Which Comes First, the Church or the Party?

Wednesday, September 2, 2009 \AM\.\Wed\.

Well, I’ve read and talked more than I ever cared to about Ted Kennedy recently, may he rest in peace. And Darwin has already ably responded to this defense of the late Senator Kennedy from Michael Sean Winters. But something about Mr. Winters response has been ringing in my ears, and I think it’s because it summarizes in a few sentences what I perceive to be the tragedy of Catholic Democrats in the U.S.: they could have taken a stand for unborn life but were unwilling. As a result, faithful Catholics have either been driven into the Republican Party, become independents, or become disconcertingly comfortable with the status quo on abortion. Currently I think both the first and last options are incompatible with Catholic thought – at least without substantial departure from party orthodoxies. Where familiarity (with both parties) should have breed contempt, it has instead yielded unconscionable familiarity and acceptance. And Mr. Winters’ post provides a clear illustration of this reality:

To dismiss his [Senator Kennedy’s] career because of his stance on abortion is to be ignorant of the complicated way the issue of abortion manifested itself in the early 1970s: I think Kennedy got it wrong but I do not find it difficult to understand why and how he got it wrong.

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Jesuitical 2

Monday, May 11, 2009 \PM\.\Mon\.

John P. Lanagan

In the National Catholic Reporter, Father John P. Lanagan, SJ, of Georgetown takes to task those bishops and cardinals in our country who view abortion as the pre-eminent moral issue of our time and who have the audacity to speak out against the Obama administration because of it.  Father Z shows him the errors of his way.

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What’s Empathy Got To Do With It?

Friday, May 8, 2009 \PM\.\Fri\.

Doug Kmiec has a rather bizarre article up at America entitled The Case For Empathy: Why a Much-Maligned Value Is a Crucial Qualification for the Supreme Court. If the article is any indication, I suppose we should be thankful Obama didn’t make any off-hand remarks suggesting ‘creativity’ or ‘imagination’ were traits he would look for in a potential Supreme Court justice, if only because it might have lead to more essays like this one. After some preliminary gushing about, you guessed it, empathy, Kmiec explains what an empathetic justice would accomplish:

To do this, it is possible that [Obama] will mine for legal talent in unusual places, but it is more likely he will attempt to find a nominee with appellate court experience whose skill set also shows the capability of challenging methods of interpretation that otherwise wouldn’t give empathy the time of day. If Obama succeeds even with this more limited challenge,he will have exploded the notion  that swapping out a Souter for a new, most likely younger and intellectually energetic, justice is without effect.

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Jesuitical

Wednesday, May 6, 2009 \PM\.\Wed\.

thomas-reese

As part of his decades long struggle to assist pro-abort politicians, Father Thomas Reese, SJ, had a piece in the Washington Post attacking the bishops and cardinals who have spoken out against Obama Day on May 17, 2009.  The article is fisked to pieces in the Father Z style here.

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Catholic Democrats Come to the Defense of Notre Dame

Friday, April 17, 2009 \PM\.\Fri\.

catholic-democrats

Catholic Democrats come to the defense of their leader in regard to Georgetown and Notre Dame and run into a buzzsaw named Father Z here.

Update:  Good analysis of why Catholic Democrats and other Obama-philes are so concerned about the fallout from Notre Dame is given here by the always readable Damian Thompson across the pond at his blog Holy Smoke.


“diminishes the reputation of Notre Dame and makes one wonder what its mission truly is.”

Monday, April 13, 2009 \AM\.\Mon\.

bishop-samuel-j-aquila

Bishop Samuel J. Aquila of the Diocese of Fargo, North Dakota,  takes Jenkins to task for the homage to Obama to Obama scheduled at Notre Dame on May 17, 2009 and also addresses the sophistical defense mounted by Jenkins of his decision:

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Stem Cells and Sophistry

Monday, March 16, 2009 \PM\.\Mon\.

p-j-orourke

P.J. O’Rourke is on fire today at the Weekly Standard, taking the President to task for the reasons he gave for allowing federal funds for embryonic stem cell research.

Update: Both Ed Morrissey at Hot Air and the Anchoress have good takes on P.J. O’Rourke’s column.