Denver’s Archbishop Charles Chaput gave an address at a dinner sponsored by ENDOW (Educating on the Nature and Dignity of Women) that speaks directly about Obama and his Catholic supporters, especially Doug Kmiec. Below are some excerpts from an article on the address, and the full text of the address is available here.
(With my emphases and comments):
“I believe that Senator Obama, whatever his other talents, is the most committed ‘abortion-rights’ presidential candidate of either major party since the Roe v. Wade abortion decision in 1973,” he added. “Despite what […] Kmiec suggests, the party platform Senator Obama runs on this year is not only aggressively ‘pro-choice;’ it has also removed any suggestion that killing an unborn child might be a regrettable thing.” [Way beyond being “pro-choice,” Obama is pro-abortion. It’s pretty clear that he does not find anything wrong with it. I’ve had some of his allegedly pro-life supporters get angry and bark, “NOBODY is pro-abortion!” They must be either deluded or hypocrites.]
The prelate affirmed that the platform of the Democratic Party that emerged from its national convention in August “is clearly anti-life.”
“Kmiec argues that there are defensible motives to support Senator Obama,” continued Archbishop Chaput. “Speaking for myself, I do not know any proportionate reason that could outweigh more than 40 million unborn children killed by abortion and the many millions of women deeply wounded by the loss and regret abortion creates.” [I defy anybody to give a proportionate reason.]
The prelate continued: “To suggest — as some Catholics do — that Senator Obama is this year’s ‘real’ pro-life candidate requires a peculiar kind of self-hypnosis, or moral confusion, or worse. [Perhaps they simply know not what they do. Or worse, maybe they know exactly what they do.]
“To portray the 2008 Democratic Party presidential ticket as the preferred ‘pro-life’ option is to subvert what the word ‘pro-life’ means.” [Words have real meaning–you can’t just define them for yourself.]
Archbishop Chaput said he thought Kmiec’s endorsement of Obama has “done a disservice to the Church, confused the natural priorities of Catholic social teaching, undermined the progress pro-lifers have made, and provided an excuse for some Catholics to abandon the abortion issue instead of fighting within their parties and at the ballot box to protect the unborn.” [Wow. This really captures the magnitude of the scandal. I would not want to have to answer for all of that.]
Archbishop Chaput lamented that for 35 years he’s watched the pro-abortion lobby fight tooth-and-nail against the pro-life movement: “Apparently they believe in their convictions more than some of us Catholics believe in ours. And I think that’s an indictment of an entire generation of American Catholic leadership.”
The prelate continued by affirming that being pro-life is much deeper than looking to overturn Roe v. Wade, or being a “single issue” voter: “The cornerstone of Catholic social teaching is protecting human life from conception to natural death. […] Every other human right depends on the right to life.” [THANK YOU, Archbishop! It cuts me to the quick to be called a “single issue voter.” It’s especially hurtful when it comes from another Catholic. Excuse me for taking a stand for the very foundation of all social justice–or of justice, period! We have to stand up for the foundation, otherwise it doesn’t matter what you do for the rest, it’s gonna crumble.]
He added: “So I think that people who claim that the abortion struggle is ‘lost’ as a matter of law, or that supporting an outspoken defender of legal abortion is somehow ‘pro-life,’ are not just wrong; they’re betraying the witness of every person who continues the work of defending the unborn child.
“And I hope they know how to explain that, because someday they’ll be required to.” [And those that are currently grousing at their bishops for speaking out and correcting them may finally realize that the bishops were trying to protect them… and they may wish that they had listened, only it might be too late.]
Whew! What an address! It’s not easy to read. I actually winced a few times–and I’m not even an Obama supporter! I wonder if it will bring some of those supporters to their senses… or if it will only make them more embattled and entrenched in their ways. (You know how it is–even if you know now that you were wrong, pride can prevent you from admitting you were wrong.)
Lord, take from them their stony hearts and give them natural hearts. St. Michael and Guardian Angels, beat back the demons from their souls. Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, teach them humility.