You Wouldn't Even Ask
-- Fr. Frank Pavone
National Director, Priests
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If a candidate who supported terrorism asked for your vote,
would you say, "I disagree with you on terrorism, but where do you stand on
I doubt it.
In fact, if a terrorism sympathizer presented him/herself for
your vote, you would immediately know that such a position disqualifies the
candidate for public office -- no matter how good he or she may be on other
issues. The horror of terrorism dwarfs whatever good might be found in the
candidate's plan for housing, education, or health care. Regarding those plans,
you wouldn't even ask.
So why do so many people say, "This candidate favors legal
abortion. I disagree. But I'm voting for this person because she has good ideas
about health care (or some other issue)."
Such a position makes no sense whatsoever, unless one is
completely blind to the violence of abortion. That, of course, is the problem.
But we need only see what abortion looks like, or read descriptions from the
abortionists themselves, and the evidence is clear. (USA Today refused to
sell me space for an ad that quoted abortionists describing their work because
the readers would be traumatized just by the words!)
Abortion is no less violent than terrorism. Any candidate who
says abortion should be kept legal disqualifies him/herself from public service.
We need look no further, we need pay no attention to what that candidate
says on other issues. Support for abortion is enough for us to decide not to
vote for such a person.
Pope John Paul II put it this way: "Above all, the common
outcry, which is justly made on behalf of human rights -- for example, the right
to health, to home, to work, to family, to culture -- is false and illusory if
the right to life, the most basic and fundamental right and the condition
for all other personal rights, is not defended with maximum determination" (Christifideles
False and illusory. Those
are strong and clear words that call for our further reflection.
"I stand for adequate and comprehensive health care." So far,
so good. But as soon as you say that a procedure that tears the arms off of
little babies is part of "health care," then your understanding of the term
"health care" is obviously quite different from the actual meaning of the words.
In short, you lose credibility. Your claim to health care is "illusory." It
sounds good, but is in fact destructive, because it masks an act of violence.
"My plan for adequate housing will succeed." Fine. But what
are houses for, if not for people to live in them? If you allow the killing of
the children who would otherwise live in those houses, how am I supposed to get
excited by your housing project?
It's easy to get confused by all the arguments in an election
year. But if you start by asking where candidates stand on abortion, you can
eliminate a lot of other questions you needn't even ask.
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