04 November 2008

'One Issue' Voters?

"One Issue” Voters?

The author is a Columban priest from Ireland who has been in the Philippines most of the time since 1971. Since October 2002 he has been based in Bacolod City as editor of Misyon, the magazine of the Columbans in the Philippines. This column is in the 3-5 November 2008 issue of Negros Times.

In the Philippines we are familiar with the word “salvaging” which, according to the dictionary, means saving cargo or lives on a stricken ship. But here it means murder, usually by government-linked agents. Over the gates of Nazi concentration camps were the words “Arbeit macht frei”, German for “Work makes you free”, mocking the millions who died in them.

The Guttmacher Institute, which promotes abortion under the guise of “Advancing sexual and reproductive health worldwide through research, policy analysis and public education”, estimates the number of deaths by abortion in the USA since the Supreme Court’s “Roe v. Wade” decision in 1973 as around 46 million.

Abortion is promoted by those who describe themselves as “pro-choice”. There’s no choice for the unborn child and, in many instances, no choice for the father. The perversion of language promotes the perversion of a society.

Senator Barack Obama promised Planned Parenthood that the first thing he will do as president is to sign the Freedom of Choice Act, which would bring back so-called “partial birth abortion”, infanticide in all but name, and force taxpayers to pay for all of this. Laws restricting abortion passed by elected legislators in all 50 of “these United States” would be trampled on. All in the name of “choice”.

One of the ironies is that Planned Parenthood, the biggest abortion provider in the USA, was founded by Margaret Sanger who said, “Colored people are like weeds and are to be exterminated”. 78 percent of their clinics are in minority areas. While Blacks make up only twelve percent of the population, 35 percent of children aborted are Blacks.

Some Catholics are criticizing their bishops for speaking the truth about. Ironically, 50 years after his death, some Catholics are criticizing Pope Pius XII for allegedly not having spoken out clearly against the genocidal policies of the Nazis. Bishop Robert W. Finn of Kansas City – St. Joseph in October wrote in the diocesan paper, The Catholic Key:

When a candidate supports ready access to abortion on demand, they are inviting Catholics to put aside their conscience on this life and death issue. Such a candidate is inviting conscientious Catholics to look elsewhere for moral leadership. When a candidate promotes total unhindered “choice,” he or she discourages the Catholic vote, and at the same time tempts the voter to betray one of the most obvious intuitions of our humanity and to support the continuation of the willful destruction of human life.

If the candidate has supported partial birth abortion, he or she asks the voter to affirm the continuation of an act that 75% of the population has rejected as repulsive.

When a candidate regards the unborn child as unworthy of the defense of law, then he or she asks us to join them in ignoring the lessons of history by which African Americans in this country were once regarded as non-persons; or the Jews of Europe were once marked for genocide or racial purification. Had we known, would we have supported the “choice” to enslave or destroy these brothers and sisters of ours? Can a candidate expect us as Catholics to ignore the classification of the unborn as non-persons? Will he or she expect us to look aside while these babies are quietly exterminated at a rate of 4000 per day? This is precisely what they are asking us to do.Some groups calling themselves “Catholic” have suggested that generous programs for the poor will reduce abortions more than the repeal of Roe v. Wade. But a candidate who pledges that he or she will seek to immediately ratify the Freedom of Choice Act (FOCA), signals to voters that the reduction of abortions is not a goal. They are asking voters to suspend the effort to constitutionally protect human life, and – at the same time - to discard all the good progress we have made to actually reduce the number of abortions in the last thirty-five years. Such a candidate is asking Catholics to “give up” on abortion. They want us to deny our conscience and ignore their callous disregard for the most vulnerable human life.

If the candidate has addressed their legislative assembly, urging opposition to the Born-Alive Infant Protection Act, then it must be concluded that this candidate wishes Catholic voters to be complicit in infanticide. Rejection of this Act, which would require that a baby who survived an unsuccessful abortion attempt be cared for and not laid aside to die with no medical assistance, is a convincing example of the numbing of our moral sensibility. The candidate who supports this fatal neglect of life and asks our vote, asks too much of any fellow human being.

Our country is at the edge of the precipice concerning the protection of the life and dignity of the human person. A significant new attack on innocent human life will likely send us into a moral freefall that would rival any financial decline. The price for such a “walk over the cliff” is millions more human lives for many more years to come.A candidate who asks us to add our weight to such a destructive momentum in our society, asks us to be participants in their own gravely immoral act. This is something which, in good conscience, we can never justify. Despite hardship, beyond partisanship, for the sake of our eternal salvation: This we should never do.

One meaning of the word “issue” is “offspring”. Senator Obama told Planned Parenthood that what is at stake in the election is the nomination of judges to the Supreme Court who might overturn Roe v. Wade. Can American voters, appalled by the willful killing of 46 million such issues in the last 35 years and who want to change this be described as “one issue” voters?

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