In response to Nancy Pelosi today, a flashback to Cardinal Edward Egan’s response to a Meet the Press interview she did with Tom Brokaw before the Democratic convention in 2008 seems like an appropriate flashback. The then-cardinal archbishop of New York said:
Like many other citizens of this nation, I was shocked to learn that the Speaker of the House of Representatives of the United States of America would make the kind of statements that were made to Mr. Tom Brokaw of NBC-TV on Sunday, August 24, 2008. What the Speaker had to say about theologians and their positions regarding abortion was not only misinformed; it was also, and especially, utterly incredible in this day and age.
We are blessed in the 21st century with crystal-clear photographs and action films of the living realities within their pregnant mothers. No one with the slightest measure of integrity or honor could fail to know what these marvelous beings manifestly, clearly, and obviously are, as they smile and wave into the world outside the womb. In simplest terms, they are human beings with an inalienable right to live, a right that the Speaker of the House of Representatives is bound to defend at all costs for the most basic of ethical reasons. They are not parts of their mothers, and what they are depends not at all upon the opinions of theologians of any faith. Anyone who dares to defend that they may be legitimately killed because another human being “chooses” to do so or for any other equally ridiculous reason should not be providing leadership in a civilized democracy worthy of the name.
Unlike the gentleman’s agreement to agree to disagree Bill Richardson seems to think exists when it comes to abortion in the Church, in a homily Sunday night as that convention opened in Denver, from the city’s Catholic cathedral Archbishop Charles J. Chaput schooled “pro-choice” Catholics: “If you’re Catholic and you disagree with your Church. What do you do? You change your mind.”