January 31, 2009
Obama and The Culture of death
"...it cannot be denied that such a culture of death, taken as a whole, betrays a completely individualistic concept of freedom, which ends up by becoming the freedom of "the strong" against the weak who have no choice but to submit".
John Paul II ,1995
"For too long, international family planning assistance has been used as a political wedge issue, the subject of a back and forth debate that has served only to divide us ... I have no desire to continue this stale and fruitless debate."
Barack Obama, 2009
After hearing Barack Obama's words in defense of his decision to rescind a ban which prohibited the giving of federal money to international groups that perform or provide information on abortions, both pro-choice and pro-life groups should know who it was in his inaugural address that he was referring to when he spoke of those who for too long have been holding on to "petty grievances" and "worn out dogmas".
As is to be expected from those who have tried to defend the indefensible, upholding this policy requires one to be steeped in what for decades has been the pro-choice movement's preferred vernacular. John Paul II exposed this Orwellian double-speak in his 1995 encyclical The Gospel of Life when he spoke of the "innocuous medical terms which distract attention from the fact that what is involved is the right to life of an actual human person". Obama's intercession on behalf of his very supportive pro-choice contingency is also further clarification of where he has always stood when it comes to the abortion issue.
By Obama's own reckoning, the heroic efforts of those who have bravely stood in defense of innocent human life in the womb -- and long endured ridicule from the press for their dissenting views -- have been reduced to nothing more than pointless efforts to engage in what is ultimately a "stale and fruitless debate". The unimaginable grief and discord this issue has wrought upon countless lives and relationships at home and abroad have been reduced to nothing more than "petty grievances". The devout religious convictions of those who have nurtured an abiding compassion and unwavering fidelity to the fundamental principle that every human life is endowed with inviolable dignity and inestimable worth by the creator of all life, barely rise to the status of "worn out dogmas".
With the magic stroke of his executive pen, Obama has declared his intentions that no ground will be given and no prisoners spared.
Yet he appears strangely confident that his decision will serve as a catalyst for reconciliation between two fiercely opposing sides.
But the fact that he expects only one side, namely pro-life advocates, to either stop voicing their resistance altogether, or assume sole responsibility for paving a viable forum for civil discourse with their adversaries, reflects the extreme contempt with which he regards those who do not hold to his worldview. His expectations of extinguishing any further debate on the issue by signing back into law a measure that literally forces the opposition to subsidize that which they have historically repudiated signals an appalling kind of arrogance from a man who presumably covets the mantle of unifier.
Obama's cavalier dismissal of the enduring national discussion on abortion as a trifling wedge issue that has only helped to create an interminable polemic between two irreconcilable extremes also reveals a glaring indifference and profound disrespect of those who stand for the protection of innocent human life. It may behoove him to remember that what he and his supporters view as a fundamental right of every woman often involves the arbitrary destruction of that which science has universally recognized as a human life. For those in the pro-life movement, it is recognition of the utter vulnerability and supreme innocence of that life which fuels and sustains their dedication to a perpetual stance in its defense.
In light of this unprovoked, but not wholly unexpected offensive, pro-life advocates should remain fiercely captive to their convictions. They should welcome this militant ploy to frustrate their honorable efforts as an opportunity to find renewed strength, and rekindle the flame of commitment to their cause. They should continue unabated in exposing the silent genocide that has been taking place for decades in this country against the most vulnerable members of society, as they also lay bare the myriad fabrications that have been advanced by those from the pro-death camp -- later exposed by even some of its own proponents -- in defense of their misguided cause.
They must, in short, make clear to President Barack Obama, that if he believes his decision will magically engender harmony between those who have never sought any compromise, and those who rightfully view the killing of innocent human life in any civilized society as an intolerable state of affairs, then he is in for a very rude awakening.
But above all, they must pray for success, since our very democracy hinges upon their unqualified victory in this epic struggle against the culture of death.
Since every other human right is necessarily derivative of that most fundamental of all rights which necessarily precludes their practice: the right to life; it follows that any violations of this right would eventually encourage further violations of every other human right for which we claim to stand. No true democracy can long survive in which its most vulnerable citizens are denied, no less by those who are supposed to be its trusted custodians, protection of that right through which only thereby any other freedoms can be exercised.