They, and by they I mean the Republican president that the Republicans by and large refuse to contradict, have gleefully promised to withdraw from treaties and restart the nuclear arms race–and I don’t think I need to tell any thinking people that nuclear fallout is very bad for unborn babies, as well as any other sort of human being. Not to mention, weapons of mass destruction that target civilians, which nuclear weapons specifically always do, are absolutely forbidden by our Catholic faith as much as abortion is forbidden. Democrats certainly aren’t angels in their foreign policy either, but they don’t support this.
They, and by they I mean the president and all Republicans who refuse to contradict them, have abused immigrant children in ways that were condemned by the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops. They threatened to end birthright citizenship, not only through an empty tweet but through drafting laws. They have quietly and not so quietly encouraged racism and bigotry of the worst kind– and racism of all kinds are condemned by our Catholic faith. There has been a huge surge in anti-semitic hate crimes in this country. It’s gotten so bad that we had a terrorist attack against Jews in their house of worship, on American soil right over in Pittsburgh last week, and the president tried to blame the victims by saying they should have been armed. Many Jewish leaders were so horrified they asked President Trump not to come to Pittsburgh until he denounced white supremacy.
They have done everything they can to enact measures that hurt the environment, which Catholics are required to protect as good stewards if they can’t manage to do it out of self-preservation. In doing so, they have not significantly improved the lives of struggling factory workers and farmers as they claimed they were doing. Farms and industry have, in fact, been hurt by Republican tariffs while all this was going on. Nearly everyone, except the very richest who didn’t need any help, has lost, and we have reason to believe it will get worse. And I hope I don’t need to tell my readers that preferential treatment for the rich is the opposite of Catholic social teaching.They have refused to act to pass gun laws that could protect our children from the plague of school shootings. What gun control laws ought to be passed are not specifically mentioned in Catholic teaching, but we are to do whatever we can to safeguard human life and follow our own well-formed consciences as to how. To me, as one Catholic with a conscience, the Republican love of guns looks like a rotten way.
They have nominated and confirmed an extremely problematic supreme court justice who says he will uphold Roe versus Wade anyway.
On Tuesday, I am going to the polls. I am going to have a choice between two parties. Both parties are permissive on abortion. On the left hand I’ll have a largely useless one which is permissive on abortion but which might, if it comes to power, stem this rapid tide decay and destruction in my country and make the total body count of hurt and killed people somewhat lower, by creating counter-inertia if by no other means. On the right I’ll have an increasingly threatening one which verbally claims to be against abortion but is in practice extremely permissive of it, which has even acted to indirectly force abortions on the poorest by drafting laws to take away their chances at a safe pregnancy and the options available to help them, and which has supported plenty of other policies that are completely against my Catholic faith.
I won’t sin no matter which button I push, for the Democrats or the Republicans, even though both parties are permissive on abortion, as long as I don’t vote for them SO THAT they can continue permitting abortion (or any other policy that contradicts the Faith). That matter is closed. The matter up to me right now, is which party I discern will do less damage. And I know what I’m going to do.
I am going to vote straight-ticket Democrat, in 2018 and for the foreseeable future unless some other consideration comes up. I’m going to keep praying and working for more, better options more compatible with the Catholic faith in the meanwhile, because this isn’t a good situation. But for the moment, in this situation, I’m voting Democrat. And I’m doing it with a clean conscience.
(image via Pixabay)