What passes for front page "news" in South Bend these days is a three-course meal of hypocrisy. So, we must be told in the top headline story, there's actually "No law against abortion photos." Perhaps that has to be clarified, pending any attacks on the freedom of speech by the current presidential administration. Ironically, it is self-styled champions of "freedom" who have been complaining.
It seems that some of the poor souls and sensitive spirits of South Bend have been "upset by graphic images on trucks, banners," depicting "aborted fetuses" (the politically correct way to describe infants murdered in the womb, violently extracted and thrown away like garbage). I'm not always thrilled by the tactics of some pro-life advocates, though they generally have my full sympathy (save for those rare instances when, in the name of life, they engage in violence). I'm not sure how I feel about larger-than-life pictures on public display of that vile wickedness which is abortion. There may well be better ways to love and serve our neighbors, both within and out of the womb. This much I do know, however: Pictures of the murdered unborn do not cause the violence, harm and death that abortion actually does.
It is a shame that some South Bend residents are more offended and upset by "abortion pictures" than they are by abortion itself. For some of them, apparently, the only thing tasteless about abortion is talking about it. Liberals normally love picket lines and protests, except when they are the ones being picketed and protested. "Freedom of choice" is the rhetoric, but those people hollering for the freedom to kill babies, holler all the louder when others exercise their freedom to cry "foul!" The same people who whine that others should keep their "beliefs" to themselves (the great shell-game by which both revealed and natural law are swept aside as personal opinions) are adament in expressing their own beliefs and attempting to legislate others accordingly. Thus the need to clarify that displaying pictures is not against the law; yet.
One woman quoted in this headline "news" article was indignant that little children, including her own three-year-old granddaughter, were being exposed to such graphic displays. Again, I'm not excited about exposing children to this wretched violence, either. But what hypocrisy to fret more about the images that some children live to see, than over the little children who are wrenched out of the safety of the womb in brutal hostility. If it is disturbing that young children might be confronted with this perversity, it is far more disturbing that it happens at all. What if that woman's granddaughter had been among the bloody bodies depicted on the side of the truck that pulled up beside her car? They are somebody's grandchildren. The woman protests that abortion is "an adult issue." Indeed. Such atrocity has not originated with the little ones. Nor are the little ones so easily buffaloed and dissuaded by the damnable political rhetoric, which does nothing but skirt the real issue in the interest of "freedom." Yes, the freedom of adults to murder infants, but let's not let the little children see what the grown-ups are doing to them; they might be frightened.
The protests are happening in South Bend right now because the University of Notre Dame has invited President Obama to speak at commencement this year. As a Notre Dame alumnus, I'm disappointed in and ashamed of my alma mater. I wish I could say that I were surprised. It is a classic case of human tradition trumping the Holy Scriptures; only in this case, the University is acting against the authority of both the Scriptures and the Church. I'm not a Roman Catholic, but, as a Christian, I applaud and deeply appreciate the clarity with which the Roman Church has consistently taught and advocated the sanctity of human life. Notre Dame is apparently not interested in such things, at least not in this case. Our Lady, though, for whom the school is named, testifies to the sanctity of human life, as she herself bore the Lord our God in her womb, conceiving Him in the substance of our human flesh and blood by the Word and Spirit of God.
The University has a tradition of inviting the President of the United States to speak at the commencement. Nice tradition, but there has never been such a pro-abortion president in the history of this country. "Pro-abortion" is the right way to describe President Obama. In his first few months in office, he has been precisely that, and aggressively so. His administration has adopted an agenda that not only protects the legal "right" of women to murder their unborn children, but is hell-bent on promoting and facilitating abortion both here and abroad. Thus, in the name of "freedom," legislation has already been enacted against the freedom of conscience of doctors and medical providers, which has heretofore protected them from being forced to abort the unborn. Other executive actions by this president have opened up the coffers of the United States to fund abortions overseas.
It doesn't matter how photogenic this president is, or how well he reads from a teleprompter. It doesn't matter how pretty his wife and daughters are, or how picturesque his family may be. It doesn't matter how he does with the economy or foreign affairs. His aggressive actions and attacks against the sanctity of human life paint a far uglier picture than anything depicted on the sides of trucks or banners in South Bend. The chief purpose and duty of human government is to protect and defend human life. A man who does the very opposite is unfit for office. I have no sympathy for the University in asking such a man to address its students.
I do not relish the pictures of murdered children on display in South Bend. I do suspect that other, better means of communication could be undertaken in the interest of protecting and defending human life. But surely something ought to be done on behalf of those who are given no freedom or choice to protect and defend themselves. We heard it this morning from the beloved disciple of our Lord Jesus Christ:
"Whoever has the world's goods, and sees his brother in need and closes his heart against him, how does the love of God abide in him? Little children, let us not love with word or with tongue, but in deed and truth" (1 John 3:17-18).
Homily at Evening Prayer (last night)
5 hours ago