Thursday, September 6, 2012

Detangling More Comments

From Anonymous on the post Ah, the DNC
God doesn't condone murder. Period?
1 Samuel 15:3
Now go and smite Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and spare them not; but slay both man and woman, infant and suckling, ox and sheep, camel and ass.

Religious freedm means forcing your religious views on others? I agree you shouldn't have to pay directly for someone else's abortion, but once you've given your money to someone else, its not yours anymore. Do you ensure that the clerks at the grocery store you give money don't sin with their wages?

Also your means belonging to you
you're meanse you are.
I'm going to be frank, this was most confusing comment I've ever had to deal with.  Not because their was anything wrong about the poster but because I couldn't figure out where their argument was coming from.  So I've spent most of this evening trying to look at it from all angels and am wondering if I may have missed something...

No, God doesn't condone murder.  In the context I was speaking about abortion.  Numbers 2270-2275 of the catechism cover that it is intrinsically evil to directly cause an abortion.  To have an abortion is to murder and God doesn't condone that.  

But I think you were extrapolating my comment and applying it to all forms of murder when you quoted the Old Testament.  Catholics are a different breed of Christianity compared to some Protestants.  We believe that the Old Testament is fulfilled in the New.  Another way of saying it is the prophets foretold of Jesus's coming and slowly edged the people of God to accept this coming.  He revealed himself and his plan for us over centuries.  Once Jesus came he offered us the whole deposit of faith.

It's a long winded way of saying that as warring people God eased us into a life of pacifism.  When Jesus came the nation of Israel expected a war leader, but that's not God.

If you click on the previous link, you will notice that the catechism tackles other topics related to murder including euthanasia, capital punishment, and self-defense.  Catholics also believe in the authority of the Church to decipher the Bible because as you point out there are moments for confusion.

God gives us a moral code to live by ie don't murder babies.  But God is allowed to call anyone home which He does all the time.  Maybe a better quip would have been "God doesn't allow us to murder people."

If you read the passages of Samuel, God is telling the Israelites to strike down all the Amaleks as a form of justice.   Is God saying justice through murder is fine even if that includes innocent children?  I've heard some explain that the reason for the children being murdered had something to do with them also becoming evil that they weren't really innocent, but I'm not a theologian.

Does God allow justice through murder?  Again I point to the above link where it discusses that in countries were a murder can easily continue down that path and incarceration is not a means to stop him/her, then capital punishment as a means of defense is permissible.  So to Just War theory.  But then it's not really murder because the intent is not to kill someone only to protect oneself and ones nation.

The key here is intent to protect.  Now some would argue that in order to protect the life of the mother abortion is still permissible.  But this would be directly killing a child and not through a defensive measure.  Unborn babies don't kill their mommies.  Other medical conditions exacerbated by pregnancy (like pre-eclampsia or diabetes) are the root cause of a mother's death.  And that's the big distinction I don't think people realize when talking about protecting the life of the mother.  It's like they are talking about an unborn baby wielding a knife.  Trust me, babies want their mother's to live so they may live.

If, however, an ectopic pregnancy took place and in order to keep the mother alive the baby and the tube was removed thereby indirectly causing the baby to die, then it's not murder.  It's not murder to in the process of chemo also loose a child.  It's the intent behind the action.  No direct intent to kill.  I know it's a bit confusing, but again there are better people out there who can explain it better than me.  I'm not a theologian or an ethicist. 

To answer your other question:  Does religious freedom mean forcing my views on someone else?  The short answer is no.

But I think what your trying to make a point with your analogy.  The problem is it falls short.

I don't give my money directly to any clerk for purposes of wages.  I do, however, give it to a business.  There are many businesses and product lines that avoid because of ethically and moral reasons.  A lot of people boycott Walmart.  Is it because they want the employees of Walmart to continue to suffer with low wages?  No.  Quite the opposite.  They boycott Walmart so that Walmart will improve it's business practices.

In the case of abortion, the federal government is making Catholic organizations (and other faith based organizations) directly pay for a woman to have an abortion. 

Let me explain.  When Bill was president he also passed health care reform laws.  Catholic organizations were exempt from providing birth control pill coverage if they self-insured.  So a number of Catholic organizations self-insured.  They literally pay for their employee's services.

If an employee decides to get an abortion, the Church can discourage it, but has no legal basis to prevent an employee from doing so.  They can, however, refuse to pay for that service.  To pay for that service would be in essence giving money to an abortionist (reimbursement) so that they employee can have an abortion which is against our beliefs.  The employee is still free to do so with their own money that they earned.  As I said, the Church cannot directly interfere nor would they with someone's decision. 

So a better analogy would be saying I am giving money to a grocery store that does something that is legal but immoral.  What the employee does is irrelevant.  Religious freedom does not trample on personal freedom since I'm not directly preventing a person from doing anything.

I've heard people describe Obamacare as forcing a Jewish person to sell pork in their deli.  The Jewish person doesn't have to eat the pork and his employees are welcome to eat pork, but to have a devote Jew directly have to pay for pork so that someone else can eat it is immoral.  What is especially hard to understand is that customer or employee can get pork down the street from a non-Jewish deli without forcing the devote Jew to compromise his morals.  Yet here we are forcing a devote Jew to buy pork wholesale so that others may partake of it.

Make sense?

1 comment:

  1. My logic applies here:
    "Catholic organizations were exempt from providing birth control pill coverage *if* they self-insured. So a number of Catholic organizations self-insured."

    Because they think that buying health insurance from another company should give them the right to dictate to others what they do with their money, since they weren't afforded that right, they decide to force their religious views on their employees through self insurance. Its rooted in the same issue: The church doesn't want other people to sin with money that isn't theirs anymore but came from them. If that's the case, and they're willing to self-insure to avoid it, you should only grow your own food so the money you give others for things like groceries can be assured not to be used for sin.

    I don't know how they would get a church built if they don't want other people sinning with money they pay out. They could just as easily apply this to the purchase of health insurance. If the people building their buildings sin with their wages, then its a sin of the builder, not the church. The same is true for health insurance providers. Its a hypocritical position.


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