Monday, November 28, 2005

Catholic League Response

I really hope no one takes this post the wrong way. I know that there are many Catholics out there that find the following quoted individual to be abhorrent, and not a fine example of Catholicism in practice, however, I feel I must bring this up. And please remember that I am being pity and sarcastic and downright mean for very good reason. The emperor has no clothes, and you may not like the way I tell him.

Thank you for reading,

-The Management

I was once asked about the folks who have told me that I am not a Catholic nor a Christian because I disagree with their bufoonery. A plethora of this divisive, culture war drivel can be found here.

Like I said: No more. If we have to hear about their interpretations of everything, they're gonna get mine right back at them. "We must all fear evil men, but there is a greater evil that we must fear even more: and that is the indifference of good men." - Boondock Saints.

Silence this.

Here's "Catholic League" President William Donahue talking with CNN's Anderson Cooper about how a culture of life is only acceptable as long as it exists within a Catholic rules structure.

I have added bold for emphasis and inserted my pity comments for the sake of debate.

COOPER: There are Catholics, of course, who see the case much differently, including William Donohue, president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights. He is standing by in New York.

Mr. Donohue, thanks for being with us.

Do Catholic schools fire men who have premarital sex?

WILLIAM DONOHUE, PRESIDENT, CATHOLIC LEAGUE: I don't know of any that do, but I certainly don't know too many that would fire a women in this particular case. But the bottom line is they have every right to.

Just because you have the right to do something does not make it the right thing to do, genius. Try burning an American flag in front of a VFW hall and tell me how that works out for you.

And, you know, I'm not buying the line that if the school knew that a man had impregnated a woman other than their wife, that they would have done nothing. That is a supposition which I think is very much a rebuttal presumption.

And all the men in the room laughed heartily.

COOPER: But, I mean, if this teacher had chosen to terminate her pregnancy and didn't tell anybody about it, she would have a job. What is the message this firing sends? I mean, do you have any concerns about what message it sends?

DONOHUE: If she had mugged somebody in the alley, and nobody knew about it, and killed a person, she would still have her job, too. What is the point here?

Two scoops of rasins, anyone? If a tree falls in the forest? One hand clapping? Apples? Oranges? I know the Catholic League doesn't like to admit it, but pregnancy termination remains legal in the United States of America. Mugging and murder are, to my knowledge, not. Don't let yourself be fooled by this sort of 'logic.'

The point is that she is a moral agent. She's standing there in the classroom in front of students whom she took a voluntarily contract to abide by the moral standards of the Catholic Church. She's a walking example of someone who violates those standards, standards which she voluntarily accepted.

She is bringing a pregnancy to full term, living a Catholic call to life that has echoed throughout the world since 1973. Yet, by choosing life, she is a "walking example of someone who violates [the moral] standards [of the Catholic Church]." Do all Catholic employees have to take daily polygraphs to avoid bearing false witness?

Look, if she was working in a diocese office, Anderson, let's say she's working with Catholic Charities or working for -- in the immigration office, and they fired her for this condition. I think then that could be problematic.

But if you're a teacher and you're a role model, particularly with the little kids, how are you supposed to explain to the parents, by the way, who might say, well, let's see now, what's the alternative? Let's say if the school did nothing. How do you explain as the principal to those parents who are paying their money expecting that a teacher is going to teach religion and abide by it that you're going to do nothing about it? You're going to have a laissez-faire attitude.

Those are brave words for the Catholic after the reign of Cardinal Law and the ferrying of unsavory characters from one location to the next. Glad to know that now we've learned our lesson and we can come down hard on individuals who are role models to the little kids who are teaching religion. Glad to know that now we're giving up on our laissez-faire attitudes, especially concerning those very dangerous women who have bought into our most positive social platform - that's really where we need to be more stringent with our hiring practices.

I think that principal would be in real trouble.

Yeah, he might face a little public ridicule.

COOPER: So, this woman who's pregnant now has no health benefits, no salary. You know, there are some who would argue that this maybe goes against church tenets about forgiveness and acceptance.

DONOHUE: Well, as a matter of fact, that's not true. I called the diocese of Brooklyn today to find out whether she was just thrown out on the street or was she given benefits. She was given benefits to the end of the year. She declines to have them.

Look, nature and nature's god make it such that the condition is woman get pregnant and men impregnate them. The problem is with radical feminists and people in the ACLU who don't like it.

Now, I think that feminists and the ACLU have their own battery of issues, but I'm not really seeing it here. Maybe Mr. Donahue will enlighten me as to how the feminists and the ACLU actually defending a choice of a woman to have a baby is incompatable with the Catholic belief structure.

Ready for it?

It reminds me of (INAUDIBLE) out of 1970 who talked about the fact that pregnancy was barbaric. That's really the problem here. It's anthropological and it's theological.

Oh, that's why the feminists and the ACLU (it is the NY Civil Liberties Unition, factually speaking) are defending a woman's right to have a baby. Because they hate pregnant women. Are you stunned by the logic yet?

Wait, there's more.

And beyond that, are we going to have the state police the Catholic institutions?

Well, the state polices Michael Jackson's institutions as well...

Are we going to have to tell them what the rabbis do in the yeshiva? This is a violation of church and state. It smacks of the worst kind of church and state violation with you have the state trying to sit there in judgment of the strictures of the Catholic Church about a contract which a woman voluntarily undertook.

You tell me what to do in my science classes, jack. How's that shoe feel?

I hope all y'alls out there worried about 'rules and regulations' really heard that one. Religion in not beholden to the Law. Police vs Church is a violation of Church and State.

COOPER: Well, I mean, the state -- I mean, if the church has broken a law, people are held to standards. I mean, people have to follow the law, as we've seen with the sex scandals in the Catholic Church.



COOPER: But -- but are you saying that she -- this woman is a radical feminist and that's really what's at the heart of this case?

DONOHUE: No. What I'm saying is she's another prototypical victim.

I'm a little sick and tired of all these people who get involved in a voluntarily, consensual situation such as a contract, they violate it. And what do they do? They don't expect that the Catholic Church is supposed to -- they expect the Catholic Church is supposed to change.

No, fool, I expect the Catholic Church to rise up and live out the character of its creed. You turn your back on this woman and all that Culture of Life stuff, all the good that is there with that moral compass, goes out the window. It proves that the only thing y'all really care about is sex, sex, sex, and the sanctity of life is just a tool in the arsenal. Well, some of us Catholics out here who have actually read some of the Book of Romans actually bought into that Culture of Life stuff to mean something higher than the way y'all are applying it.

I mean, why is it that it's incumbent upon the church to change a contract when she's the one who violated it? I don't know. If they violated her salary agreement, oh, boy, that would be different. But here, in this situation, she is the culprit.

Like I said, if this woman had been fired from a public school for choosing to have a baby, these faux 'right-to-life' organizations would be in the streets burning effigies of the principal. We'd get to hear all over again about how we need to put "God back in Schools" and how we need to respect a "Culture of Life."

Well, boys, here's your chance to show how "Culture of Life" you are, and prove "Culture of Death" folks like me are the misguided ones. You get to show how 'a la carte' and 'Cafeteria Catholic' folks like me are. There's the culture of life staring right back at you begging for justification...

Well I've said it before and I'll say it again. Put God back into Churches, cause it looks like the Philistines have taken up residence.

This ain't about contractual obligations, this is about higher obligations.

COOPER: William Donohue, appreciate your perspective. Thank you for being on the program.

DONOHUE: Thank you.


patsbrother said...

I expect this to be my last comment on this topic, as with each reply Patrick seems to get more and more like the raving rabid nonsensical pundit I always hoped he'd never be.

First, sex within and only within marriage is part of the Culture of Life. Abortion was not at issue here until a woman looking to gain sympathy for suffering the consequences of her own actions said, "I don’t understand how a religion that prides itself on forgiving and on valuing life could terminate me because I’m pregnant and choosing to have this baby." You bit and you ran with it. Congratulations. Otherwise, the message everyone would see was sex-outside-of-marriage bad, not damn-you-for-not-having-an-abortion.

As to Donahue's call for a separation of church and state in such matters, you so expertly misread what was clearly meant to involve noncriminal activity. Once again, congratulations on the misrepresenation of your opponent's clear position. I can't wait to see you on crossfire.

Sidenote: the Catholics in this story have no discernable tie to the sex-abuse scandal, save membership in the same, 60-million strong American religious denomination. Would you prefer your Church a) base all its future decisions from the Vatican down to the partish level on keeping up appearances? or b) throw up its hands on all other matters, close up shop, and open a fertility clinic? Because that's what you seem to think the Culture of Life is all about.

And finally, what has seemed most troubling throughout this entire discourse is the disgusting spectre of paternalism. Oh, this woman just didn't know no better; that's okay; you don't need to be responsible for your actions; you're not really an independent adult or anything.

To my knowledge the Church has grown out of that. But apparently not the really real liberals kicking it on the south Georgia coast.

petallic said...

"And finally, what has seemed most troubling throughout this entire discourse is the disgusting spectre of paternalism. Oh, this woman just didn't know no better; that's okay; you don't need to be responsible for your actions; you're not really an independent adult or anything."

Kevin, have I told you lately that I adore you?

Patrick Armstrong said...

I sound like the nonsensical pundit? Ok. I'll admit it, I've just been talking out my rear end this whole time just to try and make you look silly.

Boy, that didn't work, did it?

"Sex within and only within marriage is part of the Culture of Life."


That's a pretty narrow definition. Again, is the Catholic position that the "Culture of Life" has conditions? I was sure they were talking about all pregnancy terminations, all death penalties, all euthanasias, and all wars. But I guess I was just reading too much into all the stuff I've currently heard concerning the "Culture of Life."

I guess they were only talking about those things that affected married, Catholic folks.

Good to know.

"As to Donahue's call for seperation of church and state in such matters, you so expertly misread what was clearly meant to involve noncriminal activity."

I guess you haven't taken "Labor Laws" or "Anti-Discrimination Laws" in that fancy school of yern yet. We do have really real laws concerning those things for all organizations operating in the United States of America. And breaking those laws are considered, in many cases, to be criminal activity.

But I guess that's a misrepresentation on my part.

Concerning the scandals: the definition of discrimination is when you apply the rules differently to people based on color, sex etc. I remind you that the organization in charge of the school is the Diocese of Brooklyn, witch is part of the Archdioscese of New York, wich is or has been in trouble recently for not firing individuals who were committing felonious acts in the eyes of the laws of the United States of America.

But this is about moral rectitude in front of children, I forgot.

This woman committed an act that was, while not a good idea, not against the laws of the United States of America. She gets fired, and other individuals (mostly men) who did break laws of the United States of America get transferred?

And, to answer your question, No, the Church does not have to throw up its hands nor should it. But it should start doing the right thing when it comes to situations like these, and insert some common sense.

At least that's my humble opinion. You can disagree all day if you like.

Finally, the "spectre of paternalism" that "this woman just didn't know better" and "doesn't need to take responsibility for her actions?"


I guess you have a fundamental misunderstanding of how the Culture of Death and the Culture of Life work here, kiddo.

How "paternal" is it to back a woman when she makes her choice? She can go one way, or the other, and right now, you back her decision cause it ain't you that has to deal with the bilogical dangers of carrying a child to term.

Hell, I thought that's why the religious right hates Liberals.

And how much more "repsonsibility" can a pregnant woman take than to carry that child to term and raise it for 18 years?

That's just not enough?

But what do I know? I'm just a rabid, Culture of Death pundit. I see the culture of life as not having conditions, I have been operating on (apparently) totally seperate definitions of 'paternalism' and 'responsibility' than well educated individuals like my brother.

Because of all that, I've just stopped making sense, and I'm not on topic at all.

So I guess my brother just got the best of me.

Meredith said...

If the Catholic Church does not continue to hold its members and employees to the standards that it lays out, then that is unfortunate. However, it seems they decided that an employee who was expected to be role model to the students under her charge had committed an obvious case of adultery at least once. Even biblically, the teacher was in the wrong, no matter what the church leaders had or had not done. There is forgiveness of course, but there are also consequences.

I applaud her for keeping the baby, but she was not an innocent victim here.

Patrick Armstrong said...

No one here is saying this woman was an innocent victim.

No one here is saying that the Church doesn't have the right to fire her.

What is being said here is that, if they do fire her, they can kiss that "Culture of Life" thing they talk about goodbye.

Cause henceforth it'll be known as the "Culture of Contractual Obligations."

patsbrother said...

paT did something today that had nothing to do with being a Culture of Death Catholic. Therefore, paT is not a Culture of Death Catholic. Hypocrite.

Dante said...

"What is being said here is that, if they do fire her, they can kiss that "Culture of Life" thing they talk about goodbye."

Where does the Catholic Church define this "Culture of Life" and where do they explicitly say they support it? The information I've found on "Culutre of Life" as it applies to the Catholic Church varies from source to source abnd tends to be something that we're just supposed to know in supporting arguments for and against things ranging from the death penalty to sex change operations. I'm guessing that the Catholic Church (being a pretty topdown decision-making body from I can tell) has some official place where there is a clear definition of "Culture of Life."

Not being Catholic myself, this would greatly help in seeing Pat's side of the issue (which quite frankly makes me scratch my head a bit without knowing the proper context).