Largely lost in the escalating war of mud-slinging which is masquerading as our quadrennial campaign for President, is the full-court press that some churches are making to persuade their congregants to vote against pro-choice candidates.
And no church seems as hell-bent on making abortion the single issue as much as the Catholic Church.
Despite Americans overwhelming concern for the deepening financial crisis, the rapidly deteriorating health care system, and wars in both Iraq and Afghanistan, the Catholic Church wants you to focus on abortion - specifically they want you to focus on punishing any and all candidates who have the courage to support a woman's decision about whether or not to become a parent.
And they want you to be as harsh as possible.
In Scranton, Pa., childhood home of Sen. Joe Biden, every Catholic attending Mass this weekend heard a sermon about the election. Bishop Joseph Martino ordered every priest in the diocese to read a letter warning that voting for a supporter of abortion rights amounts to endorsing “homicide.”
As The New York Times reports, Martino went on to say, “Being ‘right’ on taxes, education, health care, immigration and the economy fails to make up for the error of disregarding the value of a human life,” the bishop wrote. “It is a tragic irony that ‘pro-choice’ candidates have come to support homicide — the gravest injustice a society can tolerate — in the name of ‘social justice.’ ”
And how about Archbishop Raymond L. Burke of Boston saying Democrats were becoming “the party of death."
Guess he doesn't have a problem with Republican support for the death penalty.
Last week, The St. Louis Post-Dispatch reported that the head of the A.F.L.-C.I.O. in Missouri had stormed out of a Mass because his priest had invoked Hitler's s name in condemning Democratic support for abortion rights. (The New York Times)
This is nothing more, nor nothing less, than preaching the politics of hate from the pulpit.
In a presidential campaign that will surely go down as one of the country's dirtiest ever waged by the GOP, it's nauseating to see one of the mainstays of Christian religion in this country resort to a "slash & burn" partisan political policy.
Would it not be more welcome if the Church's concern was about the health and welfare of women in this country. Would it not be more in keeping with spiritual belief to be accepting of attempts to help women prevent unintended pregnancies?
That's why Planned Parenthood does more to prevent unintended pregnancies in one day than the Catholic Church has in 2000 years.