Sunday, September 26, 2004

Seminary professors speak up

Letter from severela professors from Sacred Heart Major Seminary in Detroit on the Detroit Free Press coverage of "proportionate reasons". Awesome stuff! God bless and keep these outstanding teachers!

The headline of the Sept. 7 Detroit Free Press instructed, "Catholics allowed pro-choice vote." That headline and much of the subsequent article was distressingly misleading.

U.S. bishops, in their statement "Faithful Citizenship: A Catholic Call to Political Responsibility," asserted: "Abortion and euthanasia have become preeminent threats to human life and dignity because they directly attack life itself, the most fundamental good and the condition for all others."

Abortion, the deliberate killing of a human being before birth, is never morally acceptable. The destruction of human embryos as objects of research is wrong. This document speaks against many evils in our culture, but it makes repeatedly clear that abortion is the preeminent threat and that the right to life is the condition for all other rights. We must note very carefully that Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger stated that a vote for a pro-abortion candidate needs to be "for proportionate reasons."

Consider: Is it always wrong to vote for someone who would legalize a serious intrinsic evil, such as slavery? Suppose the pro-slavery candidate had a good health care policy or a good proposal for increasing employment, would those considerations outweigh his or her pro-slavery stance? Suppose a pro-life candidate was waging a war one thought to be unjust or was not working hard enough to ensure good health care or civil rights. Similarly, suppose one thought the pro-abortion candidate had stronger pro-life stances in areas other than abortion. The proportion surely tilts toward protection of the life of unborn persons, not other issues. Those who are enslaved certainly have a greater interest in freedom than in health care; those who are in the womb have a greater interest in continuing to live than to possess a health care plan.

Each year in the United States, there are about 1 million babies who die through abortion. They never get to enjoy any of the privileges we all hope for -- not the freedom to vote or access to health care.

Yes, injustice is done to those who experience discrimination, who are sent to fight in unjust wars, who don't have health care. But they at least have life and the opportunity to fight for other rights. The dead unborn do not. What can outweigh that consideration?

Robert Fastiggi
John Hittinger
Janet E. Smith
Eduardo Echeverria, Associate Professor of Philosophy
Mark Latkovic, Professor of Theology
Father Earl J. Muller, S.J., Bishop Kevin M. Britt Chair in Christology
Professors, Sacred Heart Major Seminary, Detroit

Hattip to Catholic Analysis for this piece.


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Hmm, so it's a sliding scale of evilness, a "morally relative" method of voting?

If you believe in evil, you may believe that abortion is evil. You should probably vote accordingly.

However, does the fact that abortion is evil mean that promiscous use of the the death penalty is NOT evil? That starting a war which THEN results in the death of pregnant Iraqi weomine is ALSO evil?

It seems to me that if you truly believe in good and evil you should not vote for EITHER of the major candidates. But if you want to vote for the lesser of two evils, that is a moral choice you have to make for yourself.

4:08 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

May I remind you that there is no such thing as a "pro-abortion" person. There is only Pro Life and Choice. Since Roe v. Wade REpublicans have reduced the abortion totals per year. They have destroyed welfare for mothers who are on the roles and pregnant. It is apparent to me that they are not humane or compassionate. Kerry will fight to reduce abortion. Kerry will fight to provide women with real options (adoption, social welfare, social security, deadbeat dad protection, safe havens for infants. Kerry is the best pro-life candidate we have... As for George W., human rights does not stop at birth... He's got lots of other things to work on..

5:24 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Could you site John Kerry's 20 yr record here? After all since he is a Catholic, I believe it would be important to see exactly what he has done to reduce abortion in the 20 yrs he has been in office. How many of these welfare programs actually work, and what evidence do you have to support that? Is it true charity and compassion to put in place programs that only make people dependent rather then independent? I don't personally think so. No one has done more for the Pro Life movement than President George W Bush in 30 yrs. I have proof of that, just let me know if you are interested, and I would be happy to post it here. It is unfortunate that you don't care for labels, because after all we are Catholic and that is a label too.

11:07 AM  

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