The Myth Of The Single-Issue Catholic Voter

With the political Left’s abortion extremism be given prominent display in Charlotte this past week, it’s time for another round of the annual debate that goes back and forth among Catholics. Some of us decline to vote for a candidate who won’t grant legal protection for the unborn. Others agree—or at least claim to agree—on the policy goal—but move into a condescending lecture about the importance of “not being a single-issue voter.”

Human life and it's protection can never be just another "issue."

And you know what? I agree. What I don’t agree with  is that the question of fundamental human rights is just an “issue.” Whether the top marginal income tax rate should be moved up or down by a few percentage points? That’s an issue. Whether U.S. foreign policy should include greater reliance on international institutions or move to a more unilateral approach? That’s an issue. A baby on an operating table, and we’re going to decide if it has a right to life or not? I’m sorry, that’s more than an “issue.”

A true “issue” has certain defining characteristics. There’s generally at least some merit on both sides and the best possible solution involves a mix of different ideas, and the process of national politics involves determining what direction that mix should lean. There is, by definition, of a few shades of gray.

Where, pray tell, is the gray area in deciding whether a human being has a fundamental right to existence? Requiring that a candidate acknowledge these basic human rights and use the power of the government to protect them does not make one a single-issue voter. It simply means they recognize what cannot be compromised on and what can.

Dan Flaherty is the author of Fulcrum, an Irish Catholic novel set in postwar Boston with a traditional Democratic mayoral campaign at its heart, and he is the editor-in-chief of TheSportsNotebook.com

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15 thoughts on “The Myth Of The Single-Issue Catholic Voter

  1. Najib Nasr says:

    IF YOU ARE A CHRISTIAN, THIS IS THE WAY TO VOTE:

    If you are a Christian, then you must believe all of God’s revelations. You cannot pick and choose. Otherwise, you’d be blaspheming against the Holy Spirit, and this is the Unpardonable Sin (Matthew 12:31-32): attributing to Satan what is the work of the Holy Spirit.

    Now, in Matthew 22:32, Jesus said that our God is the God of life, not the God of death. Therefore, in order not to commit the Unpardonable Sin, you have to concede that God is the God of life, and therefore, you have to vote for God; you have to vote for life; you have to vote Pro-Life! No, there are no other issues. There is only one issue: PROTECTING THE UNBORN!

    Because death is final, it is not just the primary issue in politics for God’s people; rather, it is the only issue and there is no issue above it or below it. It is the only issue! Economic issues can wait and are actually waiting anyway, as you can see. Social issues can wait and are actually waiting anyway, as you can see. Health issues can wait and are actually waiting anyway, as you can see. Education issues can wait and are actually waiting anyway, as you can see. But, stopping abortion cannot wait because death is final and is irreversible. Abortion is killing our doctors, nurses, researchers, geniuses, preachers and missionaries at the rate of 4,000 a day in America alone! Many of you are actually hindering God’s work: Gamaliel to the Sanhedrin, “…But if it comes from God, you will not be able to destroy them (them=the Apostles – Ed); you may even find yourselves fighting against God” (Acts 5:39). You would not want to be in that position ever!!! VOTE FOR GOD! VOTE PRO-LIFE, REGARDLESS; and then trust Him and leave the rest to Him! Your civic duties have been performed. Now, relax; sit back and watch God ruling over His people through the Pro-Life candidate!

    Look at it this way: Abortion, cloning and embryonic stem cell research, they are all interference in God’s Procreative Plan. So, a good rule would be: Do not mess with Procreation!

    So, you have to vote for life. You cannot even abstain; and again here, you have no practical choice but to participate: “So for one who knows the right thing to do and does not do it, it is a sin” (James 4: 17). You have heard it said that abortion is intrinsically evil and is murder. Believe it! The Church says so (CCC 2272 below).

    The teachings of the Church on voting and abortion, as they appear in the Catechism of the Catholic Church (CCC) and the Holy Bible, are as follows:

    The duties of citizens
    CCC 2240 Submission to authority and co-responsibility for the common good make it morally obligatory to pay taxes, to exercise the right to vote, and to defend one’s country:

    Pay to all of them their dues, taxes to whom taxes are due, revenue to whom revenue is due, respect to whom respect is due, honor to whom honor is due.45

    [Christians] reside in their own nations, but as resident aliens. They participate in all things as citizens and endure all things as foreigners. . . . They obey the established laws and their way of life surpasses the laws. . . . So noble is the position to which God has assigned them that they are not allowed to desert it.46

    The Apostle exhorts us to offer prayers and thanksgiving for kings and all who exercise authority, “that we may lead a quiet and peaceable life, godly and respectful in every way.”47

    Abortion
    CCC 2270 Human life must be respected and protected absolutely from the moment of conception. From the first moment of his existence, a human being must be recognized as having the rights of a person – among which is the inviolable right of every innocent being to life.72
    Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, and before you were born I consecrated you.73

    My frame was not hidden from you, when I was being made in secret, intricately wrought in the depths of the earth.74
    CCC 2271 Since the first century the Church has affirmed the moral evil of every procured abortion. This teaching has not changed and remains unchangeable. Direct abortion, that is to say, abortion willed either as an end or a means, is gravely contrary to the moral law:
    You shall not kill the embryo by abortion and shall not cause the newborn to perish.75

    God, the Lord of life, has entrusted to men the noble mission of safeguarding life, and men must carry it out in a manner worthy of themselves. Life must be protected with the utmost care from the moment of conception: abortion and infanticide are abominable crimes.76

    CCC 2272 Formal cooperation in an abortion constitutes a grave offense. The Church attaches the canonical penalty of excommunication to this crime against human life. “A person who procures a completed abortion incurs excommunication latae sententiae,”77 “by the very commission of the offense,”78 and subject to the conditions provided by Canon Law.79 The Church does not thereby intend to restrict the scope of mercy. Rather, she makes clear the gravity of the crime committed, the irreparable harm done to the innocent who is put to death, as well as to the parents and the whole of society.

    CCC 2273 The inalienable right to life of every innocent human individual is a constitutive element of a civil society and its legislation:

    “The inalienable rights of the person must be recognized and respected by civil society and the political authority. These human rights depend neither on single individuals nor on parents; nor do they represent a concession made by society and the state; they belong to human nature and are inherent in the person by virtue of the creative act from which the person took his origin. Among such fundamental rights one should mention in this regard every human being’s right to life and physical integrity from the moment of conception until death.”80

    “The moment a positive law deprives a category of human beings of the protection which civil legislation ought to accord them, the state is denying the equality of all before the law. When the state does not place its power at the service of the rights of each citizen, and in particular of the more vulnerable, the very foundations of a state based on law are undermined. . . . As a consequence of the respect and protection which must be ensured for the unborn child from the moment of conception, the law must provide appropriate penal sanctions for every deliberate violation of the child’s rights.”81

    CCC 2274 Since it must be treated from conception as a person, the embryo must be defended in its integrity, cared for, and healed, as far as possible, like any other human being.

    Prenatal diagnosis is morally licit, “if it respects the life and integrity of the embryo and the human fetus and is directed toward its safe guarding or healing as an individual. . . . It is gravely opposed to the moral law when this is done with the thought of possibly inducing an abortion, depending upon the results: a diagnosis must not be the equivalent of a death sentence.”82

    CCC 2275 “One must hold as licit procedures carried out on the human embryo which respect the life and integrity of the embryo and do not involve disproportionate risks for it, but are directed toward its healing the improvement of its condition of health, or its individual survival.”83
    “It is immoral to produce human embryos intended for exploitation as disposable biological material.”84

    “Certain attempts to influence chromosomic or genetic inheritance are not therapeutic but are aimed at producing human beings selected according to sex or other predetermined qualities. Such manipulations are contrary to the personal dignity of the human being and his integrity and identity”85 which are unique and unrepeatable.

    The coming Presidential Elections are the most important in our lives, because we have a president who is not just Pro-Abortion, he is actually Anti-Life. He stood on stage with the words ‘Planned Parenthood’ inscribed more than twenty times on the wall behind him. He stood there and defied God by saying, “Planned Parenthood will not yield, and I will not yield!” Unfortunately, many, many Christians voted him into office out of ignorance of God’s ways, relying on human ‘wisdom’ rather than Divine Wisdom:

    1. There were those of you who said the world is over populated. You would kill people for that? You would mess with God’s Procreative Plan for a myth, based on misconceptions and ignorance of the facts? Did you not know that all the villages, towns and cities of the world fit into a corner of Texas?! Did you not know that you cannot see the Kingdom of Heaven if you are not trusting of God as a little child is utterly dependent on his parents (Matthew 18:2 and its footnote in the New American Bible)?! Did you not know that by your silence you are killing the very geniuses, scientists and researcher who would be finding solutions to all such related issues?!

    2. There were those of you who said that it is a blob of tissue. Have you not heard yet that it is now a scientific fact and is already in the science text books that life begins at conception (Cardinal Justin F. Rigali/Bishop William E. Lori of the USCCB: “Today, embryology textbooks confirm that a new human life begins at conception. The Catholic Church does not teach this as a matter of faith; it acknowledges it as a matter of objective fact.”)?! Have you not deduced from the words of James, in James 2:26 “a body without a spirit is dead”, that the two have to be simultaneously present right from the beginning?!

    3. There were those of you who said that a woman’s body is her own. Did you not know that the Bible says otherwise? “A wife does not have authority over her own body, but rather her husband, and similarly a husband does not have authority over his own body, but rather his wife” (1 Corinthians 7:4). Did you not know that the Bible says that neither fornicators nor adulterers will see the Kingdom of God (1 Corinthians 6:9)?

    Do not vote wrong. Talk to me. I know; you have more questions. Well, I have answers; not mine, but, the Church’s. Let us all vote for God this time, as trusting children of His. He knows what He is about to do.

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