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Thanks will definitely pass on…this hurts my heart ( and mind) and we must keep fighting the good fight here, yes?
So…Jews and Muslims should get a tax rebate on the portion of their taxes that go to support food stamps because recipients of food stamps might purchase pork…? The Catholic _Church_ maintains its conscience-based exemption from providing certain services. However, institutions that are, in part, supported by tax dollars are not.
Also, when Catholic priests and deacons are telling us how we Catholics _must_ vote, and when Catholic organizations are created in order to tell us how we Catholics _must_ vote, then the Catholic Church is no longer innocent of dabbling in politics and has no leg to stand on when it comes to government interference in their quasi-religious organizations.
The Catholic Church is not supported by United States tax dollars. Where did you get such a ridiculous idea?
Also, the HHS Mandate has absolutely NOTHING to do with taxes and tax laws. It has everything to do with Catholic organizations being forced to pay for services which they see as morally evil.
Why exactly can’t Catholic priests and deacons tell their parishes that they shouldn’t vote for candidates that support abortion or that curtail our religious liberties? And just because they do, why does it means they have no political voice?
You’re correct. As I originally stated, the Catholic _Church_ is not supported by tax dollars and is currently exempt from the HHS mandate. However, Catholic organizations and institutions that do take tax dollars are not exempt from the mandate. Catholic organizations are happy to take money from the same government they claim are _forcing_ them to pay for services they believe are evil. Once they stop taking my money, they can get right back up on the high horse they fell off the first time they reached out their hand and took a single dime from the taxpayer.
Catholic priests and deacons have to be very careful about how politically active they become. Once it is clear they are advocating or or against a specific candidate, they are in danger of losing their tax exempt status.
I’m all for all this purity you folks are all about. You go first, ‘k?
The Church is not exempt from the HHS mandate. Many other religions are, but Catholics are not.
I am unsure as to which Catholic organizations you speak of when talking about “Catholic organizations and institutions that do take tax dollars”. (Unless you are talking about hospitals that accept Medicaid/Medicare). Most Catholic organizations take a tax exempt status, which is very different then taking tax payers money. As to how many Catholic organizations take government grants I can not say, but I know all of my local Catholic charities are funded by people who donate their money and the diocese.
As for Catholic priests and deacons, their jobs are to form the conscience of their parishioners. If a politician were to oppose everything the church teaches they should speak against that. I am unsure as to why they should loose their tax exempt status if they are doing what they have been ordained to do. They aren’t breaking any laws unless speaking truthfully about politicians causes people to loose their tax exempt status. (Which would cause a whole bunch of different issues.)
The Catholic Church itself — it’s priests, religious, etc., are exempt. Catholic universities, hospitals and social services organizations that take tax dollars are not.
Catholic priests and deacons (and other religious belonging to tax exempt communities) may help their followers form their consciences. They may not, however, use their pulpits to advocate for specifics, i.e., individual candidates without violating the terms under which they are tax exempt.
As for Catholics themselves being exempt from the mandate, they’re not, nor do most individual Catholics have a single problem with paying into insurance plans either on their own or in conjunction with their employers that provide coverage for abortion, contraception, sterilization, and other services the Church is opposed to.
When every individual Catholic who is benefitting from belonging to an insurance plan that also provides these services drops their coverage, I’ll buy the outrage. Until then, it’s all just political posturing on the part of Dolan, et al.
Also, many of these Catholic institutions that are acting all Polly-pure and goody-two-shoes over this issue had been paying into insurance plans that already covered these things, and had been doing so for decades. Never had a problem with it ’til now. Hmmm. Not that they’re playing politics, or anything, of course not…
Suppose this were Nazi Germany and you ran a charitable public hospital for which you claimed tax exempt status and accepted public funds comparable to “medicare”. Now let’s suppose the Government identified a compelling public “health” interest for which it mandated that you turn over the names and addresses for all patients that fit certain profiles to the SS as a condition to maintaining tax exempt status and continuing to receive public funds. I take it you would not find this objectionable and indeed your public duty??? Furthermore, I take it that you would consider yourself to have no right to speak out against what the SS do with the info you provide?
Apples and oranges. Plus, you lose. Godwin’s Law, and all that.
First, despite multitudes who seem to be confused on this point, Godwin’s Law merely claims that as a debate thread expands, the probability of somebody bringing up Nazis approaches 1. It has nothing to do with who “wins,” since obviously if the Nazis are relevant, it is perfectly reasonable to bring them up.
Second, you are in error when you claim that the comparison is inapplicable.
Exactly! Are we doomed to not learn the lessons of the past? When the citizenry begins to turn their consciences over to the Government and the Government begins to act like Nazis, we’re in big trouble. Our Government is not immune to promoting injustice. We have an obligation to resist injustice, fighting bad with good. “I’m the King’s good servant, but God’s first.”
The church is not immune to promoting injustice also. See Law, Cardinal
Who said it was? I spoke of individual conscience. Testing my conscience against what the Church teaches and what the State promotes, and I find far greater congruency with the Church than with the State.
St. Thomas More, good man, good man
I’ll see your Holocaust and raise you one sex abuse scandal.
Because it’s applicable. Because the Church, this supposed great moral authority, has shown us what their morals really are. They’re full of crap when they claim “conscience” on this issue. We already know the Church lacks any moral conscience at all.
So there are sinners in the Catholic Church. The point isn’t that some (all) fall short of what the Church teaches, but that the standard of truth remains. The Church does not redefine sin to claim that it no longer has sinners.
So now that I’ve addressed that, let’s get back to your conscience. It seems yours is one of convenience and is entirely disposable if the State were to so legislate.
My conscience is hardly one of convenience. My conscience does not permit me to overlook hypocrisy and lack of integrity. My conscience also requires that I look at this situation objectively and see that the Church isn’t 100% correct on this matter. I am required, first and foremost, to honor God and His gifts, including the gift of free will. I will not mindlessly, blindly accept everything “the Church” says as fact or as right or as honorable just because they say so. They’re wrong on this matter, IMO.
how about the Protestant offshoots, yeah i went there
Godwin’s Law doesn’t invalidate the comparison. The point is that I suppose you would find it highly objectionable if the Government tried to mandate you to directly provide or support something you considered immoral and reprehensible on the basis that they provide funds for other services you find worthy and are willing to provide.
Here’s the problem with your supposed outrage over this: many of these organizations were knowingly and happily providing insurance plans that covered these morally reprehensible services anyway, and had been for quite some time. Also, many of the people who are just now expressing outrage over this terrible evil are happily paying into and enjoying the benefits of plans that pay for these services. You can’t happily go along with something, happily benefit from it, and then do a 180 on the situation only when it suits your political purposes.
Get back to me when every Catholic dumps any insurance plans they have that provide these services. Until then, spare us all the phony outrage.
Would you mind providing the names of these many organizations? Get back to me when you have the list. Until then, spare us the phony outrage.
The bishops themselves acknowledged that many of their universities and hospitals were already paying into plans that covered these services. This isn’t even a question. So if you want an official list, go ask the USCCB for it.
What about the businesses and charities that have always done what they ought, under Catholic teaching?
Well, what about them? I’m not sure what your point is.
True, Godwin doesn’t invalidate the comparison, the bad logic on your part does that job nicely.
Don’t you think it’s a little early in this converstatoin to pull out the Nazis?
Perhaps, but that’s dodging the point. See below.
Perhaps you’ve noticed a trend in moral discussions in which Catholics pull out the Nazis as comparison.
Perhaps that really irritates you.
Perhaps you haven’t discovered the root of the problem.
Perhaps it doesn’t take a leap of faith to acknowledge exactly what we’re getting at.
The root of it being that Catholics think that abortion and birth control is as serious as genocide?
I get that. It makes you sound unreasonable and out of touch with reality. I’m not going to have a good conversation with someone that is that much of an extremist.
Of course. I mean, it’s not like we’re using flimsy designations and bad wordplay to allow ourselves to destroy an entire population of inhuman entities and still retain some feelgood about it all.
I read this and picture a forseeable future in which the atrocities of the recent past *can* and *do* get repeated, meanwhile those who object are called “extremists.”
I get it, fertilized eggs are more important than people. What that has to do with a mandate for insurance companies to cover contraception, I have no idea. is every sperm sacred also?
Fertilized eggs are not more important than people.
Fertilized eggs, which are a completely new cell (not a fusion of both gametes), ARE people, and THAT’S why they’re worth protecting.
So why isn’t abortion and birth control as seriously grave as genocide?
By the way, if you were to ask an S.S soldier what they were doing, they would not have said they were committing genocide against the Jews.
Isn’t genocide defined as the killing of human beings?
The Nazis did not believe they were killing human beings.
Neither it seems, do pro-choicers believe abortion and birth control kill human beings.
54 million and counting is not a genocide?
It doesn’t say much for their moral judgment does it.
The Pope had his chance to take a tough stand against the real Nazis and he failed.
Use of extreme examples such as the Nazis is tool to magnify problem for the purpose of more clearly illustrating the underlying moral principle. None of my opponents seem to want to address it, because to concede the obvious is to concede the principle, and that makes their case a losing argument that reduces to being only a matter of degree.
What if the charitable public hospital was running a gas chamber and the government threatened to revoke its tax exempt status unless it stopped. Would you cry government persecution? What about that? See, I can make stupid arguments too.
How would you remotely define such a hospital as “charitable”? Yes, yours is a stupid analogy and I’ve said why. You can call mine stupid, but so far haven’t managed to say why. All I’ve seen is dodging and a lot of smoke. As I’ve noted in other remarks, the State could shut down the Church’s hospitals and schools over morally objectionable services the Church refused to provide and take the entire burden upon itself, but how would that serve the public interest?
I think you have this thing upside down. Regardless of whether the services are offered to the public, they are provided by a private institution. You act as if the State is there to benefit the institution, when it’s the State that benefits from the institution providing the services. Can you imagine what the public tax burden would be if all private hospitals, schools and other services generally benefiting the public were to disappear and the Government had to provide the services. It’s really incumbent upon the State to respect the conscience of the private institution and to make accommodations, because it’s the private institution relieving the public burden, not the other way around. If a private institution finds the HHS mandates objectionable on conscience grounds, then it’s the State’s responsibility to find an alternate means to provide the services in question if they chose to do so. Otherwise, they could confiscate the institution and run it themselves or shut it down and throw the board of trustees in jail, but how would that serve the public interest?
Can you imagine what the cost burden to the average citizen would be if every private institution decided they’d play the “conscience” card and opted out of purchasing insurance plans that provide a broad range of coverage? Why should sports and nutrition organizations provide insurance coverage for metabolic disease, for example?
And, to bring it back to the video promoted as being “awesome” in its explanation of the objection to the healthcare mandate, why should Muslims and Jews be forced to pay into food stamp programs when recipients will buy pork?
It annoys me that I have to pay for the consequences of smokers’ and lazy, gluttonous people’s actions. I find sloth and gluttony to be morally reprehensible. Yet I don’t get to pick and choose because that’s the deal when you live in a democracy.
Same for the institutions the Church runs while accepting, on the one hand, benefits from the state.
Indirect use of tax dollars that might end up buying pork is not the same thing. Suppose Muslim and Jewish institutions were mandated to directly provide hams and bacon to others, even to synagogues and mosques for the consumption of their own? Would they not have a legitimate objection?
If the Government mandated you to personally to provide cigarettes for all your smoking acquaintances, would you not find that objectionable and tell them to find someone else to do their dirty work?
No one is being personally mandated to provide any particular individual with anything.
Insurance companies are being mandated to provide coverage for certain things, but no one has to avail themselves of those things. My insurance company provides coverage for many things I’ll never use.
No one is mandating that Catholic institutions accept delivery of truck loads of birth control pills/devices, or start performing abortions or sterilizations on their premises.
Is it that hard to respond to my hypotheticals? Would you or would you not find it objectionable to mandate Jewish and Muslim institution to provide bacon and hams? Why? Would you or would you not find it objectionable to have a mandate placed on you personally to supply cigarettes to others? Why?
Yes, I would. And the Church is not being mandated to provide anything to anyone. The Church’s non-religious institutions are merely being required to do what any other non-religious institution is doing.
And, now, of course, it’s a moot point, because every tax payer, Catholic or otherwise, is now essentially being forced to pay for contraception, etc., for anyone who wants it. Which is the problem with the Church picking and choosing when they’ll actually act on their beliefs. If they’d been people of integrity from the beginning, they wouldn’t find themselves in this position, or wouldn’t have pushed the rest of us into it.
Responding to below. They are religious institutions as they are the Church’s charitable arm reaching out to the world. They serve the public because that is the face of Christ. As such they serve God first and that cannot be exempted.
What might be the basis for insurance companies playing the “conscience card”? Rather take the example of a Quaker taking a conscientious objector position with regard to the draft. Does the State have a right to compel its citizens and private institutions representing its citizens to direct violations of conscience in the name of the common good?
The state compels citizens and private companies to direct violations of their consciences every day.
I find taxes in the country to be morally reprehensible. I find many social services programs to be morally reprehensible. I am compelled to pay taxes, and those taxes are intended to support morally reprehensible, IMO, programs.
If you find paying taxes in general as morally offensive and a direct violation of conscience, then I’d say you’d be obliged not to pay them. To act otherwise is hypocrisy. Yes, there are likely to be consequences, but that’s what makes heroes and sometimes martyrs.
You’re catching on… ever so slowly….. that a one-size-fits all Stateist sort of least common denominator insurance program is an insane idea. The state is already trying to knock the church down into the gutter to make it accept the unacceptable.
Uh, no, I’ve always opposed social medicine. It’s not something I’ve come to “ever so slowly” (put down the Georgette Heyer, dear…lol!).
The Church opened the door to the state and welcomed them with open arms when it suited them. They have no one to blame but themselves for this mess.
You have a rich fantasy life.
re: ( gocart mozart) : “You have a rich fantasy life.”
And it would appear that you have an impoverished line of reasoning and are thus bankrupted and bereft of any logical rebuttals. Can you only offer personal speculations and insults or do you intend to derail the topic at large?
By way of explanation, if I were to buy a generic insurance package for myself that happens to include coverage for abortions, something I consider inherently evil, there are two consciences in play, the insurance providers and my own. If the insurance provider had a conscience concern over providing such services, then he should not offer them to begin with as this is a conscience violation. For my part, I have control over the exercise of the policy. As long as I don’t exercise that particular portion of the coverage that the money stays in the insurance providers pocket and I have not violated my conscience. If he takes that money back out of his pocket to pay for an abortion because he has a policy with someone else, that becomes a matter for their consciences. If I buy that person’s policy, my conscience comes back into play. I no longer have control over what features are exercised. If that person chooses to exercise that policy feature and has the abortion, then I have just materially participated in the evil by providing the means. Providing the means is a lapse in my moral judgement in that it disregards the potential evil of its use. That would be a violation of conscience on my part.
The Church has a mandate from Christ that is the basis for providing the services that it does. That does not include what it considers inherently evil services. The State seems to think it too has mandate to provide certain services to its citizens. These services are its own self imposed responsibility. In many cases these are the same services and it benefits the State to have the Church provide them, even if the State funds them. Where the State chooses to provide services the Church finds morally objectionable, it’s incumbent up the State to find alternate means to provide their “service” and not try to foist upon the Church in violation of its conscience.
And just how do you reconcile your loathing of slothfulness and your refusing to exorcise one’s democratic rights to change the inherent unfairness and injustice of those who are too lazy to care for themselves by eating nutritiously, and electing self abusive behaviors? How do you escape that very same loathing of self observed/admitted traits??? The beauty of a Democracy is that activists can elect to advance their concerns against injustices at any time and do not abrogate their rights by being too slow on the uptake when others try to impose their own selfish views on the rest of us. These are unalienable rights for all time…
Which is why people who oppose war should not have to pay any federal taxes. Right?
Those who oppose war can consider their share going to fund welfare or social security or other public services they support. Not a very good comparison on your part, but if that did not satisfy their consciences, then the should oppose the tax. Suppose the Government mandated as a condition of holding their job that they must buy a dozen M-16s and send them to the Army once a month with no knowledge whether they actually get used. That would be a bit more of a direct comparison.
My comparison is more apt, yours makes no sense. Maybe if the state were to force all the Bishops to get abortions, your analogy would apply.
Which is why the courts have always upheld conscientious objector status. You’re attempting to compare apples and oranges…
No religious businesses are exempt from the HHS mandate. All houses of worship are. There are no religious businesses getting special consideration.
Not paying taxes means that everyone else is making up that money that the Church isn’t paying. Moreover, religious charities get $2billion/year from the federal government. The Church absolutely is getting special treatment in terms of the tax dollars it doesn’t pay and receives from the pool of money paid into by people that find some of their practices immoral.
Tax exempt status comes with the caveat that you cannot get involved in politics. That’s just the rules, it applies to all tax exempt institutions.
The hypocrisy of it all is like guest123 says, this isn’t new. They’ve been paying into this pool for as long as they’ve been employers.
So then how are religious people to get their moral conviction on a topic they should care about if not from their church? This all sounds like a lot of huff coming from the side of the argument standing opposite that of the titanic influence of the Catholic church. People may not like that they have influence in peoples lives, but they do, that’s religion get over it. Don’t just sit and spin and diminish the vast ammount of help the Catholic church does in the world, downplay the charity and overlook the love. Do they get subsidies for helping? Sure, but be sure not to confuse subsidies and profit. The Catholic church is not a profit machine. The Church runs on charity(tithes).
If they want to be politically active they shouldn’t be exempt from taxes, especially not property taxes. The people who are tithing should be paying for the taxes for the church.
Churches themselves don’t do anything that I’m glad for my tax dollars subsidizing, and there are secular charities that I’d rather receive money to do charitable works.
If the advice you have is get over it, I’m gonna go ahead and say you should do the same. If you employ people you have to follow secular laws whether you like it or not.
Hi, Could you explain your reasoning as to why being tax exempt means you should not get involved in politics?
Here’s my thinking, so you know: Tax exempt status is a way of encouraging the work of charities because the govt. knows that charities (in general) do work that benefits society as a whole. Schools are tax exempt as well, should they not teach civics or tax any kind of moral positions?
The law requires tax exempt entities refrain from political action.
Teaching ethics or morality or civics is one thing. Acting to impact a political event is another. The law is pretty specific about this.
Thank you for your reply. Certainly teaching is the major part of the Institutional Church’s actions in response to the mandate. The Bishop’s Conference is not a tax-exempt business/charity, certainly it too can advocate in politics. I wonder to whom the sentiment about “being involved in politics” is really directed at?
And also, while I did know about the legal requirement for not being directly political I would appreciate a reference to look at the exact wording so as to understand better how specifically delineated the prohibition is.
I would also like to know from Alexandra if, what, and how the tax-exempt organizations who are impacted by the Mandate might be considered to be acting politically…and also, how the Catholic businesses who are *not* tax-exempt are supposed to behave in response to the mandate.
Just google IRS 501 (c) (3)
My point is that the Catholics that live in the US have just as much right to vote as you do. These Catholics are seeking moral advice on which way to vote. The Catholic Church is not a SuperPAC, the Catholic Church does not get involved in politics, it gets involved in life issues. The Catholic Church is saying “this goes against our morality, we cannot support it”, and YOU are saying “too bad, your morality is irrelevant if we say so” and THAT is what is being argued over. The Catholics live in a world that is changing its morality around them, and the Church is keeping them informed of their teachings. Just because the world decides to shift its paradigm and the church stands strong does not give the world the right to tell the Church to do something it sees as immoral. Even if you can’t get the Jewish deli to sell pork, can you force them to hire a gentile to sell it, in their store, leaving in bags with their name on it? You are forcing an organization to become complicit with something they find reprehensible.
What moral principal are you trying to teach us here that mandates that “religious should pay tax for exercising its right to express its view viz free speech?” So when the church teaches that we should give to Caesar what is Caser’s (tax to state) that it should lose it tax exempt status for aiding the state’s position? And when the church preaches that Christians should be good citizens, not murder or slander and obey laws it should lose its tax exempt standard? Absurd but entertaining…
the people can quit and find other jobs, its not like they are being forced to work there
“If you employ people you have to follow secular laws whether you like it or not.”
You are correct but don’t stop there. The gov employs millions and IT MUST follow secular laws too (and so must unemployed past impeached presidents and senators etc.)
Government seems to have a lot of problems following its own laws in fact – in particular the constitutional laws granting considerable freedoms to Religion. You might want to acquaint yourself with the recent Supreme Court case : Hosanna-Tabor Evangelical Lutheran Church and School v. E.E.O.C.
Here the EEOC tried to FORCE religion to violate its own conscience and its religious norms concerning gender requirements and LOST 9 to 0 (Supreme court ruling AGAINST the government for intruding into religious freedoms – another Obama slap down of “Oh no you can’t” to his “yes we can”).
You have a distorted and biased view of what laws apply and when.
What are you talking about? People can get there moral values anywhere they want. Stop demanding special “rights’ and whining when you don’t get it.
Unfortunately, too many people do get their moral values anywhere they want, but they should also live accordingly or those values are nothing at all. If someone forms a certain conscience on a particular matter, then it becomes their obligation despite the consequences. That’s true whether their conscience coincides with my own. It’s not whining to ask others to respect that choice where is does not contradict their own conscience. In a different matter it might well be the other way around. If we all lived in heaven, we’d all have consciences that aligned. In this world full of weakness, laziness, temptation, selfishness, apathy, lack of charity and ignorance all leave us with less than perfect consciences. We are nevertheless obliged to do our best to inform our conscience, decide justly and act accordingly. I respect the integrity of those who do so, but I may disagree and oppose their choice and charitably attempt to correct their error.
I don’t understand why they are tax exempt anyway, it’s a stupid law.
actually they aren’t exempt, the way that mr obama phrased it made it sound like they are exempt when in all actuality they are not, the Church based organizations (hospitals, universities, etc.) can now be fined and shut down, my campus minister is now bound by this rule if it passes, and he will have to pay the fines, if not he will be put in prison…
Catholic hospitals often get government money either directly or through Medicare and Medicaid. They are also exempt from paying taxes. Catholic universities get student loan money. Hiding behind the bible doesn’t allow you to be exempt from civil laws. Should religious institutions also get an exemption from civil rights and other anti-discrimination laws? Before anyone says “But they aren’t trying to.”, do you have a logical argument as to why they should be allowed one type of exemption and not the other? What if their religious beliefs mandated they discriminate against black people. Like mormonism pre-1978 or some other fringe religions even today. Religious exemptions must apply equally to all religions even the ones you don’t like.
Strawman and a very bigoted expressive (“hiding behind bibles). Hiding behind rhetoric does not advance your shallow logic one iota. The Church have never condoned breaking just laws. However some laws are unjust (e.g. slavery laws) and we have a moral compulsion to change those.
There you go again”Hiding behind bibles” What I mean by that phrase is that when someone disagrees with you, you call them anti-catholic bigots. I am not an anti-catholic bigot. I am an anti-stupid and an anti-irrational bigot.
So you admit you’re a bigot of a different flavor? Bravo – just brilliant.
Your assertions are unfounded and absurd. All you do is attack with ad-hominums – you’ve made ZERO credible points by logic or reason. You are showing troll like tendencies. Prove me wrong and cite something factual or say something intelligent that can stand up to a rebuttal.
Re: ” I am an anti-stupid and an anti-irrational bigot.”
Are you just demonstrating incompetent grammar or did you really mean to admit you’re a bigot and also by implication a hypocrite ?
The difference is between intentionally participating in an act one considers evil and one that is not. We are all obliged to act in accordance with a certain conscience, regardless of exemptions or mandates. Collectively for the Church, this is a matter of conscience. You can point to individuals within the Church who reject what the Church teaches, but all that does is separate those who live the faith from those who just claim the title.
If you say you’re Catholic as you said, “we Catholics”, that would imply being Catholic and accepting all the Church’s teachings and following them the best way you can. Obviously we all don’t follow them perfectly because we’re sinners, but a Catholic accepts all the Church’s teachings and believes they’re true because Christ said so and we say we believe them in the Creed. If you have trouble believng all the truths of the Faith including its teachings on contraception, abortion, and sterilization, seek the truth and pray for the grace to accept the truth. Read the Cathechism of the Catholic Church and ask questions to someone who believes and accepts all the Church’s teachings, not just some. Above all, pray for the Holy Spirit to enlighten you on what the truth is and pray for the grace to accept the truth. There’s no point in living for something or defending something that’s not true. Until then, please don’t bash the Church or any member of the Church for saying the truth about what she teaches because that’s what Jesus calls each one of us to do and at least some members of the Church are doing what He said. Thank Him for that. I’m praying for you.
This isn’t about Church teaching. It’s about politics and the law. For the record, I do believe the Church’s teaching on abortion, contraception, sterilization, etc. I do not believe, however, that the institutions the Church runs are necessarily covered by religious exemption clauses.
So, you are just fine with The State defining what constitutes religion and the scope of religion? You are just fine with letting the State put The Church behind closed doors (in the closet so to speak) and say that Charity only involves those members in your particular church and does NOT include the ministries of doing exactly what Jesus commanded us – feeding the masses of hungry, caring for the needy and the sick? So you are just fine with The State TEACHING us what IT thinks RELIGION MUST be and the limits and scope of its existence and the extent of its mission and service. Sounds to me like YOU want the State to be TEACHING religion and defining what principals and doctrines we all must conform too. It sounds to me like YOU support the establishment of a generic American denomination of The State that is really fearful of The Catholic Church having any public ministries that it can not control and compete with. This is the same line of reasoning that Julian the Apostate (Caesar Flavius Claudius Julianus 331 AD) used to try to control the rising popularity of The Catholic Church to prevent it from having more influence on the population than the brutal government who had nothing to offer its subjects by way of charity and compassion so tried to outlaw all but state approved services. This is what all tyrannies do – attempt to define ITSELF as a religion so it can and CONTROL the citizens, answer to no one but self and not compete with God’s laws. The State has no right to assert that individuals can have their own consciences at the same time it appeals to conscience to obey law. Conscience is either primal or else we are all slaves to state. The state is STRIPPING all conscience provisions – saying that citizens have no right to a conscience if they work for a corporation. Not for profit Catholic Insurers are not required to renounce their corporate values just because they are the public service conduit to service. No one puts the Catholic Church on the reservation. And no amount of naive sophistry and duplicitous logic is going to pass muster if you want to dismiss conscience simultaneous with appealing to reason. It’s unconscionable, unreasonable and well down the path to an insane line of argument.
Errata: Should Read as follows:
The State has no right to assert that individuals can [NOT] have their own consciences at the same time it appeals to conscience to obey law. Conscience is either primal or else we are all slaves to state.
I’m fine with the state defining what constitutes a tax-exempt organization and enforcing those laws.
The Church got itself into this mess by getting into bed with the state when it suited their purposes.
Individuals can always act on their conscience. No one is forcing anyone to use birth control or have an abortion or undergo sterilization or IVF. No one (yet — we’ll see how the SCOTUS rules on the individual mandate) is forcing anyone to buy any insurance.
Also, since you’re so extreme in your views on this, are Catholics who currently participate in employer-subsidized health insurance plans that cover these services in a state of grave mortal sin? Do Catholics have a moral obligation to go without insurance if the only insurance they can afford covers those items?
I agree that the bishops were extremely naive and played for fools when they got in bed with the state to advance the notion of a big-government social program. They should have known better. I hope the more liberal bishops have finally learned to never trust the state when it comes to looking after Church interests.
But you are wrong. The state is essentially forcing IT’s least-common-denominator moral standard/norm on the entire country – and that is that “contraception is normal and healthy”. They are thereby encouraging it as a default “choice” for everyone – a choice that we find repugnant to subsidize. Read the legislation – they are going to charge us all a monthly “abortion” fee and its going to go into the abortionists pockets to murder children. That is NOT choice – that’s a mandate.
BTW I see you directed the classic liberal jargon of “extreme views” and assume yourself of course to be moderate and therefore correct. Of course we have to throw the Nazi flag here and say that extreme is in the eye of the beholder. No doubt to the Nazis the Jews were extremists for not being Arian. And of course the Nazis were just following state laws and quite moderate and correct right? *wink*
Your final rhetorical question is silly. Cost goes DOWN not UP if you drop these so called “services” that are being forced on us all. So your premise is wrong there to start with. Most people until now probably had no idea what coverage they had in their packages. But I hoping that this HHS Mandate fiasco will result in new legislation that forces that these gravely immoral procedures and conditions be pushed into a separate insurance option where one must explicitly Opt-in and pay out of their own pockets for it. Contraceptive should not even be in the health care program – its a life style choice. Abortion has nothing to do with medical in 98% of all cases and should not be mandated. Same with sterilization. I suppose you would be in favor of mandatory sex change and boob job surgery too. How about frontal lobotomies to “get our minds right” (ref. Cool Hand Luke) about Obamacare? Obamacare is a social and political disaster and is not sustainable.
My final question has nothing to do with cost. If a Catholic is aware that the insurance package he purchases through his employer includes coverage of these morally reprehensible services, is he in a state of sin if he continues to pay into that plan? It’s a simple yes or no question. No essays required. Is it gravely immoral to knowingly pay into an insurance plan that covers services the Church declares are morally reprehensible and are not in step with Church teaching? The Church now says yes it is. If it’s gravely immoral for the Church, is it also gravely immoral for individuals?
The answer to your question is yes, objectively it is a sin to cooperate with evil. *How the sin affects that person, how much he is responsible for, is a matter nobody can determine but G-d*
For some reason the system won’t let me reply to your question about being in a state of sin if buying abortion-inclusive insurance policies guest123? Did you block me?
Ugh. You don’t know what you are talking about. Stop the dishonest or confused moral preening and persucution complex.
Change your condescending tone with me. How dare you tell me I don’t know what I am talking about when I am more informed that 90% of the average population on this topic. The State is TEACHING morality and life value through the venue of medical care – which is a very personal and individual thing that gets into religion by the very nature of one’s beliefs about our own bodies and human nature. The State opened up Pandora’s box by daring to get into a one super size deluxe catch-all-political-hot-button insurance programs for everyone. It is doomed to fail and get tied up in endless litigation and never should have been attempted. Birth control is nothing to do with medical – it is an absurd concept. The government has no business getting into managing fertility – which is what they are after for cost control and population control and a soft eugenics program. Wake up from your childish naivety.
*You’re* calling other people condescending?
And if you really think you’re more informed than 90% of the population, that’d just be because 90% of the population knows nothing about it. You seem to know very little that’s based on real empirical evidence besides your own experiences.
And of course Alexandra you mean to assert here that you are in the upper 10% and know more about it than I do huh? Prove that to me and say something that’s actually intelligent rather than just sniping at people. You’re making invalid logical inferences and just guessing and shooting rhetoric from the hip (probably for attention).
In this short dialog thus far there have been no or few occasions to even discuss empirical data – where’s yours? If you want to discredit me you need to first demonstrate that you know more about that topic than you have demonstrated yourself. We’re not in a game here of “I shot you first so there”. Make some valid points. Bring them to a logical conclusions. Stop shooting from the hip then running away from all the arguments like a kid.
I didn’t make any claim like that I knew more about it than you did.
And I’m really not compelled to actually have a conversation with you when you’re being so mocking and making stuff up.
Why don’t you say something intelligent first.
Allowing woman to control their reproduction is “soft eugenics”! Wow! Admit it, it’s about misogony and control with you. You don’t know jack about the law or the constitution. Arrogance and stupidity are not an atractive combination for you. Just some helpful advise.
Fertility is not a disease and therefore not a matter of categorical “health” . You are very naive and obviously have absolutely no knowledge of what is going on all over the world with respect to the Culture of Death’s managing female fertility to control the population (e.g. forced abortions in China). You have no historical insight into the movements behind the feminist’s objectives and how they have conflated the topic of female rights (e.g. “right to choose”) with its dark orgins in ultra eugenics champion Margaret Sanger (principal of Planned Parenthood) and Guttmacher, Sanger (Planned Parenthood’s research branch – Guttmacher Institute). Read Sangers own book (Woman and the New Race) and see how she desired to eliminate “undesirables”. Look at the neighborhoods where abortion facilities are located – all near minority areas.
You are the one spewing hatred and flinging ad hominums. Any time you want to compare curriculum vitae’s just let me know. Your really showing yourself to be very ignorant.
Like marriage, government is an institution ordered and proper to the nature of man and in that sense is created and blessed by God. Jesus was serious when He said “Render to Caesar” and told his followers to do what the Jewish priests taught, but don’t do what they do. He willingly subjected Himself to the Law at the cost of His life. In doing so, He never acted in disregard to His conscience. That’s why what He taught and did led Him to the cross. Early Christians were subject to state mandates that violated their conscience and the Colosseum ran red with their blood. Yes the state is necessary, but its citizens should always be on the watch because it so easily diverges from the purposes for which God intended it. Yes, this is about Church teaching and politics and law because they are all inexorably intertwined. I’d be deathly afraid of a State that didn’t ultimately owe its moral conscience to God, because then it wouldn’t have one.
For information on the prohibition in participating in politics just google 501 c organization. The wiki article explains it well. You cannot present a bias for one candidate. You can’t tell people that they should vote one way or another. Church leaders do this all the time.
There is no real reason why anyone should be exempt to the mandate. Everyone has already been paying into this pool forever, and they’re expected to continue to do it if they want to employ people. If they don’t want to follow the mandate, they need to either pay the fine or close up shop.
I pay insurance premiums, I pay taxes, I pay into that pool, and some of that money goes to things I find morally reprehensible but that doesn’t mean that my rights have been violated and that I have the right to disobey the law without punishment. The same goes for the Church. If they want to participate in business, they must follow the laws that govern running a business. There is a right to free expression of religion, but there is no right to get exemptions to laws that dictate how you must treat your employees.
The Church’s job is to teach authoritatively with regard to faith and morals. The Church does not monitor its congregation at the ballet box and I’ve never heard of anyone excommunicated based on his voting record.
I’d say you have a right to disobey the law and indeed a responsibility if you consider it an unjust law. Yes, there will be consequences. Would you really have Catholic hospitals and schools close shop over a matter of direct violation of conscience? Would it be preferable for the State to allow the exception and find another way to provide the services in question. I pay into the tax pool like everyone else, only a couple of weeks since Uncle Sam picked both my pockets. As long as I can consider my contributions as going to those things I support, I’m good with that. For the ones I don’t, I figure that’s where yours go and that’s your conscience.
It seems really simple to me. All that has to happen is for the government to remove the stupid, unnecessary mandate that all health insurance policies cover contraceptive services and this polarizing controversy would simply go away. That is the boot in the face that is causing all the problems. It appears that the people responsible for the mandate want to polarize America. They whip the dog who pulls the sled and then complain that since they feed it, the dog shouldn’t growl — if the dog wants to growl, he should give up his food.
Nah, he can growl all he wants. But that makes us roll our eyes and ignore him. He should try paying for his food and perhaps not recently shielded sex offenders from the law if he thinks that he has any moral high ground.
What you are saying Alexandra is evil. I feel sorry for you and I will pray that God opens your eyes to truth and love. God bless!
What you’re saying is nasty.
what if its the truth?
What if it’s a nast lie? (which it is)
I hear this all the time. It strikes me that those who say it think they have some superior moral authority that makes them the judge of the guilty with a right to smear the innocent.
Failures to abide by the principle doesn’t negate the principle. Neither does citing the failure of others strengthen your position of authority. It’s really just pride in action. We all like to be Monday morning quarterbacks and point fingers at others beating our chest proclaiming how much better we’d do if we found ourselves in the same circumstances. That’s a dangerous thing to do. I think most of would find ourselves doing no better and probably worse. It blinds us to our own faults and weaknesses. Have you noticed that innocent people with high standards tend to expect from others what they expect from themselves? The smallest faults within themselves they see clearly, yet they find it hard to see the evil in others and it makes them slow to act with a tendency to give the benefit of the doubt. Yes Bishops were slow and made mistakes, but I can see that to be more the reason than any willful, malicious or evil intent. I’d be inclined to think their analysis of the moral principles involved to be more reliable than someone who rejects the analysis and subsequently the principle because they think their personal behavior is morally superior.
Does everyone get to ignore laws or regulations they don’t like or just the Catholic Church?
1) Barack Obama, during the last pres. election, spoke at many black churches. None of these churches have lost their tax exempt status. Al Sharpon is a baptist preacher and constantly endorses candidates. The churches he preaches in have never lost their tax exempt status. The Catholic Church informs the conscience of her members, she doesn’t endorse particular candidates, yet you claim this violates 501c – you’re either being dishonest or are misinformed.
2) There is not a right to “free expression” of religion in this country. There is a right to “free exercise” of religion (see the first amendment of the US Constitution). Free exercise includes voting your religiously formed conscience and providing services to the wider community without being forced to violate your religious beliefs. The conscience protections the Church seeks are the same ones granted for the last 200 plus years. It is the president, not the Church seeking to impose morality on Catholics.
That first point probably should have lost those churches their tax exempt status if it was an actual church function sponsoring Obama but not the opponent. Probably it wasn’t an official church function, it was just the church being used by a different group.
I’ve been in plenty of masses where they’ve urged voters to go out and vote against a specific candidate. It used to happen all the time at the church I went to as a kid. It’s not something that never happens.
I contemplate with sovereign reverence that act of the whole American people which declared that their legislature should “make no law respecting an establishment of religion, OR PROHIBITING THE FREE EXERCISE THEREOF,” thus building a wall of separation between Church & State.
It’s so simple, I don’t understand why people don’t get it?
Could a catholic president mandate that every public school student recite a catholic prayer just because they receive federal funds?
Of course not.
It has nothing to do with the fact that they receive federal funds, that’s just an incidental slap in the face to the tax payer.
Starting a business and withholding federally mandated benefits from your employees is not a religious exercise. It is not protected under the right to free exercise.
So president Alexandra would have no constitutional problem forcing all Jewish-run soup kitchens to pay its food provider for all food products (including non-kosher) to be offered to its employees and ones being serviced because there is a chance that one of them might actually like pork and believe it is healthier than red meat.
After all, the Jewish-run soup kitchen might receive some federal funds because they do a good job at feeding the local and President Alexandra would want to make sure that all who come into contact with that soup kitchen may be able to access the delights of pork products. Never mind that pork products can be found anywhere, even the gas station right beside the Jewish-run soup kitchen or the vending machine in the corner…
Are you even trying to understand the argument from the other side?
I understand the position of the Church, I know what they’re arguing. I know how they support their arguments, and I can even sympathize with why they feel that way. But what you’re talking about is nothing like what I am arguing. That and it doesn’t even make any sense.
What you argue is that since it will be a federal mandated benefit, there is no escape, yes?
The problem to us is that it will be a federal mandated benefit in the first place.
Forgive me if my prose is not constructed in a manner that shields me from your feigned miscomprehension… Its just a blog…
It is just a blog comment section, yeah, but your comment still didn’t make any sense. I really don’t know if you understand the other arguments. That “prose” was a complete strawman. I don’t know if you did that on purpose, or if you don’t understand why it’s a strawman.
I would hazard a guess that you did understand the gist of it despite being a bit garbled and foreign because I believe you are a smart person even if you pretend it didn’t make enough sense for you, but alas, now you are too entrenched in your refusal to at least assume an educated deduction.
And while I have your attention–of which I am grateful because of your challenging contributions–can I pose to you a well-meaning thought?
Imagine one sunny and beautiful day out on the field, whilst mulling over layers of rock on the side of a cut mound of soil, you find a layer of strata unlike any other that clearly indicates an event that so very so changed the course of a vast portion of the planet. Certainly such a layer would indicate the presence of something undeniable and true.
Now imagine you are looking at the history of humankind laid out on the side of a mound and you come across a strata that mimics the year a man named Jesus walked the face of this earth. Suddenly all layers after that are increasingly different from anything you have seen before. Using your formidable analytical skills, could you give some thought as to how one lone man, and a bunch of liars from very different walks of life could craft such precise narrations that would have such an impact on the rest of history and a big chunk of our dear planet?
You are an atheist because you don’t see that a God is necessary to explain the stuff of life. I understand. But, upon analyzing the layers of human history, don’t you find it interesting that such a lie could have such repercussions on our entire civilization? What if it wasn’t a lie, and even though you don’t see God as a necessity, there is one nonetheless?
Just food for thought. Have a good night.
How did you change this into a debate over theism?
I explain in the second paragraph how I would’ve liked to make use of the honor of having her particular attention at that time to share a thought that relates to her particular scientific profession. We’re in Patheos, “hosting the conversation on faith”. Open conversations include many topics, not just the one at hand.
Except you completely lost my attention when you said now that I have your attention…
For serious I didn’t actually read it. Initially I meant the tl;dr as a flippant response and would read it later, but I have no interest in reading it.
It’s off topic Iancarlo but a good point. You can’t convert an atheist by an appeal to reason or to faith in one fell swoop. Its a gift of grace that often takes a fair amount of time to take seed one you crack open the benefit of the doubt – a modest hairline crack in the armor of hubris. The funny thing to me is how “extreme” the atheists have to get as the Darwin theories delaminate. There’s simply not enough “cosmic time” for the planet to have evolved the complex cellular structure – much less the double helix DNA strands and given both male and female species simultaneously to find each other, mate (and not devour each other as food sources) and reproduce. So now they are off into never-never-land proposing “cosmic astronauts” from other galaxies or N-nested Universes and still unable to account for a prime mover… God gives us incredibly good entertainment in these times does he not?
Back to topic…
His comment is a convuluted strawman argument.
This is the problem here, and I honestly feel prioritizing the whole ‘right to free exercise’ is not as effective as what really is the problem with the HHS mandate.
The problem is what constitutes a ‘federally mandated benefit’. Contraception, according to Catholic doctrine, is -not- a benefit, it’s a detriment. It’s an inherent evil, and it will negatively impact society. -That- is what we should be fighting, with religious freedom as the secondary issue.
As long as it seems we don’t mind others getting contraceptive ‘healthcare’ as long as it’s not forced upon us, non-Catholic views will look as ‘legitimate’ as Catholic views. Let’s remind ourselves we don’t condone moral relativism AT ALL.
Christ did not teach us to uphold religious freedom in politics first and foremost. Our Blessed Lord was put to death because of religious intolerance himself. The same did happen to St. Peter, as did the Apostles, as did all the martyrs who defended our Holy Catholic faith. While they were legally persecuted, all of them, like Jesus, strongly and firmly defended Truth (with a capital ‘T’).
Right now, a truth that’s being squandered is sexual morality and the common good. The HHS mandate is just an extension of the immorality that’s being systematically legalized as long as we Catholics do not know what we’re talking about, or what to talk about.
If the HHS mandate does come to pass (and it most likely will), let us find peace in being mocked, marginalized, and perhaps once again legally persecuted because we uphold Truth.
It’s not like we’re not used to it.
The Christian persecution complex is just silly. Christians get their way in this country. There is a huge Christian privilege. No one is being persecuted for their religious beliefs, they’re just not being given special treatment.
Catholics aren’t a minority group that are being marginalized, they’re just being told that they cannot treat employees differently than other employers. Catholics need to realize that protecting free religious expression means not mixing religious ideas with legislation. Once we allow that, we put all religious expression in danger. Thankfully, for the most part Catholics do agree with the HHS mandate and the compromise and there are only a few who cling to some idea of having “Truth” that they need to making everyone else live by that
Above you say that abuse scandals invalidate anything the Church has to say on any topic. Now you say that because “Christians get their way in this country”, whatever that means, there cannot possibly be any chance that a regulation passed by presidential fiat and without the consent of the elected representatives cannot possibly be discriminatory.
I know for a fact that lots of people find this kind of argument satisfying and even convincing. But those people don’t know how– or won’t– think in a careful way about details and how they impact arguments.
And, I am sure this irony of what you wrote is lost on you: * Catholics* didn’t make federal legislation imposing their rules about birth control, as well as the costs for those beliefs and penalties for those who disagree, on the entire business-owning public.
The ones who have written and plan to enforce the regulations are the ones who have decided that their “Truth” is what everyone else will live by: “All citizens ought to have free, unmitigated access to birth control provided by their employers at the employers cost.”
There’s too much going on here so I’m just going to address the last point.
It’s not necessarily at the employers cost. Employees typically contribute to their health care premiums. An employer might cover all of it, but I’ve never been lucky enough to be in that situation. What the mandate says is that my employer can’t take away that benefit from the health insurance plan that employees are actually paying for. The employer isn’t paying for it, the employee is.
The real problem is the fact that health insurance is tied up with employment, that really shouldn’t be the case.
I don’t disagree about insurance and employment being tied together. In fact, uncoupling that system would be a wonderful way of eliminating some of the First Amendment problems of the HHS reg.
But I sure wish you hadn’t ignored my point about the irony of saying that Catholics are trying to “force their Truth” on other pwople in this context. I would find some intellectual honesty refreshing.
This is what the gov is really after. They are going to drive out ALL private insurance companies by making the laws so entangled and unprofitable an enterprise to venture into that The State will become the last insurer of choice and dictating every aspect of what must be covered and then they will start denying coverage for the elderly and hitting the other side of the equation and institute state assisted suicide for those that have exceeded their cost-benefit margins and are too old to get any more tax from.
They will start behaving like private insurers? Your point is convoluted knee jerk right wingism.
And no doubt your pithy critique escapes the charge of being typical unfounded left-wing reflexive hysteria and emotionalism? I have been in the insurance business and its easy to see that Obamacare is intentioned to do two things initially: 1) To reduce the pool of insurers to just a short list of “government approved” insurers who will play along with the gov’s program no matter how onerous and bureaucratic in exchange for a semi-monopolistic market and 2) then to make it impossible for the “anointed” few insurers to remain viable and make them subcontractors to the state and then to make it impossible for individuals to sue for medical malpractice since the state exempts itself. You really need to get out and walk around more…
Re: “Thankfully, for the most part Catholics do agree with the HHS mandate and the compromise and there are only a few who cling to some idea of having “Truth” that they need to making everyone else live by that …”
This is absurd. 100% of the Catholic Bishops are AGAINST the HHS mandate. Never before have the US Bishops been more united over a single topic as this. You’re fabricating data or expressing your own wishful thinking. What you’re saying would be like me saying I am an atheist but I still believe that God because he’s an atheist too. Just because someone calls himself/herself Catholic and rejects all the Catholic teaching does not make them “Catholic” – it makes them heretics and self-excommunicated. The Church does not define itself by the secular opinion pools any more so than Catholics accept Atheistic interpretation of scripture to try to teach us what it says in an absurd tautology.
You can’t deny though that there is a huge population of people who identify as Catholics who do not agree with the bishops’ position on the HHS mandate. Whether or not they’re “true” Catholics is irrelevant, these are the voters that call themselves Catholic and they’re who matter.
The Catholic Church like objective law is not held hostage to the tyranny of a 51% plurality. I could say I believe in God but I am an atheist. It’s an irrational position to take – making the poll data as irrelevant as asking a person “have you stopped beating your wife yet” and then taking yes answers from females as an admission of a high percentage of abusive lesbianism among the population. Garbage in garbage out.
I’m sorry, I really don’t understand what you’re saying, and I don’t think it has a point.
Actually, what you’ve said is really bizarre:
‘Thankfully, most Catholics agree’
Then go onto say,
‘Whether or not they’re “true” Catholics is irrelevant’
There are hidden premises in both statements, and their logic is mixed up.
Hidden premise: Who are, by action, virtue, and practice, members of the Catholic Church.
Hidden premise: By action, virtue, and practice, they are not members of the Catholic Church. Only by baptism and culture, they are.
That does poke a hole in your initial argument. You’re like a Christian who says ‘Einstein said atheism is a silly notion’. It doesn’t paint the real picture.
It’s better to clarify and state in your initial comment ‘Thankfully, most Catholics, despite not being faithful to the Church, agree’. Now, because we all know the Catholic Church is not a democracy, and since we all know the teachings of the Church have been messed up on the last two or three generations, Catholics who agree with the HHS mandate are about as critical to the discussion as a Jewish or Muslim is at this point. They are the numbers, and they will matter come polling time, but calling them Catholic in this particular discussion is disingenuous.
Most catholics use contraception. True, the bishops are united, much more united than they were in 30′ Germany even.
Didn’t see this, but I’ll repeat what I wrote to Guest123
When you see the word ‘persecution’, don’t immediately start typing up on the keyboard and tut tut Catholics for thinking they feel persecuted. If you read my comment and digested it, you’d find that ‘persecution’ was linked to the days of early Christianity.
Yes, it is perfectly true that open disagreement is not persecution. When it becomes law to violate your own conscience, and Christians can and will be mocked once their views are contrary to the law and the will of the people, then yes, they WILL, in the future, be persecuted for their beliefs.
I’m not from the U.S, but pretty soon it’s going that way. The UK has had its fair share of Christian persecution over the years, simply because they professed their faith in the public square.
Persecution seems like a dirty word to many, because it does entail an unreasonable and unfair discrimination against an opposing party, correct? You don’t want to feel unreasonable and unfair, do you? Interestingly, there are very few groups in the history of the world that can claim persecution.
I think it’s time someone do a theology of persecution.
“Catholics need to realize that protecting free religious expression means not mixing religious ideas with legislation.”
And non-Catholics need to realize that Catholics have NEVER been taught a separation of Church and State. Never, ever, in a million years has the Church once uttered ‘It’s good, and in fact, preferable, to have a religious and temporal power working independently and without co-operation’.
It’s actually perfectly Catholic to mix religious ideas with legislation. For what is law? Is it not the upholding of the common good, as first uttered by Aristotle, and evolved through Late Antiquity to Scholasticism?
The American government is currently making laws to the whims and fancies of it citizens. That’s NOT the duty of the government. The duty of the government is to uphold and encourage the common good upon all its citizens. Laws then, are to be put in place to encourage citizens to achieve the natural end of humanity. Rights, then, are not for a citizen to do whatever he wants, but is actually the protection given by the government to exercise THE COMMON GOOD.
In the Catholic Church’s view, the common good is being directly violated with the HHS mandate. Thus, it considers it unlawful and detestable. It is completely and utterly bizarre to say religious ideas should not mix with legislation. I’m sorry, but that’s…. well, nothing’s more interesting than an historic example:
The Democratic Experiment. This is what the United States has been building towards all this time. Chaos, division, totalitarianism, confusion.
What happens when you need to admit failure?
The HHS mandate is in the common good. The church wants special rights of exemption from civil law.
definition of persecution: The act or practice of persecuting on the basis of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or beliefs that differ from those of the persecutor., the persecutor (s): Barack Obama and his group of clowns
I have to agree with Alexandra and express some skepticism about all this “persecution”. Catholics and Christians are not persecuted in this country, by any means. Catholics and Christians are free to worship without fear of incarceration or death. They’re free to order their lives around their beliefs without fear of incarceration or death. Sure, people disagree with them, and they disagree openly. That’s not persecution. That’s other people exercising their freedoms as much as the Catholics and Christians. When Catholics and Christians cry persecution every time someone treats them as equals, it ends up with those Catholics and Christians pushing for a government that upholds their beliefs over others.
Also, Catholics/Christians have chosen to openly engage in the political arena, and this leaves them open to fair criticism. That’s not persecution.
Remove one Like from the above – I clicked it by accident as I tried to reply. So you don’t think that asking Catholics to participate in what they consider GRAVE moral evil that has ETERNAL consequences for all involved is NOT persecution??? That’s the WORST kind of persecution – its stripping our identity and asking us to become “Drones” of The State and putting us and fellow man at ETERNAL risk. That’s much more than just giving the finger or bloodying noses – some will go to hell forever over this very topic and the infants aborted will never attain to their full spiritual potential – EVER.
But the most outrageous thing you mention here is implying that good Catholics must not get involved by entering into the arena of politics – as if God forbade us from teaching ALL NATIONS and ALL PEOPLES from hearing the GOSPEL; as if we MUST become sterile in our public beliefs and identities. In fact it is OUR DUTY to speak out – we don’t check in our values and identity inside the church on Sunday. Sure we are going to be persecuted for doing so while this country drifts ever more into rank hedonism. But we better do it now before all values are stripped away since it will become a lot worse if we don’t speak out. It’s the moral cowards and the pacifists who are the ones who will bring the greatest suffering on us all for NOT speaking out. The day’s of the secular Catholic are over – the church is now going into active evangelical posture now and pushing back the devil that’s trying to take over this country. There is going to be radical changes in this country soon or this country will cease to exist in any semblance that we have known it before.
Evangelism and political action are two different things. You can evangelize all day long and you won’t be violating your tax exempt status.
Once you become politically active, however, there are rules you must abide by in order to maintain your tax exempt status.
That ol “lose your tax exempt status” line is a canard. I don’t buy into the enforcability any of the tax exempt status rules – its just not enforceable since its not uniformly enforced anywhere. The secular not for profit organizations like Planned Parenthood, NOW, ACORN and all the other liberal extremist PC groups are constantly politicizing their messages and never lose tax exempt status. I don’t think it would stand up in court if push came to shove – and the church really has no business ever agreeing to being muzzled in exchange for tax status anyway.
The Church, however, picked this fight, so their actions will come under some pretty intense scrutiny going forward. Given this administration’s agenda, and given the fact the Republican Party can’t seem to pick a decent candidate, it’s not at all unlikely that removing the Church’s tax exempt status might happen someday, and sooner rather than later.
I agree. The Church should follow the example of other religious organizations who chose to give up tax exempt status so they could be more political. It certainly would be the more courageous thing to do.
so, lets tax Catholic Charities and all the food pantries so they lose all the money they get so they can’t help any people, yeah such a good idea, also lets tax Make A Wish Foundation and the ASPCA!
By the way, I never implied that good Catholics ought not get involved in the political arena. That’s a complete and deliberate untruth on your part.
What I said was that the law prevents certain behaviors for tax exempt organizations.
I had no problem with Rick Santorum running for POTUS, and I seriously considered his candidacy for some time.
I have no problem with Catholics voting in accordance with their religious beliefs. I vote in accordance with my Catholic religious beliefs.
Again, the problem with the Bishops pushing these political issues is that they’ve muddied the line between state and religion too often themselves when it benefits them.
The Devil is trying to “take over” everything, everyone, everywhere, not just this country. It is every Christian’s duty to “push back”, as you say, but that battle is not going to be fought in the voting booth. That battle will be fought in our own hearts, minds and souls.
Nah, you’re just a delicate flower with a persecution complex.
Yes, it is perfectly true that open disagreement is not persecution. When it becomes law to violate your own conscience, and Christians can and will be mocked once their views are contrary to the law and the will of the people, then yes, they WILL, in the future, be persecuted for their beliefs.
Persecution seems like a dirty word to many, because it does entail an unreasonable and unfair discrimination against an opposing party, correct? You don’t want to feel unreasonable and unfair, do you? Interestingly, there are very few groups in the history of the world that can claim persecution.
I don’t deal in feelings. “Feeling” persecuted doesn’t mean you are being persecuted.
I don’t “feel” unreasonable and unfair because I’m not being unreasonable and unfair.
The Catholic Church is not being persecuted by any means.
If ANYONE is being persecuted in this situation, by the most lax of parameters, I suppose it’s the American taxpayer. We’re the ones who are going to pay for all this regardless of what some delicate little flower’s feelings are.
The Church is not coming from a pure place here. They’ve played footsie with the government, their institutions have opened their doors wide to secular influence, and they’re on morally shaky ground. They can’t draw a hard line only when it suits them. Maybe the Church will learn its lesson from this situation instead of trying to have it both ways as suits their purpose.
the definition of persecution: The act or practice of persecuting on the basis of race, religion, gender, sexual orientation, or beliefs that differ from those of the persecutor., the persecutor: Barack Obama…
so Catholics aren’t allowed to be involved in politics, well, i guess i should tear up my voting card right now and stay inside in November…
….Unless the federally protected “benefits” are considered themselves to be gravely immoral, according to your religion…..and/or your inability to provide something you feel is gravely immoral would prevent you in some other way from exercising your religious mandate to feed the poor, tend to the sick, etc……….
There are ways around it. Firstly, recognizing that nothing has changed and that this is the nature of being in a society. You buy insurance from an insurance plan and the money goes into a pool, a pool which might pay for things that you disagree with. The HHS mandate doesn’t change anything in terms of that the money the Catholic employers put in the pool has always benefited people getting things the Church finds immoral.
Also, not operating hospitals and businesses with more than 50 employees is not going to prevent people from being able to exercise their religious calling to feed the poor or tend the sick. So if someone really can’t get past the fact that buying insurance means contributing to a pool of money that will buy someone contraceptives, they can close up shop and find other ways to serve.
“The HHS mandate doesn’t change anything in terms of that the money the Catholic employers put in the pool has always benefited people getting things the Church finds immoral.”
I agree with this on some level, Alexandra. What I think, though, is that Catholics business owners and many charities have long lived without trying to resolve the conflict between the call of the conscience and the larger society; often the “solution” has just been to take the path of least resistance…made easier by the magical thinking of “out of sight, out of mind” moralizing.
This is not different from choices that people make all the time; as if they don’t do it themselves it is not like they are supporting it. But in reality the Christian faith calls us to examine *all* of our choices for integrity.
I am confident that this conflict and others are actually calling all people of faith, in that continual call throughout time, to reform their hearts and lives to bring them more in line with the Gospel.
Lack of integrity on the part of people who espouse a certain ethics does not discount the ethical system all by itself. In some sense, the call to repentance and reform that society’s critics are making — whether they realize it or not– is a proof that the ethical system of Catholic moral teaching is Good and True. Why else call for people to follow the precepts? And I think we shall see how G-d is bringing good out of the abject evil of the sins of the hierarchical Church from the age of clericalism.
If these benefits are gravely immoral, then are all Catholics who knowingly pay into insurance plans that cover the same services in a state of sin? Are they obligated to reject any insurance plan that provides these immoral services?
Actually, in as much as a Catholic business owner pays for abortifacients he or she is morally responsible on some level. The “amount” of culpability is not for me or anyone other than G-d to decide. But when we pay for something we are giving our approval to it, so in the sense that people of faith are called to live their faith and apply it as thoroughly as they can, then yes.
I remember teaching about justice to my students years ago. We brought up some topic like “environmental justice” and I made the point that the products we buy are not unimportant, purchasing a car can have moral dimensions if we fail to weigh our real needs with the actual impact of , say a gas-guzzling vehicle.
One of my students said what *all of us* are thinking when we face the reality of how hard it is to live with integrity:
“Are you serious? This religion stuff invades EVERYTHING? I have to think about EVERYTHING I do? That is stupid and it sucks.”
Indeed, David, I thought.
Making the argument that “nobody does it”– or even that few do– doesn’t actually disprove that it is right to do. It might just mean that it is extremely hard to live with integrity, complicated by lack of education and a properly formed conscience. Being hard to do doesn’t mean we can’t call for it, though. Peace is hard. Love is hard. Saying what we mean and putting out money where our mouth is is really hard! We have to call for these things, though. NOT doing so would be the REAL hypocrisy.
Why don’t you object to paying federal taxes. Are you pro-war or morally inconsistent?
When God said He is the Life….He Wished man conceive Life, Eternal Life….This is true Conception of the Truth.
HHS “people” do not know: *Who Eternal Life [is] Am.
====For this problem====
Solution = God
If you answer the question “What is Life?” you are entering a “quagmire” evil people share…. you are not asking the right question towards the Solution +
I am stating: Pro-life = Pro-Eternal Life (God =Solution)
Well, the Catholic haters are out in force. Their vitriol must be the result of being weened on the scruilious, hate-filled criticism directed at the Church since time immorial by those who still to these day consider Catholicism a cult. Without exception they bring up the molestation scandal even when the subject under discussion has no relationship to that dark scar on the Church’s history, but they never want to recognize the monumental good the Church has done for 2000 years. To denigrate the Church’s objection to a refutation of its religious liberty is pedestrian and childish. I wonder how some of these haters will feel when their liberty or one kind or another is encroached upon by the gang now occupying the offices of power in our nation.
And the Catholic-hater-haters are out, too! Wheee….!!!
Not everyone who doesn’t see this issue in black-and-white is a Catholic hater. I’m Catholic, AAMOF. Deal with it.
Also, the child sex abuse scandal was brought up in response to the Nazi nonsense.
There are legitimate questions regarding the status of religious-affiliated businesses taking full advantage of religious exemption clauses.
Why don’t you grow up, act like an adult, stop spewing nastiness and negativity, and state your position rather than call names and be a bitch, ‘k? Can you do that?
Does anyone else see this irony of the statement “rather than call names and be a bitch”? Please, everyone, love thy neighbor as thyself.
I’m loving her just like she loved me, babe. See how that works?
Also, I’m not calling her a bitch. She is a bitch. It’s just a fact.
People are making arguments and because the fact people disagree with her gets her big panties in a bunch, she labels them all and rejects them en masse.
I guess that’s all that great Catholic teaching coming to the fore…
The molestation scandals absolutely does relate to this topic. The Church was gravely wrong for the way that the sex abuses were handled. The public does not trust the Church, they do not see them as a doing “monumental good.” I see the Church as having done some good despite the fact that they have done heinous things and fail recognize that they need to atone to the public for that. Plenty of institutions do good without showing disrespect for the law and the safety of children, the Church isn’t special in that it has done good.
When the Church bills itself as an arbitrator of morality and insists on its morality, which differs from secular morality, being accommodated for in the law, the fact that they have an history of behaving immorally is relevant.
We are in danger of getting off topic here…
Alexandra, when you say “The Church” was gravely wrong in the way it handled the sex abuse case you are speaking as if it is/was run as a top-down autocratically managed and controlled institution. In fact this is NOT how The Church manages its day to day routines. It’s exactly the opposite.
The Church only TEACHES ONE faith in a single monolithic fashion but actually The Church is organizationally flat. Each apostolic Bishop is the head of his own particular diocesan church that is spiritually in union with each of his peer bishops (the pope is a bishop too) but administratively has very little papal or any outside routine peer bishop oversight from others. There simply was no collusion – just some incompetent administration and bad decisions by some naive bishops (and only a very few cases of real criminal cover up attempts by scared bishops who got in over their heads and panicked). No one had any insight into what was going on in each OTHER national diocese since each is independent of the others administratively. I don’t have the time to give a thesis here on what happened in great detail – but can briefly say that only a very few NEGLIGENT or administratively-incompetent bishops caused the most damage. In most cases they meant well but did not immediately discern the magnitude of the problems outside of their own area & tried to save some of those repentant priests’ reputations and did what they thought was the right thing for all at the time. The truth is – there are millions of sex offenders all over in public today from all walks of life. They are your and my neighbors – and many can’t get a job because of it. Their lives are a mess. They can’t put them in jail for more than a few years and its now proven to be a mental illness/depravity that is not curable currently. We didn’t know that back in the 60s-80s when most of this happened. In those days the advisers were very liberal and thought rehabilitation was possible. Some of the bishops were too trusting and naive.
The sad truth is there are dozens and hundreds of false accusations made against priests every year by mentally ill people and by opportunists/extortionists. Each of us in our own families and among our friends would face the same circumstances – we would have to first assess if anything credibly wrong was in evidence rather than just act on rumor or suspicion. One does not turn a family member over to the police on nothing more than a suspicion without solid evidence of a crime – and no one is legally required to do so either unless he has compelling evidence. Even the police would dismiss anyone turned over to them for investigation with no evidence – the only effect would be damaged reputations and destroyed relationships and lots of resentment from all. These were mostly poor judgement calls. Nearly all of the prior problems (80%+) were occasioned by homosexual priests who violated their oath of celibacy – NOT by celibate heterosexual priests – and why now The Church no longer accepts homosexuals called from seminary and gives many psychological screening tests, evaluations and background checks. The media wrongly called it pedophilia but the vast majority of the cases were man-teen homosexual sex (repulsive, immoral and consistently condemned by the church for 2000 years). Most of these bad priests are now dead and judged by God – long ago. The new crop of priests are well vetted now that we know of the possibility of this problem.
The good news is that since the early 1990s The Church at large has put in enormous safeguards in the USA. From the statistically few cases of sexual abuse of the past we are now down an order of magnitude BELOW that even – and much more so below the public schools and American households (where abuse at home is still rampant but not persecuted or reported much in the USA). And because now that there is much more knowledge about it bishops are more savvy with respect to keeping up and comparing notes with their peer bishops to prevent this from ever occurring again. Today there is no single safer place on the planet than the Catholic Church to bring your kids.
That was a huge wall of text and I say the words “false accusations” “homosexual sex” “repulsive” and decided it wasn’t worth my time getting angry about whatever bigotry there is likely to be in there.
Alexandra I am sorry that some replies need substantial text space to frame the context properly. But its a complete cop out to parse to near the very end to find hot button words and discount it all as bigotry. You don’t find teen molestation repugnant and repulsive? Why even weigh in on these topics then???? It seems the only thing you find repulsive is a notion of absolute truth, right and wrong and only accept your own bigoted view of Catholics as the acceptable kind. You have a convenient personal truth sort of value system that applies one way to yourself and another way to everyone religious. Do you consider yourself objective and rational ?
It’s not about it being lengthy, it’s about using paragraphs.
I did end up reading it and was correct in my first assumption that there’s a lot of really hateful stuff in there. I’m not going to have a useful conversation with someone who believes that the sex abuse was exacerbated by admitting homosexual priests into the priesthood.
The majority (73%) of the reported victims of sex abuse were younger than 14 at the time of their abuse. Pedophilia is an attraction to the pre-pubescent, and most of the time it isn’t the gender that arouses them, it’s the youth. This has nothing to do with homosexuality. This has to do with pedophile priests abusing the children they were supervising, who were largely boys.
Yeah, there’s a lot of stuff I don’t want to talk about because it’s beyond unreasonable out there and I’m not going to learn anything useful from having a conversation about it.
I hate a substantial rebuttal to this – a source that completely refuted your data but it seems to have been dropped by the posting system or deleted?
I can’t let this stand.
This is unacceptably immature:
Alexandra: “I’m not going to have a useful conversation with someone who believes that the sex abuse was exacerbated by admitting homosexual priests into the priesthood.”
You can’t frame the dialog along the lines that you personally want just to prevent hearing the truth and getting to an outcome that you have pre-ordained is inescapable. That’s intellectually and morally bankrupt Alexandra. The fact of the matter is 80% of the cases were caused by HOMOSEXUAL priests who caved in and broke their oaths of celibacy.
Analysis of the research demonstrates CLEARLY that the MAJOR cause of the crisis WAS the homosexual abuse of males,” said Fitzgibbons in an interview with the Catholic News Agency. The Church did not know the scope of it until much later.
The data also shows that less than 5 percent of abuse involved prepubescent children, contravening rumor that the scandal largely manifested as acts of pedophilia. But homosexuality, according to Fitzgibbons, was clearly the primary sexual aberration driving the bulk of abuse.
The study conducted by the John Jay College of Criminal Justice and commissioned by the U.S. Bishops, shows that nearly 80 percent of victims were POST-pubescent and adolescent males. However, the study concludes that available data “do not support the hypothesis that priests with a homosexual identity … are significantly more likely to sexually abuse.”
This completely eviscerates your data.
Don’t you just HATE and LOATH data that proves you WRONG Alexandra?
Also, mandated reporters are required to report if a child says that they are abused. I’m not sure if anyone in the Church is a mandated reporter, but I’d hope they were.
joe paterno? wasn’t he a mandated reporter but never walked into a police station and told anyone?
RE: “When the Church bills itself as an arbitrator of morality and insists on its morality, which differs from secular morality, being accommodated for in the law, the fact that they have an history of behaving immorally is relevant. ”
Let’s be consistent here then. So because of ex impeached President Clinton’s affair with Monica Lowenski and the many many allegations of his sexual abuse and rape allegations The Government should substitute for The Church in teaching us Morality – even about life and death making it an expression of right of choice in abortion? It should teach us the limits of reach of Religion as being only to serve its own members behind the closed doors of its church and have no public ministry in violation of ALL Christ, founder of the Catholic religion commanded? Brilliant.
America is a mere child compared to the 2,000 year old Church. It should be taking lessons from us not dictating and forcing its irrational Non sequiturs on us.
Your analogy doesn’t make sense because the government doesn’t claim to be the source of morality.
My point is that many people, rightfully, don’t respect the Church as a source of morality and that is relevant to the Church trying to influence legislation based on it’s own morality.
I don’t care how old the Church is, old doesn’t mean right.
Don’t be naive. Of course the government thinks its a source of morality – that is why it passes onerous laws and dictates “polices’ made in a vacuum from the back offices of non-elected committee members (e.g. Czarina High Priestess: Kathleen Sebelius). To avoid the charge of teaching religion they of course bend the semantics to “philosophy”, “ideology” and self-evident (insert sarcasm smiley here) political principals like “a woman’s right to choose” and “women’s health” (never mind the unborn child’s health and its right to life). The State is dictating a least common denominator state-morality under a thin veneer of law’s and principals which it invents on the fly to garner the most political expediency it can from the base it wants to tap to advance itself. The overarching moral principal of the state is: “we know what’s best for you” or “yes we can” (until the Supreme Court tells us ‘no you can’t – but we will be long gone then and you will be stuck with it it anyway).
Old doesn’t mean right – but it does not mean wrong either. But to a moral relativist – nothing matters anyway as long as no one walks their dogma in your own backyard…
It’s called democracy, you don’t have to like it but you should at least accept it.
No your wrong – its called tyranny when government of any form (democratically elected or self appointed) takes it upon itself to force citizens to violate its conscience and to ignore Natural moral law. I suppose you’d say the same thing about Nazi Germany being a democracy just because they deceived the citizens and got voted in and then imposed the moral atrocities of genocide on one segment of the population wouldn’t you? Brilliant….
The United States of America should absolutely not be “taking lessons from” any religious entity. Would you have our government bypass the citizenry and “take lessons from” fundamentalist Islam? As in Sharia law?
The USA was founded on the notion that government is OF the people — all the people — FOR the people — all the people and BY the people — all the people. Not just the Catholic people. This nation was founded on the idea that it is not the place of government to uphold one religion over another.
If the Church wants the government out of their business, then they should stop doing business with the government. They should limit themselves to matters of faith alone, not run schools and hospitals and other entities that accept benefits from the government.
Specious reasoning. The entire Constitution was formed on a framework of Judaic-Christian philosophy and belief. There was never any concept of “equality of persons” until the Catholic Church advanced this idea from its teachings and it gained traction in Christendom (from whence America sprang from). Further no one, especially The Church is saying that one must subscribe to Catholic teachings. Everyone can freely choose to go to hell if that is what they want to do. The Church has always embraced the notion of “conscience” as an primal right of the individual and no one can be compelled by force to accept another’s. Hence why The Church so strenuously objects to the naked tyranny of the HHS mandate. Faith is no more separated from government as it is from reason. We have faith in our leaders since we share a common constitutional vision but also have a faith in God’s Providence.
You’re making remarkable asinine statements when you say: “The Church should limit themselves to matters of faith alone, not run schools and hospitals and other entities that accept benefits from the government”. I suppose you are clueless that The Church is WHO TAUGHT the entire Western Civilization how to read and write and who developed the first hospitals and universities in our culture aren’t you? What is going on in these current times is an attempt to usurp this all from the Church many centuries since we first started doing it. The secularists are the new Johnny Come Lately’s to all this. We are just in the middle of a revolution and an attempt to power grab. How foolish they all are too in attempting it…
“The Church is WHO TAUGHT the entire Western Civilization how to read and write”
What a silly statement.
Silly only to the foolish who don’t know a thing about history. It was The Catholic Church and her bishops, monks and religious who preserved the ancient writings in the wake of the collapse of the Roman Empire and who set up the first schools, hospitals and universities and taught “the west” how to read, write and be civilized. It would seem on that latter virtue that the public school system has failed in your particular case.
Your ignorance of history is truly breathtaking.
ok, go to a Church food pantry then and tell them that they aren’t doing good for the community and that they should shut down because “the public doesn’t trust them”
If the church cared 1/10th as much for abused children as it does for fertilized eggs, they would have more moral authority.
The more I read on the internet the more I feel as if mental illness plays a large part in the lives of so many who are filled with hatred and anger. Not just the standard types of diagnosed illness, but the gaping emotional/spiritual wounds of brokenness past and present that the internet is so good at allowing us to pick at, indulge and vent to the perceived enemy.
guest123, you are positively stewing in bile.
Are you saying that being angry is a sign of mental illness?
Everyone has anger and brokenness in their life, these things aren’t abnormal or an illnesses. It’s definitely not special to people with “spiritual wounds.” Anger is a completely healthy emotion. Everyone gets angry and sometimes they’ll expose their vulnerabilities through it, but calling someone’s very human brokenness a mental illness is unfair.
“Are you saying that being angry is a sign of mental illness? ”
But I do think that persistent, abusively-expressed anger is a sign of illness on some emotional/mental/spiritual level.
Even when the anger is justified.
And when the anger that you have causes you to become relentless in the com-box, to comment obsessively (and angrily, profanely and insultingly) on every discussion you can about it, I would say that it is a definite signal that the problem is not the enemy you perceive, but you yourself, who is in need of tending to.
I am as guilty as anyone for letting my own personal problems explode their way into the conversations I have.
We can only change ourselves, and that goes for conversation too.
There’s some truth to that, but are you accusing someone here of doing that?
I thought about it after reading the inexplicable name-calling of guest123– a comment which has since, it appears, been deleted for its utter verbal violence– and reflecting on some comment threads I have read recently.
There is no way of knowing if someone’s smary, , potty-mouthed rant is a sign of soul sickness or just getting too caught up in the freedom of the internet as if it is our own cars where we swear at the radio or other drivers….so I can’t accuse anyone of what I can’t really know after one or two comments.
But, you know, some people *will* keep proving other people’s worst assumptions if they keep on talking….
Verbal violence? Rant? Are you smokin’ something, girl? LOL!
Cynthia left a nasty little rant accusing me and Alexandra of all kinds of nefarious motivations, and she couldn’t have been more wrong, but I’m the one accused of verbal violence and a long rant?
The comment is still there. Not deleted at all. Anyone can read it. So stop lying and saying I left a long, violent rant and stop insinuating that it’s some kind of habit for me.
It was ONE comment, NOT addressed to you, and was quite brief. Get a grip.
I though it was deleted when I couldn’t find it. My mistake.
Here in one place:
In response to Cynthia’s
“To denigrate the Church’s objection to a refutation of its religious liberty is pedestrian and childish. I wonder how some of these haters will feel when their liberty or one kind or another is encroached upon by the gang now occupying the offices of power in our nation.”
“Why don’t you grow up, act like an adult, stop spewing nastiness and negativity, and state your position rather than call names and be a bitch, ‘k? Can you do that? ”
If someone spoke to you in real life the way that you wrote to Cynthia and others, you would consider it aggression.
Or maybe you wouldn’t. In which case I go back to my brokenness and mental illness theory.
Yes, because I’m CLEARLY mentally ill for taking exception to a really nasty piece of writing by someone who is presenting herself as better than others.
You’re an ugly-minded person, and you’re obviously only here to stir up trouble.
I’m done with you, you crazy stalker.
Um, Barbar, it was one comment, in response to a negative comment made by Cynthia Fackler.
You’re totally overreacting, especially since no one was talking to you.
No, I’m not. But Cynthia sure is, lol. She can’t accept disagreement, so she spews generalized hatred. I just sent it right back her way.
Are you saying I’m mentally ill for taking exception to her general negativity? Then what does that make YOUR response to my response?
And what’s up with insinuating that anyone who disagrees with you, or who is annoyed by ignorant, immature, generalized responses is “mentally ill”?
These same people who pull the “child abuse” scandal as a substitute for the Nazi line of argument, are usually all graduates of the public school system that has over 10,000 cases of child abuse in just a 2 year period in one single state (CA). They have no sense of scale (fraction of a percent of 400K priests ever molested anyone) and don’t know that most of these few cases happened over 40-50 years ago and are only drummed up as part of a general smear campaign and to extort money. They don’t realize that in today’s America a person has a very high risk of being molested either at home (single mom’s [40%] boyfriends molesting her daughters) or a 10% change of being molested by public school employees – yet they are educated by their molesters & blind to the data (Stokholm Syndrome or a consequence of “no child left behind [unmolested]“?). Most are just clueless drones with an immature leftist ideology that they picked up in public school – its as common as an STD now.
I think you’re missing the point.
The outrage is not about the fact that the abuse happened, it comes from the fact that the Church did not deal with the abuse in an ethical fashion. Of course sexual abuse happens elsewhere, but the Church, who claims to be an institution built on goodness, handled it in the most appalling and illegal fashion.
And ftr, I was Catholic school educated.
you’ve mentioned that many times, its just getting old that people drag it out when the Church and the HHS mandate are mentioned (fyi i was Catholic school educated too!)
Eighteen years of Catholic education here, plus I’m a lifelong Catholic of over 50 years of age and I am a registered Republican and vote pretty conservatively on most matters. You couldn’t be more wrong in my case.
The sex abuse crisis came up because some young twit brought up the Nazis.
The sex abuse crisis is fair game because those who are defending the Church’s position on the HHS mandate continue to stress the good these quasi-religious organizations do, and the Church’s purported “moral authority” among their defenses.
If my comments don’t apply to you then why take it upon yourself to take exception and flourish your rooster feathers? Bizarre.
“Flourish my rooster feathers”….??? Bwahahahawahahhahaa!!!
That’s rich, coming from you…
You and Cynthia like to throw these accusations out there and then berate your targets after you find out YOU were wrong.
You’re an ass and a boor, kiddo. And a complete bore, to boot.
I think you are mistaking your own mocking laughter and name-calling for proving someone wrong.
They are not the same.
Who died and made you Boss of the Comboxes?
I think perhaps you should address your comments to InvictusLex, who has been arrogant and mocking towards everyone here.
You might take stock of them yourself. Your big contribution has been to stalk me and attack me when we’ve barely interacted.
Your presence here seems to be to stir up ugliness and strife, not to contribute anything of substance.
Why don’t you add to the conversation instead of trolling around looking to pick fights with people, eh?
It is easy to see, if you read, that I have been contributing to the discussion in other ways besides the three? four? times that I have pointed out the illogic and aggression in what you have written.
But I am sorry if you feel that I have been focusing on your comments in a stalkerish manner. You have written a lot of comments and so have I. I have a personal problem with bullies, so maybe I did notice your comments more. I will try to refrain from commenting “about”, instead of “to”, your posts from now on.
Lady (and I use the term lightly…), you are the biggest bully here and you are on my permanent ignore list.
I think somebody needs to step away from the internet for a while.
Then do it. You ask for a fight, you get it, and then you accuse the other person of “mental illness”. Projection much? You’re batshit crazy, woman. Totally off your rocker. Now piss off.
I try hard to not feed the trolls looking to find relevance. Guest123 has nothing substantial to offer beyond rhetoric and drama. Best to not take her/him too seriously.
I have decided for other reasons that I am finished with that particular exchange. Also I do not want to be misinterpreted. I find internet discussion very prone to bringing out the worst in everybody, from misinterpretation to bad behavior.
I genuinely meant that apology; I did not mean to make someone feel fixated upon.
Mocking everyone? Moi?
Let’s turn it right around “kiddo”- who invited you to be custos morum and spokesperson for “everyone”. I have most certainly not mocked everyone. It is you who flings the ad hominiums. I attack illogical and irrational lines of reason not persons. I can’t be held responsible when someone makes absurd comments and invalid conclusions and then I simply point out the absurdities and then that person feels like he made a fool of himself.
Don’t be silly. Learn the difference between specifically directed comments and those made to a non-specific audience. Nothing I have said has been proven “wrong”. How can anyone be berated if the comments don’t even apply to them? That’s a logical fallacy. Maybe y9u should take a remedial course in boolean logic and reason. You ad hominums are also presumptive of a superior and more mature insight that is yet to be demonstrated and in fact contradicted by your lack of style. Try again…
I’m not “some young twit”. I am over 50 years of age, a lifelong Catholic with 16 years of Catholic education who as an engineering student happened to find logic, ethics and morality subjects worth studying as my non-tech electives. I’m also a Confirmation catechist, a Eucharistic minister, a Lector, a retired Air Force officer and a registered Republican who votes conservatively. What do those credentials have to do with the substance of the argument? NOTHING! Even if I were “some young twit”, that wouldn’t change it in the slightest. The extreme Nazi case was a tool to magnify and illustrate the principle under discussion. Once someone sees and concedes the principle, then the next question becomes why it would be OK to violate it in one case and not the other. The degree does not make for justification. I’ve read that the sin of Adam was the greatest of all time despite the seemingly innocuous matter; because of all the sins ever committed it was the one most deliberate and least excusable on the grounds of ignorance or weakness.
No religious libert is being infringed, some are demandingg special Rights”
Technically, by the definition of cult, catholicism IS a cult…
A system of religious veneration and devotion directed toward a particular figure or object.
Given the degree of patriotism some have in comparison to religious practice some forms of Americanism and American exceptionalism could also be considered a cult or fanaticism. Worshiping ideologies is not much different.
But yes, Christianity was originally a Jewish Cult – like the Sadducees, The Essenes, The Pharisees. How ironic that the action of the original Jewish members (the apostles) to agree to open it up universally (Catholic) to all races (e.g. the gentiles) resulted in it being high-jacked away from the Jews for the most part (at least for the time being during this age of the Gentiles).
Sadly, they won’t care because, like Esau, they will have sold their birthright for a mess.of pottage. When they realize the devil’s food doesn’t taste so good, Holy Mother Church will be ready to welcome them back with love and forgiveness. Let’s just pray that America can survive their secular and immoral mess.
Why doesn’t anyone get the picture? ( i.e saving religin at the expense of getting rid of it.)
Let me digress, the required law, to uphold certain prescriptions of contrcacepts, brthcontrls, aborsts, etc and-at-the-same time placing its’ basis upon religin as a form of expressin, is quite strange. Meaning, you cannot call religin a mere form of expressin and then force into the practice of the exercise of that religin (which can no longer follow an interpretation as an expressin in order for the law to work ) which the law requires.
It isn’t so much the issue of one’s freedom of religin being undone. Rather, it’s one’s religin being forced to be exercised in way which law requires contrary to the precepts of that religin. Therefore, the proposition of one’s religis liberties being attacked isn’t really true. Rather, one’s religis liberties is being overstepped by an authority not respecting the amendment. Or quite similarily, it would be similar to the state saying you have to eat meat on Friday’s during Lent because the state says so.
“it would be similar to the state saying you have to eat meat on Friday’s during Lent because the state says so. ”
If by ‘similar” you mean completely different, I would agree with you.
The problem isn’t so much an atteck on freedom. It’s, as strangely as it may seem, something entirely different. The problem is the confusion of authorty.
Although I disagree with the mandate, it seems like theres a bigger issue than just the one mandate. What if, for instance, someone were to say that they, on a religious basis, disagreed with morally with highways because they increase the ability to travel from ones family. Does that mean that taxes should no longer pay for highways? Or that individual should no longer pay for highways?
I agree with the point, but it seems like there needs to be a stronger case for why we shouldn’t pay for abortions other than “because I believe so.”
The HHS mandate doesn’t require people to pay for abortions. It has nothing to do with abortions.
I can’t believe that you don’t know that you are wrong.
Numerous forms of birth control cause the disruption of implantation of a fertilized egg. Most hormonal birth control has that capability; the morning-after pill attempts to do that very thing; IUD’s cause a persistent state of irritation in the uterus so as to make it less likely to happen (although of course it can and does fail at this as well, many OB’s have seen babies born with IUDs buried in the placenta somewhere.)
Anyhoo, whether you or anyone else believes that “pregnancy begins at implantation”, Catholic theology says that fertilization is the defining event. So, in reality, it IS about other people’s technical, chemical abortions.
That is not an abortion. You can pretend it is, but medically it’s not at all. Your statements aren’t based on medical facts, but instead Catholic propaganda. Catholic theology isn’t medicine and medically pregnancy starts at implantation.
The primary action of hormonal birth control is to prevent ovulation, and theoretically they can also prevent implantation if fertilization has occurred. We haven’t observed whether or not this actually happens, but theoretically it’s possible.
I know you don’t like to read long posts but hope you will stick with me here.
“Religious freedom” protections are precisely about making accommodations for individual conscience objections to something that the rest of society finds acceptable. When those objections are about matters of life and death, they take precedence over even other religious beliefs in the way society must accommodate them.
The medical “definition” of anything is as much about words as it is about science, of course, and if you don’t know that already you ought to study the history of medicine and how it conceptualizes diseases and body processes in language. The definition of pregnancy–which has changed in the last 20 years, btw– is a *distinctly separate* issue from the religious belief about ensoulment.
You can refuse to call the destruction of an embryo an abortion if it takes place before any and all lines drawn by the language-dominate scientific categories…but, whatever you want to call it, Catholic teaching is that fertilization is where we have to being to treat life as human life with dignity and care….and doing something to deliberately interfere with that process of life is morally wrong.
Finally, you cannot make science arguments against that religious belief. It is an example of an *essentially* philosophical belief because while informed by scientific knowledge it is a position taken on a “big issue” of philosophy and religion about what it means to be human.
Because it is a matter of *very* basic matters (life and death) it is a very basic religious belief that adherents should not, under the law, be required to violate.
BTW, I did not address this but it is in fact relevant: Any other philosophical position on the beginning of life at fertilization– whether it comes from ensoulment, human dignity, or an entirely non-religious belief about human nature and violence– applies under the category of Essential Philosophical Beliefs in the realm of life and death and ought to be treated as such. For more on this, one can check out the various non-religious pro-life groups such as Atheists for Life and Libertarians For Life.
I’m sorry, but you really did lose me with the length because there’s no way I’m going to agree with you on this topic anyway.
Being concise is important.
Here is my concise restatement of what you wrote:
“Won’t read length because I have already decided I could care less.”
(Actually that is a good, concise explanation of what is wrong with politics in this country.)
Yeah, that’s accurate.
But I’ve already heard and considered these arguments. You’re not saying anything new, so it’s not a case of horrible apathy on my part.
How could you possibly know if I was “saying anything new” if you didn’t read it?
The close-minded attitude toward social interactions is astonishing. All conversation becomes masturbatory performance art.
BTW, what I wrote is pretty much the definition of apathy, whether you think you have considered arguments already.
I am not offended personally that you don’t want to read mine; I find it offensive to the general idea of serious discussion that you write as if you are engaging in exchange of ideas but will pull a “TL;DR, already made up my mind long before this” if you don’t want to think about it any more.
Also, for future reference it makes all that you have written lose credibility because of the pall of dishonesty cast over the whole thing.
We’re bickering in a comment section of a blog post. This isn’t srs business. I
got tired of your arguments because they were all just rehashing of nothing new, so I’m done. I’m sorry you feel like it’s masturbation, I know Catholics think that’s a sin.
Well, I guess you have learned that the best way to extricate yourself when you don’t know what to say next in the conversation is to yawn loudly and move one!
A classic move.
you like to argue on here though…
ABORTIFICIENTS? hmm… sounds like abortions to me…
I saw this and just *had* to post this here, especially considering the attempts at discussion of the legal issues inherent in circumscribing religious liberty.
Kathleen Sebellius looks so bad that it’s almost like it was faked up by someone to mock her.
All the intellectual posturing and the vitriol expressed by the participants is discouraging. Instead of off the cuff responses why not stop and use the time instead to ask the Holy Spirit to infuse some wisdom,we so need it. I love the faith and know in my heart that she will prevail but persecution is coming folks. We must be prepared and the Holy Spirit is the remedy. So lets not attack one another,instead fight the common enemy!
I loved this video, too: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LpGJ91fXi3o
paying for birth control and abortions make everyone’s health care cheaper. y0u’re not paying anything. you’re paying less. stop being backwoods retarded, it’s okay. if you dont want an abortion dont get one.
There are a few things here that i am not sure of. One is the fact that we have to pay for something that we don’t agree with. That is true. I can see that. But, that is what taxes are all about, no? I pay tax dollars for a war I disagree with, I pay for public housing and welfare that i disagree with, but i still have to pay for it. That is how taxes work.
The second thing is when the Father said that we don’t make Jews and Muslims pay for pork… well, they do just and indirectly as Catholics would be paying for abortions and sterilizations. Jews and Muslims pay federal taxes, those taxes go to create food stamps which people then can use to buy pork. Similarly, Catholics pay taxes, those taxes go to fund healthcare which people can choose to get an abortion.
All death threats will be disregarded unless written in iambic pentameter.
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