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Sunday, April 27, 2008

The Roads in Hell are Paved with Skulls of Bishops
This has been an irritant for a long time. You show up in Rustenberg, South Africa, and discover a large percentage of the women have HIV because they are forced to sell their bodies for food. The good bishop's solution? Permit them to use condoms so they can continue prostituting in a more safe manner. Now I was thinking perhaps a food pantry where they could get food for their children without having to trade the core of their being for a meal, but maybe that's why i'm not a bishop.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Oh, Mein Papa

While researching my beloved Franciscan patron, Padre Pio, I stumbled across several disturbing articles indicating he faked his stigmata using carbolic acid. Historian Sergio Luzzatto found a single document in the Vatican library, testimony from a woman who claimed Padre Pio asked her to get him 4 grams of carbolic acid and some other supplies. He told her it was for sterilizing needles.
So the author draws the conclusion that a single piece of circumstantial evidence is enough to prove conclusively that the stigmata was a hoax. It seems to me that if, over the course of 50 years of stigmata only one person was found who supplied carbolic acid that the evidence is too weak to be conclusive. Furthermore, the Vatican investigators who looked into his cause for canonization found that Padre Pio and another priest were having to care for victims of the Spanish flu which was raging at the time and were actually sterilizing needles with carbolic acid. Furthermore, when St. Pio died, his hands bore no stigmata wounds nor even a scar. It seems if someone were using carbolic acid to fake stigmata, that would probably leave some kind of mark with even infrequent application.
To be fair, i'm sure Luzzatto's book has other damning evidence building a case against St. Pio. However, as quickly as he overlooked the obvious, that this evidence is circumstantial and doesn't hold up to logical scrutiny, i'm gonna go out on a limb here and say he probably isn't the most unbiased and credible of historians. St. Pio pray for us.

Friday, April 25, 2008

Who Arted?
Initially i was happy about this article because both pro-life and pro-abortion forces agreed it was heinous. I thought that somehow that might be a concession by the on-campus pro-abort representative that human life was destroyed in abortion. But alas. Then I realized that pro-aborts view pregnancy as a disease. It would be like someone intentionally getting cancer and then removing the tumors herself. That would trivialize the pain felt by cancer survivors and would explain why the pro-aborts were against this self-proclaimed "artist".
So now i'm going to go into why art has been annihilated by imaginative people with no talent. The artist in this story claims the whole abortion hoax was an elaborate performance art done for her senior project. If performance art involves setting up something that will make a whole bunch of people outraged, then Michael Savage is perhaps the greatest artist of our time.
I took a philosophy class on aesthetics and still have no idea why Duchamps' readymades were considered art. I think it's a classic case of the emperor's new clothes. Art critics were afraid if they didn't praise the stupid and banal as great art, they'd be accused of "not getting it" and missing one of the great artistic geniuses of their time. I think this started after the Renaissance. The Impressionists were dabbling in it, then Picasso came along and art went bye-bye. You no longer need talent, just a gimmick. In the case of corporate art, you need a lot of metal fashioned to resemble nothing.
I don't have a solution, nor do i really care too much. I think a failing grade for the student in the story would be a good start.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Stupid Human Tricks

I have discovered two things:
#1. I can sum up the movie, October Sky, in two lines of dialogue.
"Daddy, I wanna build rockets."
"Shut up and eat your coal mine!"

#2. Monologuing on a blog is very nice because who doesn't want a soapbox? But it rings a little hollow without feedback. Your respectful comments would be greatly appreciated.

Wednesday, April 16, 2008

Sowing the Seeds of Lust
This story is obnoxious because it gets into the topic of minorities as victims. The shock jocks in our tale of woe are not chastised for their degradation of women in general, but for degradation of a particular kind of woman. If they had said bedding Jessica Simpson made a man a real Alaskan, no one would object because celebrity women exist to feed our lusts.
I think maybe trying to turn a race of people into a conquest needed to attain some kind of status (Alaskan status, in this case) is worse than a single individual, but if we were as offended by lewd comments about Jessica Simpson, would it devolve into a whole race? It seems as though right now, as long as you keep your degrading comments applicable to ALL women, or women not in protected groups, you're fine.
Women need to stand up for all other women and stop being the type of woman who invites such comments; men need to quit making these comments and consuming lewd images. And above all, I think we need to bear in mind that the Yukon River is the real victim in this story.

1 horse + 1 patoot = marriage

The above link goes to a news story indicating that many "gay married couples" are unable to divorce because they "married" in Massachusetts or Vermont, then moved to a state that doesn't recognize "gay marriage", and hence cannot dissolve what doesn't exist.
My first point: This is why Fred Thompson was such a weak and cowardly candidate. He was too busy trying to please everyone that he didn't face the reality of this issue, which is that a constitutional amendment defining marriage IS necessary for exactly this reason. Twenty-some odd states have passed amendments protecting heterosexual marriage. Because they know the popular vote is a lost cause, homosexual activists are going to the courts knowing that they have a better chance of manipulating law with liberal judges than with the American public.
I guess my second point is that this can only be an attempt to force their beliefs on Christian America. If a state doesn't recognize your marriage, you get no benefits from your partner. The only way it could be an issue is if you moved back to the state you were "married" in, in which case you could obtain a "divorce". Quite frankly, if Massachusetts and Vermont want to create this monster, they should have to fix it by altering their divorce laws so the couples don't have the burden of re-establishing residency. If Missouri doesn't recognize your marriage, they shouldn't be burdened with helping dissolve something that doesn't exist.
A third point would be that this is disgusting and i'm pretty sure some of these "couples" used their "marriages" specifically as a tool to force laws to change in all states.
A final point is that i lay blame for this fiasco squarely on the shoulders of contracepting couples. If marriage was still about fostering a stable union for children to reflect a permanent love between man and woman this wouldn't be an issue. Since it's just a 'hopefully permanent' union (you know, unless it just doesn't work out) where you may or may not want kids because you might have a career that's so engrossing and important that you still are entitled to sterilized sex, but no responsibilities that come with that (including responsibilities to your spouse because it just might not work out), we lost our ability to tell all other "couples", no matter now immoral or illogical, that they can't urinate on the sacrament of marriage the same as us.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Why Bad Things Happen to Good People

If bad things happened only to people who did bad things and good things happened when you did good things, it would impede your free will. You would not choose the right thing for its rightness, but for your own comfort. This is also why God isn't more visible in this world. You know He's always watching you, but if you find a wallet, it's easier to take the money in it (if that's what's in your heart) with the abstract concept of being watched than if a burning bush appeared before you and said, "Just pretend I'm not here."
I'm glad i figured this out before my kids got old enough to ask.

The Mirror has Two Faces

There's a cunning little forward that comes to my Inbox periodically that I used to think clever until I thought it through a bit deeper. It gives a list of people who mocked God and died horrible deaths, such as John Lennon and his infamous "Bigger than Jesus" proclamation and Marilyn Monroe shooting down Billy Graham's attempt to bring her to Christ. I don't think this should constitute an edifying forward because, #1 it's mean-spirited (sarcasm is one thing, saying people die because they insult God is a level deeper) and #2 a secularist could just as easily make the same case against some of our greatest saints.
- St. Therese the Little Flower devoted her life to loving God in a convent and died a horrible death from tuberculosis.
-St. Maria Goretti lived her life serving others and upholding chastity and was brutally stabbed to death at the age of 11.
-St. Isaac Jogues tried twice to bring the Christian faith to the Iroquois people and was eaten alive.
Makes us look bad, no?
The moral of the story is QUIT SENDING ME FORWARDS!

Monday, April 14, 2008

Don't let the Door Hit Ya

There's a loverly AP article today on all the different groups of dissenters who will be protesting and (I love this) holding vigils to protest certain teachings of the Catholic Church. I'm sure you can guess what issues are at stake (we're not talking belief in the Incarnation here, folks).
I hate the hubris involved with some of these people so eager to be the ones who "changed the Church". I wish people would think through what exactly it would mean to change Her. It would mean she was some powerful man-made institution that you bent to your will. Your will is not God's will. If it was, you'd be doing what the Church says you should instead of quibbling. I dislike the way women act like the priesthood is something they should be entitled to. It isn't something you earn with hard work and a Phd in Theology, no matter how many years you served as an Extraordinary Minister. If you really believe that the Church let a grave injustice like that pass for 2,000 years, how can you believe she's the one true Church founded by Christ? Why don't you go to the Anglican Church where it's okay to be a lesbian bishop? If that's what you believe God would want, there's an ecclesial community for it already. Go there! I don't understand why you would stay where you think the teachings are bull unless you were just so prideful you wanted everyone on the world stage to see you get your way (which would clinch that you and God were of one mind). I think homosexuals think it would make their disorder "feel" less like a disorder to know a gay lifestyle was in accord with God's plan, which makes them more sympathetic in my mind. As for contraception pushers, reread Humanae Vitae, acknowledge that all that stuff Paul VI predicted has come true, and submit your wills. A three child household will serve you better than a three car garage in the next life. We have a God-approved way of spacing births. Use it! "I don't wanna" is not a good reason for using artificial birth control over nfp.
The other group I find somewhat sympathetic are the clergy sex abuse survivors. Unfortunately Voice of the Faithful is comprised mostly of people who saw the failure of the hierarchy in this matter as an opportunity to take over. However, since injustice was done, I propose a Vatican dungeon where we put abuser priests and bishops as well as bishops who simply moved the abusers around. The Swiss Guard could jab them with sharp sticks for an hour each day to help them work out temporal suffering.
I am grateful the Pope is coming to visit America. I just hope our errant brethren can realize how fortunate we are to have such a leader as he and be brought back into full communion with Holy Mother Church.

The Myth of Choice

Despite all the feminist rhetoric out there, it takes two people to make a baby. When two people get together and act like the reproductive act won't have consequences, sometimes only one of them is willing to accept responsibility for a resulting child which creates a conflicting situation. If the two are in high school or middle school, then you have potentially four additional parents who can have differing opinions on the matter. If a pregnant woman existed in a vacuum, the choice might be all hers, but since this is reality, other people are impacted by her pregnancy. For this reason, men and women, especially high school kids, need to conduct themselves in such a way that reflects that. When you tell people they can be out of control as long as they protect themselves (use a designated driver if you get drunk, use contraception if you want to have premarital sex) then they get a mixed message that tells them that consequences for bad behavior are bad instead of bad behaviors themselves. When young men are into avoiding consequences and the girl "chooses" to have the baby, the following can result:
If it wasn't the father of the child, then obviously it was someone else who didn't respect her "choice". When society starts down the road of children as burdens, how can we continue to have laws against this sort of "assault"? Our society holds two contradicting views. We cannot continue down a path based on relativism (babies are loud, smelly, and expensive unless you want one, to quote Planned Parenthood).

Friday, April 11, 2008

The Slippery Slope

I recently read an infuriating essay written on doctor-assisted suicide. There are so many aspects to this issue that really bug me, so i'm going to try to attack the author's points and go even further.
The main point the author argued was that personal autonomy and freedom was more in danger of being eroded by a slippery slope of making doctor-assisted suicide illegal. He said that pro-lifers used logical fallacies in arguing that doctor-assisted suicide would lead to euthanasia and eugenics. Just because they involve a 3rd party doesn't mean they are logically related.
What he fails to address is the psychological impact of "death with dignity" on society. We saw what happened with contraception; what started off as a tool to help married couples space births for legitimate reasons became a tool to help unmarried women avoid pregnancy and married couples to avoid children for illegitimate reasons. We went from a society where children were seen as a natural occurence in marriage (a blessing) to believing children can be burdens if we want to engage in immoral activities without responsibility.
If you look at "death with dignity" you can see how the same thing can so easily occur in the American psyche. What one person deems as an undignified death warranting suicide, another may be willing to tolerate because they see things in life that make living with pain or the embarrassment of a colostomy bag worth dealing with. As soon as one person makes the comment that his/her mother opted for death rather than to be a financial burden or a burden who required care because of her bedridden status or any other trivial reason, a person who wants to continue living for the same trivial reason may feel shame for choosing to be a burden on their family. Her adult children may feel irritation at her selfish choice for life. Pretty soon choosing death with dignity becomes an obligation because other people have decided that your wants are undignified. If you don't think this is realistic, ask a woman who "chose" to have 6 children how many times people have respected her choice despite the fact that she was married and financially stable. We hate kids now; soon we will hate the elderly.
My suspicion is that this is a concerted effort by pro-eugenics people. You really don't need a doctor to commit suicide. If you're in a bad way medically, how hard is it to obtain enough medication to O.D.? How hard is it to kill yourself using conventional methods? What people suffering in chronic pain seek in doctor-assisted suicide is not necessarily help in killing themselves, but rationalization from a higher authority that what they want is acceptable. Suicide carries a negative stigma, but somehow if a doctor says it's okay, it makes you feel better about your decision. In France, a woman recently killed herself after losing a court case to obtain doctor-assistance in the matter. Why did she need to involve a doctor at all? She wanted to feel right about the decision. Family members want reassurance from a doctor that hastening the death of a loved one is acceptable because they feel horrible watching them suffer. These are understandable feelings, but a doctor is not a moral authority, and while easing physical pain is moral and compassionate, killing someone outright is neither.
I think people who suffer with terminal illnesses are being used in the doctor-assisted suicide debate. Instead of being given moral alternatives and counsel by clergy, they are given a bleak analysis by an increasingly indifferent and utilitarian medical staff. Eugenicists know that by gaining respectability for this immoral practice, it helps move things closer to ridding the world of other "useless eaters". How much longer will it remain optional to screen pre-born children for genetic abnormalities? As human beings, it takes love and patience to serve the elderly, the mentally disabled, and other people with less "quality of life". When we as human beings are no longer challenged to love the most vulnerable among us because they have been mercifully exterminated, we become coarsened and weaker.
As Catholics, we need to inform ourselves of Church teaching on this issue, live those teachings when our parents get to that stage, and witness to our children through the way we deal with their grandparents that caring for the sick and disabled is an opportunity for spiritual growth and service to Christ Himself, not a burden. We need to be sure, too, that everything possible is done to alleviate the physical pain of those who suffer so we don't get accused of advocating sadism (thank you very much, Christopher Hitchens). And finally, if we're lucky enough to see our golden years, we need to pray for the strength to endure suffering, the humility to be served as needed, and that our children do what we've taught them in Christ's love.

Tuesday, April 8, 2008

Adoption: the Ignored Option

One thing I don't understand is why pro-aborts have been getting away without a good argument against adoption. It seems to me that if a woman CHOOSES to have premarital sex, but can't afford to raise a child that results, she can still finish that college degree if someone else is raising the baby. Adoption also seems ideal in the case of rape. Obviously you don't kill a rapist's child for the sins of the father, but since you didn't seek this pregnancy in love, letting another couple raise the baby is perfectly understandable. Cases of incest, too, because it really seems to be best to get that poor baby away from the messed up family with a quickness.
What advantage does abortion offer over adoption? It essentially boils down to Planned Parenthood's money making agenda that involves selling recreational sex. If a girl carries a child to term and gives it up for adoption, she sees that it is human life she created with the sex act and may rethink the casual attitude PP encourages toward said act. It also hurts more to part with a full-term infant than to believe a piece of tissue was removed from your uterus. The lie becomes more exposed when you bring a child to term.
Many of us know women who casually acknowledge that they weren't ready for a baby and had an abortion. Would they be so cavalier in acknowledging, "Oh, i wasn't ready for a baby, so i gave it up for adoption." Seems more callous to be casual about that. Adoption feels more like an important decision was made because you screwed up and we hope you learned your lesson. Abortion is simply a way to get out of the consequences of your actions. With all rights come responsibilities. If you have a "right" to premarital sex, then you have a responsibility to care for the life that results. When we remove responsibilities from the citizens of our country, we become a weaker nation. When we are murdering children to get out of responsibility, how much further can we really sink?
Abortion is so insidious because it is so hidden. It happens quickly behind closed doors, oftentimes with the mothers not even being fully informed about the life growing within them. We have adoption as an option and as long as we keep letting the pro-aborts ignore that, as long as we let Barak Obama pretend like his daughters will be punished with a baby unless they kill it in the womb, we'll keep on losing the war of words.


Like . . . like he couldn't just stalk some ordinary person from his parish. He HAD to stalk a celebrity. And not even an attractive celebrity that you assume many people stalk. The yuks just don't stop with the Archdiocese of Boston.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Desperately Seeking Relevance

My pet theory of the day is that rock stars tend to adopt radical causes so that no one will point out how pathetic their job really is. I mean, yeah, Green Day can bash George W. Bush all day, but when all is said and done, do you think they feel a little desperate at the end of the day when they realize they're pushing 40 and their livelihood depends on whether or not 13-year olds still find the "button-down shirt, eyeliner look" in this season?

The Enlightened.

It's the same story you have heard before, father and mother break up mother leaves with daughter. Thrty years later father reunites with daughter sparks fly, one thing leads to another and well.... You know daughter and father fall in love and have a baby, awwwwwweeeee! This is what happens when you belive that God doesn't exist or that you can create your own morality. Shudder.....
Incest is gross, and immoral. What an enlightened world that we live in (sarcasm). This is the logical consequence of the evils of moral relativism and sexual liberation movement. Just watch the video and see the defiant way the woman anounces that they are consenting adults who can do what they want. It is the ultimate attack on the family unit, as it perverts the interior structure of the family and paternal and filial love.

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Cowman, Mancow, Can, Mow?

Check out this story from Catholic World News:
This is crazy! It makes you want to smack someone in the face with a board. Kinda like listening to someone refer to a woman with the word chick......, chickadoo, SMACK!
Why did they bother doing this? Did they think that they were eliminating any ethical concerns over the destruction of human embryos by putting in 1% cow genes and eliminating 1% human genes? What a waste of time, money, and talent! It is just as bad to kill a 99% genetic human as it is a 100% genetic human. It's also disingenuous of them to promise to not let the embryos grow until birth. If it's made in a lab, how will it be "birthed"? Surrogate cow mother? Ew.