we still remember mitch hedberg

A severed foot is the ultimate stocking stuffer.

May 26th 2004

who’s skewing the church/state distinction?

john 'i like killing babies' kerry attempts a smile in his first public appearance after botox surgery.  he arrived in an SUV his family owns (but he does not) after voting against the $87 billion after voting for it

last month i got all fired up over the disdain the media–particularly the LA times–showed the catholic church in what should have been an inarguable point. one church leader suggested that john kerry might be refused communion because of his stance on a moral issue. a catholic, he directly opposes the teachings of the church on the issue of abortion; he is for it.

if you’ll permit me, a digression: according to a new pew research center poll, only 15% of american journalists feel a belief in god is necessary to be a truly moral person, compared to 60% of the general population. [source] let’s ignore those numbers and assume these atheist journalists have SOME right to tell americans how to run their churches….or we could take the logical route and tell them to stick their pens wherever they’ve been lodging their heads on this issue.

consider this outrageous whining from the left: the other day, someone at NPR suggested churches should lose their tax-exempt status for counseling churchgoers to “vote their values”. does that teaching really make churches a tool of the republican party? isn’t the tail wagging the dog? give me a break. how about we revoke tax-exempt status for public schools? they support democratic party ideals like free condoms for 12-year olds and “gay day” where students in massachusetts are told how common homosexuality is, and to try it and see if it’s for them.

anyway, i never got around to blogging it for some reason, but then i found the issue dealt with properly at ecumenical insanity. quoting the nytimes on the catholic church’s stand on politicians who support abortion:

“[A]ny attempt to make elected leaders toe a doctrinal line when it comes to their public duties raises multiple risks. Breaching the church-state line that is so necessary to protect religious freedom is one. Figuring out when to stop is another.”

ecumenical insanity has the following to say to that:

When in doubt, haul out your favorite boogeyman. This controversy has nothing to do with church-state separation, other than the fact that politicians and clerics are involved. The bishops have no power to force politicians to act or vote in any particular way. The issue is this: can bishops discipline members of their Church who are acting contrary to the Church’s teaching? The Church forbids its members from aiding or abetting abortion, much less having one. Politicians who proclaim their support of the abortion licence place their politics about their faith. It is their privilege to do so. But that doesn’t mean the Church must support them in their decision.

In fact, one could argue that it is the aforementioned lawmakers who are breaching the wall of church-state separation, by writing to the Catholic bishops in their capacity as public officials and trying to dictate Church policy to the prelates.


john kerry is a member of the catholic church. he is free to leave that organization if he wishes. but the church must be allowed to enforce its standards if he and other politicians like him continue in defiance of them.

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