National Catholic Register

Opinion

Letters 08.12.12

BY The Editors

August 12-25, 2012 Issue | Posted 8/7/12 at 1:03 PM

 

True Charity

Reflecting upon the May 20 Register and Rep. Paul Ryan’s “Applying Our Enduring Truths to Our Defining Challenge” (In Depth), I would argue that the vast majority of charity should come from us, not the government.
The government is spending money it doesn’t have. The debt is so large that we have already impoverished the future generation. Even if we took all of the top 1%’s money, it would not cover the debt. By supporting spending like this, we are stealing from future generations.
Secondly, when the government provides “charity,” people see it as getting what is coming to them. Multiple people have told me that they were not going to look for a job until they were close to the end of their unemployment benefits, because, after all, it was due them.
Also, a person I know was instructed by the government to not accept a lesser-paying job that was available because if he lost that job his unemployment check would be less next time. Government charity encourages sloth in would-be givers as well.
Charity becomes the government’s job: I don’t need to feed the hungry, shelter the homeless, clothe the naked or give drink to the thirsty because there are government programs for that. We are robbed of the opportunity to become Christlike in meeting our neighbors’ needs.
Also, when government provides charity, it is wasteful. School workers have informed me that free-lunch programs give out lunches to the needy and the not-needy alike, so as not to stigmatize anyone.
These needy and not-so-needy students then turn around and fill the trash cans with unopened milk cartons, fresh fruit and vegetables that the law requires them to take but that they don’t want. We could feed the actual starving world with this waste.
Charity needs to return to us — family, friends and neighbors. We need to give.
We are impoverished when government provides charity. When those in need receive from us instead of the government, their attitude changes.
They develop self-reliance, initiative and gratitude and feel loved.
When charity comes from us, we grow Christlike and grow in the ability to see others’ needs and respond.
The government-provided hammock needs to be trimmed back to a safety net, so that we can all grow in virtue, grow to be like Christ. 
 

Lisa McLeod
Escondido, California

False Claim

Regarding “HHS-Religious Freedom Battle Yields Unexpected Rewards” (April 5, NCRegister.com) and “Silver Lining to HHS Mandate” (page one, April 22 issue):
Calling the Church’s opposition to the HHS contraception mandate a “war on women” is a false claim created by the liberal media and the current administration as a way to divide women and the community.
The majority of American women are much too intelligent to accept their plan.
What began as a debate regarding the government demanding the Catholic Church pay for and furnish contraceptives to women who are covered under the Church’s health insurance suddenly became a bogus argument which the administration calls a “war on women.”
Whether a majority of Catholic women of child-bearing age do or do not use contraceptives is not part of the debate.
The fact is that the prescribed doctrine of the Catholic Church forbids the use of contraceptives — and this doctrine is well known throughout Catholic congregations.
The real war is the government’s attempt to ignore and overrule Amendment I of the Constitution, which states: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof” — the administration is attempting to prohibit the free exercise of the Catholic Church and its established doctrine regarding contraceptives.
The real “war on women” has been in existence since 1973, when the U.S. Supreme Court created Roe v. Wade, a “law” declaring abortion legal.
This war is waged against women and their unborn children, both male and female.
Abortion is the authentic “war on women” and is promoted by President Obama and his entire administration. Their advocacy for Planned Parenthood, the largest abortion supplier in the world, has continued without interruption since the beginning of his administration. This organization reports hundreds of thousands of abortions performed each year.
 

Mabel Ryan
Ocala, Florida


Real War on Women

Now that Obama’s “war on women” has been unmasked for what it is, a campaign strategy, maybe we can focus on the real war that women face under President Obama’s leadership.
What we know: Roughly 50% of babies born each year in the U.S. are female. Consequently, we can conclude that 50% — or 600,000 — of the 1.2 million fetuses known to be killed each year via abortion in the U.S. are female.
We may disagree with Obama on the number of jobs he has created during his first three years, but there is no arguing that he has presided over the elimination of 1.8 million female babies during that period.
This is a “final solution” for those females who would have someday taken their place in God’s world. For those who bought into the “war on women,” where is your outrage?
On his third day in office, Obama signed an executive order reversing the ban that prohibited funding to international family-planning groups providing abortions (the Mexico City Policy).
This order released hundreds of thousands of dollars to international family-planning groups.
 

Jim Flynn
Centerville, Ohio

Cringe-Inducing Photos

Several months ago, we wrote a letter saying that we did not like the huge picture of President Obama on the front page of your paper.
We are writing again to object to the huge picture of Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon on the front page of your May 20 edition.
The Register does not need to show large pictures of pro-abortion people on the front page.
We love your paper, but the pictures of pro-abortionists displayed on the front page makes us cringe.
 

Al and Polly Knauf
Wheaton, Illinois

Forced Sterilizations

Forced sterilizations are in the news. North Carolina has just begun making amends to its 7,600 citizens “whose rights were trampled upon” by a particularly open-ended program that allowed doctors and social workers to refer citizens living at home to the state Eugenics Board. It has begun compensating each violated citizen $50,000.
The Register reports on an even more disturbing, and current, program (“Foreign Aid Tied to Sterilization in India,” May 20 issue).
These forced sterilizations are simply nauseating. “Motivators” recruit women of low caste, who are laid out on school desks, delivered anesthesia by untrained staff, and operated on by a government “doctor,” who “worked at night by the light of a flashlight.”
A human-rights advocate there says, “I tell you they treat them not as human beings, but as cattle or goats. They just cut and take out veins. They were bleeding profusely. It is butchery.”
Nearly unbelievable is the fact that these sterilizations are being done now in India, not in some prehistoric period, and they are supported by U.S. foreign aid — our tax dollars at work for the Obama administration.
Another recent report, from a most unexpected source, may be even more pitiful and scandalous than what was done in the past in North Carolina or is currently being done in India.
The August 2010 Linacre Quarterly contains an article by a self-described social worker and staff “ethicist” for the National Catholic Bioethics Center endorsing the sterilization, an intrinsic evil, of the disabled. The publication is the official journal of the Catholic Medical Association (CMA).
Ironically, the same edition of the Register contains an editorial urging that Catholic identity be restored to our once faithful universities with “a kind of courageous leadership that is needed to reverse the forces of secularization and institutional decay.”
Perhaps a healthy dose of this same medicine could be found for the CMA as well.
 

A. Patrick Schneider II, MD, MPH
Lexington, Kentucky

Editor’s note: The mere fact that the article appeared in the Linacre Quarterly doesn’t mean it reflects the position of the Catholic Medical Association. The article was republished to allow for ethical reflection. In fact, the same issue featured an article critical of the position cited here.

DNA Evidence

Regarding “Humanae Vitae, the Priest and the HHS Mandate” (In Depth, May 6):
Humanae Vitae foretold the evils that would follow the use of contraceptives to regulate births, but no one realized the vast number of lives that would be lost — even here, where life was “protected” by our Constitution.
Roe v. Wade unleashed this devastation in 1973, and it continues until the present time. But Roe v. Wade should be illegal. The justice who commented on it at the time said, “If we could determine when life begins, then (it would be undone).”
But science says life begins at conception — whether in a petri dish or in the mother’s body. When cells grow and divide, there is life.
With the examination of DNA, we can also know if that life is plant, animal or human. Therefore, we do know that a new human life has begun, as the DNA is different from the mother (not part of her body) and indeed human — because the DNA says so.
At the point that DNA evidence became admissible in our courts, Roe v. Wade was nullified.
 

Grace Harman
Columbus, Ohio