US Catholic Bishops and Abortion - Part 4
Keep in mind that this thread focuses on one strategy for reducing or eliminating abortion. If one listed the top ten political strategies that would be most effective, arguably, one's POTUS vote would be somewhere on that list, higher for one who lives in a swing state, for example. In addition to political strategies, there are legislative and judicial initiatives, at local, state and federal levels. One might easily make a top ten list of these, including ballot initiatives and constitutional amendments. One could make top ten lists for finincial, ecclesial, social, economic, cultural, educational, familial and personal strategies. One could then rank all of these into a 'Top 50 most likely to be effective' and then people collectively and individually could direct and redirect time, money and other resources in those directions. Passion is commendable. I deeply appreciate the passion expressed here. At the same time, for almost 40 years, it seems to me that too much passion and too many resources have been misdirected on the least effective strategies. Rhetoric has truly trumped results. Raising the level of the conversation is one strategy; thanks to all who thus contribute. There is realism, for sure. And the invitation to steer one's passions in a way that could effect real change. Presenting the notion that there are many strategies available does not mean that they are mutually exclusive. It doesn't mean voting is not important. It is to suggest, however, that single-issue voting, bumper stickers, yard signs and little white crosses, however necessary one might imagine they are, are WOEFULLY INSUFFICIENT. It also means that, because we are dealing in the realm of prudential judgment, that a state department, defense department and executive branch filled with neoconservative hawks would be FAR MORE LIKELY to engage unilateral military action with insufficient intelligence possibly setting off a regional or even world war and a self-described pro-life POTUS would be FAR LESS LIKELY to effectively change the legal realities surrounding abortion. An Ayn Rand-inspired, radical economic libertarian would be FAR MORE LIKELY to frustrate the social justice aims of the Bishops and FAR LESS LIKELY to effectively advance the Bishops' abortion-related agenda.
This realism is an invitation to MAKE A DIFFERENCE on other PRO-LIFE agenda items rather than to be INEFFECTIVE ON ALL of them! The Grand Old Party has cynically manipulated evangelicals and conservative catholics for decades, giving them little in exchange for their votes. Many of the Bishops do a great job of weighing the relative moral gravity of the Seamless Garment of Life issues but they have done an awful job of explaining the importance of the practical outcomes of political and legal strategies. We know that the GOP is going to rend our political tunic on abortion, but I'm holding on to the rest of my seamless garment rather than turning it over to some naked emperor, who has a neocon foreign policy and social justice policy crafted by Ayn Rand.