RORATE CÆLI: Fr. Rutler: In this presidential election, we cannot be indifferent – one side is flawed, but the other is EVIL

 

October 30, 2016

by Fr. George W. Rutler

On the Election
Exactly eight years ago I wrote a column titled “The One We Were Waiting For” in which I referred to a book by Monsignor Robert Hugh Benson, The Lord of the World. That dystopian novel has been cited by Pope Benedict XVI, and Pope Francis said he has read it several times. The protagonist, if one can apply that term to an Anti-Christ, imposed a new world religion with Man himself as god. His one foe was Christianity, which he thwarted in part by using “compromised Catholics and compliant priests to persuade timid Catholics.
Since then, that program has been realized in our time, to an extent beyond the warnings of the most dire pessimists. Our federal government has intimidated religious orders and churches, challenging religious freedom. The institution of the family has been re-defined, and sexual identity has been Gnosticized to the point of mocking biology. Assisted suicide is spreading, abortions since 1973 have reached a total equal to the population of Italy, and sexually transmitted diseases are at a record high. Objective journalism has died, justice has been corrupted, racial bitterness ruins cities, entertainment is degraded, knowledge of the liberal arts spirals downwards, and authentically Catholic universities have all but vanished. A weak and confused foreign policy has encouraged aggressor nations and terrorism, while metastasized immigration is destroying remnant western cultures, and genocide is slaughtering Christian populations. The cynical promise of economic prosperity is mocked by the lowest rate of labor participation in forty years, an unprecedented number of people on food stamps and welfare assistance, and the largest disparity in wealth in over a century.
In his own grim days, Saint Augustine warned against nostalgia: “The past times that you think were good, are good because they are not yours here and now.” The present time, however, might try even his confidence. Sands blow over the ruins of churches he knew in North Africa where the Cross is virtually forbidden. By a blessed irony, a new church is opened every day in formerly Communist Russia, while churches in our own formerly Christian nation are being closed daily. For those who bought into the seductions of politicians’ false hopes, there is the counsel of Walt Kelly’s character Pogo: “It’s always darkest before it goes pitch black.”
It is incorrect to say that the coming election poses a choice between two evils. For ethical and aesthetic reasons, there may be some bad in certain candidates, but badness consists in doing bad things. Evil is different: it is the deliberate destruction of truth, virtue and holiness.
While one may pragmatically vote for a flawed candidate, one may not vote for anyone who advocates and enables unmitigatedly evil acts, and that includes abortion. “In the case of an intrinsically unjust law, such as a law permitting abortion or euthanasia, it is therefore never licit to obey it, or to ‘take part in a propaganda campaign in favor of such a law, or vote for it’” (Evangelium Vitae, 73).
At one party’s convention, the name of God was excluded from its platform and a woman who boasted of having aborted her child was applauded. It is a grave sin, requiring sacramental confession and penance, to become an accomplice in objective evil by voting for anyone who encourages it, for that imperils the nation and destroys the soul.
It is also the duty of the clergy to make this clear and not to shrink, under the pretense of charity, from explaining the Church’s censures. Wolves in sheep’s clothing are dangerous, but worse are wolves in shepherd’s clothing. While the evils foreseen eight years ago were realized, worse would come if those affronts to human dignity were endorsed again. In the most adverse prospect, God forbid, there might not be another free election, and soon Catholics would arrive at shuttered churches and vacant altars. The illusion of indifference cannot long be perpetuated by lame jokes and synthetic laughter at banquets, for there is handwriting on the wall.

The Inconsistency of “Personally Opposed but Still Pro-Choice” | Catholic Answers

By Trent Horn July 25, 2016

Hillary Clinton’s selection of Virginia governor Tim Kaine as her running mate has reignited the debate about whether Catholic politicians can support pro-choice policies but remain “personally opposed” to abortion. In June, Kaine explained his position on Meet the Press:

I’m a traditional Catholic. I’m personally opposed to abortion and personally opposed to the death penalty. . . . I deeply believe, and not just as a matter of politics but even as a matter of morality, that matters about reproduction and intimacy and relationships and contraception are in the personal realm. They’re moral decisions for individuals to make for themselves. And the last thing we need is government intruding into those personal decisions. So I’ve taken a position which is quite common among Catholics. I’ve got a personal feeling about abortion, but the right role for government is to let women make their own decisions.

First, saying you’re a traditional Catholic because you personally oppose abortion only puts you to the right of a handful of radicals who love abortion and think it should be some kind of sacrament.

Readmore via Source: The Inconsistency of “Personally Opposed but Still Pro-Choice” | Catholic Answers

Obama rushing Mosul offensive against ISIS to influence election, troops fear – Washington Times

Residents who fled towns and villages near Mosul during the fight between Iraqi Security Forces and Islamic State militants moved to a camp for displaced people outside Irbil. Some U.S. officers in Baghdad believe the Obama administration is rushing plans … more

By Rowan Scarborough – The Washington Times – Sunday, July 24, 2016

Some U.S. officers in Baghdad believe the Obama administration is rushing plans for a Mosul offensive so it takes place before the November presidential election, a retired general says.

Retired Army Lt. Gen. Michael D. Barbero said his contacts in Baghdad have relayed the concerns to him, fearing there is now an “artificial timeline” for what promises to be by far the toughest battle in the war against the Islamic State in Iraq.

Iraqi Security Forces, which has made strides since the U.S.-led coalition began retraining its troops, may not be sufficiently prepared for a rushed operation. The troops face the monumental task of capturing a city of almost 2 million citizens and up to 10,000 Islamic State fighters and their booby traps.

“There is tremendous concern that Washington is going to press for a Mosul operation to commence before the November election,” Mr. Barbero told The Washington Times. “The concern is, will the conditions be set on the ground by then, and I don’t think so.”

Asked about the view that the White House is pushing an early offensive, Mr. Barbero answered, “Yeah. I’m hearing that from Baghdad.”

Read more: Obama rushing Mosul offensive against ISIS to influence election, troops fear – Washington Times

Can the Republican Party Avoid the Fate of the Whigs?

Note from Senior Management: Pat Caddell, Fox News Contributor and top Democratic strategist, continues his series of exclusive commentary and analysis for Breitbart News concerning the recent election and the future of the Republic.

If present trends continue, the Republicans will likely soon fall out of political viability; and the Grand Old Party will be the Grand Defunct Party. They are well on their way to becoming the 21st Century incarnation of the Whigs.

Let’s consider: At the national level, Republicans have lost four of the last six presidential elections; if one measures the popular vote, they have lost five of the last six. Indeed, over the last six elections, the GOP has averaged approximately 44.8 percent of the popular vote, whereas the Democrats have won 48.8 percent. And the disparity in the electoral college is even more telling: Republicans have won an average of 211 electoral votes over the last six elections, while Democrats have won 327.

Read more . . .

Electoral Paradise Lost: Rethinking Priorities in the Aftermath of Political Defeat | Crisis Magazine

Michelangelo Garden of Eden

On November 7th—the day after President Obama’s re-election—a lot of conservative bloggers tried to make the best of a bad outcome, but hyperbole also seems a frequent sight in the headlines. “The End of America I Know.” “The Day After America.” “Is America Still Exceptional?” Many seem to feel as though the republic has fallen. Hope is gone.

Being the literature nerd that I am, my mind immediately turns to the greatest English poem to ever lament a republican loss: John Milton’s Paradise Lost.

Read more . . .