Freedom of Worship Isn’t Religious Liberty UPDATED


There have been scads of opportunities for the current Administration to smooth over the concerns of folks regarding their moves athwart the First Amendment of late. Regarding rights of conscience, and religious liberty, in particular, though they try to argue that all is well, folks just aren’t buying it.

The reason is pretty simple. [Read more...]

Abraham Lincoln on the Importance of Freedom of Conscience and Religious Liberty

Everyone knows how easy it is in the age of the internet to cobble together a saying that meshes with the popular mood of the times, and then attribute it to a giant of philosophy, art, or politics. Often times these alleged quotes seem too good to be true. And after a little cursory check, you know, actually looking for a reference that verifies said quote, you come up empty, and toss it in the trash.

This practice is so prevalent that the following quote “attributed” to Abraham Lincoln has become a joke all it’s own, [Read more...]

On the HHS Mandate, We’re Approaching the Line of Departure

Crossing the LD, the old fashioned way…

Currently, the bulk of our forces are  still in the Assembly Area, marshalling troops, building logistics trains, and communication networks, etc.  The dozen lawsuits that were launched a few weeks ago? Probes, really, looking for areas of strength and weakness. They crossed the line of departure a few weeks back as a reconnaissance-in-force.  Over at NRO Online, Mark L. Rienzi gives a recap of what we know so far.

Basically, it’s the tale of a media blackout, which we are all familiar with, [Read more...]

Thoughts on the Role of the Laity on this Feast of St. Joan of Arc UPDATED

And so we leave Eastertide behind.  Before we move on into “Ordinary Time”, recall the events of Holy Week with me. During that week, way back in the year 33 AD, the forces of human justice, lobbied aggressively by the interested parties of the Pharisees and Sadducees, convinced the Roman procurator, Pontius Pilate, to sentence Jesus to death on a cross. And though the whole mess was a tragic setup, it was all done officially and legally.

I can think of many things today that are both official and legal and still very tragic. Here’s an example. A friend of mine who is serving in the Army in Afghanistan sent me this message recently: [Read more...]

Can Mary Ann Glendon Change the President’s Mind on the HHS Mandate?

Last Tuesday, I shared Mary Ann Glendon’s piece in the Wall Street Journal explaining why we are suing the U.S. Government. Today, Kathy Schiffer learns that Glendon has been appointed to the U.S. Commission on International Religious Freedom (USCIRF). She wonders if Glendon might be able to help the Administration realize how ridiculous they look trying to protect religious liberty overseas while they trample on it at home. [Read more...]

Lifting the Veil on the HHS Mandate And a Query to the Administration UPDATED

Joanne McPortland does all of the heavy lifting for us. All we have to do is put our thinking caps on, and consider the source of the whole twisted enterprise known as the HHS Mandate. Joanne lays it all out clearly and succinctly, and you will want to read it all. Here’s a taste, though, to get you started. [Read more...]

Props to PBS, Who Did Discuss the Lawsuit, While the Other Networks Slept

Joanne McPortland tipped me off about this in the combox of the post I wrote about the crickets chirping on the other major networks following the biggest religious lawsuit ever. Kudos to PBS, who I lauded last time for hosting Fr. Robert Barron’s Catholicism series as well. In the clip below, host Gwen Iffel queries Wall Street Journal reporter Janet Adamy about the news that the other networks (honorable mention, though, to CBS News) failed to provide to the public. Give it a look, [Read more...]

With the HHS Mandate, Belloc’s Heresy “The Modern Phase” Has Arrived UPDATED

Image Credit: Ted Schluenderfritz.

A couple of years ago, when I was boring folks with YIMCatholic Book Club posts, we tackled Hilaire Belloc’s The Great Heresies. We started it around the time school was out in the Summer of 2010, beginning with the Introduction. We followed along for six weeks as Belloc made his way through all the big heresies you’ve heard of, but didn’t know diddly squat about. First, we learned the plan of the book, and then we dug into the following heresies in succession: Arianism; Islam; Albegensianism; and Protestantism. And what was the last selection? Funny you should ask. [Read more...]

Mary Ann Glendon Explains Why The Bishops Are Suing the U.S. Government

Who is Mary Ann Glendon? She’s the Learned Hand Professor of Law at Harvard Law School. I love that title, as Learned Hand sounds like someone I’d like to get to know better. Because with a name like that, he’s got to be good. After all, Judge Learned Hand wrote wise opinions such as this,

What do we mean when we say that first of all we seek liberty? I often wonder whether we do not rest our hopes too much upon constitutions, upon laws, and upon courts. These are false hopes; believe me, these are false hopes. Liberty lies in the hearts of men and women; when it dies there, no constitution, no law, no court can save it; no constitution, no law, no court can even do much to help it. And what is this liberty which must lie in the hearts of men and women? It is not the ruthless, the unbridled will; it is not freedom to do as one likes. That is the denial of liberty, and leads straight to its overthrow. A society in which men recognize no check upon their freedom soon becomes a society where freedom is the possession of only a savage few; as we have learned to our sorrow. P. 190, The Spirit of Liberty (1944).

See what I mean? But back to Professor Glendon. [Read more...]

Cardinal Dolan on CBS This Morning with Charlie Rose

Yesterday I lamented the paucity of media coverage regarding the lawsuits filed by 40+ Catholic groups. It appears that the media outlets had some backing and filling to do. CBS again seems to be leading the way, at least in terms of getting the story out to the public and bringing in folks to get to the roots of it.

Here is Timothy Cardinal Dolan speaking with Charlie Rose on CBS This Morning. Charlie Rose and Erica Hill do a great job asking pertinent questions, while His Eminence is in his element explaining the whys and the wherefores of the lawsuit. He also discusses the controversy surrounding Catholic college commencement speakers and such. Have a look (please pardon any attempt to sell you beer and shampoo),

As I mentioned yesterday, birth control pill packages, etc. will always be floating in the background. Read more over at CBS.

Obviously, Cardinal Dolan can’t be everywhere, and on every network at the same time, but he lands on his feet and is a cheerful witness whenever he does.


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