Lynn v. Sekulow

Lynn v. Sekulow


Congrats, Not Criticism, for the Catholic Church

posted by Jay Sekulow

There’s nothing wrong with the Catholic Church – or other churches – addressing the issue of abortion.  As you know, this country has a rich and welcomed history of turning to churches and houses of worship during the debate of the great moral issues of the day.  Let’s not forget the calls to action – to end slavery – and the powerful voices raised during the civil rights movement. 

 

Consider the call to action from the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. at Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta in 1965.  These were his words: “Legislation, executive orders, or judicial decrees will have to control the external effects of bad internal attitudes. Therefore, if we are to realize the American dream, we must continue to work through legislation. So it is necessary for Congress to pass meaningful legislation.”

 

That’s exactly what the Catholic Church did with its strong support of the Stupak/Pitts Amendment, which prohibits federal funding of abortion in health care.  The Catholic Church should be congratulated, not criticized, for standing-up for the life of the unborn.  We heard from nearly 170,000 Americans – including many Catholics to be sure – who wanted a guarantee that the House health bill would prohibit the use of federal funds for abortions.

 

Barry, would you have criticized the Catholic Church if it had OPPOSED the Stupak/Pitts Amendment and it failed to clear the House?

Let the church speak out.  Don’t stifle free speech.  Religious leaders not only have a constitutional right to address the moral issues of the day – many believe they have a responsibility to do so.  And, if church members don’t agree with the position of the church, they can take it up with church leadership.  That’s always the way it’s worked.

 

Quite frankly, the church needs the ability to speak out more clearly – more forcefully – especially in the political realm.  The IRS restrictions on churches and non-profit organizations in the context of political campaigns need to go.  The fact is the law barring tax-exempt groups – including churches – from participating in political activity or face the loss of tax-exempt status has politically-motivated origins.

 

In 1954, then-Senator Lyndon B. Johnson sought political retribution against an opponent who was assisted in his campaign by two non-profit organizations.  LBJ pushed a little-known amendment that became law that essentially appointed the IRS as the ‘speech police’ for churches and non-profits.  It’s an issue we’ve debated here before and one that I’m sure we will revisit.

 

I am not surprised that you will be working to strip the pro-life language from the Senate bill.  You might not be surprised to learn that we will engage this issue, too, and work just as diligently to ensure that the pro-life remains in place.

 

With the Senate Majority Leader trying to fast-track health care with a promise to bring his package to the Senate floor next week, lawmakers are staking out their positions.  Sen. Ben Nelson of Nebraska says he won’t support any health care bill unless it includes pro-life guarantees. 

 

And, Congressman Bart Stupak, co-author of the House-passed pro-life Amendment, is working with colleagues in the Senate to keep the language in place.  

 

Barry, you want more regulation – this time aimed at lobbying done by religious organizations.  I want more free speech. Let the churches and their leaders engage the moral issues in both the legislative and political arenas.

 

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Joe Murray - Executive Director Rainbow Sash Movement

posted November 13, 2009 at 1:23 pm


I think what is worrisome to a lot of Catholics, and that includes many of our more moderate Bishops, is the word abortion is quickly becoming a code to mean political, and not pro life.
Understanding the Catholic mentality may be difficult for many outside of the Church. But our tradition teaches while we are to be in the world we should not be part of the world. Jesus has always recognized there were just and unjust laws, but they were not to be the solutions. The solution laid in making hearts of stone into hearts of flesh.
Even within the Catholic Church there is a debate about the consistent ethic of life as proposed by the late Cardinal Joseph Bernadine.
I think it worries many in the pews that our focus is being removed from the many problems in our own parishes. Our priest shortage, the closing of many of our parishes, the lose of many faithful Catholics are of equal importance as political influence.
If we are a people who really believe in the consistent life ethic it must transcend the various stages of life. Yet, we must also understand there is a difference between the ideal and the reality many of us live in.
If the Church’s leadership is really promoting the values of the Gospel it will be recognized, if the Bishops have another agenda that will also be recognized. It is the Holy Spirit not the Congress or even the Constitution that will guide us in this matter.



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LindaJoy

posted November 13, 2009 at 3:38 pm


Hold on, Jay. Note that MLK made his pitch from his church. According to the newspapers, the Catholic Bishops Conference reps were called into a late Friday night negotiation with Democratic leaders of the House and un-named White House officials. In my book, all three entities were violating church/state. I left a message on Pelosi’s call center, the White House, both on the phone and in writing to protest. I also emailed AU, FFRF, and the Secular Coalition suggesting letters of protest. It’s one thing for the Bishops to make a public statement of their views. It’s quite another to meet behind closed doors and negotiate government legislation and policy.



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N. Lindzee Lindholm

posted November 14, 2009 at 12:36 am


The speech police must go. I have never completely understand why clergies’ speech is curtailed just because of the doctrine of separation of church and state. Free speech rights should be supreme and outweigh the heavy burden Establishment Clause when the two principles conflict.



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LindaJoy

posted November 14, 2009 at 9:39 am


Tell you what, N. Lindholm- when churches stop taking government tax deductions and faith based grants in order to survive, then they have all the free speech they want.



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interpreter

posted November 14, 2009 at 12:18 pm


I agree with the OP. Congrats to the Catholic Church and many other Churches.



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DSJulian

posted November 14, 2009 at 4:30 pm


Jay –
45000+ people a year are dying from lack of adequate health care while you continue to misrepresent yourself and your clients as “pro-life”.
When are you going to acknowledge that God aborts (miscarries) 10 times more babies each year than all the Planned Parenthood clinics put together? If a fetus is a human being, that makes Almighty God the biggest mass-murderer in history — and your lame, so-called “pro-life” anti-abortion position a gigantic hoax. And when are you going to realize that you are a shill for the GOP Republican Party of NO?



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Appalachian Prof

posted November 15, 2009 at 5:02 pm


“When are you going to acknowledge that God aborts (miscarries) 10 times more babies each year than all the Planned Parenthood clinics put together? If a fetus is a human being, that makes Almighty God the biggest mass-murderer in history…”
God does not “abort,” any more than he “gives” you a fever or makes you rich. Do you believe in God, anyway? If you do, and this is the actual God you believe in, you should know that this God to which you ascribe such total interference in and control over our affairs does not exist in any religion. He’s your made-up straw God, a very convenient demon to drag out for the sake of justifying the drawing and quartering of a very small human being. Lousy theology, worse philosophy, total, invincible ignorance.
It makes perfect sense, actually, the more I think of it. This god is the bloodthirsty demon of total sexual freedom (especially for the perpetually adolescent males we’re now afflicted with) who demands bloody human sacrifice. How noble of Planned Parenthood to provide this service.
This god is not God, and abortion is not health care. And there are plenty of us who are against the drawing and quartering of small human beings who WANT THE PUBLIC OPTION AND WANT HEALTH CARE FOR ALL.
But abortion is not that. And when the mother’s life is in danger from her unborn child (a super-rare event, but to hear pro-choicers it happens every day on every block), the Catholic Church has what’s called the principle of double effect, which it has always taught, and that is that while the death of the unborn child might not be intended, but rather come about as the unintended effect of an action to save the mother’s life, that it is not just permitted, but indeed, mandatory, to save the mother’s life.
So stow the nonsense about “health care” and the “hypocrisy” of pro-life people, who do far more to help pregnant women than those who just offer to kill the kid. Various pro-choicers I have seen bloviating their positions on the internet are so incredibly ignorant and uneducated not only about theology, philosophy and history, but also about anthropology, embryology, anatomy, physiology, chemistry,and neurology, that it makes one’s head spin with rage. It may not be polite, it may not be courteous, but it’s got to be said: this particular opinion is just. plain. stupid.



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Boris

posted November 15, 2009 at 6:10 pm


Theology? Theology isn’t even a subject.



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Rich

posted November 15, 2009 at 10:09 pm


Appalachian Prof,
My advice to you would be to never include the word ‘bloviate’ in your writings, unless you are trying to be humorously ironic. Truthfully, I didn’t figure you for having a sense of humor.



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Boris

posted November 16, 2009 at 10:11 am


The uneducated people are the anti-choice fascists most of who also deny almost every major scientific theory there is. Why do we not round these people up and put them in the mental institutions they belong in?



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Mere_Christian

posted November 16, 2009 at 12:15 pm


NO!!!!
Abortion as a birth control technique.
NO!!!!
To encouraging sexual promiscuity that can be supported with abortion as a means of contraception.
NO!!!!
For this socialism driven by the shills of the Democrat party to implement their desires to sexualize our youth down to pre-school.
YES, YES and YES to the party of NO!!!!
Like a good mother or father, the power of “NO” is one of loving and caring.



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Your Name

posted November 16, 2009 at 8:38 pm


People are people. That is it. As for others who wish to confuse that, that would be a lie. For you did not come from a t.v. set or a radio station. You came from a sperm and an egg merging into one, and becoming you.
Cara Floyd



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Boris

posted November 16, 2009 at 9:30 pm


Mere Christian,
For what purpose exactly do shills of the Democrat party want to implement their desires to sexualize our youth down to pre-school. Are they taking orders from Satan perhaps? Are you sure you’re not confusing these people with Catholic priests and bishops?



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Mr. Incredible

posted December 5, 2009 at 11:02 am


LindaJoy
November 14, 2009 9:39 AM
Tell you what, N. Lindholm- when churches stop taking government tax deductions and faith based grants in order to survive, then they have all the free speech they want.
——————————————–
Soooo, you would also say that those on welfare can have all the free speech they want when they get off welfare. Ok. We understand now.



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Mr. Incredible

posted December 5, 2009 at 11:07 am


DSJulian
November 14, 2009 4:30 PM
When are you going to acknowledge that God aborts (miscarries)…
——————————————
I acknowledge that He doesn’t.
DSJulian
November 14, 2009 4:30 PM
And when are you going to realize that you are a shill for the GOP Republican Party of NO?
——————————————–
Don’t have-ta realize what is untrue.



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