YES! Rebecca Hamilton is my Hero!

YES! Rebecca Hamilton is my Hero! August 29, 2012

She says everything I’ve ever tried to say about how we should approach our civic duties as Catholics! Your vote is not going to make a difference to the outcome of a national election. It’s going to make a big impact on the outcome of your life as a disciple of Jesus Christ. Weigh your choices accordingly.

Hey! Are you still reading me when you could be reading her? She’s the bomb! She’s got her head screwed on straight. Go read her stuff post haste.

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  • Marthe Lépine

    I just read it; it is excellent.
    I found a particularly brilliant gem: “If they actually did what they said they would do, the vote-getting engine would go dead.”

  • Gives me hope for more pro-life Democrats.

  • I don’t see why I should believe a word of it. You say that all politicians are liars. Rebecca Hamilton says all politicians are liars. Rebecca Hamilton admits she is a politician. Therefore Rebecca Hamilton is a liar.

    • Mark Shea

      Norman, coordinate!

      • Logic is a little tweeting bird chirping in a meadow. Logic is a wreath of pretty flowers which smell BAD. Are you sure your circuits are registering correctly? Your ears are green.

        • Mark Shea

          You affirm me in my nerdliness.

  • Rebecca Hamilton should be everyone’s hero. She’s quite the person. There she is, among everyone else who is the problem, and seeing it so clearly. Typical of modern American thinking: Everything in America sucks, and it’s the fault of everyone [else]*.

    *This does not include, naturally, all the hip and cool people I like.

  • Marion (Mael Muire)

    I tried to post this over at Rebecca’s, but I guess my laptop wasn’t talking with her blog . . . (?)

    Very interesting and thought-provoking post. It’s quite true that the Repubs after 40 years have not been able to overturn Roe. I believe the overturning of Roe will require a renewal of the spiritual life of our nation, and a turning back to the Lord on the part of a substantial of our people, in addition to political efforts to rid our land of this horror. Political efforts alone haven’t been – and never will be – enough.

    That said, one party proudly proclaims itself the “Party of Choice” (i.e., the choice to target the infant in the womb for annihilation), and when they get into office, they really do make laws (in the case of legislators) and executive orders and court appointments (Presidents) that promote and affirm abortion. They also enact and / or lobby for legislation that would force Catholics to perform, assist at, refer for, and / or pay for other peoples’ abortions. These terrible things happen when Repubs are in office or in the majority, too, but less often.

    I have an relative with Stage III cancer. She is putting up a valiant fight. They have tried different medicines, hoping to shrink the tumor. With some medicines they try, the cancer doesn’t seem to shrink but seems to continue to grow and even to spread. With other medicines, the tumor doesn’t seem to shrink much if at all, but there is evidence that it is not continuing to grow or to spread. Does this mean that both kinds of results are equally worthless? No, my aunt is willing to suffer undergoing the chemo with the med that at least seems to reduce the growth and spread of the cancer.

    Abortion and other forms of immorality are the cancers upon our nation. I cannot ignore the fact that one party wants to promote the growth and spread of this cancer, actively targeting and attempting to swallow up healthy elements such as Catholic hospitals and Catholic social service agencies; the other party, while not able to eradicate the cancer of abortion, at least does not actively facilitate its growth and spread.

    Judicial appointments to the federal bench and to the SCOTUS matter. Conscience rights matter. The perniciousness of the choices, I believe, has been less egregious in cases where the Repubs have made them, as compared with the Dems.

    • JB

      “Abortion and other forms of immorality are the cancers upon our nation.”

      Metaphorically perhaps, but literally no. Leaving aside other forms of immorality which are after all constantly among us as effects of original sin and therefore will never be reduced by the state (state suppression of immorality is whack-a-mole, suppress one and other kinds pop up), abortion isn’t cancer, it’s homicide.

      (Gloss: The legal definition of murder is “an UNlawful killing, with malice, of a person who has been born”, and BTW that’s the Common Law definition preceding Roe. Even when abortion was outlawed it was never legally “murder”, although morally it’s a violation of the Commandment, but law seldom matches morality, as Jesus’ trial demonstrated. ANYway, what you might find interesting vis a vis this bit of legal history, is that before Roe, abortion was homicide, but it was UNlawful homicide! What has changed in the past few decades is that now the state doesn’t regard abortion as homicide at all.)

      Back to my point about abortion’s essence being willful homicide – rather than “cancer” which no one wills – as what we’re REALLY talking about, and are obliged by God to oppose, is immoral homicide (ie, willfully killing Humans for reasons other than self-defense), then abortion is one among several kinds of immoral homicide promoted by the government of the United States. Therefore my next question is: Does the Republican Party’s half-baked and inconsequential expressions of opposition to ONE common form of immoral homicide, vitiate Chritians’ duties to oppose the OTHER kinds of immoral homicide the Republican Party is dedicated to continuing to commit? Such as immoral wars of choice? Not to mention torture, another instrinsic evil the Party supports.

      • Marion (Mael Muire)

        “Abortion isn’t cancer, it’s homicide . . .abortion’s essence (is)willful homicide – rather than “cancer” which no one wills.”

        You are quite right; I was speaking – not just metaphorically, but metaphysically. And each individual act of abortion is indeed a homicide and a willful act on the part of several adults. However, speaking in a metaphysical sense, abortion affects all of us, since we are all Americans, and since many of us are in the Body of Christ. To the extent that any fellow member of the Body and any American wills to annihilate an innocent infant, we are all damaged, we are all put at risk, even, I daresay. So, in that sense, the atrocious spiritual consequences of this particularly vile and abominable act, although that act is in any given instance willed by just a few, nevertheless fall to some extent upon all of us.

        For me, torture and preemptive war are both evils, which have been preceded by abortion in their significance for two reasons: (1) One of the Fours Sins that Cry to Heaven For Vengeance – the worst sins imaginable – is willful murder. It is the first on the list. Torture and preemptive war are certainly moral wrongs that should concern every American, but abortion is the worst kind of crimes against the Law of God that there can be. And (2) this wicked and abominable crime is celebrated as a positive good by the Democratic party leaders who come closest to representing responsible and statesmanlike leadership of either party. The Dems publicly instruct the American people that it is good for women and doctors to target the infant in the womb, and, what’s more, they seek to coerce health care workers who wish to refrain from so doing into perpetrating this grave evil. Whereas although leaders of both parties who don’t meet the standard noted above have proclaimed their support for torture and preemptive war, the truly responsible senior officials of neither party has characterized torture and unjust war as positive goods that every American must proudly support. No. The really responsible ones do not speak in that way at all. But the Dems do about abortion, virtually to a man or a woman.

    • Ted Seeber

      According to SCOTUS’s argument in Roe V. Wade, SCOTUS appointments do NOT matter. Only a redefinition of the word “person” will matter. This was upheld in Casey v. Planned Parenthood.

      In other words, the ball is in Congress’s court, and they’ve dropped it so many times I’m beginning to think it’s made out of lard.

      • Blog Goliard

        Sorry, Ted, but none of those sentences make sense.

        Successfully appointing enough Justices who are willing to overturn Roe and Casey, or amending the Federal Constitution to explicitly allow for the banning of abortion, are the only two options on the table here. The “personhood” thing is a red herring, useful only to stir up partisan passions on both sides…and it has nothing to do with Casey.

    • CK

      “Judicial appointments to the federal bench and to the SCOTUS matter. Conscience rights matter.”

      I have four words for you, Chief Justice John Roberts.

  • Obpoet

    It takes 10 units of blood to save a trauma victim’s life in a massive transfusion protocol. One unit of blood will not make any difference. Therefore, do not give blood. Your one donated unit will make no difference at all. But that one unit circulating in your veins will make all the difference to you.

    • false equivalence analogy. ::angry computer sound:: please try again.

  • Fr. Shane Tharp

    She’s an Oklahoman too. Don’t you want to move her?

  • Peggy R

    I am sure she’s a fine person. But once you get 100s or 1000s of Catholics to decide their vote doesn’t matter, then you have a problem. Your vote matters. The absolute cynicism is sad to read.

    • I think you are right, but it’s a lost argument. I tried once to argue otherwise then I gave up. It’s one particular viewpoint about how we relate to our society. But it’s not the only view. I think many folks agree with you.

    • DTMcCameron

      It certainly does matter, especially in that sense, and so because of that they shouldn’t be thrown away as pearls before swine.

    • Ted Seeber

      Actually, when you get 64 million Catholics in a country of 300 million deciding that their vote doesn’t matter and they’re going to send a message, it suddenly will matter more than anything else, even if that message is that they don’t vote.

  • It’s better to light a candle than to curse the darkness. Think of your vote as one very small candle. Of course, it can always be snuffed out by the person you voted for.

    • “Think of your vote as one very small candle.”

      Now think of handing that candle over to the G.O.P., and the G.O.P. saying, “Thanks, we’ll take good care of it.”

      Eventually, you might start thinking of other acts of faithful citizenship than your vote.

      • And the basis for you assuming that Ben doesn’t already think of other acts of faithful citizenship than his vote is what?

        • Since my “you” is the same as Ben’s “you,” I’m not sure how to respond.

          • Your you is the same as Ben’s you? Now I’m not sure how to respond.

      • OK. I think I have the same question as Dave G, although I prefer to think of (and pray about) acts of faithful discipleship over & above citizenship.

        • Let me try it this way:

          Step 1. Think of your vote as one very small candle.
          Step 2. Think of handing that candle over to the G.O.P., and the G.O.P. saying, “Thanks, we’ll take good care of it.”
          Step 3. Repeat Steps 1 & 2.
          Step 4. Go to Step 3.
          Step 5. Go to Step 1.

          Step N. Think of other acts of faithful citizenship than your vote.

          • Think of other acts of faithful citizenship than your vote.

            Don’t worry, I’m sure there are many who do. And many who vote as well.

    • Ted Seeber

      Why does that remind me of Holy Thursday service?

  • Richard Johnson

    Perhaps it would be good to go back and take a page from the evangelicals of 1996. Bob Dole and Haley Barbour made a very public statement of disregard for the evangelicals in their party. Many evangelicals stayed home or chose not to vote top of the ticket out of protest. Bill Clinton won, and evangelicals in the party made their point…don’t take us for granted.

    Can Catholics do the same?

    • Blog Goliard

      Maybe the “lesson” would have made a bigger impression, and been better heeded in future, if Dole had ever had a prayer of unseating Clinton even with fervent and united support from Republican-leaning Evangelicals.

  • Chris

    One of the best posts I’ve read all year. Politics is nothing but a rigged game show with zero parting gifts.

    Translation: YOU LOSE.

    • Blog Goliard

      That’s not quite right.

      Those icky feelings of regret and betrayal that you often get after you’ve helped Your Side to victory and they’ve gone on to break most of their promises? Those are your parting gifts right there.

      So don’t say the rigged game show never gave you anything

      • Chris

        Heh. How very true.

  • I read this a few days ago, and thought of you immediately. I had the feeling your reaction would be . . . well, pretty much what you’ve just written here. D’you suppose we could write her in for President?

    • I think we should draft a Hamilton / Shea ticket. 🙂

  • Obpoet

    Stated another way, from the world of backpacking: if you watch the ounces, the pounds will take care of themselves. Your vote matters, your one vote matters so much. Without your one vote, there are no votes at all.

  • enness

    The fear I struggle with is quite the opposite: that it will have little impact on my own discipleship, but will have an impact on the election and the country (part of it is that I was an abstainer last time, and have seriously regretted that on a few occasions). Which is why I may take up drinking heavily in mid-October.

    I’ve been trying to console myself with the thought that Congress matters more…oh wait…not where I live.