Thoughts of a Catholic convert

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Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Thomas Reese SJ on the bishops and the health care reform bill

I've seen a lot of commentary on the health care reform bill and its passing - the Catholic blogs I visit are concerned about whether abortion will be funded by taxes and the women's blogs I visit are concerned that poor women are being discriminated against. I'm just glad that people without health care will now apparently have a chance to get it, though I'm concerned that it will still be too expensive to be affordable, even if available.

I saw that Thomas Reese SJ has commented on the bill and on the US bishops who were/are against the passing of the bill. Here's just his third of four points made .....

Third, the bishops should acknowledge that their disagreement with Stupak and others was not over abortion or Federal funding of abortion. It was not over principle but the prudential application of principle to specific legislative language. The bishops have no special charism when it comes to interpreting legislative language or guessing how the courts will interpret it.

The bishops must acknowledge the good intentions of Stupak and others who voted for the Senate bill and say that they do not consider them bad Catholics. Catholic social teaching has always acknowledged that Catholics in good conscience can disagree over the prudential application of principles to concrete situations.


Blogger Deacon Denny said...

Hi Crystal --

I just read the full text of Reese's comments, and the statement that the bishops issued on Tuesday. It looks like they read each other's material -- I was pleased that the bishops' statement acknowledged the good faith effort of the pro-life Representatives to get the language that the bishops were holding out for.

Representative Stupak was not so happy. He worked for that promise from President Obama for an executive order declaring that no federal funds could be used for abortion, and thought that would finally end much of the opposition of the bishops and other pro-life groups, but it didn't happen. He felt that was hypocritical that those groups didn't get behind the reform, & that it showed there was other opposition, not being declared. Kind of like the Republican Party, asking for all kinds of changes, but remaining 100% against the bill when changes were made.

12:01 PM  
Blogger crystal said...

Hi Denny,

Yes, I think many republicans were just using the pro-life stance as an acceptable excuse to not vote for the bill when really they just hate the idea of socialized medicine.

I'm so used to seeing things from a liberal democrat pov that it's hard for me to like Stupak, but I must admit he seems to be a sincere and brave guy.

12:20 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Is it me or are you guys treating abortion like it is no big deal? Abortion is so terrible and it not only kills unborn children, but it hurts women in many different ways. I get happy whenever I see people that oppose anything that has to do with abortion. Don't listen to the libearl media like MSNBC or CNN. See the World Over on EWTN!! Don't let your dislike of the Republicans make you blind to the truth. Be a Catholic and act it. It is so common sense that abortion is wrong and it kills a human being. God Bless everyone.:)

1:34 AM  

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