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Baumeister: Biden Advocates for Women’s Rights, Not Abortion

Dave Baumeister
Columnist and Catholic Dave Baumeister

Columnist Dave Baumeister offers this Sunday homily on women’s reproductive rights:

I was raised Catholic, I went to a Catholic elementary school, and I spent 16 years teaching in a Catholic high school, so I am pretty well versed in how that particular sect of the Christian faith is supposed to work.

In fact, I am so well-versed in the Catholic faith that while I used the word “sect” to describe the Catholic Church as a part of the Christian faith, I know that based on history, all other Christian traditions are actually “sects” of the Catholic Church.

So this is why I took GREAT offense this week to Father Robert Morey, the pastor at Saint Anthony Catholic Church in Florence, S.C., telling the Florence Morning News that he had denied former Vice-President Joe Biden Holy Communion because, as he was quoted, “any public figure who advocates for abortion places himself or herself outside of Church teaching.”

If this is true, and lists it as “unproven,” due to the fact no one witnessed this and no one besides Morey is talking about it, it would seem that Fr. Morey equates himself with God to have the omniscience to make that distinction on Biden’s beliefs. Granted, I don’t know everything about the former Vice-President, but I have never read or heard anywhere that he advocates for abortion. In fact, I have read and heard just the opposite.

“Advocating for abortion” is completely different from advocating for reproductive rights. Joe Biden has never walked into a room of pregnant women and randomly pointed at them saying who should abort their babies. That would be the only way that anyone could “advocate for abortion,” as Morey suggests.

For Morey to say he knows differently, that he knows what is going on in another human soul, truly shows his arrogance. Such soul-reading is not a power that Jesus passed on to Peter.

One can advocate for having abortions being legal and a choice and not be advocating for any woman to have an abortion. THE ABORTION ISSUE SHOULD NOT BE USED AS A POLITICAL CUDGEL, as Morey is doing.

The whole premise of being “pro-choice” is that a woman is allowed to make certain choices for herself and NOT deal with advocates of any particular cause.

Fr. Robert Morey of Florence, S.C., is definitely advocating for women NOT to have the right to make their own reproductive decisions.

But what is truly telling, that before Roe vs. Wade, abortions for medical reasons were perfectly legal in the United States.

My mother was an OB nurse at a Catholic hospital, and I remember her talking about women “losing their babies.” Then, the term “abortion” was pretty much reserved for things that happened in a back alley, but the procedures Mom talked about were the same things that laws in Alabama would make illegal: parents choosing to end a pregnancy because the fetus would not be viable, or the mother’s life was in danger.

And in the last 50 years, medical science has advanced so far that much more can be told about the health of a baby. But people like Morey and lawmakers in Alabama and elsewhere (including South Dakota), while not “advocating for abortion,” are advocating that a woman carry a child for four-plus months when she knows it can’t survive out of the womb and will die as soon as it is born.

Requiring women to carry such hopeless pregnancies to term—and so far, the courts have kept that from coming to pass—would be the worst form of torture imaginable.

Maybe, as a Catholic priest, South Carolina’s Fr. Morey is looking to bring back the Spanish Inquisition. I wouldn’t expect that to be true of a Catholic priest today, but then again…


  1. Mr. Ross 2019-11-03 14:14

    I think the Catholic priest is right on this on… assuming that all the correct, prescribed steps up to this point were followed. The Church’s teaching is that abortion is wrong, and to follow that teaching, elective abortion should not be legal. Fighting for this goes against that teaching. To commune in the church, you are required to be in agreement with those teachings. It seems to me that this would be one of the only priests publicly standing firm in the Church’s public teaching.

  2. mike from iowa 2019-11-03 15:05

    Alabama’s draconian law has been blocked by the courts, at least for now. I would venture a guess it is blatantly unconstitutional on its face, but then one has to realize the blatant ideology of drumpf’s SCOTUS picks and other lifetime tenured judges to recognize reality is about to get set on its ear.

  3. Jeff Barth 2019-11-03 16:11

    We ALL favor Choice. Some want to make the choice for everyone else.

  4. Porter Lansing 2019-11-03 16:24

    Catholic women use the term miscarriage instead of abortion. Miscarriage with no preface such as chosen miscarriage. e.g. She had a miscarriage often means she chose to have a miscarriage.

  5. Loren 2019-11-03 17:32

    Yes, Mr Ross, the Catholic church teaches that abortion is wrong. They taught me, as a child, that eating meat on Friday would send me to hell. They said I had to go to church every Sunday, but now Saturday is OK if you want to watch the football game. They taught me that priests could not be married, but looks like they will change that, now that there is a shortage. They teach lot of things but adhere to very few. Leave choice to the individual, you know, the person whose situation you could not possibly know.

  6. bearcreekbat 2019-11-03 17:38

    So what makes Catholics want to criminalize abortion anyway? Why isn’t it enough for a Catholic to have faith that God will reject the woman’s eternal soul and condemn her to hell?

    Catholics apparently don’t care that other so-called mortal sins are legal.

    In the Bible, St. Paul gives us a list of grave sins. He states that anyone who commits these sins shall not enter the kingdom of God. “Now the works of the flesh are manifest, which are these; Adultery, fornication, uncleanness, lasciviousness, idolatry, witchcraft, hatred, variance, emulations, wrath, strife, seditions, heresies, envyings, . . . , drunkenness, revellings, and such like.

    Where is the hue and cry for laws to criminalize witches, drunks, heretics, greedy people, etc? Why only go after a woman who asserts bodily autonomy contrary to Catholic doctrine?

  7. o 2019-11-03 18:08

    I wonder how many priests refuse communion to their parishioners who are “obscenely wealthy” after Pope Francis added to the mortal sins?

  8. Porter Lansing 2019-11-03 18:15

    BCB – Follow the money. My cousin, a Doctor of Statistics, who is an expert witness in court estimating how much money a person would have made for the rest of their life had they not been injured and become unable to work could easily estimate how much money the Catholic Church loses in lifetime tithing from each aborted future member. The church’s actions on other issues convinces me the Catholic Church cares much more about the lost money than a lost soul.

  9. bearcreekbat 2019-11-03 18:29

    Interesting idea Porter, yet Catholics want to criminalize this mortal sin for non-Catholics too.

  10. Porter Lansing 2019-11-03 18:35

    They have to be consistent about it. Besides, non-Catholics aren’t going to heaven, anyway.

  11. Debbo 2019-11-03 18:37

    From what I have learned, heard and read about Vatican Inc, it’s all about the Benjamins. Not so for the average church member in the pew or for most religious orders and priests.

    Women are an easier target for Vatican Inc., have been from the moment of that church’s inception.

  12. Debbo 2019-11-03 21:20

    Here’s a state, a red one at that, doing more for children and women, not less. SD could take a lesson from North Carolina.

  13. Donald Pay 2019-11-03 22:00

    Not a fan of any church that has people like Father Robert Morey in it. People like Morey are why I’m an atheist. Jesus is fine, but save us all from the Christians.

  14. Roger Cornelius 2019-11-03 22:51

    God Grief Already!!!
    How does God keep track of all this stuff?

  15. jerry 2019-11-03 23:51

    There are no Catholics in Ireland I guess, what’s more, I guess they don’t fear hell with the way they vote..

    “Ireland has voted by a landslide to repeal its near-total ban on abortion, an extraordinary victory for women’s rights that seals the country’s transformation from bastion of religious conservatism to one of Europe’s most tolerant democracies.”

    We here struggle with Democracy, because of women don’t ya know.

  16. Jenny 2019-11-04 00:44

    Sigh……The priests should be more worried about The millions of innocent children all around the world that have been and continue to be victims of the evil sexual abuse in the Church.

  17. bearcreekbat 2019-11-04 01:11

    Isn’t Catholic doctrine more concerned with the sinner than any particular victim of the sin? Hence, the plight of children likely would be of little concern to formal Catholic theology.

    And while possibly the driving force in reality behind the Catholic hierarchy’s treatment of abortion differently than other mortal sins of the flesh, is the purpose identified by Porter and Debbo (to generate Benjamins) actually any part of official written Catholic church theological doctrine?

  18. John 2019-11-04 09:32

    From a true catholic point of view and not a bunch of non-factual speculation, catholics believe that the bread and wine become the body of blood of Christ through the miracle of transubstantiation. The Eucharist cannot be given to a person who is in a state of mortal or grave sin, as the Eucharist will do more harm to the soul than good. If a person REALLY believes in what the church teaches, they will not even attempt to take communion in the state of mortal sin. Usually, this fact is hidden and is only revealed in the sacrament of reconciliation, but Mr. Biden chose to state that stance publicly that he is “personally” against abortion, but can’t force this decision on others.” Liberals love to tell us not to bring our church into their politics, well don’t bring your politics into our church. It is the priest’s duty to withhold the true body of Christ to someone who is in a state of grave sin. It is for his soul’s own good. I just wanted to give a different viewpoint to this situation. I believe Joe is a good man, but unfortunately is on the wrong side of right on this one.
    By the way, attacking people’s religion is very gustapo-ish of all of you. Good job. And before all of you tell me I’m a Trump loving conservative, I think he is the worst thing that has ever happened to this country. I’m a registered pro-life Democrat, which sadly, disqualifies me from voting for almost everyone I think may be an effective leader. Commence with your pathetic attacks from your armchairs, boys. I’m glad you’re all attempting to making a difference in your world by bitching about everyone else in it. You all need a hug, or a prayer, or an anti-psychotic.

  19. Porter Lansing 2019-11-04 09:48

    “attacking people’s religion is very gustapo-ish of all of you” – “Commence with your pathetic attacks from your armchairs, boys”
    Oh! Now I get it John/Jon. It’s not the hundreds of molested boys and girls and not the millions of discriminated against females, BUT it’s the Catholic Church that’s the real victim here.
    Thanks for smartening us up.

  20. John 2019-11-04 09:55

    copying half your post from mine doesn’t equate to much of an original thought there, Porter

  21. bearcreekbat 2019-11-04 10:00

    John, my questions about Catholicism were not meant as an armchair attack on the religion. I asked these questions in good faith. If I made any incorrect statements I apologize and ask that you or someone else more knowledgable than myself correct any such statement.

    Meanwhile, given your apparent knowledge of Catholic doctrine, perhaps you will be willing to address my two questions:

    (1) Why is it so important under Catholic doctrine to seek to repeal the current secular constitutional right of a woman to decide whether to continue her personal pregnancy and then use secular law to criminalize her decision to terminate her pregnancy, but not just as important to repeal current constitutional rights to engage in so many other different mortal sins, and then criminalize such behavior, such as those mortal sins listed in the Saint Thomas Acquina link I posted in the earlier comment?

    (2) Is Catholic doctrine more concerned with the sinner than any particular victim of the sin? For example, is it a mortal sin for a non-sinner or clergy to ignore a victim? And is it a mortal sin for a non-sinner or clergy to ignore a sinner?

  22. mike from iowa 2019-11-04 10:17

    John, do you believe the Catholic Church, as a whole, deserves all the derision they receive for the handling of member sexual predators and those above them?

    In a similar vein, a man in Indonesia who pushed caning for adultery was himself caned for adultery.

  23. mike from iowa 2019-11-04 10:19

    Well said, Jeff Barth. Short and accurate.

  24. Donald Pay 2019-11-04 10:25

    I don’t have a problem with the Catholic position on abortion, as long as it applies to Catholics. It shouldn’t be the law of the land. Other people have other beliefs and those beliefs don’t follow Catholic teaching. Biden understands that. Whether Catholic clergy decide to approach what they consider sin or a wrong approach to abortion in a very anti-Jesus way is up to them. Jesus never said a word about abortion, but he was very clear about how one should treat people.

  25. bearcreekbat 2019-11-04 10:30

    Exactly, Donald. I have no problem with Catholics denying the Eucharist, or any other church benefit or perk, to a person Catholics believe to be in a state of mortal or grave sin. Hence my question to John and others about what Catholic doctrine supports their desire to co-op secular law and punish only certain sinners (here, punish women who exercise the constitutional right to decide whether to continue an individual pregnancy).

  26. John 2019-11-04 10:34

    Thanks bearcreek, I appreciate the civility of your question and I will attempt to answer it with my very limited knowledge of Catholic apologetics. As catholics, we are called to be civically active and participate in activism when we see the secular world veering off the path of what is taught through scripture and the magisterium of the church. As Dante described, there is differing severity of sin, and that is how the church responds, I believe. This would be a better question for a priest or a theologian. The church defines all the sins that St. Thomas A. outlined as grave, however, I think you and I can both agree that there is a big moral difference between getting drunk and ending a human being’s life.
    As far as the second question is concerned, I believe the church is equally concerned with sinner as well as the victim. As the Lords’ prayer says, forgive us our trespasses, as we forgive those who trespassed against us. I believe that the goal of our faith is to help the sinner clean their soul through the sacrament of reconciliation. The victim will hopefully pray for the strength to forgive the one who hurt them. In the end, we only answer to God, and if you cannot forgive the ones who have harmed you and you have not sought out personal forgiveness, you might be in trouble. As far as “ignoring” a victim or sinner, if the sinner or victim reaches out for help and is ignored, then I believe it is a mortal sin. That’s a tough one as apostolic succession states that “whoever’s sins you forgive on earth will be forgiven in heaven, and whoever’s sins you hold bound on earth, will be bound in heaven.” Higher than my pay grade. Thanks for asking.

  27. John 2019-11-04 10:46

    I think the question most Catholics ask themselves is, ” How can I support anyone who would think it is O.K. to end the life of the most innocent of all lives” By the way, we also support the ending of the death penalty as it is in violation of the sanctity of human life, no matter how egregious the sins of that person may be. We march against that too, it just doesn’t get any airtime. Catholic’s stance on abortion is not political, it just isn’t. Catholics also believe that the war on the poor is deeply sinful. I think most democrats would find the Catholic church being an ally on many fronts if it would only look hard enough.

  28. bearcreekbat 2019-11-04 11:14

    Thanks for your observations John. The call to civil action would seem to make sense if there were efforts to use secular law to remove any constitutional right to engage in a mortal sin, and use secular law to inflict a secular punishment upon people deemed sinners by the Church. Here, I see no such efforts?

    I too wondered whether Catholic doctrine ranked sin so that taking a life was somehiow a more serious sin under Catholic doctrine than other mortal sins. The Acquinas site suggests it is not. Indeed, even the Catholic version of the ten commandments seems to suggest taking a life ranks a bit lower than the other identified sins, as “thou shall not kill” is not ordered until after ordering several other commandments. Honoring thy father and mother (along with several commandments relating to blasphemy) has numerical priority by God over thou shall not kill, if that is evidence of any ranking.

    Is there some other source that would suggest taking a life is a more serious sin under Catholic doctrine than other mortal sins? And is the theological punishment (rather than secular punishment), such as denying Eucharist or eternal damnation, greater for the sin of taking a life than it is for other mortal sins?

    In this interesting Catholic forum people discuss this question. One comment suggests “The bible also lists one mortal sin as more serious: it says that to blaspheme against the Holy Spirit is the only unforgivable sin.”

    If true why then is there no Catholic effort to modify or repeal the SCOTUS interpretations of the 1st and 14th Amendments so “blaspheme” can be criminalized in the same manner as Catholics seek to remove the constitutional right that the SCOTUS has found from the 1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 9th and 14th Amendments of a woman to her personal bodily integrity in reproduction decisions?

    As for the distinction between the Catholic concern for a sinner as opposed to his or her victim, if any, my original supposition was that the Church was primarily concerned with the sinner. Your comment seems to confirm the fact of the Church’s concern for the sinner, but does not really address whether Catholic doctrine directs the Church itself or its parishoners to have any unusual of different concern toward a victim. For example, if a victim reaches out for help you indicate it would be a mortal sin to ignore the victim. But, would that also be true for people who are not victims and are reaching out for help? Or does the Church advocate treating these two situations in a different manner?

    Thanks again for your feedback, John.

  29. Jenny 2019-11-04 11:15

    What does you wonderful holier than thou Church say about molestation and the hiding of it, Johnny?

  30. bearcreekbat 2019-11-04 11:44

    John, your observation about Catholic opposition to the death penalty is relevant to my inquiry. Has the Catholic Church as an institution, its leaders or parishioners, especially Catholic elected officials, advocated Supreme Court Justice appointments of judges opposed to the death sentence in an effort to reverse 8th Amendment jurisprudence regarding the death sentence?

    I know there have been efforts to amend some state laws to eliminate the death sentence, but I wonder if Catholics have made any similar national effort to change the interpretation of the Constitution in the same way they have in trying to eliminate a woman’s right of privacy in reproductive decisions?

  31. john 2019-11-04 12:18

    It’s a sin, Jenny, I never made any attempt to say that it isn’t. But my church teaches that if you sin and are truly sorry for it, and confess the sin in the sacrament of reconciliation, it will be forgiven. It has nothing to do with whether or not the victim will forgive you. We only pray that they will find it in their hearts someday to forgive, so they can move on. I don’t want to pretend like I know what it is like to go through the aftermath of sexual abuse, because I don’t. But I do believe that self forgiveness and forgiveness of those who harmed you, is an essential part of healing. I don’t want to make any excuses for predator priests and bishops who hid their sins, but I also don’t want people to think for a minute that what has happened is a reason to abandon your faith. When the ship is sinking, do you let it go down and save yourself, or do you try to save others? I would like to think that I would stay, and that is why I do. If being a Christian was easy, everybody would do it, right? I’m just glad I wasn’t one under the reign of Tiberius, Nero, and all the other pre-Constantinian Emperors, I would have had the chance to really put my money where my mouth is. I enjoy the dialogue, keep it coming!

  32. John 2019-11-04 12:33

    Mike, I will try to answer your question as simply as I can. Yes, if you view the “church” as simply a secular entity, with levels of hierarchy ie. priests, deacons, bishops, arch-bishops and pope that are charged with protecting the members of their flock from harm, then absolutely they deserve the derision they have received. But the Church, as seen from the Catholic point of view, is much more than an institution, it is the Bride of Christ, infallible in it’s existence as it was ordained by God himself. So in this instance, no, it isn’t deserving of the derision. This is a very complex question from the Catholic perspective, so I don’t think I can do it much justice. It is extremely hard to explain, but I would direct you to a priest, apologist, or other theologian to get a wayyyyyy better answer than I could ever give you.

  33. mike from iowa 2019-11-04 12:59

    Thank you for your answer, John.

  34. Porter Lansing 2019-11-04 13:16

    They deserve the derision they have received? Bull sheit! These priests, deacons, bishops, arch-bishops and pope who’ve molested children deserve prison, just like any other child rapist.
    You see your church as “infallible in it’s existence as it was ordained by God”? Thus, you see your church as a group to be above the law. Therein lies the “reason for prison”. Admission of guilt with no remorse, only divine justification.
    Vatican’s answer to the question “Why did the Vatican hide child molesting Priests?” is “You don’t understand. It’s very hard to explain.”
    NO!! The answer to the question is, “To keep them out of prison and to keep Catholics from leaving the church and ending our endless supply of money from them.”

  35. John 2019-11-04 13:47

    You’re going to see it however you’re going to see it, Porter. Yes, they belong in prison, because they have broken the laws of God and man, but they deserve the chance to be forgiven, just as you and I do. You act as though you think these crimes don’t make me angry; believe me they do. I guess I just feel I need to defend my faith, no matter what, because I believe it’s the truth. I’m sorry if it offends you, but I’ll defend it unto death, if I have to. Take care.

  36. Debbo 2019-11-04 13:56

    John, I’m interested in your responses to BCB’s questions. Please continue that conversation.

  37. Porter Lansing 2019-11-04 14:00

    John – Are you more invested in defending your church than trying to reform your church? It sure sounds like it. You’d die defending a decision to hide criminal child molesters? That’s not religion. That’s cult like behavior.
    My church was responsible for most of the moral attitudes in America. The over the top, moral superiority some still hold over normal people. But, we changed. We denounced the puritans and their witch burnings and are now the first and maybe still the only church to sanctify same sex marriage in SD.
    Catholic Church won’t change as long as people like John look the other way and claim purity where none exists.

  38. Debbo 2019-11-04 14:05

    Porter, I’m not sure which one is your church, but the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA), United Church of Christ (UCC), Unitarian Universalist Church (UU), and Episcopal Church of the USA (ECUSA) all sanction marriage for all. The UU has done so forever, or nearly so.

    There may be other churches too. I’m not certain.

  39. Jenny 2019-11-04 14:20

    Some of the Methodist Churches open their doors to same sex couples also, Debbo. The Methodist actually might split with the anti-gay stance that was taken last winter.

  40. Jeff Barth 2019-11-04 14:22

    If we (and those embryos) have eternal life how does it matter? Just go to heaven.

    The key on the whole issue is how to prevent unwanted pregnancies.

  41. John 2019-11-04 14:29

    Porter, I don’t ask God to change to fit my needs, I need to change to fit God’s plan for me. I think that is a big difference between my religion and yours. And if I’m not mistaken, there have been plenty of other religious organizations that have been accused of sexual misconduct, ie. the southern baptist church and the FLDS. And I’m sure it has happened and been covered up in yours as well. Casting stones, aren’t we? I’m sure you have read that one.

  42. Porter Lansing 2019-11-04 14:36

    That’s what-aboutism, John.
    Debbo – I’m UCC. 😊

  43. John 2019-11-04 14:43

    Not familiar with that sect, who started that one, Calvin, Luther, Knox, Spock, Yoda, Vishnu, Siddartha, I get confused with all these offshoots of the CATHOLIC church. Mike drop, I’m out.

  44. John 2019-11-04 14:55

    You know, Porter I looked up the mission statement of the UCC church, and one of their missions is to be a unified universal church. “That they may all be one” -John 17:21. You know what the other word for that is… Catholic. We’re not as different as you’d like us to be. Peace.

  45. Debbo 2019-11-04 15:14

    It’s disappointing that John split without responding to BCB’s thoughtful questions. I guess he was intimidated or perhaps fearful of tackling them.

  46. John 2019-11-04 15:29

    I just don’t know the answer, simple as that. So many people on this blog are afraid to say that.

  47. Porter Lansing 2019-11-04 15:36

    John is a perfect example of what Baumeister blogged about. The RCC is actively trying to stamp out and legislate against the rights of molested people to get their day in court. Why would RCC do that? Because their religion’s celibacy policies attract child molesters.

  48. John 2019-11-04 15:54

    Porter, you sound like a crazy person. If you can’t sound coherent in your arguments, get a grown up to help.

  49. Debbo 2019-11-04 16:01

    Porter, I don’t think it’s the celibacy so much as the position of power over that the priests are in. They are not answerable to the congregation like other denominations are. The emphasis on Roman Catholicism as “the one, true church” that John likes to mention, only adds to that power image and makes congregations more vulnerable.

    The RCC’s heavily hierarchical structure creates multiple layers between the individual and any clerical accountability. When bishops and archbishops say they’ll respond to an abuse report, the perpetrator and any action taken are thoroughly insulated from the victim. Secrecy is maintained and the victim doesn’t know if anything was actually done.

    It’s an extremely sick system that fights against victims reporting the crimes to police while cozying up to and co-opting the branches of law enforcement to the best of the RCC’s financial ability. Meanwhile, using more of the wealth it keeps from victims via bankruptcies, the RCC lobbies legislative bodies to stop passage of laws that will support victims and hold perpetrators accountable by extending or eliminating the statute of limitations.

    There is no way to pretty that up. Vatican Inc protects its wealth at the cost of molested children plus raped and forced abortion nuns. Vatican Inc continues to operate the world’s largest trafficking organization of children and women.

    (Once upon a time, the religious angle was genuine, and for most individual congregations it still is. John is an example of that kind of genuine heart.)

  50. John 2019-11-04 16:15

    Thank you, Debbo. I have recently become involved with a mission group that focuses on the points you hi-lighted. We encourage men to rise up to be the holy heads of their families that they were intended to be to help rebuild the church. Some of us are trying, thank you for seeing that.

  51. Porter Lansing 2019-11-04 16:16

    I’ll yield to Debbo. She has an education and a career in this field and has thought about the RCC’s hierarchy for a long time.
    Hey, John. Sound like a Promise Keepers.

  52. Debbo 2019-11-04 17:34

    You lost me John. Where did I suggest “men to rise up to be the holy heads of their families that they were intended to be to help rebuild the church.”? That’s already the structure of the RCC and that overly hierarchical, male dominant structure is what enables the criminal activities.

    Did you read my comment at 16:01?

  53. Debbo 2019-11-04 17:46

    From Porter’s excellent link:

    “The only thing that they care about is protecting themselves. Even though they say that they support victims, in the same breath they are undermining victims by spending these millions of dollars to shut out all Catholic clergy victims.”

    It’s true.

  54. bearcreekbat 2019-11-04 18:06

    John, I accept your answer that you do not know the answer to the questions I posed. I asked about Catholic doctrine and it would be unreasonable to expect all members of that Church to be fully versed in all Catholic doctrine.

    Yet given the hot button nature of the goal to reverse Roe’s right of privacy it would seem likely that, if there is such a supporting Catholic doctrine, anti-Roe Catholics would be cognizant of the doctrine, especially if they desire to use the Church to justify their anti-Roe position.

    Perhaps Catholic doctrine doesn’t really support changing secular laws to take away a constitutional right of privacy from all women. Perhaps the doctrine instead only directs each individual member to behave in particular ways rather than impose its will through secular law on everyone. Perhaps Church doctrine leaves it up to God to sanction members that sin?

    And back to John’s earlier comment about Joe Biden, where John observes ” It is the priest’s duty to withhold the true body of Christ to someone who is in a state of grave sin.” I don’t recall Joe Biden, nor anyone supporting a woman’s constitutional right to personal bodily integrity and privacy in all reproduction decisions, ever arguing to the contrary. Indeed, it seems that we can respect fully the Priest’s decision to deny the Eucharist to anyone required by Church doctrine as this is an internal non-secular action.

    Perhaps I am wrong, has Biden ever argued otherwise? John simply said, ” Mr. Biden chose to state that stance publicly that he is “personally” against abortion, but can’t force this decision on others.” This position does not seem to oppose a Priest’s authority to “deny the body of Christ” to anyone. And given the apparent absence of opposing Catholic doctrine, Joe’s position actually appears consistent with the Church doctrine.

    In these circumstances John’s claim that “Joe is . . . on the wrong side of right on this one” seems unsupported by the Catholic religion.

    Again, I am not Catholic and do not claim to know all details about Catholic doctrine. My conclusions are based on my limited knowledge coupled with John’s comments and responses to my questions about Catholic doctrine. If John or anyone else has additional information that contradicts my analysis, I encourage corrections.

  55. Cory Allen Heidelberger 2019-11-04 21:07

    Male headship? Good grief—there’s the death rattle of insecure men threatened by equality and cooperation.

    And that really encapsulates why conservatives will one moment tell us they want limited government but the next tell us government should ban abortion. Lots of men want no government regulation over their own actions while they use government to exert control over women.

    That’s not being a man; that’s being a bully.

  56. Cory Allen Heidelberger 2019-11-04 21:13

    Hmm… I know many Catholics who support the First Amendment, which grants people the right to practice and promote faiths that run counter to Catholicism.

    Are Catholic supporters of the First Amendment advocating heretical beliefs?

    Must Catholics renounce the First Amendment to receive communion?

  57. John 2019-11-05 07:24

    Cory, why do you always insist on asking rhetorical questions that have absolutely no bearing on the conversation? You pick crap out of thin air and justify it as what the other person means. Nothing you stated has even an ounce of truth to what I say or mean. Get a grip, dude.

  58. Lincoln Hawk 2019-11-05 09:05

    Cory, if Catholics didn’t respect the First Amendment, we’d have long ago taken to the streets to exercise the Second Amendment in response to blog authors and comment writers who mock and belittle us based on falsehoods, misrepresentations and flat out lies. It’s clear how in awe of your own intellect you are, but you clearly don’t know nearly as much about Catholicism as you think you do. And Pride is a mortal sin; even Martin Luther believed that.

  59. bearcreekbat 2019-11-05 09:30

    Cory’s 1st Amendment question seems right on point, and not in any way a rhetorical question. According to the above linked Catholic doctrine blasphemy is the worst of all mortal sins, worse than murder, and the 1st Amendment’s Free Exercise clause allows blasphemy.

    If it is appropriate for Catholics to oppose Biden simply because he accepts the several Constitutional Amendments that allow a woman the Right of Privacy to make her own family planning decisions because they feel she might commit a mortal sin with the wrong decision, why is it not even more appropriate to challenge support of the 1st Amendment because it allows blasphemy, especially since someone freely exercising that 1st Amendment right might also commit this much worse mortal sin?

    Maybe, just maybe, any Catholic theological justification for opposiing to a woman’s freedom to choose has not been well thought out and is simply out of proportion to the nature of the mortal sin feared; especially, when such narrow thinking causes a Catholic to reject someone otherwise acknowledged as “a good man.”

  60. John 2019-11-05 10:36

    The Catholic teaching does not endorse the elimination of free will. That was given to us by God and is ours to do with what we choose. We can choose to follow him and do what is right and good, or we can choose to not follow him, and suffer the consequences. The suggestion of challenging the first amendment to avoid blasphemy is a fools errand. Blasphemies happen every day, committed by every person, in the actions and inaction of human beings given free will. We pray for sinners, we don’t reject them. We are taught to love the sinner, and hate the sin. We just don’t believe that killing someone should be on the menu of free will decisions, if it can be avoided. Do we give dictators free will to decide to commit genocide. No, we stop them. In the eyes of the Catholic church, this is a genocide, legality be damned. But back to the original point, a priest can withhold communion from anyone who is in a state of sin. My cousin wasn’t allowed to receive communion until his first marriage was annulled and his second marriage was recognized by the church. He didn’t like it, but he accepted it. Good people sin every single day; in thought, word, and action, but we still love them and we still pray for them. I don’t know if I’m answering you BCB, but I feel like I’m hitting some of the points.

  61. Jenny 2019-11-05 11:15

    I just vomited a little bit and fell asleep…….self-aborbed people that are obsessed with their self-absorbed (hypocrite) church. It’s like a bad dream.

  62. Jenny 2019-11-05 11:19

    And i still get nightmares from being in that creepy dark dreary confessional room with that scary old balding priest.

  63. John 2019-11-05 11:24

    I feel like somebody really wronged you at some point in your life, and I’m sorry for that, Jenny. Maybe you should talk to somebody other that writing on this thing, it won’t help you.

  64. Jenny 2019-11-05 11:43

    I have empathy and compassion for the millions of abuse victims at the hands of the Catholic Church. My bleeding heart cries for them. Do you?

  65. john 2019-11-05 11:46


  66. john 2019-11-05 11:49

    It’s just hard to take your sentiment of empathy and compassion seriously when you don’t defend infants from being killed in the womb. Calling me and my church hypocritical is a bit like the pot calling the kettle black, don’t you think? Does your heart bleed for all who are suffering, or only those who agree with you?

  67. Donald Pay 2019-11-05 11:50

    Anytime you give up your right to think for yourself, you have succumbed to someone else’s tyranny. Whether it’s a religion, a cult or a government leader, you have to keep your own right to think your own thoughts and disagree with church or government institutions. Any church or government that doesn’t recognize that fundamental right of its constituents is not worthy of its constituents. I like heterodox institutions that have tolerance for different ways of thinking about important matters, not those that close off discussion or try to shame or force people into a common way of thinking. I’d say I was a Freethinker, but I think there is some good in most religions.

    I think all of these issues are tough to consider outside of specific instances. I generally agree with the pro-life stance in general, but I don’t pretend I know what some women must feel when they are considering their own specific instance. I leave it up to them to make the right decision.

  68. Jenny 2019-11-05 11:58

    And John changes the subject. The Catholic lay people are not supposed to talk about the world wide abuse of children in their Church. They just can’t do it, they don’t have it in them. They are Cowards. They choose not to help break the stigman of sexual abuse.

  69. Porter Lansing 2019-11-05 12:00

    John … There are NO infants in the womb. There are NO lives in the womb. A life begins at birth when God blesses a newborn with a soul. Cells reproduce before a life begins and cells divide after a life becomes a corpse. Anthropomorphization of a fetus is a farce designed to control people that overemphasize emotions over facts. You sir are being duped by RCC to the church’s monetary benefit.
    *When does a fetus gain a soul? After the first two cells divide? After a random period of pregnancy? You must know the answer, John? A fetus never gains a soul! But, Bible says every human life has a soul, doesn’t it?
    @Jenny … They also ignore the widespread rape of nuns by Priests.

  70. John 2019-11-05 12:07

    Sexual abuse occurred in my church. It was and is terrible. I feel like I’ve already gone over this. Your argument seems to be that there is no possible way that you can be catholic and feel terrible about sexual abuse at the same time. That, Jenny, is super dumb. Your arguments are fueled by hatred of the church, not sympathy for anyone. Your arguments are fragmented and mostly of your own concoction, not based on fact. I’ll gladly have a real conversation with you, but if you’re just gonna spout bullsh** all day, go pack sand, lady.

  71. Jenny 2019-11-05 12:16

    The stigma (not stigman) . With me, just the opposite, I will ALWAYS fight for the victims, the forgotten ones, the little guy. True, proud liberal here.

  72. Jenny 2019-11-05 12:19

    That is absolutely false, John. I have total empathy for them, so back off you don’t know me. Have you read any of their stories? Have you talked to them. Or is it just your hope and prayers?

  73. Cory Allen Heidelberger 2019-11-05 12:45

    John, as BCB says, it’s not a rhetorical question. The Constitution grants Americans the right to say and do many things that do not align with Catholic orthodoxy. Is supporting those Constitutional rights the same as advocating the un-Catholic those rights legally permit?

    I’m not lying or tricking you; I’m seeking to understand the principles behind what you are saying.

  74. Cory Allen Heidelberger 2019-11-05 12:47

    “Lincoln,” shooting people with whom you disagree is not an exercise of the Second Amendment. It is unjustifiable murder.

    The rest of what you say is irrelevant personal attack that does not respond usefully to any intelligent statements made by Mr. Baumeister or participants in this comment section.

  75. Cory Allen Heidelberger 2019-11-05 12:52

    So with John and “Linc” avoiding the question, let’s refocus: Should priests’ ban on communion extend only to those who commit specific sins, to those who advocate active commission of those sins, or all the way to people who do not commit the sins themselves and do not encourage anyone else to commit them but defend the legal right to engage in such sinful behavior without government interference?

  76. Cory Allen Heidelberger 2019-11-05 12:55

    Consider adultery: the Bible clearly says not to do it (more clearly than it issues any fatwa against terminating a pregnancy), but no Presidential candidate is advocating a total ban on marital infidelity. Should priests deny communion to all Presidential candidates who refuse to advocate laws against adultery?

  77. Lincoln Hawk 2019-11-05 13:03

    Fair enough Cory – I poorly chose my words as I would not advocate the use of violence. Carrying a firearm is no more an act of violence than carrying a hammer.

    Joe Biden has the right to say and do whatever he wants – that’s his God given free will. And the church as an institution upholding moral truth, has the right to correct him when he’s wrong. He’s a member of the church willingly, so such admonishment should not come as a surprise. A true “practicing Catholic” would have refrained from the reception of the Eucharist if they knew themselves to be in a state of mortal sin. It’s all for the good of his own soul.

    I support the First Amendment because it gives me the right to voice my clearly unpopular Catholic beliefs. Perhaps I don’t understand your question, Cory. What is the discrepancy you’re trying to isolate in regard to contrasting 1st amendment rights with Catholic moral teaching? I’m genuinely not following.

  78. John 2019-11-05 13:18

    First off, the bible doesn’t issue Fatwas, the Koran does, don’t make the mistake of confusing the two ideologies, second of all, is there a law legalizing and legitimizing marital infidelity… no. If there were, you can bet you sweet potatoes we’d be against it. Cory, you are a master manipulator of words to fit your agenda. You have a lot more in common with the folks in Pierre than you think.

  79. John 2019-11-05 13:25

    And Porter, grab your UCC bible, open it up, and turn it to Jeremiah 1:5
    “Before I formed you in the womb, I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.”

    Don’t give me that pile of crap you just gave for a justification of killing babies.

  80. Porter Lansing 2019-11-05 13:32

    That is a speech directed at Jesus, not a fetus.
    Before I created you in the womb I knew you; before you were born I set you apart; I made you a prophet to the nations.”
    Read Exodus 20-21 and see that the Bible says a fetus is not a human.
    Jon doesn’t seem to have an open mind. Is that common among the indoctrinated? Killing babies is unlawful. Abortions are not.

  81. Lincoln Hawk 2019-11-05 13:33

    Not avoiding your question, Cory, it’s just very unclear what it is you’re trying to get at and I assume that is rooted in a fundamental misunderstanding of how the Church functions and enforces teaching.

    If I blow past a cop in a school zone doing 100 mph, I’ve broken the law regardless of whether the cop flips on his lights and chooses to enforce the law I broke.

    To assist someone in committing a mortal sin is itself a mortal sin. If I drive my wife to get an abortion I’m in sin. And based on his public stance, Biden is effectively assisting woman all over America in obtaining an abortion. So if he’s doing so unrepentant, he should never be receiving Jesus in the Eucharist. This priest didn’t just come up with this on his own. He was simply the first to step up and enforce the doctrine.

    We are not a Church of sheep. Most non-Catholics get the teaching on Papal infallibility wildly wrong.

    I’m still not sure if I’m responding to your question, Cory.

  82. Jenny 2019-11-05 13:34

    My daughter and I went up to Communion at my Catholic Mom’s funeral recently. We are not Catholics, but No Priest is going to tell me I can not go to Communion on the day of my Mom’s funeral.

  83. John 2019-11-05 13:37

    Sorry about your mom, Jenny, but if you go to communion not believing in what it is, then it is just that, bread and wine. I really am sorry about your mom, I lost my Dad too, 8 years ago and it’s just like it happened yesterday.

  84. Porter Lansing 2019-11-05 13:44

    Sorry about your Dad, Jon. Bill had a great shop.

  85. John 2019-11-05 13:51

    Porter, I just read Exodus 20 and 21 and I don’t see anything that resembles what you’re talking about. Is it next to Exodus 21: 2 where it talks about buying a Hebrew servant, you have to forgive me, I’m more of a new testament kind of guy. Don’t get the joke about my dead father… you just ooze class, don’t you?

  86. Porter Lansing 2019-11-05 13:58

    Sorry. Exodus 21: 22-23
    What the Bible says about Abortion

    Abortion is not murder. A fetus is not considered a human life.
    If men strive, and hurt a woman with child, so that her fruit depart from her, and yet no mischief follow: he shall be surely punished, according as the woman’s husband will lay upon him; and he shall pay as the judges determine. And if any mischief follow, then thou shalt give life for life. — Exodus 21:22-23
    The Bible places no value on fetuses or infants less than one month old.

  87. Debbo 2019-11-05 14:11

    My point, and perhaps others here too, is that the Roman Catholic Church has forfeited any moral standing to deny communion to Joe Biden or make moral judgments on any woman’s medical decisions. They’ve done so not only based on a past history of sexual abuse of innocent children and women; not only based on the rape and forced aborting of nuns; not only on the protection of the perpetrators of those crimes, but on continuing all of the above into the present day while spending millions of dollars to avoid providing full reparations to victims.

    Based on those cold blooded facts, the Roman Catholic Church has zero moral authority to judge anyone about anything.

    Billions of people around the globe share my sentiment because this is not an individual or several who’ve committed bad acts. Vatican Inc is at the head of a globe wide system that continues to enable and perpetrate these criminal acts on every continent and uncountable islands. Vatican Inc operates a planet wide scourge. Therefore, it is beyond laughable, bitterly laughable, that the RCC should ever attempt to claim moral authority regarding any thing at all.

    If Vatican Inc wants to regain some moral standing, a gargantuan IF, …
    they will immediately turn over every bit of information they have regarding sexual crimes of any sort to civil law enforcement with no strings attached at all.
    They will urge all legislative bodies to remove statutes of limitations on sexual crimes.
    They will write and enforce policy that any criminal acts within the RCC be immediately reported to local civil law enforcement.
    They will urge parishioners to report crimes to local civil law enforcement, not their church.
    They will set aside many billions of dollars of Vatican Inc’s enormous wealth in an account to fully fund the needs of their victims and spare no effort to make them whole.
    They will reform their structure to put a great deal more power in the hands of the congregations, rather than unanswerable clerics.

    That should be a good start.

  88. John 2019-11-05 14:29

    I don’t need to justify myself or my beliefs to any of you. I’ll pray for you and I ask that if you believe in what Christ teaches, you’ll pray for me too. Later

  89. Debbo 2019-11-05 14:34

    No John, you don’t. My comments aren’t personal to you, though it may feel that way.

    But perhaps you’ve gained an understanding of why so many have no respect for the RCC and feel contemptuous when it claims moral standing.

  90. Porter Lansing 2019-11-05 14:34

    NO, Jon. You don’t have to justify anything to us. Just keep your beliefs to yourself and everyone will be satisfied. No accusing anyone of killing babies. No talk of anyone being a sinner. Judge not … lest you get it back, treble.

  91. o 2019-11-05 14:39

    John, ” . . .is there a law legalizing and legitimizing marital infidelity… no. If there were, you can bet you sweet potatoes we’d be against it. ”

    Isn’t any law allowing for divorce and re-marriage exactly that? I thought Catholic dogma was that marriage is one-and-done (until death do part). I have missed the Catholic outrage of divorce and the subsequent adultery and bastard children of second marriages.

  92. bearcreekbat 2019-11-05 15:08

    Just to be clear, there is no law “legalizing and legitimizing” engaging in a family planning decision the Church objects to, just like there is no “law legalizing and legitimizing marital infidelity” contrary to Church doctrine. Rather, essentially the same sections of the U.S. Constitution identified by the SCOTUS (1st, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 9th and 14th Amendments) combine to prohibit our government from passing a law to outlaw either family planning decisions or marital infidelity.

    Hence, it makes little sense to oppose any “good man” simply because that man doesn’t seek to empower the government to outlaw family planning decisions, while supporting other “good men” who do not seek to empower the government to outlaw marital infidelity.

    I am a bit surprised that John’s comment suggesting that on one hand it is okay not to challenge secular law that doesn’t criminalize the exercise of of free will to commit blasphemy, and leave the sanctions to God, but on the other hand secular law should criminalize a women for deciding over who or what is permitted to use her body. It seems as if this logically would be contrary to Catholic doctrine, i.e. secular law should criminalize both or neither.

    Deciding whether or not someone or something can use our bodies may be a mortal sin, but the authority I have cited states unequivocally that it is not as serious of a mortal sin as blasphemy. As I noted above, there seems to be Catholic authority for the idea that the Bible “says that to blaspheme against the Holy Spirit is the only unforgivable sin.” If blaspheme is the only unforgivable sin to Cathiolics, it follows that it is forgivable for a woman to take action prohibited by the Church to protect her body from an unwanted intrusion or use by another.

  93. Robin Friday 2019-11-05 16:49

    John said “I feel like I’ve gone over this”, as if he were talking to reluctant students. No, John, you’re talking to competent and intelligent adults whose opinions differ from yours. In other words, just because you’ve “gone over this” does not ensure that it’s been settled or agreed to.

  94. Debbo 2019-11-06 00:17

    In the latest online version of the Strib:

    Twin Cities attorney Jeff Anderson on Tuesday appealed directly to Pope Francis, demanding the leader of the Catholic Church immediately remove the bishop of the Crookston Diocese for interfering in clergy abuse cases and allowing accused priests to continue their ministries.

    “The peril is present and real,” Anderson said. In an hourlong news conference, Anderson reviewed transcripts and played video from a deposition in which he questioned Hoeppner about allowing priests who were accused of sexual abuse to remain on the job. He charged that Hoeppner, as well as Malone, have concealed predators and protected themselves.

    “Both have engaged and are engaging in the dangerous practice of deceit, deception and concealment of crimes by predators and crimes in which they both are complicit,” Anderson said. “No excuses. No more time. Remove Hoeppner and Malone and remove them now.”

    This is what’s happening at this very minute and the Crookston diocese is far from the only one.

  95. Debbo 2019-11-14 14:14

    Wow Mike. What a powerful article. It’s heartbreaking, sad, sickening and, again, heartbreaking.

    No. I never knew Lysol was an abortifacient. How horrible. How desperate. 😥😥

  96. Debbo 2019-11-18 18:43

    That’s good news about Dr. Ford and about Chick Filet. (I know that’s not how it’s spelled, but that’s how I feel spelling it.)

    Dr. Ford is so deserving of the Courage Award. That makes me very happy.

  97. Robin Friday 2019-11-18 19:00

    When they stop contributing entirely to anti-LGBT groups I will consider buying a sandwich from them, not that we have a lot of choice here in SD. I’ve never bought anything from them, and until then, I never will. Doesn’t matter, you say? It matters to me, and apparently it does to them, too.

  98. mike from iowa 2019-11-18 19:17

    I dropped Salvation Army back when dumbass dubya singled them out as a first rate charity the gubmint could give taxpayer dollars to, and still let them discriminate by not hiring non-kristian workers. They haven’t gotten a single penny from me since then. Chick fil a won’t either.

  99. Debbo 2019-11-29 13:39

    Mike, I think any of his sperm ejaculations that don’t result in pregnancy should be reimplanted or he should face jail for abortion/murder. What a frail, misogynistic idiot.

  100. mike from iowa 2019-11-29 14:26

    I concur, Debbo.

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