Monday, October 27, 2008

Elections make me rant.

Regardless of what religion or political party your affiliate with most people could logically say that they'd want to be a good person and affiliate themselves with truth and honesty etc. Right? I would like to believe this. I'd like to believe that most people want to be good, would like society to be good, and woud like to live in a just society.

If we can say that, then shouldn't we be a different society?

Isn't it true to say that killing an innocent human being is immoral? It's bad and we shouldn't allow it in society?

Why is it okay to kill a human being in the womb? Did it do something wrong?
Why is it okay to allow a mother to ruin her life? Will killing her child really make all her problems go away? Does killing a child ever make a problem go away? Who thought up that ridiculously evil solution?

Why is it okay to help people kill themselves? Even if they did to something wrong, isn't their life valuable?

If 1,000,000 people would die absolutely if you said "it's above my pay grade" would you say that?

Who are you Barack Obama to say babies are punishments? If someone called you a punishment would it be okay to kill you? Obviously not, because your life also has value.

It seems like some people are just avoiding the truth. If you can't face the truth, then how are you supposed to run a country? How can you be responsible enough to lead 300 million people if you can't decide when a person becomes valuable?

*Human Life begins at conception. Read it in any embryology book. If not then biology would probably be a different science, it being the study of life.

Isn't the United States supposed to allow it's people the right to life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness?

Why then are we so gladly voting for the right to death, opression, and the pursuit of self-destruction?

People in other places of the world dream of America being a country where life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness are the norm. What happened? What are you doing to yourself America? Why are you allowing yourself to be duped by the father of lies (that's Satan, please don't take that to mean Obama)?

I hope and pray that people take a long, hard, honest look at what they want the world to be like and then think even harder how that world is even possible if we allow death and evil to creep in under the guises of abortion and assisted suicide.

Abortion and Assisited suicide are not good, they are not holy, and they will not make the world a better place. You all know it deep inside.

Yes, I understand that war kills people too. But will it kill 1,000,000 people by the end of next year? It's a numbers game. Weigh the numbers of lives that hang in the balance.
And no it doesn't matter if you're born or unborn. Human life is human life. A child is no less valuable because it hasn't yet had the chance to live outside it's mother's womb.

Barack Obama as president would allow 4,000,000 million people to die in the next 4 years without a fight because he says babies can be burdens and because he won't take the time to think about when human life should begin being protected.

McCain isn't perfect but at least he can muster up the courage to say "at conception" when questioned about the beginning of human life.

Form your conscience well and vote by it. Can you really vote for a man that won't defend the voiceless? What kind of president is that?

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Pro-Life Catholics for Obama???? Check out the Newsweek article.

My husband found this article. It's a good read. There have been some crazy arguments out there for Catholics that want to support Obama. Read on.

Here's the LINK to the Newsweek page, or you can read below.

Should abortion be the litmus test for political support?

George Weigel

In an election cycle filled with its share of quirks, oddities, and surprises, the emergence of Roman Catholic pro-lifers as leading supporters of Sen. Barack Obama—himself a favorite of the National Reproductive Rights Action League—must rank as one of the strangest of twists and turns. Whatever its effect on the election, this unexpected development may also portend a new hardening of the battle lines within the Catholic Church, no matter who is inaugurated president in January.

The most visible of the pro-Obama Catholic pro-lifers has been Pepperdine University law professor Douglas Kmiec, formerly dean of the law school at the Catholic University of America and a minor official in the Justice Departments of Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush. Kmiec began the 2008 cycle as co-chairman of Mitt Romney's campaign, but recently told the Chicago Tribune that, as the campaign unfolded, "I kept discovering that Obama was sounding more Catholic than most Catholics I know" on issues like the family wages, health-care costs and the war in Iraq. With Romney out of the race, Kmiec announced his support for Obama on Easter Sunday, arguing that "Senator Obama comes reasonably close" to embodying "an alternative way to be pro-life." Kmiec develops that arresting claim in a new book, "Can a Catholic Support Him? Asking the Big Questions About Barack Obama," published in mid-September.

Other pro-Obama Catholic intellectuals include Notre Dame professor M. Cathleen Kaveny, whose Obamapologetics are frequently found on the Commonweal blog, and Duquesne University law professor Nicholas Cafardi, one of the original members of the U.S. bishops' National Review Board to study problems of clerical sexual abuse. In a recent statement, "Senator Obama: A Moral Choice for Catholics," Cafardi summarized the three most frequently deployed arguments of self-declared pro-life Catholics who support Barack Obama for president.

First, according to Cafardi, Catholics have, as a matter of law, "lost the abortion battle ... and I believe that we have lost it permanently." Second, abortion is not the only "intrinsic evil" of the day; the Bush administration has been guilty of committing acts that are "intrinsically evil" in its policies on interrogation of terrorist suspects, in its failures after Hurricane Katrina and in its detention of terrorism suspects at Guantánamo Bay. Third, Senator Obama "supports government action that would reduce the number of abortions," including an "adequate social safety net for poor women who might otherwise have abortions."

The argument, in sum: the constitutional and legal arguments that have raged since Roe vs. Wade are over, and Catholics have lost; there are many other "intrinsic evils" that Catholics are morally bound to oppose, and Republicans tend to ignore those evils; liberalized social-welfare policies will drive down the absolute numbers of abortions and Senator Obama is an unabashed liberal on these matters. Therefore, a vote for Obama is the "real" pro-life vote.

The argument is, some might contend, a bold one. Yet it is also counterintuitive, running up against the fact that, by most measures and despite his rhetoric about reducing the incidence of abortion, Barack Obama has an unalloyed record of support for abortion on demand. Moreover, he seems to understand Roe vs. Wade and subsequent Supreme Court decisions as having defined abortion as a fundamental liberty right essential for women's equality, meaning that government must guarantee access to abortion in law and by financial assistance—a moral judgment and a policy prescription the pro-life Catholic Obama boosters say they reject.

According to his own Web site, Obama supports the federal Freedom of Choice Act [FOCA], which would eliminate all state and federal regulation of abortion (such as informed consent and parental notification in the case of minors seeking an abortion); these regulations have demonstrably reduced the absolute number of abortions in the jurisdictions in which they are in effect. FOCA would also eliminate, by federal statute, state laws providing "conscience clause" protection for pro-life doctors who decline to provide abortions. Obama (along with the Democratic Party platform) supports federal funding for abortion, opposes the Hyde amendment (which restricts the use of taxpayer monies for abortion) and has pledged to repeal the "Mexico City policy" (initiated by Ronald Reagan and reinstated by George W. Bush, which bans federal foreign-aid funding for organizations that perform and promote abortion as a means of family planning). According to the pro-choice Web site, Obama also opposes continued federal funding for crisis pregnancy centers.

Then there is the continuing controversy over Obama's role in the Illinois state legislature when that body was considering an "infants born alive" protection act that would extend full legal protection to infants who survive a late-term abortion. According to the Annenberg Political Fact Check (Obama opposed the 2001 and 2002 Illinois "born alive" bills on the grounds that they were attempts to undermine Roe vs. Wade but said he would have supported an Illinois bill similar to the federal "born alive" legislation signed by President Bush in 2002. Yet, according to Annenberg, "Obama voted in committee against the 2003 state bill that was nearly identical to the federal bill he says he would have supported." However one sorts out the conflicting claims in this often-bitter debate, in which charges of infanticide and lying have been hurled, there can be no doubt that Barack Obama did not make his own the cause of legal protection for infants who survive an abortion.

The "social safety net" component of the pro-life, pro-Obama argument may seem, at first blush, to make sense. Yet it, too, runs up against stubborn facts: for example, Sweden, with a much thicker social safety net than the United States, has precisely the same rate (25 percent) of abortions per pregnancy as America. As for the claim, often repeated by pro-life, pro-Obama Catholics, that more financially generous welfare policies would drive down abortion rates because financial pressure is a predominant cause of abortion, another stubborn fact intrudes: according to a survey conducted by the research arm of Planned Parenthood, the Guttmacher Institute, a mere 23 percent of abortions in the United States are performed primarily because of alleged financial need. There is also what some would consider the insuperable problem of squaring a concern for fostering alternatives to abortion with Senator Obama's opposition to federal funding of crisis pregnancy centers that provide precisely those alternatives. Moreover, the Freedom of Choice Act Obama has pledged to sign forbids publicly supported programs helping pregnant women from "discriminating" against abortion. Thus a federal Pregnant Women Support Act—a key plank in the platform of pro-life congressional Democrats—would, in Orwellian fashion, be legally bound by FOCA to include support for abortion.

As for the claim that the legal argument is over, and lost, that, too, seems belied by the evidence. Roe vs. Wade remains deeply controversial, in the culture and among legal scholars. Since 1989, the Supreme Court has shown a willingness, on occasion, to uphold laws regulating abortion clinics or banning certain forms of abortion. No Clinton-appointed justice contributed to that trend; it seems very unlikely that Obama nominees would extend the trend. In that respect, a pro-life, pro-Catholic Obama vote is not so much a recognition that the legal argument is over but, de facto, a vote to repeal the legal protections for the unborn that have been laboriously crafted in the 35 years since Roe eliminated the abortion law of all 50 states.

Another line of critique against the pro-life, pro-Catholic Obama activists has been mounted by, among others, Cardinal Francis George of Chicago, who holds a doctorate in political philosophy and currently serves as president of the U.S. bishops' conference. In a September letter to the people of the archdiocese of Chicago, the cardinal laid down what he described as a basic principle of justice: in a just society, innocent human life, especially when incapable of self-defense, deserves the protection of the laws. No one who denies that, the cardinal argued, can claim to be advancing the common good. And, as Roe vs. Wade does indeed deny the protection of the laws to the unborn, no one can, with any moral or logical consistence, claim to support both Roe vs. Wade and the common good. It's one or the other.

Similarly, two New York bishops, William Murphy of Rockville Centre and Nicholas DiMarzio of Brooklyn, the present and immediate past chairmen of the U.S. bishops' committee on domestic policy, implicitly challenged the position of Kmiec, Kaveny, Cafardi and others in a Sept. 24 letter to The New York Times. According to a Sept. 18 Times article, the U.S. bishops' statement on the 2008 election, "Forming Consciences for Faithful Citizenship," had been crafted so as to "explicitly allow Catholics to vote for a candidate who supports abortion rights if they do so for other reasons." That was simply not true, according to DiMarzio and Murphy, who said that "Faithful Citizenship" states that a Catholic can support a pro-abortion candidate "only for truly grave moral reasons, not to advance narrow interests or partisan preferences...." Moreover, the bishops concluded, "this standard of 'grave moral reasons' is a very high standard to meet."

The pro-Obama, pro-life Catholics would doubtless reply that that standard has been met in this instance. But that claim still leaves them with a problem. As Cardinal George's letter indicated, the Catholic Church's teaching on the intrinsic evil of abortion involves a first principle of justice that can be known by reason, that's one of the building blocks of a just society, and that ought never be compromised—which is why, for example, Catholic legislators were morally obliged to oppose legal segregation (another practice once upheld by a Supreme Court decision that denied human beings the full protection of the laws). Questions of war and peace, social-welfare policy, environmental policy and economic policy, on the other hand, are matters of prudential judgment on which people who affirm the same principles of Catholic social doctrine can reasonably differ. The pro-life, pro-Obama Catholics are thus putting the full weigh of their moral argument on contingent prudential judgments that, by definition, cannot bear that weight.

One of the most interesting facets of the intra-Catholic furor over Kmiec, Kaveny, Cafardi and other pro-life, pro-Obama Catholics is the way this argument seems to have displaced the struggle between bishops and pro-choice Catholic politicians that was so prominent in 1984 (when the contest was between Geraldine Ferraro and New York's Cardinal John O'Connor) and 2004 (when the candidacy of John Kerry embroiled the entire U.S. bishops conference in a dispute over whether pro-choice Catholic politicians ought to be permitted to receive holy communion). That displacement, however, is likely to be temporary.

In the wake of ill-advised (and nationally televised) ventures into theology by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Democratic vice presidential nominee Joe Biden, several bishops—including Denver Archbishop Charles Chaput, Madison Bishop Robert Morlino and Washington Archbishop Donald Wuerl—issued statements underscoring the Catholic Church's unswerving moral opposition to abortion from the very beginnings of Christianity; the morality of abortion was not an open question for serious Catholics, as Pelosi in particular had suggested. (After receiving what seems to have been an avalanche of protest over the Speaker's misstatement on "Meet the Press," Pelosi's own archbishop, George Niederauer of San Francisco, announced publicly that he would invite Mrs. Pelosi in for a conversation.) Moreover, in the wake of both the Pelosi and Biden incidents, the chairmen of the bishops' pro-life and doctrine committees, Cardinal Justin Rigali of Philadelphia and Bishop William Lori of Bridgeport, Conn., issued sharp statements deploring the misrepresentation of Catholic teaching by the Speaker and the senator.

Many U.S. bishops, in other words, seem exasperated with Catholic politicians who present themselves as ardent Catholics and yet consistently oppose the Church on what the bishops consider the premier civil-rights issue of the day. It seems unlikely that the bishops, having found their voices after discovering the limits of their patience, will back off in an Obama administration—which could raise some interesting questions for, and about, a Vice President Joe Biden, whose fitness to receive holy communion may well be discussed in executive session at the bishops' annual meeting in mid-November.

Biden is not the only Catholic who will be seriously challenged by an Obama administration bent on reversing what its pro-choice allies regard as eight years of defeat; pro-life Catholics will face different, if equally grave, dilemmas. The bishops already find themselves defending the Catholic integrity of Catholic hospitals under pressures from state governments; those pressures, as well as pressures on doctors and other Catholic health-care professionals, will increase in an Obama administration, especially if FOCA succeeds in knocking down state conscience-clause protections for Catholic health-care providers and institutions. And should an Obama administration reintroduce large-scale federal funding of abortion, the bishops will have to confront a grave moral question they have managed to avoid for decades, thanks to the Hyde amendment: does the payment of federal taxes that go to support abortion constitute a form of moral complicity in an "intrinsic evil"? And if so, what should the conscientious Catholic citizen do?

About which, it will be very interesting to hear what professors Kmiec, Kaveny and Cafardi have to say.


More articles from George Weigel HERE

Really Good one Here

More Interesting Stuff for voting Catholics. This bit is from Catholic World News. The link is HERE

Full text here..

News Briefs
US bishops to ponder excommunication of pro-abortion legislators October 14, 2008

Bishop Gerald Kicanas of Tucson, vice president of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, revealed in an interview with John Allen on Monday that the US bishops will discuss in November whether voting for pro-abortion legislation entails automatic excommunication. ‘I think there are several issues’ to be discussed, Bishop Kicanas said. ‘One is, what is the level of cooperation involved in a legislator voting for legislation that encourages, or allows, intrinsically evil acts? Is that formal cooperation, or isn’t it? That’s a critical question, because if it is formal cooperation, then serious consequences flow from it.’ When Allen asked, ‘You mean automatic excommunication?’ Bishop Kicanas answered, ‘Right. That’s one question that has not been answered.’ Bishop Kicanas made clear there was no consensus in the conference about that issue or about the related issue of withholding Holy Communion from pro-abortion Catholic politicians.

Tuesday, October 07, 2008

The Catholic Vote

My friend Jessi just sent this to me. It's a pretty awesome video. Check it out.

Monday, October 06, 2008

Earliest Version of the Bible...What Bible?

A friend sent this BBC article to me. It is about an early version of the "Bible". Stick around at the end of the article because there are some very important things to point out.

Here's the link to the original.


The rival to the Bible

By Roger Bolton

What is probably the oldest known Bible is being digitised, reuniting its scattered parts for the first time since its discovery 160 years ago. It is markedly different from its modern equivalent. What's left out?
The world's oldest surviving Bible is in bits.
For 1,500 years, the Codex Sinaiticus lay undisturbed in a Sinai monastery, until it was found - or stolen, as the monks say - in 1844 and split between Egypt, Russia, Germany and Britain.
Now these different parts are to be united online and, from next July, anyone, anywhere in the world with internet access will be able to view the complete text and read a translation.

For those who believe the Bible is the inerrant, unaltered word of God, there will be some very uncomfortable questions to answer. It shows there have been thousands of alterations to today's bible.
The Codex, probably the oldest Bible we have, also has books which are missing from the Authorised Version that most Christians are familiar with today - and it does not have crucial verses relating to the Resurrection.
Anti-Semitic writings
The fact this book has survived at all is a miracle. Before its discovery in the early 19th Century by the Indiana Jones of his day, it remained hidden in St Catherine's Monastery since at least the 4th Century.

The monastery at the base of Mt Sinai
It survived because the desert air is ideal for preservation and because the monastery, on a Christian island in a Muslim sea, remained untouched, its walls unconquered.
Today, 30 mainly Greek Orthodox monks, dedicated to prayer, worship there, helped as in ages past by the Muslim Bedouin. For this place is holy to three great religions: Judaism, Christianity and Islam; a land where you can still see the Burning Bush where God spoke to Moses.
The monastery itself has the greatest library of early manuscripts outside the Vatican - some 33,000, and a collection of icons second to none.
Not surprisingly, it is now a World Heritage Site and has been called a veritable Ark, bringing spiritual treasures safely through the turbulent centuries. In many people's eyes the greatest treasure is the Codex, written in the time of the first Christian Emperor Constantine.
When the different parts are digitally united next year in a £1m project, anyone will be able to compare and contrast the Codex and the modern Bible.
Firstly, the Codex contains two extra books in the New Testament.
One is the little-known Shepherd of Hermas, written in Rome in the 2nd Century - the other, the Epistle of Barnabas. This goes out of its way to claim that it was the Jews, not the Romans, who killed Jesus, and is full of anti-Semitic kindling ready to be lit. "His blood be upon us," Barnabas has the Jews cry.
Had this remained in subsequent versions, "the suffering of Jews in the subsequent centuries would, if possible, have been even worse", says the distinguished New Testament scholar Professor Bart Ehrman.

And although many of the other alterations and differences are minor, these may take some explaining for those who believe every word comes from God.
Faced with differing texts, which is the truly authentic one?
Mr Ehrman was a born again Bible-believing Evangelical until he read the original Greek texts and noticed some discrepancies.
The Bible we now use can't be the inerrant word of God, he says, since what we have are the sometimes mistaken words copied by fallible scribes.
"When people ask me if the Bible is the word of God I answer 'which Bible?'"
The Codex - and other early manuscripts - do not mention the ascension of Jesus into heaven, and omit key references to the Resurrection, which the Archbishop of Canterbury has said is essential for Christian belief.
Other differences concern how Jesus behaved. In one passage of the Codex, Jesus is said to be "angry" as he healed a leper, whereas the modern text records him as healing with "compassion".
Also missing is the story of the woman taken in adultery and about to be stoned - until Jesus rebuked the Pharisees (a Jewish sect), inviting anyone without sin to cast the first stone.
Nor are there words of forgiveness from the cross. Jesus does not say "Father forgive them for they know not what they do".
Fundamentalists, who believe every word in the Bible is true, may find these differences unsettling.
But the picture is complicated. Some argue that another early Bible, the Codex Vaticanus, is in fact older. And there are other earlier texts of almost all the books in the bible, though none pulled together into a single volume.
Many Christians have long accepted that, while the Bible is the authoritative word of God, it is not inerrant. Human hands always make mistakes.
"It should be regarded as a living text, something constantly changing as generation and generation tries to understand the mind of God," says David Parker, a Christian working on digitising the Codex.
Others may take it as more evidence that the Bible is the word of man, not God.


Okay, so a few things to note.

***They claim this Codex was written around the time of Constantine.
Constantine died in 337 AD.

***The Biblical Canon had not been decided until (at the earliest) 382 AD at the Synod of Rome. It is more commonly attributed to the Council of Hippo in 393 and the Council of Carthage in 397. So the Church had not yet gathered all these texts to discern which are the inspired word of God. As we know there are many books that didn't make it in.

***There are many early translations of the Gospels which were written long before this Codex was written and compiled. Wouldn't it be prudent to compare those early Gospels in Greek and Hebrew to the Gospels in this Codex which are apparently missing parts?

Who the heck wrote this Codex anyways?

My husband is at the moment trying to post to the BBC website to point out some inaccuracies. Please pray for those whose faith is already shaken and those whose faith will be shaken when this version of the "Bible" becomes readily available on the internet.