“Shut Up, Old Man”

That’s what Scott Paeth wants to say to Catholic bishops who think that female contraceptives shouldn’t be covered by health insurance:

In all honesty, my first reaction to any attempt by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops to make any kind of moral argument, least of all one involving sexuality, is to want to say “Shut up, old man.” And no Bishop who is honest about the negligence and criminal malfesence of the Catholic Church around the hundreds and hundreds and hundreds of allegations of child molestation and rape around the world over the last half century should expect any other response.

How can any Bishop expect to excercise moral authority, particularly in the authoritarian “do it because I say so” manner that they use, given their record? Every single solitary Bishop should be on his hands and knees begging for forgiveness from both those they’ve directly harmed, and from every Christian, Catholic and non-Catholic, for the damage that they have done to the church. The Bishops, through their choices, erased 2,000 years of authority over the period of a few decades. And why? To protect their own institutional position while shielding absolute moral monsters from being held accountable for acts that were both criminal and detestable. There is no excuse. And it will probably take another 2,000 years for them to regain that authority. In the mean time, the only thing I want to hear from a Bishop is the phrase “I’m sorry.”

Scott also has some thought’s on Romney’s Mormonism and Santorum’s gag reflex here: Against the Stream: Back to Religion and the Public Square.

“Beneath Christianism is a deep fear of the human mind”

Andrew Sullivan money quote:

For Santorum, as for Ratzinger, if your conscience says one thing, and the Pope says another, you obey the Pope, not your conscience. And for the Christianists, if your conscience or intelligence says one thing, and the Bible says another, you obey the Bible, not your conscience, and certainly not your intelligence. Because beneath Christianism is a deep fear of the human mind – as if they actually believe that reason is stronger than religion and therefore must be restrained. As if the human mind can will God out of existence.

via Santorum Exposes The Real Republican Party – The Dish | By Andrew Sullivan – The Daily Beast.

Rick Santorum Doesn’t Think You’re a Christian

The Republican candidate for POTUS, who thinks that our president follows and unbiblical theology, thinks that mainliners are not ChristianL

We all know that this country was founded on a Judeo-Christian ethic but the Judeo-Christian ethic was a Protestant Judeo-Christian ethic, sure the Catholics had some influence, but this was a Protestant country and the Protestant ethic, mainstream, mainline Protestantism, and of course we look at the shape of mainline Protestantism in this country and it is in shambles, it is gone from the world of Christianity as I see it. [via Santorum Excommunicates 45 Million Christians]

Further, he doesn’t believe in a strict separation of church and state: [Read more...]

Santorum’s Bible

Mike Lux at HuffPo has this astute observation:

Because here’s the thing: while you can — if you really work hard to do it — find verses here and there supporting a more conservative political point of view on certain specific issues, there is simply no way to read the Bible I read and not come to the conclusion that it is overwhelmingly supportive of helping the poor, showing mercy to the weak, refraining from judging, treating others as you would treat yourself, calling on the wealthy to give their money to the poor, and all kinds of other liberal, lefty, progressive values. You would have to ignore a great deal of Genesis and Exodus, with their talk of being our brother’s keeper and bringing justice to the poor, oppressed slaves in Egypt; you would have to skip over a great many of the verses of Psalms with its poetry about justice and mercy for the poor and the widow; you would have to avoid the books of the Prophets almost entirely since so much of what they are angry about is the Israelite society’s mistreatment of poor people and immigrants in their midst. Then there is the New Testament, where between St. Paul, the relatives of Jesus, and the big guy himself, there are so many verses on these subjects that it is virtually impossible to ignore them.

READ THE REST: Mike Lux: What Bible Is Santorum Reading?.

Hey, Rick Santorum, Let’s Talk about a “Theology Not Based on the Bible”

Rick Santorum, an ardent Catholic, made headlines over the weekend for saying that President Obama practices “a different theology” that is “not a theology based on the Bible.”

Theologies develop, and I have no trouble with that. But Santorum obviously does, so let’s take a look at some things that are not “based on the Bible”:

  • The Immaculate Conception
  • The perpetual virginity of Mary
  • Praying to saints
  • A celibate priesthood
  • Transubstantiation
  • The papacy
  • Twelve sacraments that bestow grace

Again, this isn’t about my quibbles with these. This is about setting up a standard that Santorum’s own church can’t meet.

And Santorum’s Sunday backtrack about radical environmentalists was laughable.

It’s interesting, isn’t it, that we get honesty when these candidates talk off-script?

A Secret Group of Evangelicals Picks Santorum

Police officers checking guests on Friday on the road to a ranch near Houston where conservative Christian leaders met for talks. (Michael Stravato for The New York Times)

So, it turns out that I was only partially right when I posted that evangelicals wouldn’t vote for a woman, a Mormon, or a Catholic. At least their leaders will vote for a Catholic.

At a secret meeting, an unidentified group of evangelical leaders, they took a vote, and Rick Santorum won. The New York Times reports,

The extent to which those attending the meeting will be able to mobilize their followers behind Mr. Santorum remains unclear. The group’s vote is not binding on participants and the leaders did not directly ask Mr. Gingrich or Mr. Perry to drop out of the race.

“There is a hope and an expectation that this will have an impact on South Carolina,” Tony Perkins, the president of the Family Research Council and a spokesman for the group, said in a telephone news conference after the private meeting concluded.

The decision here in Texas came on the eve of the final Sunday church services before the South Carolina primary on Saturday. Mr. Santorum said that he raised $3 million in the last week and expected that the support would likely help him raise even more money and strengthen his campaign organization in the state.

But that’s not all.

[Read more...]

Santorum (the Candidate, not the Frothy Substance) Gets Booed by College Students

Turns out that Rick Santorum’s views on gay marriage don’t play quite as well in New Hampshire as they did in Iowa.  (Gay marriage is legal in NH.)

CONCORD, N.H. – Rick Santorum found out the hard way Thursday that he wasn’t in Iowa anymore, earning boos and catcalls from a roomful of college students for equating gay marriage to polygamy during a spirited debate over traditional values.

Several students challenged Santorum, a committed culture warrior, over his long-standing opposition to same-sex marriage. Instead of saying he disagreed and changing the subject – as many politicians might have – Santorum launched a law-school-style Socratic exercise, answering questions with questions.

“So are we saying anybody can marry anybody else?” the former Pennsylvania senator asked one student. “Don’t you have to make the positive argument for why the law should be changed?” he asked several. “What is the public policy reason?”

A young woman suggested that gay men and lesbians should be allowed to marry because they have an inherent right to happiness.

“If you’re not happy unless you’re married to five other people, is that OK?” Santorum asked, as students began booing and shouting.

READ THE REST: Santorum, in New Hampshire, gets a challenge on his marriage stand – Philly.com.