Faith-based justices

Faith-based justices

If you’re Catholic, the only reason you might have to take moral or principled stance is because you’re a mindless drone taking orders from Rome. That’s been the consensus of the liberal establishment after the Supreme Court’s decision upholding the federal partial-birth abortion ban.

Joan Crawford Greenburg, ABC News’ legal correspondent, looks at the phenomenon in her official blog, in a post entitled “Faith-Based Justices”.

While she starts with the inanities voiced by crackpot conspiracy theorist Rosie “fire doesn’t melt steel” O’Donnell, Greenburg also includes more mainstream liberal voices like Geoffrey Stone, former law school dean and provost of University of Chicago:

“Ultimately, the five justices in the majority all fell back on a common argument to justify their position. There is, they say, a compelling moral reason for the result in Gonzales,” Stone writes. “By making this judgment, these justices have failed to respect the fundamental difference between religious belief and morality.”

What the reaction tells us is that many of these people don’t understand just what religion is, or if they do, they don’t accept the traditional understanding of its role. For much of society, religion is a comforting fairy tale we tell ourselves for an hour on Sundays, but which should have no real effect on the rest of our lives. At worst it’s just another form of power grab by an age-old institution.

They just can't accept that one might believe in God and believe that God has a plan for the right ordering of society and believe that God has communicated that plan in a sensible and ordered fashion.

Only in rejecting one's faith is one principled

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  • Personally, I think it’s a lot scarier that there are so many who would carve out an exception to the prohibition against infanticide and justify it on the basis of person whim.

  • There was a famous American who thought religion and morality were inseparable.

    Of all the dispositions and habits which lead to political prosperity, religion and morality are indispensable supports. In vain would that man claim the tribute of patriotism, who should labor to subvert these great pillars of human happiness, these firmest props of the duties of men and citizens. The mere politician, equally with the pious man, ought to respect and to cherish them. A volume could not trace all their connections with private and public felicity. Let it simply be asked: Where is the security for property, for reputation, for life, if the sense of religious obligation desert the oaths which are the instruments of investigation in courts of justice? And let us with caution indulge the supposition that morality can be maintained without religion. Whatever may be conceded to the influence of refined education on minds of peculiar structure, reason and experience both forbid us to expect that national morality can prevail in exclusion of religious principle.

    —George Washington, “Farewell Address”

  • I saw in comments on the website of Stone’s law school that some Catholics are getting together to bring charges against the professor for bigoted barbs he has made in his classroom directed at Catholics.

  • It’s funny to think,that if you receive the Church’s position on some issue and then spend thought and energy on it but come to the conclusion that the Church (not surprisingly)has it right, you are an unthinking drone. If you do all of the above and come to the conclusion that you disagree with the church, well then ,you are a thinker who doesn’t allow dogma to brainwash you.