Saturday, January 24, 2004

Credibility Problem

Would you trust someone's evaluation of Mel Gibson's movie if you knew that person had an agenda to be critical of it, and had to lie to people to get in and see it? Neither would I.

Friday, January 23, 2004

Bush is Not Pro-Life Enough

So complains influential and respected Catholic bloggers Amy Welborn and Mark Shea because 1) the Prez didn't mention abortion in his recent State of the Union Address and 2) he didn't personally appear at the March for Life protest yesterday.

From a substantive standpoint, I myself don't think President Bush is "perfect" on the general issue of life, as exemplefied by his limited allowance of embryonic stem cell research and his seemingly uncritical support of the death penalty. However, insofar as abortion is concerned, Bush has publicly done more to support and uphold the rights of the unborn than any other U.S. President in recent history. See, e.g., the signing of the partial-birth abortion ban, proclamation of the National Sanctity of Human Life Day, and the nomination of several pro-life and pro-life leaning individuals to the judiciary. In light of these acts, for folks like Welborn and Shea to lambast Bush simply because he didn't mention abortion in a speech or personally show up at a rally down the street from the White House is downright silly. Indeed, one wonders what Welborn and Shea must think of the Pope, since I don't believe he has mentioned abortion in any of his Wednesday General Audience talks for quite some time.
Sin Boldly

I was reading this article by Ralph McInerny about the pseudoscience that purports to prove that human behavior is controlled by genetics, and all the while I kept thinking about Protestantism and its historic theological doctrine of "Once Saved, Always Saved." Under this doctrine, of course, man is generally presumed to be a hopeless reprobate (i.e., man is immutably bad). However, as long as a person has faith in God and accepts Jesus Christ as the Messiah, then it doesn't matter how many "involuntary" sinful acts he commits as his reprobate soul is externally covered by God's infinite grace.

By their inherent denial of the existence of free will, as well as the internal efficaciousness of God's grace through the Sacraments, Protestants, especially those of the Fundamentalist stripe, better hope that science never one day universally determines that there is a "gay" gene. Such a determination, from the general Protestant perspective, would effectively render biblical condemnations of homosexual conduct as nothing more than a legalistic and social/cultural hangup that has no importance or relevance to salvation. Sure, two men having sexual intercourse with each other is objectively disgusting and sinful, but if it is genetically in their nature to engage in such conduct, and they profess to be Christians, who are many Protestants to say these men shouldn't be doing what they're doing, or more importantly, that they aren't "saved?"

Thursday, January 22, 2004


In an effort to overturn Roe v. Wade, South Dakota may pass a bill that would outlaw most abortions.

"This is a decision that should be made by the people in each of the states through their elected representatives, not by nine un-elected judges in a courtroom 1,500 miles from the capitol of South Dakota. This bill puts South Dakota in the forefront of the nation and says we will lead the fight to protect unborn children," said McCaulley, a Republican who was 4 months old when the high-court decision came down.

"Medical and scientific discoveries over the last 30 years have confirmed that life begins at conception, a question the Roe Court said they could not answer."

A most noble and admirable endeavor. However, unless the composition of the current U.S. Supreme Court radically changes, it simply won't survive judicial review.
Year 31

Another reminder that intelligence is not a primary qualification for being a Justice on the United States Supreme Court.
What the...?!

Chinese New Year dragon dances during Mass. Give me a break Cardinal Hollywood. (link via Amy Welborn)

Wednesday, January 21, 2004

Visions of Michael Moore's Inane "We're Living in Fictional Times" Remark

Drudge reports asinine Wesley Clark quote of "marriage" being a term of art. No word on what other social conspiracies that Clark believes every living culture and religion in the world has created out of whole cloth.

Lack of posting from two of my favorites, the Mighty Barrister and the Conservative San Diego Chica. Not sure why, but maybe the MB is being consumed by a big case and Molly is in the throes of trying to delude herself into believing that Marty Schottenheimer can bring the Chargers back to the Super Bowl. Hope you guys come back soon and often.
Judge Pickering and the Pathological Dems

Reacting to the recess appointment of Charles Pickering to the U.S. Court of Appeals, Sen. John Edwards transforms himself into a living caricature of the American lawyer.

On his Web site, Mr. Edwards repeats a most egregious smear against Judge Pickering: that he "took extraordinary steps to reduce the sentence required by law for a man convicted of cross burning." But the facts of the case are as follows. In January 1994, three hoodlums burned a cross on the lawn of a house. Two of the three — including the apparent ringleader and chief organizer of the cross-burning attack — received a sentence of six months of home detention and one year of probation. Judge Pickering urged prosecutors to reduce the sentence of the third, less culpable defendant, who had been sentenced to seven years in prison.

Tuesday, January 20, 2004

Choosing a Flavor of Ice Cream, Playing God With Humanity...It's Really All the Same

This fairly disturbing story in Newsweek reminds me of the futuristic world portrayed in the movie Gattaca. If you've never seen it, do so. It may end up not being as fictional as it was intended.

The brave new world is definitely here. After 25 years of staggering advances in reproductive medicine—first test-tube babies, then donor eggs and surrogate mothers—technology is changing baby-making in a whole new way. No longer can science simply help couples have babies, it can help them have the kind of babies they want.

Sunday, January 18, 2004

Pray for Unity, But Uphold the Truth

Today marks the begininng of the Octave of Prayer for Christian Unity; or, as my Tridentine Latin-English Missal more bluntly phrases it, an International Week of Prayers for the removal of schism. For more background on this week, visitLane Core's blog.