Once again, Catholics were incompetent at just the right time.

Remember when that Catholic hospital argued in court that fetuses weren’t people (because they’re only moral absolutes until they’re inconvenient)?  I read on Ed Brayton’s blog this morning that now, after they’ve already won the case, the heads of that hospital are very sorry.  They didn’t know their lawyers were using such an immoral argument!

Miguel De La Torre, a professor at the Iliff School of Theology in Denver, noted that the church often argues for laws recognizing a fetus as a human being.

“If that legislation was to come up again, how could the Catholic Church argue we should protect the rights of a fetus?” he said.

Indeed, last week Colorado’s bishops met with executives at Catholic Healthcare Initiatives, a branch of the church that operates the hospital at the center of the case, to review how the lawsuit was handled. The two released separate statements Monday saying CHI executives had been unaware of the legal arguments and pledging to “work for comprehensive change in Colorado’s law, so that the unborn may enjoy the same legal protections as other persons.”

Man, the Catholic Church has been conveniently ignorant a lot lately.

In their Monday statement, Denver Archbishop Samuel J. Aquila, Colorado Springs Bishop Michael Sheridan and Pueblo Bishop Fernando Isern said: “Catholic healthcare institutions are, and should, be held to the high standard of Jesus Christ himself.”

And how, exactly, do they intend to do that?  By coming out after the fact and saying that fetuses are people, despite the arguments their lawyers made on their behalf, they are saying that the court got it wrong.  Will the hospital now act as though they had been wrong?  I mean hell, if fetuses are people, and that’s what the Catholic Church believes, why was this ever in court?  Shouldn’t the Catholic Church and their hospital have realized that their shortcomings cost two lives and, being the moral bastions for all of humanity, sought to make amends?  Will the Church now take it upon themselves to pay a settlement to the man who, if you believe fetuses are people, lost his two daughters due to the hospital’s negligence?

Of course they won’t.

All the way down to its clumsy attempts to protect child-raping priests by shuffling them off to a new set of victims, it is clear that the Catholic Church is far more concerned with its image and with dodging responsibility for their transgressions than for any of their victims.  Their goal in court was to avoid financial accountability for what they did (or, in the case of that dying woman, what they didn’t do), and they achieved it.  And all it took to repair their image was just a little dishonesty.

  • Glodson

    What happens if this ruling is appealed? The Church “knows” about it now….

    • Yoav

      I’m sure their can “forget”.

      • Glodson

        Don’t worry, I’m sure there’s plenty of people waiting to remind them.

        • Artor

          …and a couple millions dollars to help them forget again.

    • Aureliano_Buendia

      The ruling was already appealed; the original ruling was upheld not only on the basis of fetsues not having the rights of actual humans, but for other reasons as well.

      In other words not only did they lie to win the original case, the hospital refused to come clean until they won the appeal as well on different grounds that would not be overturned even if Catholic dogma is followed in the future and the laws change.

  • baal

    Knowing how legal defense of large institutions work, the Bishops are almost certainly lying. The mumble about the CHI not talking to the RCC about this particular case is a mumble – I strongly suspect the CHI’s attorneys briefed and got sign off on strategy from the Bishops.


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