13 thoughts

  1. “If the spate of anti-Obama(care) suits really issues from a concern with moral integrity, then shouldn’t Catholic institutions care more for the sins they commit directly and willfully then for the sins they enable indirectly and reluctantly?”
    I am absolutely sure the are both equally important. Then again, we always focus on one sin rather than the other one… we go step by step or little by little.

    I would not generalize as “Catholic institutions”, even though I do realize the relevance on the subject. Every institution commits sins (as humans do), but the sin changes from one person/institution to another, irrespective of their religion.
    Any type of freedom is about doing and not doing things. Freedom is part of the capacity to do good things and bad things. We are free to lie (even God grants us this freedom) even if we ought to tell the truth. – Now that I think about it, It is actually interesting that God provides us with more freedom than other humans do: He grants us freedom even it is means killing and destroying other people/the world/Him.

  2. Thank you Katie for an excellent post which gets to the heart of the gospel message. Scripture is insistent on the rights of workers to just wages and on the dignity of the human person, but silent on contraception.

    Catholic schools ought to be living the gospel by encouraging union membership and by paying the Living Wage.

    It is a sad indictment on Catholic failings that most of our U.S. Catholic schools were once also racially segregated.

    All the posturing around contraception smacks of special pleading and is a distraction from the real issues. Pope Francis has framed a much better set of priorities for the Church.

    God bless

    1. Most Catholic schools were NOT racially segregated, and the ones that were — in the Deep South — were so segregated at the insistence of and benefit for both whites and blacks. You couldn’t have integrated Catholic schools where the rest of society was segregated. The threat to black lives would have been tremendous.

      Of course, various Archbishops later DID desegregate Catholic shools (in the 1950’s and 1960’s) when the envirnoment was more open. These bishops would threaten recalcitrants with excommunication, barring them from attending Church services including weddings/funerals of family and friends, and burial in Catholic cemeteries. The New York Times endorsed these penalties for Catholics who obstructed desgregation efforts.

      I wonder if so-called Catholic liberals and The Times will support similar measures for Catholics working in league with abortionists and the abortion lobby ?

      1. LCin NJ, have you heard of the Second Amendment? If you want government forcing birth, you’re not a conservative. You’re a big government liberal, who wants more intrusive government. If you’re not supporting the “abortion lobby,” you’re supporting a homicide investigation for every miscarriage. Government has to bring in a medical examiner to determine cause of death. There has to be a burial. There’s no statute of limitation on murder. Anyone, at anytime, can later claim that a woman who had a miscarriage engaged in behavior which led to the death of her unborn child. Authorities have to investigate.

  3. I love it! This is one of the things I’m talking about when I say I “don’t like” rights language. I think it’s limits our scope and concept of what’s important. Therefore the emphasis on rights and “freedom from” encourages people/institutions to think about themselves in individualistic ways. Well, that and this kind of moral inertia.

  4. Vigorous and well argued.

    OT, an economist I esteem very greatly, Warren Mosler, @wbmosler argues cogently that “As a matter of economics and public purpose it is counter productive for health care to be a marginal cost of production.”

    A business’ success or failure should be based on their core competencies, not on the health (or lack of a few workers).

    IMHO, Mosler’s ideas on health care are worth a look.


  5. Gah, this is awesome.
    Though I do feel there are some strong points made by those concerned for religious freedom, the discourse itself is thoroughly secular. As you said (and other commenters noted) the assertion that a religious institution should be exempt based on a religious paradigm beckons an altogether more important conversation: if an institution is “Christian,” what does it mean to engage in the world? What’s missing from the answer, if one is ever given, is exactly what you pointed out: total inconsistency.

  6. Hard to believe someone this ignorant can be a theology professor. Then again, nobody said theologians actually do anything of substance except offer opinions on things they are not qualified to talk about.

    1. You’re right: “nobody” in human history has ever said that theologians do anything of substance.

      I guess that’s why the church decided not to recognize Thomas Aquinas as a saint or declare him a doctor of the Church. They were like: “should we make this dude a doctor of the church?” And then someone was like: “He a theologian and nobody thinks they actually do anything of substance so we better not.” And so the first guy was like “you’re right, dude, good call.”

      I guess that’s also why at the Second Vatican Council they were like: “should we change church teaching about religious freedom partially in response to the arguments made by theologians like John Courtney Murray?” and the bishops were like: “dude, he’s a THEOLOGIAN! He’s has no clue what he’s talking about.” And then they were like: “Let’s continue insisting that there is no right to religious freedom.”

    2. LCinNJ, learn the difference between a trillion and a billion.

      “5 U.S. Banks Each Have More Than 40 Trillion Dollars In Exposure To Derivatives.”

      To put $200 trillion in perspective, annual U.S. GDP is around $17 trillion. Social Security’s Trust fund is around $2.3 trillion. We blew at least $6 trillion in the Middle East occupations.

      Per the “zerohedge” link above, Wall Street and elites are using the FDIC to “socialize” their derivative risk onto the taxpayers. Almost none of the $200 trillion “trickles down,” into the real economy. It’s mostly on interest rate swaps and credit derivative swaps, nothing goes into the real economy that makes stuff or into new technologies.

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