reply is, yes, it's a long time, (so long that one can't even promise there'll be an election then, if you want get to it), but that, unless something REALLY dramatic happens, the Dems will have the WH by JAN 09. It's just a prediction, might be right or wrong.

Patris Katholos

Bill912 -

How would you characterize this selection? Bad and worse or good and better?
I do not consider myself conservative, liberal or centrist - only Catholic; I am so sickened by politics. As for myself, I have to say "hopeless and more so". It all seems so shallow and broken; not unlike the elections described in Bradbury's "Farenheit 451" - devoid of real substance and geared to appearances.

Michael

Contraception used to be illegal in this country for a long time. Banning its sale and use may be unrealistic with the world as it is today but it is a happy dream and should be so for Catholics.

As to the rest, it is not really a long time til '08. Assuming there is not another major terrorist attack and the Republican party presents more of the same at the next general election, electoral disaster is assured.

Blackadder

It's simply not the case that if you think something is immoral then you are committed to thinking it should be illegal. St. Thomas Aquinas thought that prostitution should be legal, for example, but he most certainly did not think that it was moral.

Mike Petrik

Blackladder is right. This is one reason why some Catholics can fairly claim to oppose abortion and believe it to be immoral but do not advocate its criminalization. I have never found their arguments persuasive, mind you, but the notion that a Catholic must support the criminalization of abortion simply because it is evil is not representative of careful Catholic thinking. That said, I have never encountered a persuasive Thomistic or prudential argument in favor of legalization, and for the most part those who favor legalization pretty plainly have a disordered understanding of the evil of abortion.

Kevin Cary

The Pro-aborts are very quick to welcome with open arms anyone willing to convert to their side. Why are pro-lifers not doing the same? Until Romney or anyone else gives evidence to the contrary through their voting record or supreme court nominees (both of which Romney has consistently held), why don't pro-lifers believe them?

BobCatholic

The Pro-aborts are very quick to welcome with open arms anyone willing to convert to their side. Why are pro-lifers not doing the same? Until Romney or anyone else gives evidence to the contrary through their voting record or supreme court nominees (both of which Romney has consistently held), why don't pro-lifers believe them?

Because pro-lifers get played by phonies (pro-aborts pretending to be pro-life, only to get votes) on a routine basis. When we see a flip-flop, we think "is this yet another phony trying to play us?"

Now, if he were to repent, then we'd accept him. However, Mitt is not likely to say "I repented of my evil pro-abort position" on the air.

Jarnor23

Because I strongly suspect Catholics are being fed garbage from the Giuliani campaign, or perhaps the Democrats, or both. "Oooh, gloom and doom," they say. "Only Giuliani can win, it's futile to do anything against him." Well, great, once everyone caves in to what we are told MUST happen, even MONTHS before any primary voting by our media masters, they'll have locked a pro-abortion candidate in for the next president.

And if Catholics refuse to vote for a third party candidate and choose either, or stay home, that pretty much locks it in for Hillary. Quite the plan they got going there.

A) Don't buy into the lie that we can't get someone other than Giuliani in the Republican party, not a single vote has been cast. ANYONE is better than Giuliani's record on abortion, even those we don't think have it 100% right. Better than 100% wrong.

B) If we DO get stuck with such a puketastic choice as our media masters are trying to set in order, vote for a 3rd party PRO-LIFE candidate. Send a message that Catholics will vote for pro-life outside of party politics, and that we will not tolerate the Republican party nominating pro-death candidates thinking we'll just go along because we hate Democrats so much.

Ed Peters

bobcatholic. right.

Kevin Cary

Bobcatholic -

Romney: (speaking on his conversion to become pro-life while Governor) "I was wrong (about my pro-abortion stance) and I am pro-life."

Like is said before, what more do people want? Many politicians who were either fence-sitters or leaned only mildly one way or the other tested the pro-abort waters, so to speak, and when welcomed with such appreciation and, most importantly, votes, decided that this was a prudent political decision. In their minds, it had little to do with morality and much to do with votes and political power. Now, my point is, why wait for a definitive, humbling and heart-felt apology (however nice that may be) from a politician?? When was the last time ANY politician acted in a convincing way unless they KNEW that it was a quite near certainty that it would result in more votes? If they knew the pro-life side wouldn't badger them for not being 'sincere', they might be much more willing to convert. You can call it a political decision or you can call it Christian charity. Either way, give him the benefit of the doubt until proven wrong. Then, if proven wrong, you can go back to being cynical.

Curt

I really think that this doesn't show us that Romney is secretly much more pro-choice than he claims to be. I think that this is a matter of we're watching two people have a sloppy discussion where neither of them is clear on what the other is trying to say.

The host is trying to get Romney to say, "I will not back a pro-choice postition becasue of my Mormon faith."

Romney is trying to clarify that a Mormon faith is compatable with a pro-choice postition for other people, but that a Mormon must not have an abortion or have anything to do with one.

The host wants a statement that "A" is true because "B" is true. Romney is saying that "B" isn't true, but that tells us nothing about "A." I don't know if it's actually true that a Mormon can be pro-choice for others but not for himself (I'm a good Catholic boy), but Romney says that's the postition of the church as he any many "higher ups" understand it so that's why he's unwilling to make the statement the host wants.

Jarnor23

Normally I'd be suspect of a religion teaching that something is morally across the board evil, then say it only matters though if you're one of us. If something is wrong, it's wrong, and if it's a grave evil, it should be opposed.

However, these are the Mormons we are talking about. I'm not real impressed with their theology to say the least, even if I am impressed at how devout some of their members are. Such inconsistencies wouldn't shock me too much. They kind of strike me as the type it may be possible to flip-flop on stuff, oh say... polygamy, or to say it's fine for others, but not the "chosen".

Josh P.

Everything Romney said made sense. I think the host was trying to make the debate about Mormonism, as Romney accused him of after they went off the air. What was the host's point anyway? I really can't make sense of his argumentation. Romney is spliting his religious identity and political identity by recognizing diffent jurisdictions in church and secular law?Romney's analogies to the Mormon prohibition of alcohol and premarital sex made clear his point.

Josh P.

"Normally I'd be suspect of a religion teaching that something is morally across the board evil, then say it only matters though if you're one of us... They kind of strike me as the type it may be possible to flip-flop on stuff, oh say... polygamy, or to say it's fine for others, but not the "chosen".

Jarnor - I don't think you understand the point: it's not that some things are wrong for Mormons--or Catholics--but right for others, it's a matter of authority. I'm guessing Romney believes alcohol use is objectively wrong for everyone but that he doesn't have the authority to stop everyone from using it. I'm Catholic and I believe it's objectively wrong for anyone to deny the doctrine of transubstantiation, but I would never support laws or rules for punishing those who do outside of those who choose to be Catholic, i.e. the jurisdiction of Catholic Canon Law.

Mary

If something is wrong, it's wrong, and if it's a grave evil, it should be opposed.

How a grave evil should be opposed is a matter of prudential judgment. Given that the people enforcing the law are as fallen as those breaking it, given that the law has no power to make a man good -- even a grave evil may not necessarily be best opposed by law.

Jarnor23

In the case of murder, I respectfully think you both are dead wrong. Pun intended.

Mike Petrik

Jarnor23,
If by "both" you mean Mary and Josh, then I think your comment is misplaced. More specifically, because neither said that murder should not be criminalized I don't see how you can state that they are wrong. What they are suggesting is that the decision as to whether society should criminalize a wrongful act, even a gravely wrongful act, is a prudential one. Neither even remotely suggested that the appropriate prudential response to murder is legalization.
Now, even if one assumes that abortion is merely a type of murder it does not necessarily follow that society would be wise to treat it like other murders. Even before the trend toward legalization that occurred in the 1960s and 1970s, criminal statutes and their prosecution were directed toward abortionists rather than women procuring abortions. In today's environment, any advocacy to treat such women as murderers would be treated as lunacy and would, if anything, harm the pro-life movement. In other words, prudential considerations invariably dominate the questions surrounding criminalization, even regarding such grave wrongs as abortion, and even if abortion may be properly understood as murder.

Jarnor23

Mike, are you suggesting that it is not?

Mike Petrik

Jarnor23,
You might consider responding to my points first before raising ancillary questions.
Now to respond to your question: It depends. The church has always taught that abortion is a grave sin. It has only more recently taught that it is a sin in part (but not only) because it is the deliberate killing of a human life. Given that it is a deliberate killing of a human life, it would seem to qualify as murder in the ordinary sense, but it need not necessarily qualify as such in every sense -- including the legal sense. Indeed, I seriously doubt that the Church requires or even advocates that abortion be treated as murder under our criminal statutes, even if it does advocate that it be treated as a serious crime. The point, which really is ancillary to my broader point, is that the term "murder" can have many meanings depending on whether we are using criminal, civil, philosophical, canonical or other vocabularies.
All that said, my basic point continues to be that whether a grave wrong should be criminalized and, if so, how, is generally a prudential decision. My understanding is that abortion is somewhat of an exception to this generality insomuch as the Church now formally teaches that it is the duty of the state to criminalize this particular wrong, though the Church has no teaching on precisely how best to do that.

Jarnor23

Well, in that case, I must indeed disagree with you. It is murder, and should be treated as such. Sadly, our culture is so sick that we cannot get legislation passed that would treat it as it should be. If it were better, it would be good if we could.

Just because the political realities won't allow for goodness, or will allow for atrocities such as feeding Christians to lions for their beliefs doesn't make it right. It only makes it sadly unable to be easily fought.

Mike Petrik

Jarnor,
I'm not sure we disagree. Of course if we lived in a better world we could have better laws. And of course we'd all like to live in a better world. But there is a reason why St. Thomas argued in favor of legally tolerating prostitution. We are in fact living in a fallen state. Our laws necessarily take that into account -- and should.

matt

Mike Petrik,

I think your problem is you fail to distinguish between personal sins, and violations of justice. A violation of justice is almost always a sin but a sin is not necessarily a violation of justice. True violations of justice under the natural law ought to be crimes, and it is the duty of the Catholic politician to do what is possible to provide for justice. Since abortion is an incredibly grave violation of justice against the innocent victim, it most certainly should be outlawed. Of course, prudence dictates that the current culture could not be changed overnight, so throwing women in jail tomorrow would not be correct. First, banning it legally, then locking up any doctors committing it or anyone dispensing abortion drugs, will almost completely eliminate abortion almost immediately. Eventually, punishment for both the doctor and the woman would be necessary.

Contraception is a little different, except when it can act as an abortifacient as in the case of the pill, IUD, Plan B etc. (see above). The use of it does not have an unwilling victim, however, considering the serious damage to the users and society, the sale of such products ought to be banned, just as illegal drugs are. I don't think one could justify criminalizing use itself.

God Bless,

Matt

Mike Petrik

Matt,
Thanks for trying to help me with my problem, even if I am confused as to where precisely we disagree. Perhaps you are suggesting that prostitution is a personal sin and not a violation of justice. If so, I cannot accept such a distinction in this case, and I don't recall Thomas's willingness to tolerate prostitution as being grounded in such a distinction. Properly understood, prostitution has important adverse social consequences, including innocent victims; it cannot rationally be dismissed as private sin.
In any case I agree with much of your post. It may be that in a properly ordered society we would treat women and girls who aborted their babies as simple murderers. But if so, we aren't there yet. In any case the Church does not teach that women who procure abortions should be accorded the same treatment under criminal law as other "murderers." As long as the magisterium is silent, the matter is predominately a prudential one subject, as I understand it, to the teaching that society has a duty to use its laws to protect the unborn, including its criminal laws. The Magisterium includes no additional precision.


Mike,

Matt,
Thanks for trying to help me with my problem, even if I am confused as to where precisely we disagree.

Sorry, I thought I made it abundantly clear that we disagree... we do.


Perhaps you are suggesting that prostitution is a personal sin and not a violation of justice. If so, I cannot accept such a distinction in this case, and I don't recall Thomas's willingness to tolerate prostitution as being grounded in such a distinction. Properly understood, prostitution has important adverse social consequences, including innocent victims; it cannot rationally be dismissed as private sin.

Yes, there are innocent victims in every sin, even those most private, however there is a clear distinction made in those sins which attack a person with intentional malice. As such, prostitution (unless forced or involving someone unable to consent, which is rape and not prostitution) is not in it's essense a crime which has victims. Let's leave the prostitution red herring aside, as it does not relate to the discussion anyway.


In any case I agree with much of your post. It may be that in a properly ordered society we would treat women and girls who aborted their babies as simple murderers. But if so, we aren't there yet.

This is true, and we do agree on that point. Every leader has a moral obligation to bring about an ordered society, and should have as it's goal that such acts are punished in proportion to the gravity of the crime.

In any case the Church does not teach that women who procure abortions should be accorded the same treatment under criminal law as other "murderers." As long as the magisterium is silent, the matter is predominately a prudential one subject, as I understand it, to the teaching that society has a duty to use its laws to protect the unborn, including its criminal laws. The Magisterium includes no additional precision.

Sorry, on this you are objectively wrong. In fact the magisterium has been clear that abortion and euthanasia are specificlly identified as more grave than even other intentional murders. Furthermore, you there is no necessity to suggest the Church must speak on the matter, because, by it's very definition, abortion is a form of intentional murder.

I refer you sir to Evangellium Vitae:
58. Among all the crimes which can be committed against life, procured abortion has characteristics making it particularly serious and deplorable. The Second Vatican Council defines abortion, together with infanticide, as an "unspeakable crime".

I'm curious, you seem an intelligent person, how is it that you would make such a false claim without at least a cursory review of magisterial documents? I chose only one of the more prominent, and could find numerous others without the slightest effort.

God Bless,

Matt

Mike Petrik

Well gee Matt, thanks, you seem like a smart fellow, too. Then how is it you site documents for propositions they do not claim? The point that you seem incapable of grasping is that the moral gravity of a sin in the objective sense is not dispositive as to its appropropriate treatment under criminal law in the civil sense, which necessarily takes into account other factors; and that is true even with regard to abortion. Your citations are not apposite, and the prostitution example is not a red herring just because you say so; and nor is it a victimless crime even under the criteria you offer.

Mike,

Well gee Matt, thanks, you seem like a smart fellow, too. Then how is it you site documents for propositions they do not claim? The point that you seem incapable of grasping is that the moral gravity of a sin in the objective sense is not dispositive as to its appropropriate treatment under criminal law in the civil sense, which necessarily takes into account other factors; and that is true even with regard to abortion. Your citations are not apposite, and the prostitution example is not a red herring just because you say so; and nor is it a victimless crime even under the criteria you offer.

Posted by: Mike Petrik | Aug 8, 2007 8:08:38 PM

You clearly don't understand the concept of proportionate justice, so it will be impossible to continue this dialogue until you figure it out. It is clear from Catholic teaching that the objective of a Catholic politician is a well ordered society, and in a well ordered society the justice is proportionate, as the gravity of the offense of abortion is significantly greater than other murders, the punishment ought to reflect this. As I have said, the first step is to criminalize the purveyors of abortion, and some short period later criminializing all participation. The latter step can not be neglected in an ordered society.

God Bless,

Matt

paedn

I live in Iowa the interviewer is a militant Lutheran who Hates Catholics and Hates Mormons. It is almost a daily thing when it comes to Catholics. he spreads significant mistruth about the Catholic Church on his show. AND WHO IN DES MOINES IS A 50000 WATT RADIO STATION THAT SPANS THE ENTIRE COUNTRY>

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