Thursday, June 25, 2009

RIP Michael Jackson, Laptop Fixed, and my up next...

So, I got my laptop back, which will allow me to ramp up my posting as I had planned before.  I'd like to cover Obama's moves with the Bioethics Council, the implications of the events in Iran, healthcare, my frustration with Amnesty International, and some brief comments on the Citi pay "scandal."

The world just lost one of its most talented men, though, and I'd be remiss to ignore it.  All of the allegations and criticisms aside, Michael Jackson was an entertainment genius, and in many ways seemed to me to be a very good man.  Requiscat in Pace.

Some of my favorite of his lyrics:

"I've Been A Victim Of A Selfish
Kind Of Love
It's Time That I Realize
That There Are Some With No
Home, Not A Nickel To Loan
Could It Be Really Me,
Pretending That They're Not

"I can hear your prayers
Your burdens I will bear
But first I need your hand
Then forever can begin
Everyday I sit and ask myself
How did love slip away
Something whispers in my ear and says
That you are not alone
For I am here with you
Though you're far away
I am here to stay"

"What have we done to the world 
Look what we've done 
What about all the peace 
That you pledge your only son... 
What about flowering fields 
Is there a time 
What about all the dreams 
That you said was yours and mine... 
Did you ever stop to notice 
All the children dead from war 
Did you ever stop to notice 
The crying Earth, the weeping shores 

I used to dream 
I used to glance beyond the stars 
Now I don't know where we are 
Although I know we've drifted far "

Tell me will you hold me
When wrong, will you scold me
When lost will you find me? 

But they told me
A man should be faithful
And walk when not able
And fight till the end
But Im only human"

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Factual Oversight

I've been alerted that I made a pretty egregious oversight in my previous post.  Of course, the United States doesn't have an embassy in Iran... a fact that I guess I ignored in my thinking before.

I'm sorry for the error and I will try to do better in the future.

Obviously that reality would make it impossible for the administration to mirror the behavior of the Australians.  I continue to believe that our government's pro-liberty stand here has been anemic, but I'll elaborate on that tonight.  Next up, though, I have a domestic politics issue...

Saturday, June 20, 2009


The Iranian government seems to be getting more violent in its crack down on those seeking freedom and justice.  Many protesters claim that the Iranian government is dumping chemicals on the crowds out of helicopters, causing burns.  There have even been reports of tanks on the streets.  There have been 19 confirmed killings today, with some claiming that today's death toll in this unrest is as high as 150.

When those wounded by the Iranian government have sought medical attention, many have been arrested in hospitals, and rumors are that a number of them have apparently vanished from hospital beds.

Since even the hospitals are not safe for the protesters, several countries are providing medical attention to the injured in their embassies.  Australia is one of the countries doing this.  In the lists of them, though, the United States has yet to be mentioned.  Aiding those wounded in pursuit of justice is the right thing to do.

Please send the Obama Administration an e-mail here or call them at (202) 456-1111 and tell them that supporting human rights cannot be just a rhetorical task.

Here's what I said:

A number of countries have opened up their embassies to provide medical attention to protesters injured in Iran, since apparently they are not even safe in their hospitals from government retaliation. Has the U.S. done this? If not, will we start providing at least basic humanitarian assistance to those being burned, beaten and shot for exercising their natural rights to free assembly and political speech? I encourage your administration to recognize that human rights are not merely a point of rhetoric. Respecting and defending them is a universal obligation. If the United States cannot even bandage those wounded in pursuit of justice, I fear the light that has made us a beacon to the world is growing quite dim. Sincerely, 
[Collegiate Catholic]

P.S. Updates for the next few days may be sparse because my laptop is in need of repair.


The White House released the following statement on Iran earlier today:


Office of the Press Secretary
For Immediate Release                                        June 20, 2009

Statement from the President on Iran

The Iranian government must understand that the world is watching. We mourn each and every innocent life that is lost. We call on the Iranian government to stop all violent and unjust actions against its own people. The universal rights to assembly and free speech must be respected, and the United States stands with all who seek to exercise those rights. 

As I said in Cairo, suppressing ideas never succeeds in making them go away. The Iranian people will ultimately judge the actions of their own government. If the Iranian government seeks the respect of the international community, it must respect the dignity of its own people and govern through consent, not coercion. 

Martin Luther King once said - "The arc of the moral universe is long, but it bends toward justice." I believe that. The international community believes that. And right now, we are bearing witness to the Iranian peoples’ belief in that truth, and we will continue to bear witness.

"Bear witness" seems to mean very little to this administration.  Apparently releasing a 3 paragraph statement with no accompanying action counts as bearing witness these days.

To be clear, I don't support hyper-involvement on the part of the United States on Iranian internal affairs.  Not only is that not our place, but we do need to be careful not to allow ourselves to become a scapegoat or to provide the "Supreme Leader" with a rallying call.  But, we could at least act like we care... Obama seems more interested in taking cover.  I urge caution against too strong of a response... but the response thus far has been weak.

Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Catholic Controversies

On the America Magazine blog "In All Things," Fr. James Martin, S.J., posted up the story of Commonweal Editor-In Chief Paul Baumann's sniping rebuttal to First Things editor Joseph Bottum's op-ed in the Weekly Standard about The Obama/Notre Dame controversy and about Commonweal's coverage of it.

Quoting Fr. Martin: "Don't let all that concatenation of magazine names fool you; this is important stuff... as did the Obama controversy, the CW/FT conflict lays bare some of the conflicts in the Catholic church today." 

I recommend reading Mr. Bottum's piece here.

Commonweal had, as I interpret it, two main complaints with "God and Obama at Notre Dame."

I'll start with their more valid but less central complaint.  Commonweal was naturally a little miffed with this paragraph:

On the First Things website, a young woman named Lacy Dodd published an account of her pregnancy during her senior year and the pressure her boyfriend applied to talk her into an abortion. "Who draws support from your decision to honor President Obama," she reasonably asked her alma mater, "the young, pregnant Notre Dame woman sitting in that graduating class who wants desperately to keep her baby, or the Notre Dame man who believes that the Catholic teaching on the intrinsic evil of abortion is just dining-room talk?" Commonweal put a notice of the article on its own website, and 83 comments later, the young woman had been called everything but a slut. Her story was "flimsy," "manipulative," "hardly fair," a "negative stereotype," "polemical"--and she was just "a horny kid," one of the "victims of the Russian roulette moral theory of premarital sex" so rampant in the protesters' troglodyte version of Catholicism.

Bottum is interpreting several commenters’ respectful criticisms of Dodd’s argument as attacks on her person and her personal decisions, which were in fact widely praised. When Bottum writes, “Her story was ‘flimsy,’ ‘manipulative’…” he is apparently quoting the following sentences: “It’s a moving story, but a flimsy argument.” And “Bless the young woman for all she did to keep her baby, but her article is emotionally manipulative.”

More seriously, Bottum distorts two phrases from another comment when he writes, “She was just ‘a horny kid,’ one of the ‘victims of the Russian roulette moral theory of premarital sex’ so rampant in the protesters’ troglodyte version of Catholicism.” In fact, the use of the former phrase did not refer to Ms. Dodd, and Bottum’s interpretation of the latter phrase is totally inverted. Here is the original comment (which was addressed to another commenter on the blog):

Your metaphor of the pregnant ND girl and the Blessed Mother also implies that the Holy Spirit was just a horny kid. Come off it.

Do I feel sorry for the ND girl? Of course, and also for her child and even the father. They are all victims of the Russian roulette moral theory of premarital sex - take a chance! :-( But contraceptives are not fail-safe, and it does a tremendous disservice to kids to let them think it’s OK to act otherwise. The possibilities of negative consequences are simply to [sic] great to risk.

Yes, the old teaching ‘no marriage, no sex’ is a hard saying. So?

In context, the line Bottum quotes as an attack on the moral outlook of “the protesters” is in fact an endorsement of abstinence education. And his suggestion that Dodd was called “a horny kid” is simply false.

Bottum should know better than to pretend that comments on a blog post are representative of a magazine’s editorial stance. But if he insists on using blog comments to make his argument, he ought to make sure he doesn’t misconstrue their meaning.

I'll let you decide what to think about this one, but, much as I'd like to side with Bottum/First Things, on this, Commonweal's right.

There's a more important issue here, though... the main message of "God and Obama at Notre Dame."

Politics has very little to do with the mess. This isn't a fight about who won the last presidential election and how he's going to deal with abortion. It's a fight about culture--the culture of American Catholicism, and how Notre Dame, still living in a 1970s Catholic world, has suddenly awakened to find itself out of date.

The role of culture is what Fr. Jenkins at Notre Dame and many other presidents of Catholic colleges don't quite get, and their lack of culture is what makes them sometimes seem so un-Catholic--though the charge befuddles them whenever it is made. As perhaps it ought. They know very well that they are Catholics: They go to Mass, and they pray, and their faith is real, and their theology is sophisticated, and what right has a bunch of other Catholics to run around accusing them of failing to be Catholic?

But, in fact, they live in a different world from most American Catholics. Opposition to abortion doesn't stand at the center of Catholic theology. It doesn't even stand at the center of Catholic faith. It does stand, however, at the center of Catholic culture in this country. Opposition to abortion is the signpost at the intersection of Catholicism and American public life. And those who--by inclination or politics--fail to grasp this fact will all eventually find themselves in the situation that Fr. Jenkins has now created for himself. Culturally out of touch, they rail that the antagonism must derive from politics. But it doesn't. It derives from the sense of the faithful that abortion is important. It derives from the feeling of many ordinary Catholics that the Church ought to stand for something in public life--and that something is opposition to abortion...

for American Catholics, the Church is a refuge and bulwark against an ambient culture that erodes morality and undermines families. Catholic culture is their counterculture, their means of upholding the dignity of the human person and the integrity of family--and, in that context, the centrality of abortion for American Catholic culture seems much less arbitrary than it first appeared.

This is what the leaders of Notre Dame need to grasp. They do not necessarily have bad theology when they equate the life issues with other concerns. They do not necessarily have bad faith just because they say that war and capital punishment outweigh the million babies killed every year in this country by abortion. But they lack the cultural marker that would make them Catholic in the minds of other Catholics. Abortion is not the only life issue, but it is the one that bears most directly on the lives of ordinary Catholics as they swim against the current to preserve family life. And until Catholic universities understand this, they will not be Catholic--in a very real, existential sense.

To which Commonweal said

If you had a penny for every time a First Things writer has pronounced this or that Catholic (and especially this magazine) “out of date”–well, you’d have almost as much money as First Things gets each year from right-wing foundations. To be sure, Bottum takes pains to inform his readers that the Obama/Notre Dame controversy was not about politics, but culture. Reaching for the highest rhetorical notes in his impressive register, he argues that legalized abortion is irrefutable evidence of America’s corruption and decline, if not impending doom. “For American Catholics,” he writes, “the church is a refuge and a bulwark against an ambient culture that erodes morality and undermines families.” Notre Dame’s alleged squishiness on abortion, exemplified by its invitation to President Obama, means it lacks “the cultural marker that would make [it] Catholic in the minds of other Catholics.” Until Catholic universities understand this, the essay pronounces, “they will not be Catholic–in a very real, existential sense.”

Bottum’s writing has always been brightened by a wonderful indifference to mundane facts, a winning embrace of the fantastical. Still, it is rather stunning, in the aftermath of the clergy sexual-abuse crisis, to read that Catholics find a refuge and a bulwark for their families in the church. (That must be why every parish in the country requires anyone involved in church work to attend a “safe environments” workshop. And you have to attend in the real, not merely the existential sense.) Just as problematic is the attempt to define who is or isn’t Catholic. Granted, reading this or that person or group out of the church is a passionate hobby for some. But doing so in the “existential sense” seems a bit squishy for the editor of a magazine that prides itself on its gimlet-eyed defense of “orthodoxy.”

Apparently, Commonweal still doesn't get it.  They're still more interested in claiming they're right to understand why many of us believe they are so wrong, and until these Catholics are willing to listen to their Catholic brethren, the rift between these camps is only likely to grow larger.  They'll sink to trying to open the old wounds of the sex abuse scandals in their fit to insist that the feelings of other Catholics are just partisan screams, and that's not it at all.

Here was my comment on the "In All Things" blog:

It seems to me like Baumann either missed the point of the First Things article, or deliberately misrepresented it.  Bottum was writing about the way many Catholics FEEL about the Church.  A big part of his point was that this was not necessarily entirely a matter of "orthodoxy."  Bottum was trying to classify the very real sense of betrayal many Catholics felt over Notre Dame's actions, and I believe that his point was that no matter what defense you can erect of Fr. Jenkins' decisions, many of the Catholic faithful feel wounded, nonetheless.

The whole point was that even though Fr. Jenkins didn't see any contradiction between his decision and Catholicism, and even though CW agreed when it came to all of the documents of the Church, canon law, etc., that, in itself, is indicative of the fact that they're out of touch with the Catholic identity and culture as it exists for many of us.

Baumann can try to thrown insults back, but Bottum was right.  In the setting of an ultra-secular university, I go out every day and find myself under siege.  For standing up for the rights of the unborn, and not even in an in your face or aggressive manner, I've been smacked, spit on, publicly cursed out, etc.  I've been asked my opinion on the abortion issue and then shunned for expressing it. I count on my Church for support.  When my beliefs are under attack, I fall back on the Church.  And, when Notre Dame selected Barack Obama as its commencement speaker, it encouraged those who oppose my beliefs, as they made very clear, and I felt betrayed.  I know that there are many more like me.  Baumann can write off our beliefs, feelings and experiences, claim we're partisan hacks, etc., but once again, it only shows that he doesn't understand the realities of many Catholics.
Long post, I know.  I hope it gives you something to think about.  I also hope that the two sides in this debate can rediscover what it means to be united with the Church.  While, as I wrote before, I think the whole "common ground" line regarding Obama is pretty empty, as Catholics, we DO hold a lot of common ground.  The Commonwealers would be doing themselves, the Church, and us a service if they would listen to us instead of trying to see everything as part of the vast right-wing conspiracy, and, going the other way, misquoting and misrepresenting the "more liberal" side is not helpful... it doesn't exactly make them more receptive.


So, there are a few people out there who visit this blog, and then I've been getting a number of hits from people who see this site attached to my name when I comment on other sites.  I'd like to build a more stable readership, though, in order to make it worthwhile for me to keep up with posting.

If you like reading this, please try to visit regularly, post some comments, and/or subscribe to the Atom Feed (at the bottom of the page.)  Also, tell your friends about the blog, etc.  I'm going to try to do a little bit better of a job at self-promotion, too.

If you'd like to suggest topics or tip me off to issues, e-mail me at

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Some numbers that blow my mind...

According to a recent Gallup poll, "40% of Americans... describe their political views as conservative, 35% as moderate, and 21% as liberal."  A few weeks ago, another Gallup poll told us that the majority of Americans now consider themselves "Pro-Life."

Only 35% of Americans supported President Obama's decision to allow government money to go to organizations that provide abortion overseas.  The vast majority of Americans opposed Obama's executive order to close Gitmo.
According to a June 1st Rasmussen Poll, 58% of Americans think that Obama's spending bill had no effect or made things worse (31% of Americans think the bill made things worse.)  In a June 8th poll, they found that more Americans now trust Republicans on economic issues than democrats.

Going through the issues, people disapprove of Obama's economic policies, disapprove of his security policies, disagree with his social policies and are torn about his dealings with foreign states... and yet, 60% "approve" of the Obama presidency.  How?  Is it just pure cult of personality? 

Monday, June 15, 2009

Write to your Senators

Time is short, so shooting them an e-mail might be the way to go. The Senate will soon vote on the Foreign Relations Authorization Act. This bill disastrously creates the Office for Global Women's Issues, which is frightening seeing as Secretary Clinton has claimed that it should be a policy goal of the United States to promote "reproductive rights" around the world, including intervening in domestic political debates to advocate the repeal of any laws that protect unborn lives. This is inappropriate on so many levels. Not only am I bothered by its support for abortion, but I'm bothered that the State Department is actually trying to use our money to engage in political lobbying about domestic issues that have nothing at all to do with the security of the United States. It's one thing when our government tries to bully other countries to override the wills of their people to promote policies for our business interests... but doing it to promote the abortion agenda? That takes things to a whole new level.

My letter to Senator Casey:

Senator Casey, I urge you to stand up for the values of the majority of Americans and to respect the rights of American taxpayers by voting against the current iteration of the Foreign Relations Authorization Act. Passage of this act will create the Office for Global Women's Issues within the State Department. The creation of this office would serve as a major advance to Secretary Clinton's stated goal to make the global promotion of "abortion rights" a fundamental policy goal of the United States. The State Department cannot be allowed to interject itself inappropriately into the domestic political issues of other countries, particularly on issues that are so divisive in the United States. The American people should not be forced to fund the promotion of an agenda that many of us believe is murderous, particularly when it has no obvious relationship with our security. In the House, Congressman Mike Pence argued that "We deserve a foreign relations budget that respects our pocketbooks and our values." While apparently the House of Representatives lacked the courage to stand up for such an idea, please show America and the world that you do. Sincerely, [Collegiate Catholic]

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Tiller a Martyr?

To follow up on yesterday's post, today on AC360, one of Tiller's partners at his clinic proclaimed Dr. Tiller a martyr.  The same guy has compared him to MLK Jr., and predicts that his murder will be like the sinking of the RMS Lusitania or the bombing of Pearl Harbor for the abortionist cause.  We must make sure our message is expressed, and expressed clearly, in order to prevent this from becoming the case.  

Also related to this incident, the Tiller family has decided to close his clinic, so some good has come out of it.  

Monday, June 8, 2009


I like to hear a wide variety of viewpoints, even when I strongly disagree.  If I don't hear what others have to say, I can't do a very good job disagreeing.  So, I sign up to get the e-mails from all sorts of group from all over the political spectrum as one way of keeping up with what different people are saying

Today, I received an e-mail from People for the American Way, which, if you didn't guess, is a group with whom I disagree on pretty much everything...

Here's their e-mail and my response... my comments on their email will be [Bracketed Blue Italics]

Dear [Collegiate Catholic],

Extreme, overheated rhetoric can have dangerous consequences.

By now, you may have heard or read that last Sunday, Dr. George Tiller, a physician who has been targeted for years for his willingness to provide abortion procedures often in the most difficult circumstances, was assassinated in his church in Kansas. [Are we really going to start using the word "assasinated," now?  While I think I've made clear that I see his murder as a tragedy, we need to be on guard against those who would make him out as some kind of martyr.]

Freedom of speech is one of our most cherished constitutional values and rights -- and should always be protected. But just because speech might be constitutionally protected does not make it right or decent. [Much of this e-mail is garbage, but let's remember this very valid distinction.  I have a feeling PFAW types won't appreciate it when this is applied in other circumstances.]

There can be little doubt that the irresponsible, inflammatory, dehumanizing and violent speech of some around the abortion debate -- much of it targeted [Warning... this link is pretty bogus.  It tries to characterize complaints about Sebelius' Tiller ties, similar to the one I directed to Senator Casey, as hate-mongering rhetoric.] at Dr. Tiller himself -- contributed to this tragedy. [Perhaps.  We do, however, have to distinguish between true statements and "dehumanizing" speech.] The reaction to the assassination by some of these same people has been pretty shocking.

Operation Rescue founder Randall Terry said Tiller "reaped what he sowed."[Terry was guilty of insensitive timing, but in context, his point was perhaps a valid one.  Tiller was an integral part of the culture of death.  His murder was another symptom of that culture.  If you watch the video of what he said at the first link in the paragraph, you'll probably see that the comment was misrepresented here.]

Ann Coulter basically equated a woman's decision to have an abortion with a would-be assassin's decision to kill an abortion doctor. [Ann is a font of obnoxious, offensive statements.  She's an entertainer and that's her schtick.  But, abortion does take an innocent life.]

And Wiley Drake, a former vice president of Southern Baptist Convention who last year was Alan Keyes' running mate, called Tiller's death "an answer to prayer." Drake then unabashedly told FOX broadcaster Alan Colmes on his radio show that he prays for the death of President Obama! [On the radio, Drake indicated that he gave up on praying for Tiller's salvation after years of doing so.  I understand his frustration, but we have to rely on God not gunmen.  When we let the challenges Satan gives us turn our love to hate, he wins.]

Dr. Tiller's death is a sad reminder that stoking the flames of hate has serious ramifications, yet the Radical Right [I don't like that phrase at all.  WHo, exactly, is the "Radical Right" ?] is seemingly doing everything it can to continue the extreme demonization of its opponents, even suggesting violence with the use of images.

In the wake of Tiller's death, a Religious Right group calling itself Answers in Genesis has a billboard up in Texas and a TV ad comparing Atheism to murder [Answers in Genesis believes in that Young Earth stuff and what not... they're a little out there, IMO.  But, it's a gross mischaracterization to say that the billboard compares atheism to murder.]. And the FOX Nation web site actually featured side-by-side articles with images that appear to have firearms aimed at the heads of progressive leaders who also happen to be African American. The absolute best that can be said of this is that FOX Nation is guilty of sloppy and irresponsible negligence. [Oh, Puh-leez.  Grasp at straws much?]

It's incredibly important that we all stay vigilant in exposing the fear mongering and hate that drive people inclined towards violence to take action. PFAW's blog is one such place for activists like you to stay informed [if by "informed," you mean that you're actually seeking a left-wing brand of fear mongering and hate]. Please visit the blog often, sign up for regular "Best of the Blog"updates and help spread the word about this resource.

Thank you for all you do. [Obviously not intended for me...]

-- Michael B. Keegan, President

P.S. On a far more positive note [If they think it's positive...], New Hampshire Governor John Lynch on Thursday signed into law legislation that makes New Hampshire the sixth state in which same-sex couples now enjoy legal marriage equality. This is a tremendous step in the fight to make sure ALL of our LGBT Americans have equal protection under the law. A special thanks to all PFAW members and activists in New Hampshire who took action in the effort to pass these bills (New Hampshire folks, please consider calling your legislators to thank them as well as Gov. Lynch).  [I'm hoping to put up what I think will be a rare sane look at the gay marriage debate sometime in the near future.]

And here was my response:

Mr. Keegan,

I often disagree with PFAW, but usually the contents of your e-mails don't bother me enough to respond.  This time, however, was a different story.

Here, you are guilty of the sort of overheated rhetoric, demonization, and mischaracterizations that are leading to the growing rift in society.  
I'm not big fan of Randall Terry, but you ripped his quote far out of context.  You are fear mongering about the "radical right," without defining it.  Pretending that a significant number of people are in the camp of "Sovereign Citizen" tax-protester abortionist-murderer Scott Roeder (who also happens to suffer from mental illness) is disingenuous at best.

If you're so scared about the dangers of stoking the flames of hate, stop doing it yourselves.

[Collegiate Catholic]

Monday, June 1, 2009

Connecticut Government at it Again

Many of you likely followed the story a few months ago from Connecticut where the CT legislature was forced to back down after an attempt to intervene within the financial and power structure of the Catholic Church, apparently in retaliation for Catholic opposition to same sex marriage.

Public outcry over the blatant First Amendment violation and growing opposition in the state senate forced the bigots in the CT House to table the bill with little hope of bringing it back for further consideration (at least in this term.)

The bigots, however, have not gotten enough.  They're still seeking retaliation against the One True Church.  Now, the Office of State Ethics (OSE) is investigating the Church, accusing it of ethics violations for failing to file the appropriate forms for being... get this... a lobbying group.  Apparently, if you ask people to contact their legislature about bills that not only specifically pertain to your membership but mention your organization by name, you are "a lobbying group."

According to Catholic News Service, Bishop of Bridgeport William E. Lori asked:

"Following the surprise introduction of Bill 1098, a proposal that singled out Catholic parishes and would have forced them to reorganize contrary to Church law and the First Amendment, our Diocese responded in the most natural, spontaneous, and frankly, American, of ways: we alerted our membership – in person and through our website; we encouraged them to exercise their free speech by contacting their elected representatives; and, we organized a rally at the State Capitol.

“How can this possibly be called lobbying?"

In a letter to the faithful, he wrote:

'Lobbying'? Exhortations from the pulpit, information posted to the world wide web, a rally in the middle of the day on the State’s most public piece of property? This cannot possibly be what our Legislature had in mind when it enacted lobbying laws to bring more transparency and oversight to a legislative process that has been corrupted by special interests and backroom deals.

“Let’s be clear: we violated no law.”

Americans of all faith backgrounds should decry this absurd violation of our First Amendment rights.  For the legislature to have first attempted to violate the establishment clause by intervening in the structure of the Catholic Church, and then to jump in and seek to discipline the Church when Catholics exercised their rights to free speech and assembly is against everything the United States is supposed to represent.  Even pro-gay-marriage atheists should be united with Catholics here in defense of our Constitutional liberties.  People of all political and religious perspectives must stand together in favor of our right to have our beliefs, free from government attack.

The Archdiocese of Bridgeport is now filing suits in the Federal District Court against OSE Ethics Enforcement Officer, Thomas Jones, and against the OSE's Executive Director, Carol Carson.  They are asking that the Court bar the OSE from applying these lobbying regulations to the Church, allowing it to continue to provide its religious and social services without intimidation.  Without such a prohibition, the Church and all its agents would have to operate in fear of financial punishments and even criminal prosecution.

The Diocese of Bridgeport has its comments here.

It's a sad time to be an American, folks.  Hopefully the necessary groundswell against the Democratic Party's current onslaught against all that America has stood for will develop, and quickly... and hopefully that will bring some change to our government.  It's sad that the neoconservatives are comparatively a beacon of civil liberties and free enterprise.