Cannot Be Right

When a candidate for public office is wrong on abortion, he or she cannot be right on the other issues.

"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" (US Bishops, 1998, Living the Gospel of Life, n.23).

"Above all, the common outcry, which is justly made on behalf of human rights — for example, the right to health, to home, to work, to family, to culture — is false and illusory if the right to life, the most basic and fundamental right and the condition of all other personal rights, is not defended with maximum determination" (Pope John Paul II, 1988, The Vocation and the Mission of the Lay Faithful in the Church and in the World (Christifideles Laici), n.38).

Those are clear and strong words.

Why do the bishops say that when a public servant cannot stand up for the right to life, his stand for other human rights is "suspect?" When one says that people have a "right" to be safe, free, educated, and economically secure, on what basis do these rights exist? Are they human rights, that belong to the person simply because he or she is human, and are therefore beyond the authority of anyone to take away? Or are they "rights" granted by those in power?

 These rights cannot possibly be human rights if life itself isn't a human right. And the public official who says abortion can be legal is saying that life itself is not a human right. This is because he or she is saying that some human beings (those in the womb) can be deprived of that right to life.

Bishop Elio Sgreccia, Vice-President of the Vatican's Pontifical Academy for Life, stated, "Without respect for life, society simply does not exist…all [other] rights presuppose the right to life. If the right to life is not defended, the defense of all these other rights is useless. It becomes a lie, because it would mean that the defense to the right to work, to society, etc. applies only to some, and not to all" (May 2004 interview with Priests for Life).

This is also why the Pope can call the outcry for human rights "false and illusory" without the right to life.

Cardinal Renato Martino, President of the Vatican's Pontifical Council for Justice and Peace, said "The Holy Father speaks of the protection of life as the fundamental realization and respect for human rights. Without that respect for the right to life, no other discussion of human rights can continue; it must be based upon the foundation of human dignity and the right to life" (May 2004 interview with Priests for Life).

In short, to allow legalized abortion is an attack on the entire moral order. If abortion is not wrong, nothing is wrong. If it is wrong, civilization will not survive unless it is set right.

Fr. Frank Pavone

By

Father Frank A. Pavone is an American Roman Catholic priest and pro-life activist. He is the National Director of Priests for Life and serves as the Chairman and Pastoral Director of Rachel's Vineyard.

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  • Guest

    for Americans this debate has to be framed in terms of our Constitution as well as in moral and religious terms. Every elected official takes an oath of office to uphold the Constitution, and fundamental to all rights it guarantees is the right to life, liberty, and property (the pursuit of happiness is mentioned in the Declaration). When rights of life and liberty conflicted with the subordinate right of property, the conflict paralyzed government and national growth until resolved in the bloody conflict of the Civil War, in which brothers killed brothers. The subordinate rights, stated, implied or imagined upon which pro-aborts base their claims must yield to the superior right to life, which even sitting Justices have acknowledged in commenting about the constitutional errors propounded in RvW and subsequent abortion decisions. Sadly this conflict is being fought in an equally bloody civil war in which parents kill children, with government connivance.

  • Guest

    Exactly, Cheryl! Back in 2006 Some 55 congressional Democrats tried to weasel out or their moral obligation to oppose abortion. The U.S. bishops responded by telling them their moral priorities were out of order. I'm glad they have included their response on their new Faithful Citizenship website.

    http://www.usccb.org/faithfulcitizenship/

    Lood for it under the hypertext "Other Bishops Documents"

  • Guest

    “We are moving toward a dictatorship of relativism which does not recognize anything as for certain and which has as its highest goal one's own ego and one's own desires.”  Pope Benedict XVI (when Cardinal Ratzinger) 

    When Pope Benedict, as Cardinal Ratzinger, issued these words he was stating that there are certainties in life, all things are not on a sliding scale and that denying this moved us perilously into a world  made up of shades of gray.

    Contrast that to Rick Warren (of the purpose driven life fame) who invites pro-choice presidential candidates to speak at his mega church and defends his actions by saying that if he only worked with people with whom he agreed on all things, he would work with no one; thus justifying a gray world he would like us all to embrace.

    Catholics cannot be drawn into such a slippery slope, believing such an illogical argument.  If we do not stand for life, we stand for nothing.  If we can rationalize away every action because there are no absolutes, then we rationalize away our need for Christ and our work for His kingdom.   Excellent article Father Pavone.  God bless you in your work. 

  • Guest

    The absolute litmus test for a political candidate is their stand on life. If they can't get that right they can't get anything else correct in the human arena. There is no gray area to determine – life from conception to natural death. Pope John Paul II in Evangelium Vitae talked about how the Church acknowledges the "incomparable value of every human person". Our Catholic brothers and sisters who claim to be pro-choice and blatantly vote for abortion must be in our prayers as well as confronted with the truth.

  • Guest

    "

    When a candidate for public office is wrong on abortion, he or she cannot be right on the other issues."

     

    That's absurd.  I agree with you about the abortion issue, Fr. Pavone, but sometimes your rhetoric is completely off the wall.  Which is why I stopped send $$ to Priests for Life.

     

    Ferde Rombola

  • Guest

    Winslow,

    Why is it absurd to state that if one does not support the right for an unborn child to be safe, free, educated; to have health care, to a home, a job and a family, that one cannot possibly understand these rights for those who have "escaped" their mother's wombs?

    In Christ,

    Remember, the Sun is always shining!

  • Guest

    First, saying that makes an assumption that can't be proven and can easily be disproven.  The assumption is abortion supporters are ignorant of what they support.  They are not.  They know exactly what they're doing; second, abortion is not the only social issue on the Church's docket; third, we're dealing with politicians who are, among other things, sworn to uphold the Constitution.  The right to procure an abortion is protected by the Constitution.

    Yes, I think that's absurd, too, but it's there.  We don't have to deal with it, but politicians do.  Some use it as an excuse.  Some ignore it and vote against the right. Others take money from Planned Parenthood an NARAL and pay them pack.  Politics is a dirty business.  Making dumb statements like the one Fr. Pavene makes isn't going to change anything and will achieve nothing but make pro-life people seem ignorant and irratioinal.

    Fr. Pavone has made it a habit to slam Democtats on this issue and just about demand that Catholics vote for Republicans.  It's a fact most Republicans support abortion rights.  They use the issue to win elections, but where the rubber meets the road, they know most abortions happen in inner city ghettos.  They know criminalizing abortion will drastically ramp up the welfare rolls and they'd rather give up their free lunches than see that happen.  Fr. Pavone would do better to be a priest instead of a political hack and do more to promote abstinance instead of Republicans.

    How would you (and he) propose we feed, clothe, shelter and provide health care for the newly born millions that would be left on the government's and Church's doorstep when the abortion laws are changed?

    I hate bringing things like that up on the eve of our Savior's birth, but you asked me.  (-;

     

    Peace

  • Guest

    Winslow,

    Our Lord was born into this world many years ago to bring Light into it. I do not believe He has a problem with shedding that Light always.

    You wrote: First, saying that makes an assumption that can't be proven and can easily be disproven. 

    You have done neither in your post.

    You wrote: The assumption is abortion supporters are ignorant of what they support.  They are not. 

    Really, please provide a quote from an abortion supporter that calls it murder. One must remember what the definition of ignorant is.

    Now, if you would like to say that some supporters do so ignorantly, thinking that it will keep overall costs of providing for the poor down, I would agree with you. 

    Did you happen to read again what you wrote? I can't help but find irony in your last two statements. Can you?

    You wrote: How would you (and he) propose we feed, clothe, shelter and provide health care for the newly born millions that would be left on the government's and Church's doorstep when the abortion laws are changed?

    I hate bringing things like that up on the eve of our Savior's birth, but you asked me. 

    I could easily say we will "feed" them the Truth and see how they grow and prosper with a steady diet of love, chastity and understanding vs. lip service, sexualization and free birth control, but I know you want an answer with substance so I can not help you as you are blinded by "reality".

    Finally, to your post, you wrote: they know most abortions happen in inner city ghettos. 

    I would proffer that the inner city ghettos, while being under the scourge of abortion, is the place where life finds its greatest value. It is because the poor have rejected death as an answer to their embracing the message of the popular media, educational curriculums and various denominational "churches" that they are to, at any age, fulfill and exploit their sexuality, that the "welfare rolls" and abortion has not decreased but increased exponentially.

    Really, man, have you researched the parallel progression of contraception and abortion? Do you really believe that it is going to get better if we can just provide these for the "woefully ignorant" poor? People are only concerned with what will happen now, not how we got here. It has been an indoctrination allowed by the ignorant in the face of prophecy by Paul VI, our venerable brother in Christ, and promulgater of Humanae Vitae. 

    [Tongue in cheek] I hate bringing things like this up on the eve of Jesus' birth, but I have heard your argument before.

     :o{

    In Christ,

    Remember, the Sun is always shining!

  • Guest

    God loves you .

    Hey, why don’t we form labor camps and ship the inner-city ne’er-do-wells to them – and, whoa, why can’t we gas the ones who will not be able to work?

    And, while we purge public welfare rolls – best done with jobs, but what the heck – we can hold that looming Social Security debacle at bay with using off-hours at the gas chambers for those old, used-up, useless eaters.

    Why stop at murdering the unborn? After all, they aren’t eating up our finances – yet. We just may have heaps of folks – maybe, those on Medicare who use the hospital in-patient facilities the third time in a year? Maybe, even those on private insurance rolls, reducing every third-party payer’s need for covering them to the tune of higher premiums.

    Any variously handicapped (read: unproductive useless eaters) persons – out they go . . .

    Alzheimer’s victims, the old and demented – out, out!

    And – homeless – get rid of them . . .

    And . . .

    My thought process above – impractical and unjust – is simply logical outcome that Pope Paul VI foresaw three decades ago.

    There is no permanent Constitutional security – and hence no use for any other right or privilege or welfare support or on and on, not even the right to worship as we will – if the right to life is abrogated.

    DUH!

    Remember, I love you, too .

    In our delighted glory in our Infant King,

    Pristinus Sapienter

    (wljewell @catholicexchange.com or … yahoo.com)

  • Guest

    The last two posts have taken this thread completely off the rails and I will not respond to arguments I didn't make. 

    God bless us all.

  • Guest

    Winslow,

    I find your last comment strange. I addressed exactly what you wrote. If you feel that the arguments you did present are someone else's, then maybe you should not have done so.

    In Christ,

    Remember, the Sun is always shining!

  • Guest

    God loves you .

    I beg your pardon?

    Winslow, sir, with all due respect, my last post refered precisely to where any lack of protections for very life leads – in support of Father Pavone’s argument.

    If the gist of it has an all-too-familiar reek – WELL . . . I repeat . . .

    DUH!

    Remember, I love you, too .

    In our delighted glory in our Infant King,

    Pristinus Sapienter

    (wljewell @catholicexchange.com or … yahoo.com)

  • Guest

    winslow,

    I do not regard the position as an assumption. I think of it this way:

    Our God-given, inalienable rights to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are cited in that order for a reason. 

    Our right to pursue happiness is subordinate to our right to liberty – if one condones human slavery, then one's defense of rights ordered to pursuing happiness are tainted; disordered; suspect.  The US Civil War was about that very thing.

    Likewise, our light to liberty is subordinate to our right to life — if one condones abortion and euthanasia, then one's defense of rights ordered to liberty and pursuing happiness are tainted; disordered; suspect.

  • Guest

    God loves you .

    Précisément, exactement et justement, Monsieur La Roche.

    Remember, I love you, too .

    In our delighted glory in our Infant King,

    Pristinus Sapienter

    (wljewell @catholicexchange.com or … yahoo.com)

  • Guest

    Here's what I wrote:

     

    <<When a candidate for public office is wrong on abortion, he or she cannot be right on the other issues."

     

    That's absurd.  I agree with you about the abortion issue, Fr. Pavone, but sometimes your rhetoric is completely off the wall.  Which is why I stopped send $$ to Priests for Life.>>>

     

    And now all of you are arguing the 'right-to-life' issue with me and/or making ridiculous arguments in a feeble attempt to support Fr. Pavone's absurd remark.  Like the following from Brother Warren: 

     

    <<Hey, why don't we form labor camps and ship the inner-city ne'er-do-wells to them – and, whoa, why can’t we gas the ones who will not be able to work?

    And, while we purge public welfare rolls – best done with jobs, but what the heck – we can hold that looming Social Security debacle at bay with using off-hours at the gas chambers for those old, used-up, useless eaters.>>>

     

    Okay, Warren.  Put your money where your mouth is.  You said the lack of support for life leads to the litany of alleged results you posted.  Abortion has been legal in this country for many years.  Please show me where any of your predictions have come to pass.  And, BTW, none of what you wrote supports Fr. Pavone's statement.

     

    From PTR:

     

    <<if one condones abortion and euthanasia, then one's defense of rights ordered to liberty and pursuing happiness are tainted; disordered; suspect.>>>

     

    That's an opinion.  An unsupported opinion.  You have gone from  Fr. Pavone's *cannot* be right on other issues to 'tainted, disordered and suspect.'  Are we hedging?  Your opinion needs proof.

     

    I defy any of you to PROVE abortion supporters are not and cannot be right on other issues.  Or even that their positions are 'tainted.'  Bear in mind. 'other issues' means ALL other issues before them.   

     

    From David:

     

    <<You wrote: The assumption is abortion supporters are ignorant of what they support.  They are not. 

    Really, please provide a quote from an abortion supporter that calls it murder. One must remember what the definition of ignorant is.>>>

     

    You beg the question.  'Murder' is a legal term with legal implications. You and I agree abortion is murder.  The law of the land doesn't agree.  The law says it's legal.  Abortion supporters don't call it murder because, in this country, it isn't murder.

    Believe me, abortion supporters know abortion is the ending of a human life.  They know partial-birth abortion is killing a baby.  If you think they're ignorant of those facts you need to prove it.  Just saying so doesn't cut it.

     

    Finally, I said I agreed with Fr. Pavone about abortion.  Did that register with any of you? 

    I said I thought his remark is absurd.  I say it again.

     

    Peace

  • Guest

    Winslow,

    Main Entry:
    ig·no·rant 
    Pronunciation:
    \?ig-n(?-)r?nt\
    Function:
    adjective
    Date:
    14th century
    1 a: destitute of knowledge or education <an ignorant society>; also : lacking knowledge or comprehension of the thing specified <parents ignorant of modern mathematics> b: resulting from or showing lack of knowledge or intelligence <ignorant errors>
    ———————————————————————
    Would you say that abortion supporters understand that what they are promoting is murder or that they see it as a right of a women to do with her body as she will? Would you say that during the groundswell of support for abortion during and after the Roe v Wade decision that the majority of people comprehended that it was indeed human life. Listen, man, that has been the question that was never answered and still hasn't been. To me that's ignorance. What do you call it?
    In Christ,

    Remember, the Sun is always shining!

  • Guest

    God loves you .

    As Father Pavone is already supported by Humanae Vitae, my pointing at what frankly are logical outcomes in a deathly absurd culture can come to pass. Simply, if life is cheap, all its forms are subject to appraisal and elimination. And, no other right holds much water.

    ONE: Euthanasia is just over the ‘too many Boomers’ horizon – it will settle the Soc. Sec. funds thing quite nicely. If babies, why not those old, useless things? (Hint: hold a job. Work yourself to death.)

    TWO: They are already talking about rationing not only Medicare, but vets benefits and Medicaid, too. Next step: use it too much, no more service.

    THREE: Though many are resistant to euthanizing the dementia/Alzheimer victims, couple their increased numbers in the future with rationed medical services, and ‘just put him to sleep’ sounds SO compassionate – to and for his survivors who won’t want the burden of housing, caring for, etc., him because he no longer has institutional benefits.

    The following bear repeating: These are “simply logical outcome that Pope Paul VI foresaw three decades ago.

    Where there is no security for the life right, if that right to life is abrogated: “There is no permanent Constitutional security – and hence no use for any other right or privilege or welfare support or on and on, not even the right to worship as we will.”

    If that does not support Father Pavone’s contentions, I cannot say what will. Worse – why do you seem to have a thing about (against) Father Pavone? And, indeed, about his defenders?

    And, David, about abortion many are invulnerably (of their added ‘choice’) ignorant.

    Remember, I love you, too .

    In our delighted glory in our Infant King,

    Pristinus Sapienter

    (wljewell @catholicexchange.com or … yahoo.com)

  • Guest

    "…In the tender compassion of our God the dawn from on high shall break upon us, to shine on those who dwell in darkness and the shadow of death and to guide us in the way of peace"

     

    Dear friends, I have said all I wish to say on this subject and have no reason to change a word of it.  I bid you a happy and a holy Christmas.  God bless you.

  • Guest

    Winslow,

    You said,

    How would you (and he) propose we feed, clothe, shelter and provide health care for the newly born millions that would be left on the government's and Church's doorstep when the abortion laws are changed?

    That's what you said!

    In Christ,

    Remember, the Sun is always shining!

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