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October 13, 2004

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Charles M. de Nunzio

The answers of the two of them on the topic of "gay" "marriage" were equally unsatisfactory, Kerry being dead wrong and Bush not daring to be right.

Esquire

After being the first commander-in-chief to be felled by one, Kerry as a pretzel is Bush's worst nightmare.

Jay Anderson

"That's why I fight against poverty. That's why I fight to clean up the environment and protect this earth.

"That's why I fight for equality and justice. All of those things come out of that fundamental teaching and belief of faith.

"But I know this, that President Kennedy in his inaugural address told all of us that here on Earth, God's work must truly be our own. And that's what we have to -- I think that's the test of public service."

So, Sen. Kerry, why is it again that your "faith" leads you to make "God's work ... truly your own" when it comes to poverty, the environment, equality and justice, but not when it comes to protecting unborn children from murder?

On the one hand, you tell us you can't force your faith on the rest of us when it comes to abortion, but then you turn around and say that "we have to" fight poverty, protect the environment, and work for equality and justice because "those things come out of that fundamental teaching and belief of faith."

You're a lying hypocrite, Kerry.

Peggy

I'll also add to Mr. de Nunzio's list that both candidates gave awful answers to the illegal immigration question. It's time to deport illegal aliens en masse and tighten the border--really, not just half-heartedly. Hust a few big busts and deportations for show periodically would scare the bejeezus out of them and keep 'em in their own countries where they could improve things rather than sponge off us Americans.

Esquire

Very simply Jay, because poverty, equality and environmental regulation are all things the government actively either does or inhibits.

The killing of an unborn child is something done by a mother and her doctor.

To quote the Second Amendment enthusiasts, Presidents don't kill unborn babies, mothers and doctors do."

Jay Anderson

And I don't understand the constant need to knock Bush's answers on the life issue. Is he perfect on the issue? No. But read the answer he gave again.

The leader of the free world is trying to make the pro-life case in a culture of death, and we ought to at least be able to give him credit for that.

Esquire

Peggy, maybe some public executions would stop the sponging too, do you think?

I mean, if the worst thing that happens is that illegal immigrants get sent back to where they came from, they'd be no worse off in the end and have nothing to lose.

Esquire

Jay, "making a pro-life case" means more than spouting catch-phrases. This is the man who bragged that he reduced the time he reviewed clemency petitions while Governor of Texas from 30 to 15 minutes! And mocked Carla Faye Tucker's plea for mercy. And won't even condemn Roe.

Charles M. de Nunzio

"I am a Catholic." The most supreme of all lies Kerry has told in this entire campaign.

"I believe that I can't legislate or transfer to another American citizen my article of faith. What is an article of faith for me is not something that I can legislate on somebody who doesn't share that article of faith."

Translation: I have no king but Caesar.

Now our blog hostess observes: "And then we eat some pretzels because, you see what Kerry has done in this answer is twist himself into a good imitation of one. He can't impose his faith on anyone, but then ... his faith affects everything he does. It's why he fights for equality and justice, and for the poor, the environment. His faith."

She's right, but Kerry wasn't alone in the pretzel department. Bush said substantially the same exact thing in answer to a different question towards the end when he was asked what influence his religious faith had upon his execution of official duties. He kept going on and on about how his faith was a "personal" thing, yet somehow was manifest in things he did, too.

P.S. Clarifying my first comment: it was the responses to the moderator's direct question, viz., is homosexuality a choice?, that I meant to say were equally unsatisfactory. Bush didn't dare to speak the truth (claiming "I don't know"), while Kerry peddled the line of it not being a choice but of who they are.

That's a critical distinction, and Scripture and Catholic tradition are unequivocally clear that it is in fact a choice to commit mortally sinful and perverse acts liable, without repentance, to eternal perdition. This is exactly the trick of the rainbow agitators: to hoodwink us into buying this notion that it's not a question of deeds (for which there is moral culpability and therefore a rational basis for social condemnation) but rather of being or identity, a "natural" condition, for which therefore there must be not only tolerance, but positive approval — or else.

Jay Anderson

Very simply Jay, because poverty, equality and environmental regulation are all things the government actively either does or inhibits.

The killing of an unborn child is something done by a mother and her doctor.

To quote the Second Amendment enthusiasts, Presidents don't kill unborn babies, mothers and doctors do."

That's a cop-out answer. Somewhat like saying the government didn't enslave people, slaveowners enslaved people. By the same token, Presidents don't pollute the environment, cause poverty, or cause equality to exist. Polluters pollute, discriminators discriminate, and heck, Jesus said the poor will always be with us.

Try again.

amy

Clinton said he wanted to make abortion "safe, legal and rare."

How is what Bush says any different?

What, I'm supposed to say he gave a fabulous answer when I thought he didn't? I'm supposed to lie?

Tired mantra: A Bush administration is far better for this issue than a Kerry administration, to the degree that I can figure. No question. The line will be held - in the UN, with court appointments, and perhaps some progress will even be made at the level of whatever the federal government can do on this issue. But the man is not engaged with the issue, can't think through it, and is afraid to alienate the swing voters who are supposedly tied to their "right to choose". What's the harm in observing that?

And Peggy...joking, yes?

Jay Anderson

I think I already acknowledged that Bush isn't perfect on the life issue. But I find it amazing that he at least wants to make the case, and all he gets is grief.

And hearing you try to make the pro-life case against the President, Esquire, is rich indeed.

chris

You are too quick to criticize Kerry's answer to the abortion question. His response, which I agree was pathetic, was good enough to score points with the typical, contracepting, pro-abortion, Glory & Praising Catholic that has been created following V2. His message: "Hey, I am not a good Catholic because I disagree with the rigid bishops on the issue of abortion. But so do you, and there are many like us, so vote for me." I'd say that the majority of voters at my parish, dulled by years of dumbed-down CCD classes--oh wait, the new correct term is "PSR"--and by seamless garment ethics, will vote for him.

The response was more calculated than anyone here seems to think. If he wins, he will be the bishops' greatest nightmare. He will force them to face up to what they have created.

Carrie

I have only one question...where can I get some of those money tree seeds? The trees both candidates are growing must be producing a bumper crop!

Peggy

Amy,

Come to Northern Virginia. I am against illegal immigrants being left untouched in our country. The gangs in No. Va. are all Latino, mostly illegals. A recent City Journal article [Heather McDonald?] researched that in many cities, gangs and crime are associated high pops of illegal immigrants.

Is it not better to improve conditions in Mexico than to try to solve Vicente Fox's racial/socio-economic problems at the cost of the American taxpayer? [FYI--NO ONE in this country is denied healthcare, as Dems claim. Even illegal aliens get medical care, with or without insurance and with or without citizenship/legal residence.]

I do speak forcefully b/c we cannot stand it here any more. We hope to move back to the midwest, a fairly rural town, within a few years.

Why shouldn't the govt go after illegal immigrants? They are criminals by definition. Periodic busts publiziced are a good thing to discourage crossing the border illegally. Border crossings increased dramatically when Bush announced his "amnesty lite" program earlier this year. Further, we probably ought to rewrite the laws pertaining to citizenship of persons born here to the extent that constitutional language allows so as to prohibit the birth of "anchor babies" as US citizens by illegal aliens or temporary visitors. Rewarding illegal aliens is patently unfair to legal immigrants and naturalized (and native born) citizens, and a great cost to Am. society in terms of taxes, quality of life, societal cohesion, traffic dangers, ability to conduct commerce in multiple languages, etc. The Church is dead wrong to aid and abet illegal immigration. They should be concentrating (which many missionaries do, of course) on improving lives in the countries. The US is not the promised land. There is no reason why people cannot be reasonably prosperous and free in their own countries, if they would but sacrifice to make the necessary changes. Yeah, that's asking a lot, but our founders sacrificed greatly as well in order that we have the country we have. Instead, they cheat Americans who gladly give what they have to help those in need. If you want to come to the US, do what citizens of Britain or Germany might do and wait your turn.

Jay Anderson

"The response was more calculated than anyone here seems to think. If he wins, he will be the bishops' greatest nightmare. He will force them to face up to what they have created."

If he wins, he'll be the most prominent "Catholic" in the world, even moreso than the Pope. And, unfortunately, the majority of Catholics will be mimicking the apostate "Catholic" who would be leader of the free world rather than following the lead of the orthodox Vicar of Christ.

Esquire

Ah Peggy. Welcome to the cafeteria.

Esquire

Saying Bush is "pro-life" is like saying someone is "pro-good-weather". Sure, when you consider the alternative. But what are you actually doing about it?

Jay Anderson

Esquire: "Saying Bush is "pro-life" is like saying someone is "pro-good-weather"."

Since you spend more time on here defending the democrat party's position on abortion rather than advocating what the Church actually teaches about abortion, I'll be sure and take your pronouncements of who is "adequately" pro-life with a grain of salt.

Kirk

Peggy: "The U.S. is not the promised land."? What? Are you kidding me? Re-read the inscription on the Statue of Liberty! We are INDEED the promised land. We are -- or aim to be -- that "shining city on a hill" that Ronald Reagan so eloquently spoke about. You must be a Native American, I guess, whose ancestors did not travel at great lengths to get to America (mine came from Scotland, England, and Ireland). Was it Kerry or Bush last evening (I think the latter) that pointed out when you can earn 50 cents an hour in Mexico or $5.15 in America, you are going to want to come here (and then send half your paycheck home to your family). It is in OUR best interests, though, to promote economic good times in Latin America to alleviate the immigration problem (I missed the section of your post about what we should be doing to improve Mexico's economy) but we will still be the promised land. And Church officials in America are supposed to be doing God's work, not the work of the INS. That is, they are to assist immigrants (illegal or legal) and all in need of attention.

By the way, Peggy, I live in No. Va. too ... and moved here from California where the problem is more serious. Here's a little tip, Peg: there is no escaping the growing Latino population of the U.S. You can run (to a small rural town in the MW) but you can't hide (or put your head in the sand). (If it makes you feel better, Peggy, I am a Republican who will be voting for Bush.)

WRY

Peggy, the growing hispanic presence is a fact that all your wishing will not change. Here are our choices:
1. We get them on our side and ask them to help us, with their Catholic cultural background, to form a culture of life in the U.S.
2. We alienate them and lose their votes, turning them over to the Democrats in one huge bloc, and lose that chance to build a pro-life alliance. Look at California for example. It is permanently Democratic, thanks to aggressive GOP efforts in the past to alienate hispanics.

Christopher Rake

Bush didn't dare to speak the truth (claiming "I don't know"), while Kerry peddled the line of it not being a choice but of who they are.

I think Bush told the truth--he doesn't know what makes a human being homosexual. And neither does anyone else. Very few experts in the field claim that they know, and those that do are wrong.

As for immigration, certainly in my mind there are conflicts between politics and Catholic faith when it comes to immigration. But as a fellow Washingtonian, I agree there is a problem here and just throwing up our hands and acquiescing to an unratified open borders policy is not the answer.

I certainly don't agree, as has been implied above, that Catholic teaching prevents me from supporting enforcement of immigration law.

Heather MacDonald has indeed done important work in this area, just to look at crime for a moment. Peggy is probably aware of the local MS13 gang member who used a machete to separate a rival's hand from his fingers. For the U.S., this is an ugly and growing subculture.

Since we have few resources and no will to identify and deport illegals, their numbers continue to grow. Meanwhile the Mexican government, with the cooperation of large parts of our own government, issues "matricular consular" cards to illegal aliens that help them pretend to be here legally, and are used to open checking accounts, rent apartments, and so on. Talk about teaching contempt for the law. Simultaneously our open borders are being used very effectively by terrorists, and Al Qaeda is exploring, what should we call them, joint ventures with the gangs.

So yeah, we have a problem.

I'm descended from immigrants like most Americans, but it was different a couple of generations ago. There was strong social and political pressure to assimilate; modern multicultural agendas are, in contrast, succesfully creating belligerent nations within nations.

And as for Kirk's reference to California, I consider the mess out there to be a cautionary tale.

As long as countries like Mexico are allowed to freely export their extreme misery to the United States, they will never have will to reverse their own political and social catastrophes. The end result will be one unending tale of misery, from sea to shining sea.

Thomas Gonzales

I second WRY's comments.

And thanks for reminding me that Christian charity only extends to those with U.S. citizenship.

I had almost forgotten why I found it so hard reaching the decision to vote for George Bush.

SiliconValleySteve

Nobody argues harder than someone with a guilty conscience they are trying to soothe. This is why the pro-Kerry folks here take out their microscopes to examine the pro-choice rhetoric of George Bush.

They need to find Bush's rhetoric to prove he is no better on abortion than Kerry. This is an impossible act in the real world. Kerry thinks so, that's why he gos out of his way to make this a stark choice between himself and Bush. He knows that sincere pro-life supporters wouldn't think of voting for him so he plays to the lukewarm pro-choicers. Here we have these lukewarm anti-abortion supporters salving their consciences by making up rhetorical games to salve their consciences while voting for the most pro-abortion candidate in US history.

Kerry is also appealing to woman who have had and abortion and do not want to face up to the consequences of what they have done.

Call the pro-life position extreme, pretend it is in the constitution (which article of the bill of rights was that?) and that will make those with a guilty conscience about having or having facilitated an abortion feel that they have to vote for you to protect themselves from guilt.

As far as your "pro-life" supporters, they are so sold out that they will take care of themselves.

Let me publicly admit to something here. Before I returned to the church, before my children were born, I was a big supporter of legal abortion. I did the clinic defense thing on two occasions. While I was fortunate that none of the woman that I slept with ever got pregnant, there are occasions where I would have favored abortion. There were others (based on the relationship) where I wouldn't but I admit it was hit-or-miss. I was wrong. I have sinned. I will pay for this sin and while there are things I can do to atone, I fully expect to be called on this when I face my creator. It doesn't get any better for me than that.

I do work with pro-life groups where I can. I do consider it a personal mission to reach out to others who are sinning as I once did. Don't do it, you will pay a terrible price. When i saw my 5 week old son on ultrasound, I saw a human being. He was sucking his thumb. I don't know how anyone could see this and continue to approve of abortion.

Walter Babetski

Kerry is so far out-of-the-loop re Catholicism that he continues to use the anachronistic term "altar boy" rather than the Catholitically-correct "altar server". Doesn't he (or his henchmen) know that everytime he uses the term "altar boy" it irks the liberal Catholics he is courting?

John Heavrin

Walter, the liberal Catholics he's courting aren't irked by "altar boy" or any other thing he says or position he takes. They're with him whatever he says, and love (or lust for power) is unirkable.

I think he'd say he was once an "altar girl" if he thought it would help in a swing state, or at least "I was once an altar boy, just as many of your daughters now are."

Frankly, I think many "liberal Catholics" are delighted at the prospect of a Kerry presidency, so his version of what being a Catholic is, what it looks like, and how to do it, could become normative. The implications of that are far bigger than taxes, immigration, or even the war, it seems to me.

Walter Babetski

Chilling thought, John.....Catholics imitating Kerry's 'Catholicism' just because he's President. What's next? Wrist bands reading "WWKD"??

Christine

Esquire said:

To quote the Second Amendment enthusiasts, Presidents don't kill unborn babies, mothers and doctors do."

Right. Just like presidents don't abuse children, mothers and fathers do. Is this a reason for presidents--and the government--to stand idly by and let it happen? And even more, protect it under the Constitution?

If you answer no (and I hope you do), then you acknowledge that child abuse is evil and those who commit it must be penalized by the government. If child abuse is evil, then why isn't the murder of sentient infants in the womb not more so?

SiliconValleySteve

Christine,

Thank you. I get so caught up in the rhetorical limitations that we are stuck with that I miss the obvious.

A child is a child is a child. In the womb or out. I need to always remember that.

Peggy

I'm only online after my kids are in bed (legally US citizens via an authorized international adoption process). So, my rebuttal is a day late (& hopefully not a dollar short).

This is not a question of Latino culture in general as one commenter implied. There are tons of non-citizens here in NoVA, who are obviously not with the diplomatic corps of their native lands. However, we should not be accomodating languages other than English as a society, through government, in particular. [EG: If an (legal) immigrant cannot read English, he should not be granted citizenship and should not, therefore, need to vote in his native language.]

There is a key difference between legal and illegal immigration. Legal immigrants must make a showing of ability to support oneself. Illegal immigrants do not. They are not able to receive minimum wage (not that I'm a min wage fan, as an economist). Therefore, US citizens who are "entitled" by law to the minimum wage lose out on work that illegal immigrants take. Any kinds of handyman/home improvement business here in NoVa employs Latino men who cannot speak English (and who invariably screw up the work as a result). I like the idea of guest worker program in theory on a going forward basis. Let someone live in Mexico and commute to CA for work daily. But, take action against illegal aliens in the US today. Don't allow them to be eligible for this program, unless they go back to Mexico and establish residency there. [We should be wary of "takeover" talk by Mexicans who want CA et als back. I don't mean to sound paranoid, but there are Chicano groups with that agenda in CA. Race-based interest groups never want assimilation.]

As far as charity ending at US borders, I think I was clear that we (Americans) tend to give privately toward many causes and efforts to aid the poor in other countries. There are a number of missionaries and projects in 3rd world countries that can use our support.

Let them come here legally, however! It is the only fair and honorable thing to do. I don't understand how Catholic morality requires aiding and abetting illegal immigration. Does the Church in Rome espouse unfettered "migration" to any country from any country by any person in the world? I am not aware of that. I can't imagine that the Church would expect nations to drop all border control.

Further, there are issues, not just of local criminal gang activity, but also of national security at stake. The 9-11 hijackers had overstayed visas and their applications were incomplete, but approved. Recently some Chechnyans were caught (Thank God) using the Mexican border to get into the US. A middle eastern woman was caught also recently. Some middle eastern terrorists are changing their names to Latino names since those immigrants are quite favored.

No politician wants to take this on. We should apparently put shilling for votes above national security. Latinos will vote their pocketbook, which for most non-white (and some white) groups (and many businesses) is about gimme, gimme, gimme $ from the government till, er, from other hardworking citizens' pockets.

My family come from France, Germany and Switzerland. Oh, there is some American Indian blood in my family as well. What do you know about that? France's duplicity and love for John Kerry (& Jerry Lewis!) aside, I've always found French to be a superior language to Spanish.

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