No Need For Discussion….

President Obama's controversial commencement address at Notre Dame

During the Democratic primaries, then-candidate Barack Obama was sharply criticized for his openness to dialogue with the heads of state that have traditionally been anti-American.  Attempts by Senator Hillary Clinton to portray the junior senator from Illinois as someone willing to cozy up to the likes of Kim Jong Il, Hugo Chavez, or Mahmoud Ahmadinejad fell flat — even though Senator Obama openly stated he would meet with each of these leaders personally.

President Obama is not lacking in political deftness. He skillfully fended off criticism by offering the JFK approach:  “We must not negotiate out of fear.  But we must also not fear to negotiate.”

Obama’s approach, like President Kennedy’s, has merit.  It certainly didn’t hurt the new President to do much more other than “show up” and be somebody else given the unfavorable international view of the Bush foreign policy. 

So what is it that has Robert Finn so troubled? 

You might ask:  Who is Robert Finn and why is he troubled?

He’s actually “Bishop” Robert Finn, the Bishop for the Diocese of Kansas City-St. Joseph and he is troubled not so much by President Obama’s controversial commencement address at Notre Dame as he’s troubled by one word, in particular, uttered by President Obama during that address.

The word is “irreconcilable.”

President Obama declared he and the Church have “irreconcilable” differences on the matter of abortion.  To Bishop Finn’s point, these words were an admission by the President that he has shut the door on any dialogue.

“As a country we want to see an end to racial prejudice.  We want a more secure peace in the world.  We want sound economic justice for people.  So we can’t give up on working with the administration, ” said Bishop Finn.

Finn sees a genuine role for the Church to work with the Obama administration — which protects abortion — by addressing “many associated elements that have to do with taking care of women in distress, offering alternatives to abortion.”  He added, “We have to work together, discuss and study how best we can provide for the needs of women and families.  How can we reduce the number of abortions?  These are elements for dialogue.”

But can a dialogue even take place given the President’s declaration of “irreconcilable differences?”  Is this because he knows deep in his heart abortion is wrong and he is the one fearful to negotiate?

A frequent — and often justified — criticism leveled at Obama’s predecessor was the prideful and stubborn ways of President George W. Bush which kept him from seeing the larger picture when it came to the war in Iraq and, to some extent, the war in Afghanistan.  The criticism by Obama and the political Left was their assertion that there was little or no room for dialogue, much less dissent.

So what makes President Obama’s firm irreconcilable position any different from President Bush’s

And why is President Obama willing to give time to the likes of Mahmoud Ahmadinejad — a man who denies the Holocaust and seeks total destruction of Israel — but is completely unwilling to work out differences he has with the Catholic Church and her people? 

A majority of Catholic voters cast their ballots for President Obama in this last election.  But as issues are purportedly “irreconcilable,” will that majority of Catholic voters be there for the President during his re-election?

Source:  CNA (www.catholicnewsagency.com)

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19 Comments

Filed under In the News, Thoughts

19 responses to “No Need For Discussion….

  1. Matthew Wood

    The unfortunate thing here is the lack of recognition concerning the inherent flaws in any Patriarchal system. Any system which excludes members from having a full voice due to a condition that is beyond their control….like gender. I would pose my contention to you this way….how can a woman have true freedom, if in fact she does not have reproductive rights?
    Women have historically been repressed and been without an equal voice for long enough that a paternalistic affectation has colored their lives….they must have their freedoms secured on their behalf. So as much as we all don’t want abortions to take place, thats not up to the masses…especially who attend mass, to decide for them individually.
    So as to not speak directly to the issue of modern day Catholicism, like having grown men not marry, which is completely unnatural.,I’ll look at the Southern Baptists for an example of exclusions within the male dominated structure. Women cannot lead a “Modern Southern Baptist Church”…sexist at the very least, but completely understandable in a ridgidly structure, male dominant hieracrchy.
    It is unfortunate that this divide does exist, but in order to fulfill the desired end of living with “unalienable rights” many old constructs must be dismantled.
    Kinda like when I was a kid, age 12 and I ask my dad why the electric bill wasn’t paid… he might have been justifies in saying it was nothing for me to be concened with, but if we couldn’t afford things at that time and my mom decided it would be unjust to bring another child into an already percarious situation…she definately would have the right to, with equal footing say…this is not just up to the “man of the family, but up to the mature decision makers with the most at stake”.
    Matthew Wood

    • Jason Christensen

      Matthew —

      You make an eloquent argument for your case, however, I respectfully disagree with some of your points to which I’d like to respond. Additionally, I do take exception to your assertion that “especially those who attend mass” imposing their values upon women. It’s an implied singling out of one particular faith which is often the chosen target of criticism when it comes to Christianity in general.

      First, you question how women can have “true freedom” without “reproductive rights?” I would offer that the state (not particulary religion) is already telling women what they can and cannot do with their bodies: They cannot pollute them with drugs (e.g. meth, heroin, etc.) nor can they sell their bodies for sex (with the exclusion of certain areas in Nevada).

      I have a difficulty with the term “reproductive rights.” To me the term is simply a euphamism for political purposes that shrouds it for what it really is: The taking of an innocent human life. Is the term “reporductive rights” really any different when the Pentagon uses the terminology “Collateral Damage?” Both terms gloss over the end result: killing of an innocent.

      In defense of the traditions of my Church (Roman Catholicism) I disagree with your notion that grown men not marrying as “unnatural.” For some, celibacy is a gift. (Full disclosure: I was not given that gift.) A Catholic priest is to be a holy servant of God. St. Paul speaks to the issue of marriage and celibacy when he explains the difficulty of man serving both God and his wife. Celibacy for priests is a single-minded love focused on God and serving his flock. Why is the divorce rate among Protestant pastors higher than the national average? It’s mostly due to the pastor dedicated more time and energy than is what should be given to his/her spouse.

      Your point with regard to the Southern Baptists is well taken. It frustrates me greatly when Christians manipulate scripture. The best example is St. Paul’s passage in his letter to the Epehsians (5:21-24) that calls for wives to be subordinate to their husbands while conveniently leaving out the passage that calls husbands to love their wives as Christ loved the Church and as they love themselves (5:25_30).

      You are correct: It is unfortunate that this divide exists. Men have historically failed to recognize the gifts that women bring to our societies and, in Christian terms, to the Body of Christ. In many ways this still exists today; however, I cannot subscribe that abortion — the taking of innocent life — is the means by which we meet a just end.

      Thank you for your comments, Matthew.

      –JDC

      • Athena

        Jason,

        I would like to challenge your view of reproductive rights. The difference between the restriction on reproductive rights on women and the restriction on drug use or prostitution is that the reproductive rights constrain women – not men. Men are also not allowed to sell their bodies for sex or to use illicit drugs. Matthew is right in recognizing that the restriction of women’s reproductive rights is part of the Patriarchal historical view of women of society. Restrictions of reproductive rights are designed to constrain women, not men.
        I have difficulty with your decision not to recognize the inconsistencies our culture has in viewing the sexual and reproductive rights of men and women. For example, many health care providers will allow men access to pills such as Viagra, however, will not allow women access to birth control pills. Reproductive rights are inclusive of many things, from accurate information regarding the efficacy of contraception to family planning to abortion. It is not a euphemism for anything. Reproductive rights are not about just a singular issue – they include many interconnected issues. Counterproductively, many people who advocate for a “Pro-Life” position fail to recognize the supports that lie within reproductive rights, such as birth control and comprehensive sex education, that would support women and give them a greater opportunity to avoid the terrible choice that confronts them after an unplanned pregnancy.
        I had a woman in my office just four days ago. She is staying in a halfway house and found out that morning that she is pregnant. She has been sober from crack and alcohol for approximately 30 days. She stated she was very uncertain as to the father, as she had been prostituting herself to support her drug habit before she became sober. She told me she did not believe in abortion, but that she did not think she was ready to have a child. She has a diagnosis of bipolar disorder and has relapsed on drugs and alcohol several times, although she is still just 22 years of age. She was very concerned that she would relapse under the strain of this news. As my client told me she was close to self-injury and was actively considering suicide as an alternative to being pregnant, I did my best to calm her and to assure her that her higher power would not only support her through this, but that she would be given the strength to make the best decision for her. This brave young woman is just one representative of the difficult realities that women must face. I pray that she will make the best decision for her, and that she receives support for her decision no matter what the result may be. This is not my decision, nor any other person’s decision to make. She must rely on her higher power and her own capabilities. We can all pray for her, but we can not and must not decide for her.

        This quote is much more concise than I could hope to achieve:
        “Every 36 seconds in America a women lays her body down, forced to choose abortion out of a lack of practical resources and emotional support. Abortion is a reflection that society has failed women.” – Patricia Heaton

        Until we start to work on the “irreconcilables” – until we start to have a dialogue that may not reconcile but may move us closer together on the spectrum – then we will continue to perpetuate our failures. I believe this is the message President Obama sent, not one of irreconcilable differences.

      • Jason Christensen

        Athena —

        I would simply offer that you and I see this matter through different prisms. You embrace the notion that this is strictly patriarchal. Perhaps that may be some of the negative motivations towards such restrictions. I, however, subscribe to the fact that abortion is the taking on an innocent life. For me personally, I don’t view restrictions against abortion as a weapon to oppress women; it’s a means to protect the unborn.

        I have no disagreement with your comments about viagra. Of all the community health problems (diabetes, heart disease, etc.) it baffles me all the attention healh insurance providers and pharmaceutical companies spend on E.D.drugs. Besides, I’m tired of those silly commercials with the bathtubs in obsure places that are virtually impossible for a man to discreetly set up for he and his wife. How do they get them up into the mountains for that great view?!?

        Your anectdote is tragic, and unfortunately, all too often true. I believe it is also a challenge that needs to be issued to all who purport to be “pro-life” because simply being against abortion does not qualify one to be “pro-life.” That woman does need and deserve all the support she can be given.

        The quote you reference from Patricia Heaton. I do not know if this was made before or after Ms. Heaton became an advocate for abortion alternatives. She is a charter member of “Feminists for Life.” Regardless of when she made the quote, it is apropos: Abortion is a reflection that society has failed women. It shows the lack of a support system that must be given to an expectant woman who seeks help. It points to what Ive stated in previous posts: We are a disposable society. Shame on us a society for letting women down. It’s certainly not “pro-life.”

        Thanks again, Athena, for your remarks.

      • Athena

        Jason,

        Thank you for your response. I don’t agree that I see this within just one singular view – one of patriarchy or other. In contrast, I believe I see this issue through the eyes of many – the many women, men, and families with whom I work and live. The reality of their varied experiences place me in a position in which I must do my best to view the issue not through my own life and my own personal moral views, but through their own. It is because I try to see so many sides of this issue that I choose to challenge your singular view. I don’t believe that you and I are very distant in the ways in which we value human life. The difference lies in the political ways in which we choose to confront the issue. Your values, rooted in the Catholic Church, tell you that abortion is the murder of an innocent. My values, also rooted in Christian values, recognize the dignity and the worth of a person through my respect for their values and choices. Through this respect for others, I choose to view this issue in another light.

        I choose to educate and support women and men as they learn about and explore their sexuality. As a result of some people’s actions (or as the result of sexual victimization), some may find themselves in situations when difficult choices arise as a result. I use my God-given gifts to support them in whatever way is needed. That is my calling. My calling is not to make decisions for them.

        The difference between most supporters of Choice and those who advocate against Choice is not a failure to recognize the value of life. The difference is that persons who are pro-choice do not feel it is their role to make that most difficult decision for other people. The difference is that regardless of our own value system, we recognize a woman’s right to have her own value system, to make her own decisions based on her own values, and to respect that it may be the best choice for her, her family, and her future.

  2. Wendy D.

    Jason, my friend, you misunderstood the meaning and the context of the word “irreconcilable.” I will avoid engaging you in a debate about whether abortion is right or wrong. I will howver say what is not negotiable (from the perspective to the Democratic partY) is that a woman has the right to choose. This means that a woman has a right to choose abortion. That part is not negotiable and is therefore an irreconciable difference.

    For some, they see the issue as anti-abortion. Others see the same issue as pro-choice. It’s a no win arguement. That is why the issue is irreconcilable. People cannot agree fundamentally on the definition of what “it is.” One starts with anti, one starts with pro. How can you ever reconcile that disparity? There is little room for “negotiation” when the argument is an emotional one, not a logical one. Aren’t most questions of morality like that? Be it gay marriage, capital punishment, abortion? They all are moral issues that polarize people because of our core beliefs and sense of individual moraility.

    That’s what President Obama meant.

    Oh, and I take issue with the statement that all he had to do was “show up.” That’s a bit myopic, don’t you think? Come on….you know better.

    • Jason Christensen

      Wendy —

      You are correct in that there are two very different issues seen by each side: One sees it as an issue of “Life” while the other sees it as an issue of “Choice.” So long as the two sides are operating on different levels, I do not know how that “disparity” as you describe will be reconciled.

      I also agree with you that the “right to choose” is a non-negotiable in the Democratic Party. Just ask Congressman Bart Stupak (D-MI), or had you been able to, the late Governor Bob Casey who was ostrasized from the party and not allowed to address his own party’s convention due to their pro-life stances.

      Until Vice President Cheney became the self-appointed titular head of the Republican Party that now supposedly does not claim General Colin Powell, the GOP at least accepted people of differing views. Reagan got it knowing one cannot win, much less lead, by strictly courting the base. That’s why the term Reagan-Democrat came about and why he won 49 states in his re-election.

      I don’t know if that’s exactly what the President meant; however, I agree w/Fr.Nicholas’s post (see below) a better choice of words should have been used. If he meant, as you suggest, “differences” that no longer implies an “absolute” and that there is room for future dialogue.

      With respect to my comment about “showing up” that was meant as a criticism of the Bush foreign policy. My point was this: All it had to be was “anybody but Bush” and the President — even McCain in my opinion — would have fared better.

      Thank you for your comments, Wendy.

      –JDC

      • Athena

        So, until very recently, you claim that the GOP has been accepting of people of differing views? I’ll give you that the GOP has accepted the votes of people with different backgrounds – just not the responsibility of then representing people with needs different than rich, white-collar males.
        The small-mindedness of the GOP in the past 20 years is what has depleted the party to its current state. This is not a recent development. It may have taken a while, but people have realized that the Reaganomics and extreme conservative social policies only serve those who already have money and power, and America has grown tired of the past.
        If you continue to play semantics and ignore the overlying message, then you will continue to live in the divisive, black and white politics of the past – and you will not “live differently.”

      • Jason Christensen

        Athena —

        Your assertion about the GOP is well taken. At the same time, it’s not much of a stretch to equate it with the Democratic Party. Democrats have gladly accepted the support of African Americans and Latinos while at the same time supporting policies and practices that serve contrary to their interests. Consider Davis-Bacon prevailing wage laws that served to keep southern blacks from taking “white jobs” away from northerners. Recently, there’s been immigration reform — offered by former President George W. Bush and Senators Ted Kennedy and John McCain — was sacked thanks to flat-earthed/xenophobic Republicans and pro-union Democrats. And yet an overwhelming majority of Latinos supported the Democratic Party in the last election.

        Let’s not forget the loss suffered last week by environmentalists — a largely Democratic constituency — at the hands of the Obama Administration where the EPA “green-lighted” miners to continue with “mountaintop mining” in West Virginia to further the “Appalachian Apocolypse.”

        My point is this: Both parties are guilty of using constituencies for political purposes and oftentimes there’s a social injustice.

        Don’t allow your political blinders to prevent you from seeing the shortcomings within your own party. Both parties have them. Our objective should be to pursue a more just society…and a more informed electorate.

        As a one-time Republican, I do disagree with your notion the GOP’s depleted state has been 20 years in the making. The last 3 and a half years of the Bush Administration was the impetus for the GOP downfall. In many ways, the failed response to Katrina and indifferent throwing of federal dollars to “make problems go away” is what has destroyed the present day GOP. They’re not the only reasons, but have a great deal to do with it.

        Parties change, Athena. If you examine the party platforms from 1960, the GOP had a far more progressive stance on civil rights than did the Democrats. Nixon more progressive on race than Kennedy? The one-time “Party of Lincoln” has fallen far from that title. Then again, JFK’s position on capital gains tax elimination and cold-war defense policies wouldn’t get him very far in a Democratic primary…even in his home state of Massachusets.

      • Athena

        Well, I do appreciate the history lesson. I didn’t realize that I unwittingly signed the last post “Democratic Party Lover and Life-Long Member!” Was it the “McClellan 1864” lapel pin that gave it away? Yes, I did realize that the Democratic Party of 1931 (Davis-Bacon) or the Democratic Party of 1960, for that matter, did not have the strongest background on supporting minorities. Do you really think that minorities were voting for the Dems when that legislation was passed? Oh wait, that’s right – they couldn’t vote, Jim Crow was still in charge. However, I do find it reassuring that you felt the need to go back to the Civil Rights movement to make your point about progressive values in the Republican Party. I’m surprised you didn’t bring up Teddy Roosevelt!

        I was in DC and sat in on a variety of hearings on Immigration that same week that the Bush-Kennedy-McCain legislation was introduced. As I sat in on one memorable hearing, I remember the ranting and raving in the room as people “railed” against immigration. Please believe me when I say that it wasn’t the Labor leaders leading the charge. No, instead it was the xenophobes who discussed how the immigrants were sucking away all of our money. I challenge your assertion that it was the labor movement’s opposition that brought down that act. I’m not trying to negate the fact that there were Democratic leaders who were opposed to that legislation. In fact, many of them opposed it because it was seen as unworkable and did not go far enough to fix our current immigration problems. That last part might have contributed to why Latinos supported the Democratic candidates in the last election.

        Your information about the Appalachia decision is acknowledged but I question your point. Because Obama decided against the environmentalists’ position, he has ignored his constituency? President Obama has been far from perfect, but he made more progress in passing legislation for his constituents in the first month than many presidents do in their first term. I do not understand why you continue to discuss his shortcomings or parse his words instead of embrace the progress he has made in these first few months. He is not perfect, but he is a vast improvement. From reading this blog post, I would almost think he was as bad at recognizing the other side of an issue as Bush was. (Almost.)

        I thank you for reminding me to take off my political blinders. I don’t quite understand how discussing positions within the Democratic Party therefore makes me unable to disagree with any party positions. If you’d like a numbered list of my own personal gripes with the Democratic Party, I’ll need a least a few hours. We can start with gay marriage and Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell – just for fun.

        The Republican Party became drunk on power in the 90s and has been building themselves up in preparation for implosion ever since Gingrich became Speaker. By sticking their nose in the private lives of others while telling the government they have no authority to meddle in business, by making sure the rich become richer and the poor become more numerous, the right-wing has been setting themselves up for failure for quite some time. The last 3 ½ years didn’t create this problem – Bush’s legacy became the implosion that broke the proverbial camel’s back – or maybe just the American economy.

        And yes, you can tell me that Clinton’s economic positions didn’t help. I agree. However, was he valuing labor and the middle class? Or was he going along with a powerful conservative Congress that supported NAFTA and CAFTA and getting in bed with the Chinese? And all the while we’re finding ways to pay for the unsustainable Reagan tax cuts for the wealthy.
        So…what were we talking about? Somehow we were discussing the meaning of the word “irreconcilable” and decided to have a history lesson on the Democratic Party.

        Jason, I think your College Republican side is showing…

  3. Dennis Valentine

    No pun intended, but NO issue in today’s modern society is black or white. Everything is some varying shade of grey. The best solution to most of America’s issues falls somewhere in the middle. Unfortunately, the majority of society’s leaders, religious and political, are left or right extremists.

    When it comes to religion, I was raised Roman Catholic, and as I matured, I recognized that the Vatican’s strict rules are unrealistic for the complex world we live in. My biggest objections are the Catholic stance on abortion and homosexuality. I wont even get into the abortion issue because it could take all night. The official Catholic view of homosexuality is “It is not a normal condition, the acts being against nature are objectively wrong.” Their stance is absurd. The Catholic church’s decision to alienate a segment of society that is largely made up of honest, hard-working, decent people, may forever put me at odds with the church.

    When it comes to politics, I have lived with blinders on with most of my life. Then again, growing up in Chicago, it was probably for the best the way politics are run back home. But in the past few years, my eyes have opened up. My wife, Julia Piscitelli, has been working on Capitol Hill for 15 years, and is a regular contributor on Fox News. She’s one of their token Democrats. I not only watch all of her appearances, I actually help her prepare from time to time. And as I watch more and more political commentary, I realized that the Democrats are led largely by extreme leftists, and the Republicans are led by the ultra-conservatives on the right. And this makes ABSOLUTELY no sense at all. Having spent 14 years in law enforcement, I consider myself as an expert in the area of sociology. And I am supremely confident that the vast majority of the 300 million people in America fall somewhere in the middle. Very few are extreme right wing conservatives, and very few are extreme left wing liberals. Most people lean one way or another. But most people who identify as democrats will occasionally agree with some republican ideas….and vice versa. Yet if you follow our party leaders, their respective party is always correct, and the other party is always wrong. How is this government ‘of the people, by the people, and for the people’. Most people clamor for ideals that make good common sense. Unfortunately, we dont get that very often.

    To get back on point, what makes President Obama’s firm irreconcilable position any different from President Bush’s? The irreconcilable difference is on the church’s side, not the President’s. Most educated and informed Catholics recognize this. Will the majority of Catholic voters be there for Obama in three years? The answer does NOT hinge on his stance on Abortion. It may be a small ingredient, but if Obama’s overall body of work is good three years from now, Catholic American’s will be behind him. If the economy gets worse, if no progress is made in Iraq & Afghanistan, and no significant progress is made on the other problems facing our country, he will lose the Catholic vote…..regardless of his views on abortion.

  4. Athena

    Do you really believe that Obama meant irreconcilable in that he will not work to reduce the number of abortions – or do you believe that he will not work with those who chose to express themselves at ND by pushing baby carriages filled with stage blood?

    I feel like you (and Bishop Finn) just reduced his speech to a single word – therefore ignoring all of the positive aspects (and intent) of his message. Do you believe that Obama’s message was that he and the church have an irreconcilable difference of position, or that despite that difference, he and others are still willing to work toward a solution that moves toward pleasing both sides of the issue?

  5. Fr. Nicholas

    It’s a good question, Athena; but, if I used that language or phrase within the context of a marriage relationship, people would certainly conclude that a divorce was in the not-too-distant future. I guess I have to agree with Jason and say that such language is prohibitive of any future dialogue… Perhaps the President should have used another phrase or explained the use of it better–translating it well into the philosophic laymen’s understanding.

    • Athena

      Father,
      If a married couple came to you and used that one word when discussing their relationship, irreconcilable, would you continue to work with the couple? Would you instead decide that no matter the overall message or tone of the entire conversation, that word had rendered you unable to continue to help the couple? Just because a strong word is used does not mean that either side is finished trying. In fact, I believe that word reflects an honest assessment of where many people involved in this debate feel they are currently – and yet, neither side seems ready to stop debating. Obama has challenged us to take this debate and reframe it into constructive dialogue and action – not to give up trying to find an answer.

      • Fr. Nicholas

        Thanks for responding, Athena. I understand what you’re saying and so let me just cut to the chase and say that I believe Obama wants to make clear that, although he would like to see less abortions, the right of the woman to choose is a non negotiable. And, thus, irreconcilable… Wouldn’t you agree? But, since it is against US law to take human life–and I believe abortion ends viable, human life (I think you might not agree)–the idea of a person (whether male or female) being given the right to choose is an invincible road block for me. And, not just theologically, but legally and biologically. Therefore, when the President declares the right of a woman to choose as fundamentally more important as a legal concept than the “right” to life of the unborn child–he declares irreconcilable differences; he is admitting that he will not be persuaded; he’s made up his mind: less abortions (certainly), but (always) the woman’s right to choose. Period. End of discussion. As a lawyer, the President should evaluate the legal consequences of such a “closed” argument: if we give a woman the right to end her unwanted pregnancy we have to give the child (when grown) the right to end the life of her unwanted aging parent–see, it’s about vulnerability. The law should always side with the weak when it comes to protection. This is a legal argument that should appeal to the President. No?

  6. Jim

    “I would pose my contention to you this way….how can a woman have true freedom, if in fact she does not have reproductive rights?”

    I find the constant references to a “woman’s right to choose” pretty offensive. The living, growing child in the womb doesn’t have a right to choose his or her own destiny. The flaw in thinking that the woman has control over reproductive issues to include abortion is that it doesn’t address other human beings in the equation.

    A strong tenet of liberty is the freedom from someone else trampling on your rights. The voiceless child has no rights in abortion. How do you reconcile that?

  7. Matthew Wood

    A speculative assessment of what constitutes life doesn’t overshadow the tangible need to lend exceptional protection to a womens right to control what happens to her body. we have to trust her intent and acknowledge the paternalistic effects of the Patriarchal system that has made this the only real viable option at this point in our history.

  8. Jim

    Matthew, that is specious reaasoning (and poorly constructed, considering your grammar). Do women and men not have a right to determine what happens to their bosies during the act of procreation? The intent of procreation is to create another human being. Don’t believe me? Check the dictionary version.

    That aside, claiming this is a paternalistic definition is a red herring. This involves men and women alike, including the result of procreation.

    If the intent of fornication is not procreation, does it exist?

  9. Bill

    Fr. Nicholas… right on. Obama is once again couching the discussion as “let’s dialogue” when what he really means is “Cathoics (or the opposition) need to do all the compromising.” It’s a joke that, as the contraceptive mentality becomes more ingrained generation after generation, rationales like Obama’s become sweet-sounding and make sense. That so many Catholics fall for this now is sad. Obama could care less about Catholicism unless it meant decisive votes.

    As for “reproductive rights” and attaching the church’s teaching on this, they do allow for married couples to choose when to reproduce… it’s called abstinence. But in our porn-influenced society, abstinence is vilified and deemed unrealistic. But an Obama Nation is all about having sex with whoever, whenever, wherever and keep the abortion option open just in case… That, supposedly, is considered respectful as long as both people are consenting. And the goal is to keep it all in some vague realm of “choice” without focusing on the consequences of decisions. It’s such garbage. But then again, I’m a male and a Catholic, so I’ll be the one deemed judgmental and narrow-minded.

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