I read the February 24th edition of the Catholic Standard and was once again appalled at the zombie-esque chanting of the liberal/progressive mantras that polluted the pages of a supposedly "Catholic" publication. Where to begin? I suppose it doesn't matter, since all this mess has a common theme.
This is a long read, so....
Let's start on page 4 - the CNS article about the Messiah Most Miserable bestowing the Medal of Freedom on some individuals. It seems like these Catholic news organs must wax breathless every time a person who calls him/herself Catholic is honored by the "rulers of this age" - and it matters little to these news organs whether or not the person lives as an authentic Catholic or has spent his/her public life as a lackey of the culture of death. Because this article is not on the Catholic Standard website, I link to it as it appears on the CNS site. Read this. The Standard added to the CNS article that Sweeney and his wife Maureen are long-time members of the Church of the Little Flower in Bethesda, and both served as chairs of the Catholic Charities Gala.
Of that last little tidbit I'm very aware, as I helped lead a picket of that gala. At that time, Sweeney had been president of the AFL-CIO for several years. Under his watch, that union demanded that employers cover contraception in their health plans, and the AFL-CIO website had, on its front page, a link to the website of National Organization of Women (NOW). We were disgusted that a promoter of the culture of death should be publicly honored at an event that claimed to celebrate charity in a Catholic sense. A year or two later, I led a smaller picket of him as he received from Cardinal McCarrick some honor at St Mary's Church just outside of the Chinatown area of DC.
Until I read this article, however, I was not aware that Sweeney had worked for the SEIU for 35 years, the last 15 of these years as its president. Now go back to that article and contemplate the Messiah Most Miserable draping that bauble over Sweeney's neck. Then go to my post two days ago on the Wisconsin situation and Obama's unconstitutional and unethical intrusion therein. The knowledge that Obama desperately needs big labor to send money to his and other Dems' campaigns adds a depth of understanding to that video. It adds the same understanding to that picture of him honoring Sweeney. Note: for more on the immense mischief wrecked by SEIU, go here.
I've gone a bit long with this Sweeney episode. We now look to this issue's coverage of Maryland Lobby Night. For those outside of the Maryland area, it's an evening event, usually held on President's Day, whereby Catholics gather in a church in Annapolis, receive some talking points from the Maryland Catholic Conference, walk to nearby Lawyers' Mall for a rally, then descend upon their respective representatives to lobby them to vote the positions of the Maryland Catholic Conference.
Before I continue, I want to make very plain that I salute the initiative of those Catholics who went to Annapolis last week with a view to advancing the Church's teachings on the non-negotiable issues regarding protection of the unborn, defense of traditional marriage, combatting embryonic stem cell research, etc. When I went to my one and only Lobby Night, such was my hope. I was bitterly disappointed by the presentation of the Maryland Catholic Conference. As we gathered in the church hall for a panel discussion. Several members of that panel were pro-abortion members of the legislature. As I was rather new to things at the time, I did not think to challenge them right then and there. But I remembered thinking that these individuals had no credibility to teach a damned thing to us. Moreover, we were presented what I will call a "laundry list" of things to broach with our representatives. Oh, yes - abortion was in there, but it was treated as just one of several issues - no recognition of the prominence it should have received.
Almost twenty years later, not too much has changed, if I believe this Standard's accounts of it. Good people went there with the express and sole aim to defend traditional marriage, since it is coming under very deliberated attack at this time. For a flavor of that night, go to this Standard online article. You will notice the Laundry List. The interspersing of the life/marriage issues with other issues gives the appearance that the MCC treats all issues equally. Hopefully that is mere appearance and does not reflect any wayward attitude of the MCC. I've got to be frank and say that some of the MCC's positions on other issues reek of socialistic sympathies. For instance, under "poverty" we read the statement that "Times such as these, when Marylanders are increasingly in need, are not the times in which the social safety net should be cut, but rather exactly the times when social safety net funding should be preserved if not increased " Doesn't that beg the question, "How will we pay for all these safety nets? Shall it fall on the backs of those who are already burdened with huge taxes? Doesn't that sound like what all those unions in Wisconsin would inflict on the ordinary Wisconsin citizen? At my one and only "lobby night", I did ask the MCC director at the time just how all these programs would be financed. Now have your smelling salts handy as you read this. He said (and I kid you not!), "we're not worried about matters such as that". At best, that seems like an overly-simplistic view to take of social issues and a truly Christian response - a response that demands a well-thought-out solution.
I said that this displays a "zombie" mentality as described by the Vortex. The Standard is simply mouthing all the talking points of the USCCB. Of the readers of this blog, there must be other members of the Archdiocese of Washington, and perhaps attendees of this year's Lobby Night. As I mentioned earlier, I salute you all, and only regret that you may have been co-opted into pushing for issues that are, at best, of lesser import. I was in that position many years ago. Comments welcome.