Tom Hoopes is Vice President of College Relations and writer in residence at Benedictine College in Atchison, Kansas. He has written for the Register for more than 20 years and was its executive editor for 10. His writing has appeared in First Things’ First Thoughts, National Review Online, Crisis, Our Sunday Visitor, Inside Catholic and Columbia. He has served as press secretary for the Chairman of the U.S. House Ways & Means Committee. He and his wife, April, were editorial co-directors of Faith & Family magazine for 5 years. They have nine children.
It falls to Christians once again to defend the fundamental beliefs and highest aspirations of mankind. After all, we believe in principles that are losing adherents by the day. A top 10:
10. Individual freedom of religion. We still believe in the conscience rights of everyone. And we include: Anti-porn librarians, Catholic teachers, pro-life health care workers, pro-marriage adoption agencies, Christmas-loving state workers, prayer warrior students in assemblies, etc.
9. Respecting the handicapped. We believe that handicapped people — even those with Down Syndrome — ought to be allowed to be born. And that those in a coma should be protected from being offed.
8. Nuremburg standards. We believe you shouldn’t do science experiments on human beings. Even embryos in labs — like the one who was rescued, named Erin, shown here.
7. Institutional freedom of religion. We believe that the government shouldn’t interfere with what clergy say. Even if it’s about the government.
6. Freedom of speech. We believe you should have the right to responsible protest. Even against the abortion industry. Even near an abortion clinic’s entrance.
5. Decency standards. We kind of think it’s a bad idea for kids to have virtually unlimited access to smut. In fact, it’s not a great situation for most adult males, either.
4. Sex is for marriage. In a nation where 1 in 4 young women have a sexually transmitted disease, this is clearly an unpopular belief — and clearly one we need to reconsider.
3. The Universal Declaration of Human Rights. Opponents want to change the bits about the right to life, marriage being for men and women, the importance of the family, the importance of motherhood, and the right to choice in education. We like it as it is.
2. The Declaration of Independence. We hold it to be, well, self-evident that people really are endowed by their Creator with inalienable rights. And we believe that among them is the right to life.
1. Democracy. Opponents want unelected judges to decide what marriage is. We think the people can handle even that.
— Tom Hoopes