On Blood Money, and Those Who Accept It…

I’m very sorry it’s been so long between posts.  Between the new job, the recent move, Wall Street being mauled by a herd of wild bears, and the election, I’ve been busy.

I try not to talk too much about politics on this blog, but it’s only natural during an election year.  Most disturbing to me, working in a Catholic school as I do, is the number of coworkers who seemed to so easily sell their vote to Obama as soon as the economy turned.  I’m staunchly, unapologetically pro-life, and the senseless slaughter of 1.4 to 2.1 million babies a year is the greatest social justice issue of our generation, and in magnitude represents an evil greater than no other this country has ever faced (with the possible exception of slavery).

Given that the next president will likely choose 1-2 supreme court justices, and therefore determine the course of the abortion issue for the next decade or more, it remains the most important issue of this election.

For that reason, as I’ve unabashadly informed my students (without mentioning who exactly I’m voting for), I will never vote for a pro-choice candidate for president.  McCain is far from the ideal pro-life vote, with his irrational support of unproven embryonic stem cell research, but he’s nowhere near the disaster that Obama would be (who’d roll back every advance we’ve made, and didn’t even support measures like the “Born Alive Infant Protection Act”–a measure even Hillary Clinton and Ted Kennedy passed).

For a Catholic, who knows and values the sanctity of innocent babies–who are members of the Body of Christ–to sell your vote out of economic self-interest is an extreme act of betrayal.  In fact, I think it puts many Catholics (including some I consider friends) in the same company  as someone else who sold the body of Christ “for the (economic) good of the nation”…  His name was Judas Iscariot*.

*I’m mindful of alternate theories that suggest ways for the betrayal of Judas to be less dastardly, including the sympathetic view that he fully expected Christ to manifest his awesome power, shatter his bonds, and overthrow the Romans.  Even those accounts that paint Judas as not-quite-evil acknowledge that his good intentions were tragically misguided, and so I find even in this interpretation a fitting metaphor for the misguided,  but-not-quite evil (and not-quite-scientifically literate) Catholic supporter of Obama.


2 Responses to “On Blood Money, and Those Who Accept It…”

  1. James Says:

    You are usually pretty straightforward and accurate. But I think you may have been trying to “play lawyer” involving your conversation with your students.

    Your comment was analogious to saying you would never vote for a black person and insisting that would leave any sort of doubt in someones mind who your candidate would be.

    If you endorse a position, you’re endorsing the person who supports it in a two candiate system, such as the one we are currently seeing. Trying to pretend you are somehow not endorsing a candidate by name in front of your students in the manner you described is laughable.

    If you are taking a stand…take it. Qualifiers make you seem timid or scared….

  2. artaban7 Says:

    I was totally playing lawyer, and fully concede as much. The way I went about it wasn’t meant to leave doubt in the minds of my students (who’d been asking me my opinion for quite some time). I had to say in a roundabout way (I see it more as a “nudge and a wink” sense) because people who have the power to fire me have basically endorsed Obama. Plausible deniability (“lawyering”) is the name of the game, and for better or worse, my students are learning some of the nuances and dangers of politics (whether national or in the workplace).

    I have struggled with the question of whether I blatantly “cross the line”, as the Archdiocesan Education Office had issued very strict directives telling us not to endorse a candidate by name. I was quite pleased when my class asked to discuss nuances inherent in the question of whether or not they should be able to ask their teachers political opinions. They’re thinking critically, and that’s one of the purposes of education (as I see it).

    Sometimes you have to pick your battles, and find ways to win some without the blunt edge of boldness (though that has its place and purposes).

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