SecretAgentMan posts on the kerfuffle over the Catholic Answers voting guide with the USCCB. He makes some good points especially in regards to the USCCB’s lawyers. So go read his post first and he titles it "A Small Note" which for SAM means you will only need to scroll the web page three or four times. It is funny how the USCCB’s lawyers seem to have an opinion on Catholic Answer’s voting guide but don’t seem to have one on Catholics for a Free Choice or other abortion advocates like the National Catholic Reporter.
CWN previously reported:
A parishioner in the Archdiocese of St. Paul-Minneapolis asked archdiocesan officials if he could distribute the "Voter’s Guide" on church property. The archdiocese sought guidance from the USCCB, according to William Fallon, the archdiocese’s chancellor, and was told they preferred that only the USCCB guide, "Faithful Citizenship: A Catholic Call to Political Responsibility," be distributed. "Faithful Citizenship," a document issued by the lay staff of the USCCB, has been criticized even within the Church for placing the paramount issue of abortion on a level playing field with other lesser issues like promoting "social justice" and "global solidarity." Bob Laird, director of the Family Life Office of the Diocese of Arlington, Virginia, said, "It equates abortion with debt relief. They are not equal." Critics charge that the document has had the effect of minimizing the importance of abortion in Catholic social teaching. The USCCB is also set to release its staff-produced presidential questionnaire which has faced similar charges.
Well I would not say that the USCCB’s document Faithful Citizenship actually equates abortion with debt relief. It is quite obvious when reading the whole document that protecting all human life from conception to natural death is at the forefront. It does go into many parts of Catholic social teaching but there is no real relativism in it. The main problem with the document is the problem with most documents written by a committee. It is muddled and confusing in parts and it is not a clear and simple citizenship guide. One point in it I find at odds with Catholic teaching is their support of affirmative action. They qualify it with the words "judicious use of" but I don’t see how you can justify favoring some people by the color of their skin even to make up for despicable past racial injustices. The ends do not justify the means and affirmative action based on racial quotas can never be judicious.
It is no surprise why more people prefer Catholic Answer’s Voter’s Guide for Serious Catholics. It is short, clear, and easy to be understood by the laity. The five non-negotiable issues are not nuanced into paragraphs that leave you more confused then when your started reading them. I would encourage reading both documents but using Catholic Answer’s guide as a rosetta stone to understand what the bishops are trying to say.
Matt C. Abbot also recently reported:
Kudos to Catholic Answers!
The California-based Catholic apologetics organization will, on August 31, be taking out a full page ad in USA Today to tell Catholics “how to vote according to Catholic moral teachings on five key issues when they go to the polls,” according to a news release.
Those five issues, which Catholics should never vote in favor of, are abortion, homosexual marriage, embryonic stem cell research, human cloning, and euthanasia.
The ad will contain the text of the controversial but successful ‘Voters’ Guide for Serious Catholics,’ the text of which can be seen on the organization’s website, www.catholic.com.