Catholic Voting Guide Again
The guide is based on Faithful Citizenship, published by the USCCB last year. Faithful Citizenship makes no distinction between all the issues it lists. Thus, the protection of the weakest among us, the unborn, is given the same standing as support for the United Nations! The USCCB published in 1998 the pastoral letter, The Gospel of Life, in which they stated,
If this was the case in 1998, why is not the case now in 2004? Regardless, no matter how "right" Senator Kerry seems to be on dealing with "Haitian refugees' fleeing to the US" or supporting "buy-in to health insurance through creating a federally subsidized plan" it does not excuse his wrong choices on abortion, ESCR, and euthanasia. As well, his failure to defend life renders suspect the claims in the guide to his being right on the 'Death Penalty' or 'Use of Force'.
But being 'right' in such matters [policies on poverty, employment, education, etc.] can never excuse a wrong choice regarding direct attacks on innocent human life. Indeed, the failure to protect and defend life in its most vulnerable stages renders suspect any claims to the 'rightness' of positions in other matters affecting the poorest and least powerful of the human community.
This same commenter accuses me of being a "cafeteria Catholic" for he/she seems to think I "pick and choose" the USCCB statements I use. Never been accused of that! If I picked or chose my positions on faith and morals as I saw fit and not as the Church (i.e. not the USCCB) teaches then you could call me a "cafeteria Catholic". I am merely pointing out what seems to be a contradiction from the USCCB. If I am to be accused of being single issue voter or closed minded when the I point out USCCB does not fully uphold and defend the faith then so be it. My conscience tells me to do so.
Back to the guide itself. It would helpful if those who wrote and maintain the guide would reference the information they list under each of the candidates positions. It would allow all to see where they gather the information. In acknowleging this commenter's claim that I only pointed out one issue, here are a few others:
Under Avoid War, the guide states "All nations have a right and duty to defend human life and the common good against terrorism, aggression, and similar threats," yet points out under the president's position that "he would still have invaded Iraq in March 2003 even if he knew at the time that there were no WMD in Iraq and that there was no link between President Hussein's regime and al-Qaeda." This does not address Saddam's use of WMD on his own people and Iran, his financial support of families of Palestinian suicide bombers, his brutal treatment of political opponents, or his blatant violation of UN resolutions. And the Iraqi link with al-Qaeda is debatable and not a closed case as the liberal pundits suggest. These were all important in "defending human life and the common good against terrorism". I feel the writers of the guide have their own pacifist bias here rather than a non-partisan laying out of the candidates positions.
Under Discrimination, the guide lists President Bush's position as that he, "reduced funding for the Equal Employment Opportunity Commission, the agency that enforces federal laws against discrimination and upholds the equal pay. " That's all. Nothing more. As if the funding of the EEOO is a proper measure of the president's work to "overcome barriers to equal pay and employment for women and those facing unjust discrimination." Why not mention the Bush administration's changes to overtime rules? Though misreported by the liberal media, these rules will ensure that an "additional 6.7 Million Workers Earning Less Than $23,660 Will Be Guaranteed Overtime. '. . .[T]he final rule guarantees overtime protection for all workers earning less than the $455 per week ($23,660 annually), the new minimum salary level required for exemption. Because of the increased salary level, overtime protection will be strengthened for more than 6.7 million salaried workers who earn between the current minimum salary level of $155 per week ($8,060 annually) and the new minimum salary level of $455 per week ($23,660 annually).'
I could go on and will if asked, but it seems rather obvious that the writers of the guide are not "non-partisan" as they claim and have an agenda of their own.