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Law, culture, and Catholicism...up in smoke!

Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Potential assaults to Human Life in Ave Maria Town?

AveWatch has the story here and here.

Fumed by Petronius at 12:06 PM. |

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Scandalum Non Cassat Veritatem Nec Debet Praetermitti Veritas Ut Evitetur Scandalum

As Hugh of St. Cher put it, "Scandal cannot annul the truth nor should truth be overlooked that scandal might be avoided."

A word to the Christopher Hitchens-types of the world: Stop trying to discredit Christ and His Church because you've suddenly realized that sinners are part of the Body of Christ. By the judgment you pronounce, you will also be judged, my friends.

And an editorial point - An ex-priest, and several haters of Catholicism (like Hitchens and Sinead O'Connor) do not sources make. What is next, Dan Brown becomes an authority on the history of the Church to these people? Oh wait . . .

Man is fallen. That is all the more reason that the World needs Christ's Church. It is not a reason that the pleas of atheists should win the day that the Church should be further persecuted.

"And so I say to you, you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church, and the gates of the netherworld shall not prevail against it." Matt 16:18.

This Holy Week, offer up the Triduum for the Pope and for his strength in this trial. And pray for our priests each day, and even more if you can (and not just the ones you think are good).

Fumed by TheLawDog at 3:36 PM. |

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Recent Attacks of Pope to Weaken Berlusconi's Friends

Whatever else you have heard about people hating the Pope, and it's an attack on the Pope by the Catholic haters, I'd like to present a bit more specific and much simpler reason why suddenly, nearly from out of nowhere, new attacks on the Pope are being made in the media right now.

The ex-construction worker and the golfer and the corned beef eater won't tell you that the NATO crowd is stirring a violet color revolution in Italy.  Last year's NATO-UK-US attempt to stage a color revolution coup in Iraq failed.  That left energy corridors at peril.  It also put a new need to push in the middle east.

Italy has taken a new central role in the distribution of energy in the EU.  It is also central to the geography of the NATO-buffer created from Bosnia up into Lithuania through all the countries in between.  Recently, Berlusconi has made several deals with Russia to secure natural gas supplies.  That's one problem in NATO's eyes.

There is more, however.  Italy is also one of the so-called "PIGS" countries comprised of Portugal, Italy, Greece, and Spain.  Recently, many attempts were made to completely topple Greece through bonds on the cusp of several years of its currency being destabilized.  It appears that, for now, the bond attacks have failed.  However, Greece was to be the first domino in the string of European countries to be forced into failure.  After all, if the Euro could be forced into collapse, the US Dollar would be in good shape.  Not that anyone thinks it would be intentional.  Of course, such talk if for conspiracies, otherwise the U.S. might order the hedge funds to save their records to stop spoliation of any evidence of an attack.   Surely, those above board hedge funds would comply totally.

The Greece issue is still unclear.  Plan B is warming up:  Punish Italy back into NATO full control.  Good little countries don't make deals with third parties for energy.  Pope Benedict is a strong supporter of Berlusconi, at least in as far as Berlusconi seems, even to me, to be a reasonable leader.  The Pope would be a significant political obstacle to a coup, too.  But that is more easily taken care of if everyone thinks he does something wrong.

Not saying it conclusively, but it makes more sense than people just picking stuff out of the sky randomly. 

Fumed by Casimir Pulaski at 9:07 PM. |

Never Thought I Would Say That I Support a Chicago Democrat.


Fumed by Advocatus Militaris at 2:16 PM. |

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Canada and Ann Coulter

There is lots of excitement up in Canada surrounding Ann Coulter's trip to give several speeches: she's been threatened with criminal charges and her speech was cancelled because of protestors. But it's all good: freedom of speech is only an American concept and doesn't apply in Canada.

Fumed by Thales at 11:27 PM. |

Earth Hour Is This Saturday at 8:30 p.m.!

What is Earth Hour, you ask? Oh, just environmentalists encouraging us to be in the dark (in more ways than one) about climate change.

I say, stay in the light!

Fumed by Thales at 10:55 PM. |

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

So Did the President Sign the Executive Order Today?

Stupak is the most useful of idiots.

Fumed by Advocatus Militaris at 1:12 PM. |

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Support Benishek for Congress Against Stupak

Support him, join his Facebook group, and donate to his campaign here.

UPDATE: It has come to my attention that there are at least 4 candidates running for the GOP candidacy in Stupak's district. Maybe it is best to wait and see who the GOP candidate turns out to be before sending money. It certainly is a race to watch closely.

Fumed by Thales at 11:39 PM. |

Stupak Is a Fool and a Liar

Sad to see.

Fumed by Thales at 11:03 PM. |

Pelosi, Hoyer, and A Little Help From Their Friends!

In honor of Nancy, Steny, Hillary and most of the members of Congress who were formed during the Age of Aquarius and who will be voting today for another step in their longed-for utopia.

Oh, if only they made as much sense as Joe.

Fumed by Advocatus Militaris at 11:15 AM. |

Friday, March 19, 2010

Devout Italian Grandmothers...

...remember the Feast Day of St. Joseph, Husband of Mary.

Others traffick in holy persons and things for the most vile secular gain.

Fumed by Advocatus Militaris at 5:32 PM. |

Thursday, March 18, 2010

Is This Guy Related to Advocatus?

"Unfortunately, there aren't any new vocations in the liberal [women's] orders. Their old revenue stream is now as dry as the wombs of most of the post-menopausal Wicca worshippers; it's as out-of-date as the 1970's pantsuits that are their new traditional habit."

On why the 59,000 nuns broke with the Church and are in support of ObamaCare.

Fumed by Columcille at 12:11 AM. |

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Remember School House Rock?

From the Campaign Spot blog at NRO:

Fumed by Thales at 9:07 PM. |

Monday, March 15, 2010

How To Fill Out Your Census Form

You should all receive your census form soon. Are you wondering how to fill out Quuestion 9, the section on race and ethnic background? Fill it in this way (courtesy of the Corner):

Choose "Some other race" and then write in "American."

This answer is truthful (it's illegal to answer falsely, and you may be subject to a fine), and it's a good way to express your "rejection of unconstitutional racial classification schemes." After all, if the Census officially recognizes "Pakistani" as a race (which is a political/religious identity invented in 1934), then "American" is definitely a race too.

So, to review:

On Question 9, choose "Some other race" and then write in "American."

Fumed by Thales at 12:20 PM. |

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Rationalism Ascendant (or, Tony's an ass)

The rather dismissive and "I'm smarter than you" elitism of some in the First Things crowd is yet another reason to call into question their overall project. Is it the building up of the Faith, or is it the building up of a modern salon of neo-Catholic philosophes?

I'll stick with the old priest.

Fumed by Advocatus Militaris at 12:08 PM. |

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Ave Maria 2010

Fumed by Petronius at 6:51 PM. |

Some Universities are Known For Their Academic Programs...

...Others for the continual hijinks, shenanigans, and other goings on!

UPDATE: Ladies of AMU, you're welcome. Just a public service we provide here. Please stop sending gifts; the satisfaction of knowing that you are happy is enough for us.

Fumed by Advocatus Militaris at 6:04 PM. |

AveWatch on Fraud Award Against Golisano

AveWatch reports on a case out of California where the court of appeals affirmed a $26 million judgment against Tom Golisano and his company. A $11 million-portion of the judgment was in punitive damages for using "fraud" and "malice" to run a competitor out of business.

Remember, Golisano has been greatly honored by AMU when it named a prominent building after Golisano. Here is a great example why it is sometimes not a good idea to name a building after someone who is still alive, because he might do something regrettable later.

But maybe Golisano has redeemed himself of his past errors with his recent $10 million+ donation to the William J. Clinton Foundation. After all, isn't that a worthy charitable organization doing work in line with Catholic social teaching? (More on Golisano and AMU here.)

Fumed by Thales at 12:52 PM. |

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Noxious Fumes

On the day that Fr. Gabriele Amorth offers a gloss on Paul VI's 1972 statement that "the smoke of Satan" has entered the Church, this from the US:

(1) Archbishop Dolan and Bishop Listecki believe a continued and "successful" strategy of persuasion is more effective than enforcing Canon Law re: anti-life politicians.

(2) Cardinal O'Malley, the Boston Presbyterate and "What Me Worry?" Casuistry.

Smoke indeed.

(h/t Uncle Di)

Fumed by Advocatus Militaris at 6:48 PM. |

Tuesday, March 09, 2010

AMU Employs the worst of Corporate America's Double Speak

Hospitals, which regurgitate the worst business practices of 20 years ago, would blush at the duplicity of the email policy announcing the dress code revisions at AMU.  In an attempt to assist the people that have been slapped by the politely worded trash, I will deconstruct the policy posted at Naples News below.  (the verbatim text from Naples News appears in the COURIER font below). 

In hopes of bringing clarity and unity among all employees with respect to the dress code policy, 
     This is a bad start.  The author is hoping for things, "clarity and unity."  Noble goals, indeed.  Such a pursuit should put me at ease, and the wind up here should immediately make me, the reader receptive.  Clarity?  great!  Unity?  Unity is good.  Dress Code policy?  I'm dressed.  You mean I have to look like everyone else?  Is that what you are making clear?

I have been asked by the University Council to communicate the following information
Attached is the revised AMU Dress Code Policy. 

     OK.  This is bad.  The author is using passive voice and an appeal to authority.  Passive voice means that the author is helpless and distancing himself form the policy.  It's a scream "don't shoot the messenger!"  All that unity and clarity crap is out the window, if the author doesn't believe enough in it to say it himself, then it's bad.

University Council? I've never heard Mr. Monaghan referred to by that name.  That's news!  There may be hope of clarification yet!

As you will note, it is a clarification of the existing policy to provide clearer direction of what is and is not acceptable professional business attire.
    OK, so there will be nothing changing below.  I can relax, it's not as bad as that passive voice would make it seem.  It's just clarifying.  The author instructed me "to note" something -- Nothing will be changed!  Pheww!  Or, the author is telling me how I supposed to describe this thing.  I am not allowed to talk about this as anything other than a "clarification" of an existing policy.  I get it.  That's what I'm supposed to think.

Male employees are required to wear business attire that effectively promotes the professional image of Ave Maria University; meaning, jackets and ties are required with a preference of suits for faculty: suits are required for staff. Of course, this is in conjunction with the stipulation noted in the policy regarding employees working in certain areas of the organization that warrants dressing differently.

    What?  No golf shirt and khaki pants anymore?  That's a change!  I thought you said this would be just a clarification????

In addition, beginning August 30, 2010 the AMU Dress Code Policy will be revised to state that female employees will no longer be permitted to wear slacks or pant suits during work hours. They will however be permitted to wear slacks when traveling.
     REVISED????   You lied to me!  You said this was just going to be a "clarification" for "unity"!  This isn't the old policy at all!!  I wasn't confused by the old policy, I didn't need a clarification.

Although this is a major change...
     Damn straight it is.  Nobody in their right mind would get into this deal. You changed my whole life in one "clarification" that changes what I wear 5 of 7 days a week.

for some of you ...
     Phew.  OK, it's only for a little group of people, not all of us.  WAIT.  Is this admitting that the staff is very small?  I don't see exceptions to the no trousers thing.  That means all of us.  Liar!  That's not some -- it's all of you!  Liar!

and certainly comes with a cost for adding skirts, suits, and dresses to your existing wardrobe, 
     $$$  cost?????  You know this is going to cost me money, so you're going to reimburse me right?  After all, if you are requiring a uniform, and you know I bargained for a salary based on my anticipated costs, then you realize that I should be given adequate cash to cover the cost, right?  After all, that's just plain a matter of fairness, and fairness is part of Catholic teaching, right?

it is the intent of Senior Management to work with local retailers in the hopes of providing suitable business clothes such as skirts or skirt-suits at discounted prices. 
     hopes?  No money?  Discounts?  I already get discounts.  Suitable?  Oh wait!  Unity...  You are making us all dress the same!  No cash, no clarification, just crap!  Empty promises in place of putting your money behind this great new thing.  And I don't want to buy clothes in Ave Town.  I want to buy them where I typically shop in Ft. Myers and online.  So give me cash.

This information will be shared as it becomes available. 
     but no promises, just intentions of hope.  Obama says that, too.

Please keep in mind that we are implementing this change to improve our overall appearance as an institution of professionals. 
     So you are doing this for your benefit?  And you aren't paying me for it?  Are you intending to imply that the school is not professional at this time?

Knowing that this change will require time and planning, Management believed it important to provide several months advanced notice.
     That's supposed to make me feel better that you just caused me to have to pay a bunch of money for a unity uniform.  Mao Tse Tung at least provided uniforms free of charge when he implemented "clarifications" like this.

It is the expectation that all employees will adhere to the policy as written and management will enforce the policy accordingly.
     No mere "hope" there.  That's a pretty sour and dour prediction of certainty.  No cash for the imposition on my family budget, no promise of anything other than enforcement!  es, Stalin would be proud.  Better yet, this sounds like "hope and change"!!!

The following is Ave Mari[e]'s response to the new dress code, posted at Naples Daily News:
Last week, the university issued a memorandum regarding a new dress policy for our faculty and staff, scheduled to take effect on August 30 - the beginning of the next school year. 
     I thought that was a mere clarification for unity?  You mean that wasn't a joke?  And I noticed you haven't given me any promises of cash or significant reimbursements for clothes from my preferred clothiers.  Guess you're still working on those intentions of hope for discounts.

We realize it is contrary to the very casual dress policies that are being adopted by many other universities and corporate America. 
     Nice juxtaposition!  We here at AMU aren't like the wordly corporate satan!  Those people give wardrobe allowances and pay for uniforms.  We don't want to be like them!  They are satan!  Satan is casual and doesn't reimburse you for work imposed costs.

However, we are striving to portray our excellent faculty and staff in a highly professional public manner. [...]
     ...because we haven't been able to find any other objective criteria to set ourselves apart from the other academic institutions.  And you "striving" to make an image is costing me money, but you aren't reimbursing me for the image you want to make.  Does Robert Falls make public images for free?

We believe this new policy will help visually set us apart in a positive way from other institutions of higher learning.
     again, because we have nothing else going for us, so we'll make you be the oxen of distinguishing our school.

How we present ourselves professionally and the role that attire has on ones performance are things that were taken into account when crafting this policy. 
     Yeah right.  If the clothes make me more professional and increase output, then give me a proportional raise, and reimburse me for the cost.  So now, not only are you causing me costs, but you are saying it will save you money?  Where's the justice in that?

We have invited all employees to express themselves to our Human Resources Department, welcoming comments and suggestions so that we can better understand some of the concerns expressed to date.
     But HR didn't write the policy, the Council did.  If it is such a good idea, why pass the buck of complaints on to HR unless you are intimidating me with that move.  HR fires people, so telling me to comment and suggest to them is telling me to shut up.  I get it -- go buy clothes to fit Monaghan's whims, on a salary that will not be increased, so that I will produce more output, create an image you desire, all on my dime.  Nice.

Fumed by Casimir Pulaski at 8:49 PM. |

AMU: Fully Covered, Fully Alive!

Ave Maria Town (AP)--In front of several people in a room off The Bean, Ave Maria University (AMU) Chancellor Tom Monaghan and other university officials announced a new policy for women at the university. The new policy entitled "Fully Covered, Fully Alive," is an initiative to higlight the dignity of women at AMU that officials say is in the spirit of the little known document De pudicitia meretricis. University spokesman Tad Rich introduced the initiative as a way in which to "celebrate the contributions of women to the life of the university, and to promote modesty in thought, word, and deed." Rich continued, "The fact of the matter is, until such time as the town is flourishing--and we are well on our way!--the university thought that it was necessary to create a safe space for women. Human nature as it is and based upon our knowledge of what poor people have historically done for fun, Chancellor Monaghan thought it best to remove the 'occasion for sin' at the university." One of the practical means of implementing the initiative is the introduction of a new dress code for the university. "Today, I am proud to unveil the new policy," stated Chancellor Monaghan.

Yet not all people at the university are happy. Joseph Wilkins, a freshman at the university on a Marine Corps scholarship, stated, "Uncle Tom could have used a better verb than 'unveil.' What the [expletive] is wrong with this guy." Dr. Ignatio Bevilacqua, the Erasmus Chair of Rennaissance Literature at the Universitas Sancti Ludovici, was puzzled by the move and quipped that "this is the sort of thing that was lampooned in More's Utopia." Deal Hudson was unavailable for comment.

(AMU Female Uniform* available at the University Bookstore)

*Cornstalks sold separately.

Fumed by Advocatus Militaris at 1:30 PM. |

Monday, March 08, 2010

A Positive Interview With Tom Monaghan

Here is a positive Ave Maria link. It is to an excerpt of a recent interview with Tom Monaghan by the National Catholic Register.

Two quick sound bites from the interview:
What is it like being in charge of a Catholic university?

It's very exciting, very fulfilling. I'm working harder than I was when I was at Domino’s and enjoying it more. When I was at Domino's, I was spending half of my time working on Catholic educational and other projects; now I can do it full time. There is so much potential. I feel I'm doing something that's so important. I think that Ave Maria University may be the most-watched private school in the country, and there's an obligation to make it work and do it right.
"the most-watched private school in the country": I've noted before that Monaghan has this quirk about always using superlatives. It gets distracting after a while, especially when they're used in odd locations.
Tell me about the relationship between the university and the town.

Barron Collier Co. owns a tremendous amount of land in the county, and they are our general partner in the town. There's a permit for 11,000 homes, and we have engaged Pulte to build 80% of phase I.
Our timing in making the move to Florida couldn't have been worse because of the economic downturn. Right now, the town is not growing as fast as we had hoped or projected, but I am confident that it will eventually; we'll just have to wait a bit longer for the economy to come back, but this challenge is not specific to us.

Of the 11,000 homes, approximately 300 have been built.
I have to keep on reminding myself that the Law School Board of Governors used due dilligence in coming to the conclusion that a Florida move was in the best long-term financial interest of the school.

Fumed by Thales at 2:47 PM. |

Saturday, March 06, 2010

Jackasses in the Episcopate (or, Why I Continue to Dislike the Irish)


Fumed by Advocatus Militaris at 3:48 PM. |

Or Is It Mission Half-Accomplished?

So I finally get around to flipping through the Ave Maria School of Law Advocate magazine that has been sitting for the last several months on a pile of things I've been meaning to read..... and I see one of the articles is headed with the title "Mission Accomplished." And I think to myself, isn't the "mission" to get onto Ave Maria University's campus?

And later in the magazine, there is an article about the dedication of a new memorial garden, and I think, is it possible to move a memorial garden to Ave Maria Town?

Fumed by Thales at 2:05 PM. |

Canon Lawyer Ed Peters on Needle Exchange Programs

I've been catching up on blogs, and found a great post by canon lawyer extraordinaire Dr. Ed Peters at his In the Light of the Law blog. Dr. Peters argues why the Diocese of Albany's needle exchange program for drug addicts is formal cooperation with the the evil of drug use. Before now, I never knew what to think about needle exchange programs, with supporters arguing that they are good initiatives because they help stop the spread of disease. After Dr. Peters's arguments, I'm persuaded that regardless of any incidental good, these programs are an immoral means that should be rejected. What do you think?

Fumed by Thales at 12:25 PM. |

Friday, March 05, 2010

Abbott: Ave Maria University---otherwise known as the Tom Monaghan Empire

Fumare pal Matt Abbott demonstrates the predictability the "beltway Catholics" (or "neo-Catholics", whichever you prefer) in their obsequiousness to Monaghan and AMSL/U/T.

(h/t RenewAmerica)

Fumed by Advocatus Militaris at 12:43 PM. |

Wednesday, March 03, 2010

Observer Editor Responds to Prof. Rice

Over at the Defend Us In Battle blog, there is the latest response by the Editor of Notre Dame's student newspaper, the Observer, to Prof. Rice. (scroll down to the update).

The email is the following:

From: Matt Gamber
Sent: Tuesday, March 02, 2010 5:29 PM
To: Charles Rice
Subject: Re: Rice Column on Catholic Teaching on Homosexuality

Dear Dr. Rice,

Thank you for your response. I appreciate your contributions to The Observer and I hope that we will continue to work together. I do not wish to question the Church teachings or argue the points you presented in your essay, but rather, because the paper is still recovering from the incident with The Mobile Party comic, we would
prefer to examine this issue at a later time.

I sincerely appreciate your understanding of our concerns, and I hope you will not hesitate to contact me with any further questions or concerns you may have.


Matt Gamber

Fumed by Thales at 12:33 PM. |

Tuesday, March 02, 2010

FUMARE EXCLUSIVE: "Catholic" Notre Dame Refuses to Print Prof. Rice's Article

Professor Rice's Article (printed below) was refused by The Observer. Truly the late great Professor Ralph McInerny was correct in his styling of Notre Dame's "truly vulgar lust" to be accepted by the secular academy and the secular world.

From: Matt Gamber
Sent: Tuesday, March 02, 2010 1:24 AM
To: Charles Rice
Subject: Tuesday's column

Dear Mr. Rice,

I wanted to first introduce myself as Matt Gamber, the new Editor-in-Chief of The Observer. Thank you for your continued hard work and contributions to The Observer's Viewpoint section.

Second, I wanted to let you know why we chose not to run your most recent submission in Tuesday's Observer. First, it far exceeded our word limit guidelines, which I understand our Viewpoint Editor, Michelle Maitz, has shared with you in the past. Our daily space limitations require that we enforce this word limit, and we would appreciate your attention to this limit in the future.

Also, I personally had some concerns with the content of the column, particularly considering The Mobile Party comic incident earlier in the semester at The Observer. While your piece was well-researched and I trust the information was factually correct, I did not feel it lent itself to creating a productive discussion, all things considered. I was a bit concerned with certain language as well.

In the future, if you would like to examine this topic, we thought it might be beneficial to do so in a point-counterpoint format, perhaps with an author of an opposing or differing viewpoint. That way, each "side," to speak, would have the opportunity to present relevant facts, evidence and analysis to define its position.

As I began, I again thank you for your contributions to The Observer. Please let me know if you have any questions regarding this decision, and I look forward to working with you in the future.

Matt Gamber

Matt Gamber
The Observer
Cell: (847) 287-1141
Office: (574) 631-4542

--- On Tue, 3/2/10, Charles Rice wrote:

From: Charles Rice
Sent: Tuesday, March 02, 2010 3:04 PM
To: Matthew Gamber
Subject: Rice Column on Catholic Teaching on Homosexuality

Dear Mr. Gamber:

Thank you for your email informing me that my column presenting the teachings of the Church on homosexuality will not be published. Since 1992, I have been privileged to publish every two weeks a column, entitled "Right or Wrong," in the Observer. I emphasize my appreciation for the unfailing professionalism and courtesy of the Observer editors with whom I have had contact over those years.

You mention the column "far exceeded our word limit guidelines." It is in fact significantly shorter than each of the three previous columns published this semester in the Observer. I was not asked to shorten any of them. The rejected column accurately presented relevant teachings of the Catholic Church on homosexuality. I understand why you are concerned over the content of the column. You further propose that if I examine the topic of homosexuality in the future, "we thought it might be beneficial to do so in a point-counterpoint format, perhaps with an author of an opposing or differing viewpoint. That way, each 'side,' so to speak, would have the opportunity to present relevant facts, evidence and analysis to define its position."

In a university that claims to be Catholic, I am not willing to restrict my presentation of Catholic teaching to a format that treats the authoritative teaching of the Church as merely one viewpoint or "side" among many. If you require that future columns of mine on homosexuality comply with a format such as you propose, it will be inappropriate for me to continue writing the column for the Observer.


Charles E. Rice
Professor Emeritus
Notre Dame Law School

Fumed by Advocatus Militaris at 4:07 PM. |

Charles E. Rice's Latest from The Observer

Charles E. Rice
Right or Wrong?
March 1, 2010

A big issue at Notre Dame a few weeks ago was "sexual orientation" and the status of the Notre Dame Gay/ Lesbian/ Bisexual/ Transgender (GLBT) community. Enough time has passed to make it useful to review some of the governing principles as found in the teaching of the Catholic Church. That teaching includes four pertinent elements:

1. Homosexual acts are always objectively wrong. The starting point is the Catechism: "Homosexuality refers to relations between men or between women who experience an exclusive or predominant sexual attraction to persons of the same sex. It has taken a great variety of forms through the centuries and in different cultures. Its psychological genesis remains largely unexplained. Basing itself on Sacred Scripture, which presents homosexual acts as acts of grave depravity, Tradition has always declared that 'homosexual acts are intrinsically disordered.' They are contrary to the natural law. They close the sexual act to the gift of life. They do not proceed from a genuine affective and sexual complementarity. Under no circumstances can they be approved." No. 2357.

Homosexual acts are doubly wrong. They are not only contrary to nature. They are wrong also because they are extra-marital. The Letter on the Pastoral Care of Homosexual Persons, issued in 1986 with the approval of John Paul II, said, "It is only in the marital relationship that the use of the sexual faculty can be morally good. A person engaging in homosexual behavior therefore acts immorally. To choose someone of the same sex for one's sexual activity is to annul the rich symbolism and meaning, not to mention the goals of the Creator’s sexual design." No 7.

2. Since homosexual acts are "intrinsically disordered," the inclination toward those acts is disordered. An inclination to commit any morally disordered act, whether theft, fornication or whatever, is a disordered inclination. "The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies," says the Catechism, "is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial." No. 2358. That inclination, however, is not in itself a sin.

3. "[M]en and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies," says the Catechism, "must be accepted with respect, compassion and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided." No. 2358. In a culture which tends to marginalize and disrespect those with physical or psychological disorders, it will be useful to recall the admonition of the 1986 Letter that “The human person, made in the image and likeness of God, can hardly be adequately described by a reductionist reference to his or her sexual orientation.... Today the Church provides a badly needed context for the care of the human person when she...insists that every person has a fundamental identity: the creature of God and, by grace, his child and heir to eternal life." No. 16. The prohibition of "unjust" discrimination, however, does not rule out the making of reasonable and just distinctions with respect to military service, the wording of university nondiscrimination policies and other matters including admission to seminaries. As the Congregation for Catholic Education said in its 2005 Instruction on the subject, "the Church, while profoundly respecting the persons in question, cannot admit to the seminary or to holy orders those who practice homosexuality, present deep-seated homosexual tendencies or support the so-called 'gay culture.'" No. 2.

4. "[M]en and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies.... are called to fulfill God's will in their lives, and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord's Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition…. Homosexual persons are called to chastity. By the virtues of self-mastery that teach them inner freedom, at times by the support of disinterested friendship, by prayer and sacramental grace, they can and should gradually and resolutely approach Christian perfection." Catechism, nos. 2358, 2359.

The positive, hopeful teaching of the Church on marriage, the family and the transmission of life is founded on the dignity of the person as a creature made in the image and likeness of God. The "gay rights" movement is, instead, a predictable consequence of the now-dominant contraceptive ethic. Until the Anglican Lambeth Conference of 1930, no Christian denomination had ever said that contraception could ever be objectively right. The Catholic Church continues to affirm the traditional Christian position that contraception is intrinsically an objective evil.

Contraception, said Paul VI in Humanae Vitae in 1968, is wrong because it deliberately separates the unitive and procreative aspects of the sexual act. If, sex has no intrinsic relation to procreation and if, through contraception, it is entirely up to man (of both sexes) whether sex will have any such relation, how can one deny legitimacy to sexual acts between two men or between two women? The contraceptive society cannot deny that legitimacy without denying itself. Further, if individual choice prevails without regard to limits of nature, how can the choice be limited to two persons? Polygamy (one man, multiple women), polyandry (one woman, multiple men), polyamory (sexual relations between or among multiple persons of one or both sexes) and other possible arrangements, involving the animal kingdom as well, would derive legitimacy from the same contraceptive premise that justifies one-on-one homosexual relations.

It would be a mistake to view the homosexual issue as simply a question of individual rights. The militant "gay rights" movement seeks a cultural and legal redefinition of marriage and the family, contrary to the reality rooted in reason as well as faith. Marriage, a union of man and woman, is the creation not of the state but of God himself as seen in Genesis. Sacramento coadjutor bishop Jaime Soto, on Sept. 26, 2008, said: "Married love is a beautiful, heroic expression of faithful, life-giving, life-creating love. It should not be accommodated and manipulated for those who would believe that they can and have a right to mimic its unique expression." Space limits preclude discussion here of the "same-sex marriage" issue, which we defer to a later column.

Professor Emeritus Rice is on the law school faculty. He may be reached at 574-633-4415 or rice.1@nd.edu.

Fumed by Advocatus Militaris at 12:38 PM. |

AMU Has Good Basketball Seasons!

I've been challenged to post some positive news about Ave Maria University. I will rise to that challenge!

Congratulations to AMU's mens' and womens' basketball teams on their turnaround seasons! Naples News has the full story.

UPDATE: Go Gyrenes! Go, go, go! Yay, Gyrenes!

Fumed by Thales at 9:52 AM. |

Monday, March 01, 2010

This Week's Episode: Mike Loves Ave Maria!

Fumed by Advocatus Militaris at 11:52 PM. |

Michael Novak Loves Ave Maria University

How much does he love her? Let him count the ways.

And criticism of her? Just "the Prince of Lies sow[ing] a cloud of mischief trying to disrupt it." And the difficulties? Just signs "that our Lady really wants this University." After all, "The Lord has, as is His wont, given it obstacle after obstacle to surmount. Just as He set before Our Lady in her own life."

Fumed by Thales at 11:50 AM. |