Tag Archives: President Obama

Obama’s Amnesia Express — ‘This election is not about what we’ve done.’

…And two years into it we know why.

As Americans wait on the president to finally decide on what his “pay grade” actually is as president, (Hint: providing the country with a workable job prescription for the ills of 10.2 unemployment might be a start), he warns his followers in Madison, Wisconsin, last week that the “other side” is counting on amnesia come November 2. All this while asking that we forget about what he’s done. Which is… well, you fill in the blank_____________.

Outside of the dreamy-eyed devo-ite organizers protrayed below, is anyone actually still buying into the “game of change” thing?

Welcome to the world of selective amnesia…

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The 9.1.1. Mosque: Saying no to a monument on our graveyard…

 

“We were so oblivious to the beauty of the twin towers as we sat with our kids in the park all those years ago. Gabrielle was in the second grade at P.S. 41 on 9/11, and by the time we walked home that day our clear view of the trade towers from Sixth Avenue and 11th Street was gone.” — Debra Weinstein

 

Starting to say ‘no’

By ANDREW C. McCARTHY

A Tectonic shift is in motion: How fitting that its focal point is Ground Zero, the inevitable fault line between Islam and the West.

Only the blink of an eye ago, uttering the unpleasant truth that in terms of doctrine there is no such thing as “moderate Islam” resulted in one’s banishment from what our opinion elites like to call the “mainstream,” by which they mean the narrow-minded, viciously defended circle of their own pieties and fictions.

You could say it, but your skin had better have an extra coat or two of thick: You were in for a fusillade of rage, the likes of which our candor-phobic elites would never dream of unleashing at our Islamist enemies — no matter how clearly those enemies announced their intention to destroy us.

The fusillade still comes, but now its blows only glance. The elites and their mainstream have been exposed as frauds: Being on the wrong side of enough 70-30 issues will do that to you.

It should never have gotten this far. Sponsors of the Ground Zero mosque neither own the property in question nor possess the means to build and operate the palatial Islamic center they envision. The more light that shines on their record of murky real-estate dealings and the dubious circumstances of their limited stake in the Ground Zero property, the more questions arise.

In a more sensible world, those questions would get answered before we plunged into a rancorous public debate. That hasn’t happened, though. In spite of the implacable determination of the mayor (and the attorney general who would be governor) to look the other way, the issue has galvanized the public. What has long bubbled beneath the surface did not need much more heat to boil over.

For the better part of two decades, Americans have been murdered by Islamists and then lectured that they are to blame for what has befallen them. We have been instructed in the need for special sensitivity to the unceasing demands of Islamic culture and falsely accused of intolerance by the people who wrote the book on intolerance.

Americans have sacrificed blood and bottomless treasure for Islamic peoples who despise Americans — and despise us even more as our sacrifices and gestures of self-loathing intensify. Americans have watched as apologists for terrorists and sha ria were made the face of an American Muslim community that we were simultaneously assured was the very picture of pro-American moderation.

Americans have had our fill. We are willing to live many lies. This one, though, strikes too close to home, arousing our heretofore dormant sense of decency. Americans have now heard President Obama’s shtick enough times to know that when he talks about “our values,” he’s really talking about his values, which most of us don’t share. And after 10 years of the Council on American-Islamic Relations’s tired tirades, we’re immune to Feisal Rauf, too.

We look around us and we see our country unrivaled by anything in the history of human tolerance. We see thousands of thriving mosques, permitted to operate freely even though we know for a fact that mosques have been used against us, repeatedly, to urge terrorism, recruit terrorists, raise money for terrorists, store and transfer firearms, and inflame Muslims against America and the West.

As Islamists rage against us, we see Islam celebrated in official Washington. As we reach out for the umpty-umpth time, we find Muslim leaders taking what we offer, but always with complaint and never with reciprocation.

We’re weary, and we don’t really care if that means that Timemagazine, Michael Bloomberg, Katie Couric, Fareed Zakaria and the rest think we’re bad people — they think we’re bad people anyway. So finally we’re asking: Where is this “moderate Islam” you’ve been telling us about?

Why would a self-proclaimed bridge-builder insist on something so patently provocative and divisive? How can we be sure that if imam Rauf builds his monument on our graveyard, it won’t become what other purportedly “moderate” Islamic centers have become: a cauldron of anti-American vitriol?

It turns out that there are no satisfactory answers. When finally pressed on the taxonomy of moderate Islam, the best our elites can do — besides shouting “Islamophobia!” — is debate whether there ever was a “golden age” of Islamic tolerance. They have to confess that the Islamists — whom they’d like us to see as a handful of “extremists” but who are in truth a mass movement — are in the ascendancy.

It is embarrassingly obvious that while some of us have been working to defeat Islamism in our midst, our elites are of the incorrigibly progressive mindset that counsels accommodating them — in the delusion that they will be appeased rather than encouraged to become more aggressive.

That is precisely the mindset that makes an Islamist think: Maybe now is the time for a $100 million mosque at Ground Zero.

“Moderate Islam” is a dream, not a reality. It is a dream with potential — because there are millions of Muslims who are moderate people, and because there are dedicated Muslims working to transform their faith into something that is institutionally moderate.

But they work against great odds. They confront Islamists whose dedication to theocratic principles is deeply and undeniably rooted in Islamic scripture. And they confront American opinion elites who, wittingly or not, serve as the lifeline of the Islamists.

The reformers’ slim chance at prevailing hinges on the American people’s will to say “no” to our self-anointed betters. Ground Zero, once again the site of epic Islamist overreach, may be remembered as the place where we started to say “no.”

Andrew C. McCarthy is a Na tional Review Institute senior fellow. His latest book is “The Grand Jihad.” From nationalreview.com

SOURCE/PIC NYT

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Diocese of Green Bay to Gamaliel Groups: “The end does not justify the means”

 SOURCE: Post Crescent

Roman Catholic Diocese of Green Bay tells Fox Valley interfaith groups politics not a factor in call to sever ties

The Roman Catholic Diocese of Green Bay said Wednesday partisan politics played no role in its decision to call for two Fox Valley interfaith groups to sever their ties from their state organization. Bishop David Rikken sent a letter Saturday to ESTHER of the Fox Valley and JOSHUA of Green Bay asking them to make the move and calling a meeting with Catholic members of the two groups in March.

In the letter, Ricken says ESTHER and JOSHUA’s affiliation with WISDOM, the state umbrella organization of interfaith groups, is problematic because WISDOM is affiliated with the Gamaliel Foundation, a national group whose strategies run counter to Catholic teachings.

“The end does not justify the means,” the Very Rev. John Doerfler, the diocese’s vicar general and chancellor, told The Post-Crescent on Wednesday.

He declined to specify what exactly Gamaliel, a Chicago-based national organization, has done that the diocese disagrees with. The diocese has no plans to discuss the matter publicly until Bishop David Ricken meets in March with the two groups’ Catholic leaders to talk about their membership. Catholic churches make up half of the membership of ESTHER (Empowerment Solidarity Truth Hope Equality Reform) and JOSHUA (Justice Organization Sharing Hope & United for Action).

The focus of the groups’ work is to advocate for health care reform, affordable housing, rehabilitation for non-violent offenders instead of imprisonment, and fair treatment for immigrants. Depending on how the meetings unfold, the diocese might convene a meeting with the nonCatholic members.

“That would be my hope, that we go forward in engaging and discussion,” Doerfler said.

Members of the interfaith groups huddled Wednesday night to reflect and talk about the bishop’s objectives. They remain stunned by what they consider the diocese’s sudden move to pull out of WISDOM without warning that diocesan leaders were concerned about its affiliation with the Gamaliel Foundation.

EDITOR NOTE: 

Excerpt from 2009 report, ‘Alinskyian Organizing Linked To Abortion Movement’, by Stephanie Block on The Orate Fratres: 

Gamaliel is part of the Health Care for America Now coalition that includes several [other] Alinskyian organizing networks, such as ACORN, as well as some pro-abortion groups like the Religious Coalition for Reproductive Choice and Planned Parenthood Federation of America. 

The following video is a Gamaliel sponsored event wherein participants prayed to Barack Obama shortly after his election.

President Obama and his most current Healthcare proposal would require U.S. taxpayer funded killing of innocent unborn children through abortion….

DOCUMENTS:

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Bishop Charles J. Chaput: Politics, Morality and a President: An American View

Politics, Morality and a President: An American View

by Charles J. Chaput

One of the strengths of the Church is her global perspective. In that light, Cardinal Georges Cottier’s recent essay on President Barack Obama (“Politics, morality and original sin,” 30 Days No. 5, 2009) made a valuable contribution to Catholic discussion of the new American president. Our faith connects us across borders. What happens in one nation may have an impact on many others. World opinion about America’s leaders is not only appropriate; it should be welcomed.

And yet, the world does not live and vote in the United States. Americans do. The pastoral realities of any country are best known by the local bishops who shepherd their people. Thus, on the subject of America’s leaders, the thoughts of an American bishop may have some value. They may augment the Cardinal’s good views by offering a different perspective.

Note that I speak here only for myself. I do not speak for the bishops of the United States as a body, nor for any other individual bishop. Nor will I address President Obama’s speech to the Islamic world, which Cardinal Cottier mentions in his own essay. That would require a separate discussion.

I will focus instead on the President’s graduation appearance at the University of Notre Dame, and Cardinal Cottier’s comments on the President’s thinking. I have two motives in doing so.

First, men and women from my own diocese belong to the national Notre Dame community as students, graduates and parents. Every bishop has a stake in the faith of the people in his care, and Notre Dame has never merely been a local Catholic university. It is an icon of the American Catholic experience.

Second, when Notre DamÈs local bishop vigorously disagrees with the appearance of any speaker, and some 80 other bishops and 300,000 laypeople around the country publicly support the local bishop, then reasonable people must infer that a real problem exists with the speaker – or at least with his appearance at the disputed event. Reasonable people might further choose to defer to the judgment of those Catholic pastors closest to the controversy.

Regrettably and unintentionally, Cardinal Cottier’s articulate essay undervalues the gravity of what happened at Notre Dame. It also overvalues the consonance of President Obama’s thinking with Catholic teaching.

There are several key points to remember here.

First, resistance to President Obama’s appearance at Notre Dame had nothing to do with whether he is a good or bad man. He is obviously a gifted man. He has many good moral and political instincts, and an admirable devotion to his family. These things matter. But unfortunately, so does this: The President’s views on vital bioethical issues, including but not limited to abortion, differ sharply from Catholic teaching. This is why he has enjoyed the strong support of major “abortion rights” groups for many years. Much is made, in some religious circles, of the President’s sympathy for Catholic social teaching. But defense of the unborn child is a demand of social justice.  There is no “social justice” if the youngest and weakest among us can be legally killed. Good programs for the poor are vital, but they can never excuse this fundamental violation of human rights.

Second, at a different moment and under different circumstances, the conflict at Notre Dame might have faded away if the university had simply asked the President to give a lecture or public address. But at a time when the American bishops as a body had already voiced strong concern about the new administration’s abortion policies, Notre Dame not only made the President the centerpiece of its graduation events, but also granted him an honorary doctorate of laws – this, despite his deeply troubling views on abortion law and related social issues.

The real source of Catholic frustration with President Obama’s appearance at Notre Dame was his overt, negative public voting and speaking record on abortion and other problematic issues. By its actions, Notre Dame ignored and violated the guidance of America’s bishops in their 2004 document, “Catholics in Political Life.” In that text, the bishops urged Catholic institutions to refrain from honoring public officials who disagreed with Church teaching on grave matters.

Thus, the fierce debate in American Catholic circles this spring over the Notre Dame honor for Mr. Obama was not finally about partisan politics. It was about serious issues of Catholic belief, identity and witness – triggered by Mr. Obama’s views – which Cardinal Cottier, writing from outside the American context, may have misunderstood.

Third, the Cardinal wisely notes points of contact between President Obama’s frequently stated search for political “common ground” and the Catholic emphasis on pursuing the “common good.” These goals – seeking common ground and pursuing the common good – can often coincide. But they are not the same thing. They can sharply diverge in practice. So-called “common ground” abortion policies may actually attack the common good because they imply a false unity; they create a ledge of shared public agreement too narrow and too weak to sustain the weight of a real moral consensus. The common good is never served by tolerance for killing the weak – beginning with the unborn.

Fourth, Cardinal Cottier rightly reminds his readers of the mutual respect and cooperative spirit required by citizenship in a pluralist democracy. But pluralism is never an end in itself. It is never an excuse for inaction. As President Obama himself acknowledged at Notre Dame, democracy depends for its health on people of conviction fighting hard in the public square for what they believe – peacefully, legally but vigorously and without apologies.

Unfortunately, the President also added the curious remark that “… the ultimate irony of faith is that it necessarily admits doubt… This doubt should not push us away from our faith. But it should humble us.” In a sense, of course, this is true: On this side of eternity, doubt is part of the human predicament. But doubt is the absence of something; it is not a positive value. Insofar as it inoculates believers from acting on the demands of faith, doubt is a fatal weakness.

The habit of doubt fits much too comfortably with a kind of “baptized unbelief;” a Christianity that is little more than a vague tribal loyalty and a convenient spiritual vocabulary. Too often in recent American experience, pluralism and doubt have become alibis for Catholic moral and political lethargy. Perhaps Europe is different. But I would suggest that our current historical moment – which both European and American Catholics share – is very far from the social circumstances facing the early Christian legislators mentioned by the Cardinal. They had faith, and they also had the zeal – tempered by patience and intelligence – to incarnate the moral content of their faith explicitly in culture. In other words, they were building a civilization shaped by Christian belief. Something very different is happening now.

Cardinal Cottier’s essay gives witness to his own generous spirit. I was struck in particular by his praise for President Obama’s “humble realism.” I hope he’s right. American Catholics want him to be right. Humility and realism are the soil where a commonsense, modest, human-scaled and moral politics can grow. Whether President Obama can provide this kind of leadership remains to be seen. We have a duty to pray for him – so that he can, and does.

(Full Video) President Obama Commencement Speech at Notre Dame 05.17.09

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Obama speech video 1

Obama speech video 2

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Obama speech video 4

FOCA Remains Threat: NCBC Director of Bioethics and Public Policy Releases March 2009 Report

pro-life202

From the desk of:

Marie Hilliard
Director of Bioethics and Public Policy
 
 
Dr. Hilliard holds graduate degrees in Maternal-Child Health Nursing, Religious Studies, Canon Law and Professional Higher Education Administration; and she has an extensive professional background in medical ethics and public policy and advocacy. She is a practicing registered nurse who has been substantially involved in health care regulation at the state and national levels for twelve years. In addition, she is a canon lawyer and serves as a resource for the implementation of the Ethical and Religious Directives for Catholic Health Care Services and Church – State relations.

Go Directly To Full Report 

The National Scene: 
President Obama has not only reversed the Bush policies that prohibit the use of taxpayer dollars for human embryonic stem cell research, but also rescinded the Bush executive order that gave priority to research that not only is morally acceptable, but most significantly, fruitful (adult stem cell research). President Obama’s order directs the federal support of all legal forms of stem cell research. This means that as long as tax dollars are not used to destroy the embryo, researchers can use tax dollars to research on cells garnered from these destroyed human beings, including cloned embryos and other embryos engendered just to be destroyed. While President Obama stated that human cloning will never be supported, he limited that ban to reproductive cloning only.

The good news is that President Obama signed into law the annual renewal of the Dickey-Wicker Amendment, which prohibits tax dollar support of research that directly destroys the embryo or fetus. There is some good news on this topic at the state level, see State by State, below. 

  • The “Freedom of Choice Act” creating abortion as an entitlement and mandating the violation of consciences of health care workers, remains a threat. It is feared that the provisions in this legislation will be included, piecemeal, in a number of other bills so that the threat is less detectable. Cognizant of such implications, the Georgia House passed a resolution urging Congress to oppose FOCA. 
  • President Obama already has initiated the process of reversing the legal conscience protections for health care workers, which have been law for decades and codified in rules of the US Department of Health and Human Services by President Bush. Public comments are needed to prevent this policy reversal. Health care providers will have no right to refuse to participate in abortions. Please e-mail your comments “in support of President Bush’s US HHS conscience rules” to proposedrescission@hhs.gov by April 9, 2009. 
  • The ACLU has sued the US HHS for working with the US Conference of Catholic Bishops to protect the vulnerable from human trafficking. The USCCB’s position is to protect all human life, from the victim of trafficking to her unborn child.
  • A federal judge has ordered the US FDA to make Plan B available without a prescription to 17 year old girls (which means without parental consent). It already is available to 18 year old females and males (allowing statutory rape to go undetected). 
  • The federal government is being sued in an effort to have federal recognition of same-sex spouses. 
  • The US Senate has rejected a proposal to make national law a Bush provision that entitled the unborn child health care under the SCHIP provisions. These provisions are to assure healthy children through providing uninsured children with health coverage. 

Full Report Here