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The Big, Juicy Lies of Catholics for Choice

Posted on August 2 2010 11:00 am
Lisa Graas has covered politics and religion at her blog since 2008. She has served as a crisis pregnancy counselor, youth speaker, mental health advocate and legislative consultant.

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In Omaha, Nebraska, as Archbishop George Joseph Lucas is taking the lead in a protest against the opening of an abortion clinic in his community, Catholics for Choice (CFC) is offering up a poison apple to Planned Parenthood of the Heartland to encourage them in their activities by assuring them that they are not engaging in activity that Catholics believe to be intrinsically evil (as if Planned Parenthood gives a hoot about Catholic belief anyway). That poison apple is in the form of a big lie about Catholic teaching on conscience. This big lie is one that has the potential to lead some astray, not to mention the impact it may have in hardening even further the hearts of those employed by Planned Parenthood.

Modern-day Catholics worth their stuff understand with crystal clarity that among all of today’s political issues, there are five things which are “non-negotiable.” This means that no Catholic may vote for any candidate who supports even one of them. These are, in no particular order since they are all non-negotiable: Abortion,  Euthanasia, Embryonic Experimentation, Human Cloning and Same-Sex Marriage. War? That’s negotiable for Catholics. Economic policy? That’s also negotiable. The death penalty? That, too, is negotiable. In fact, when it comes to political issues that we all must consider today, everything is negotiable for Catholics with the exception of the five non-negotiables.

CFC, like the Catholic Church, also believes the abortion issue is a “non-negotiable” issue, but instead of professing, as the Catholic Church does, that no one could rightly vote for a candidate who would support abortion, CFC insists that “Catholics believe” no one should ever stand in the way of the performance of an abortion. Where do they get this notion which places them in the exact opposite position of the Catholic Church on the matter? It comes from their failure to understand Catholic teaching on conscience.

In a letter to Planned Parenthood of the Heartland, CFC President Jon O’Brien makes a claim that is based on a belief about conscience that is actually quite commonly misunderstood among Catholics. O’Brien then makes a second claim that actually refutes his first claim.

As Catholics, we believe that individual conscience in matters of moral decision-making is at the core of our tradition. We cannot presume to tell others how best to inform and to listen to their own consciences. Clinics such as yours serve vital roles within the community and attempts to impede access through intimidation are unconscionable.

O’Brien claims:

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