With some people, you just know you’re going to cringe when you read their writings. Fr. Thomas Reese (I love how he doesn’t even use the “father” part) is one of those people. How one person can consistently get it so wrong is beyond me. This one, however, really takes the heretical cake.
Irish vote shows need for new pro-life strategy
By Thomas Reese | May 27, 2018
(RNS) — The overwhelming vote in Ireland in favor of allowing access to abortion shows that the pro-life movement needs a new strategy. Trying to preserve anti-abortion laws or trying to reverse the legalization of abortion is simply not working.
Yeah, this probably has nothing to do with the fact that the Church in Ireland has screwed it up so badly that barely anyone practices their faith anymore. But, yeah, let’s blame it on the pro-life strategy that’s kept Ireland abortion free longer than almost anyone else.
In almost every country where abortion has been on the ballot, abortion has won. Rarely have pro-choice laws been reversed. This trend is not going to change. To think otherwise is simply ignoring reality.
Look around America, Fr. Reese. The tide is turning, albeit slowly. We’ve made some great strides in the past year. I know it’s killing you, because you’ve been suggesting that we vote for death on a fairly regular basis, and instead spout out ridiculous ideas like helping the poor is more important than trying to stop the slaughter of innocents, all the while acting as if nobody is trying to help the poor. If nobody is taking care of the poor and downtrodden, then it’s likely the problem is the evangelization of the people in the pews by people like you, not the pro-lifers who usually are doing multiple things at once. While people certainly have focused on the issue where they can do the most good, I rarely run across a pro-lifer who doesn’t advocate taking care of the poor as well.
The American pro-life movement still holds out hope that the U.S. Supreme Court will reverse Roe v. Wade, but even if that does happen, most Americans will still live in states where abortion is legal. Those who don’t will be able to travel to a state where it is, just as Irish women have long traveled to Britain.
So you’re saying we shouldn’t have hope? I thought with God all things are possible? Seriously, if we can’t hope for the end of the slaughter of innocents, why should we hope for the poor, the sick, the imprisoned, etc., to be taken care of, “Father”? Why should David have ever beaten Goliath? Honestly, your reasoning on the matter is why the Church fails. It’s not because of the pro-lifers. Your idea is to give up the fight because “one can’t possibly win this.” Is that what the slavery abolitionists thought? You’re far more like the disciples who walked away than you are like Christ.
The reality is that most Americans think that abortion should be legal even if they think it is immoral. There is no indication that this thinking will change. In fact, opinion is moving in the opposite direction, thanks to the attitudes of younger generations. The Pew Research Center shows Americans under 50 are more likely than their elders to support abortion in all or most cases. Likewise, in Ireland, younger people voted more strongly to change the law. Time is on the side of the pro-choice movement.
Pope Benedict XVI has famously said, “Truth is not decided by a majority vote.”. Not too surprised this does not roll off your tongue. You don’t give in to what’s evil. You fight for what is right, good, and true.
If making abortion illegal is an impossible goal, what should be the pro-life strategy for the foreseeable future?
The answer is simple and obvious: Work to reduce the number of abortions.
And the pro-life movement has accomplished that, but it’s not the ultimate goal. The ultimate goal is to reveal the truth of the atrocity of abortion and save women and their babies – ALL OF THEM!
When women are asked why they are having an abortion, the main reasons given are that having a baby would interfere with their education, their work or their ability to care for the children they are already raising, or that they simply cannot afford another child at the time.
The main reasons? Really? Yeah, kind of evident you don’t spend much time fighting it. Try: they are terrified of going it alone and afraid of what people will think. This is why a good chunk of fighting abortion has been to provide support to these women and to make sure they are not going it alone. It’s clueless to think that the pro-life activists simply seek to change laws. This is the pro-abortion line of thinking. They never point to the actual help of the Catholic Church, Gabriel Projects, crisis pregnancy centers, crisis nurseries, those pushing to help student moms, etc., etc., etc.
Pro-life activists must take these reasons into consideration when developing a new strategy.
Pro-life advocates should strongly support programs that give women a real choice — increasing the minimum wage, free or affordable day care for working and student moms, free or affordable health care for mothers and their children, parental leave programs, education and job-training programs, income and food supplements, etc.
Yeah, because we never, never do that. Duh. Thanks, Fr. Reese. What would we do without your pearls of wisdom?
In short, the pro-life movement must support any program that lessens the burden on mothers and their children.
Really? Any program? Complete bunk. We do not need to support “any program” that does this. We only need to support ones that are ethical and moral in all of their programs. And, oh yeah, we do.
No longer should Republicans be allowed to call themselves pro-life if they vote down programs that would help mothers and their children. In the early 1990s, Republicans in the New Jersey Legislature voted not to increase benefits for women on welfare if they have additional children. Thus, a mother with two children would have to take care of three with no increase in support. The consequences were quick and predictable: an increase in the number of abortions among women on welfare.
OK, a few things here. Let’s look at this case of which he speaks. http://articles.latimes.com/1992-01-22/news/mn-513_1_welfare-recipients
Let’s knock out the first fallacy of Fr. Reese: “Republicans can’t call themselves pro-life if they vote down programs that would help mothers and their children.” (Insert big buzzer sound). If Democrats wanted to attach birth control and abortion to legislation for such programs, they most certainly can. In fact, Democrats love attaching evil onto other plans just so they can get that evil passed. That’s why Republicans often fight for line item vetoes and “clean” bills which don’t have things like Planned Parenthood funding attached to them.
Then there’s Fr. Reese’s next fallacy:
If abortion is never going to be illegal, pro-lifers must consider voting for candidates, even pro-choice Democrats, who will reduce the number of abortions by supporting programs that help mothers and their children. It is no accident that the number of abortions went down during the two most recent Democratic administrations, according to the CDC. (Clinton: 1,330,414 abortions in 1993 to 857,457 in 2000; Obama: 789,217 in 2009 to 652,639 in 2014).
Pro-life voters must choose between Republican rhetoric and Democratic results.
Wow! This one is a whopper. Even liberal snopes.com called this a falsehood: https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/abortion-rates-presidencies/ Not only that, the Guttmacher Institute (Planned Parenthood’s research arm, even if they say they’ve parted ways) gives quite a different explanation of why the trend is down:
Twenty-two states enacted 70 abortion restrictions during 2013. This makes 2013 second only to 2011 in the number of new abortion restrictions enacted in a single year. To put recent trends in even sharper relief, 205 abortion restrictions were enacted over the past three years (2011–2013), but just 189 were enacted during the entire previous decade (2001–2010).
Totally contradicts your premise, Fr. Reese, that abortion has gone down because of social services enacted under Democratic regimes. Oops.
Churches must also step up. In today’s world, an unwed woman willing to give birth should be treated as a hero, not a whore. She is not the only unmarried woman in her age group who got pregnant, let alone the only person having sex. Yet, she is the one brave enough to choose life. Shame on the Pharisees who try to shame her.
I have mixed feelings about this comment. How about not treating the woman as a hero or a whore but simply as someone who needs help? Choosing the scary and hard path is a heroic act, and certainly not making a child pay for life’s mistakes is a laudable move. The big question is, who is trying to shame her? It ain’t the pro-lifers. In fact, you’re going to find far more shaming and fear-mongering going on in the pro-abortion Democratic world than you are in the pro-life world.
Schools, too, must do more to help these women. Universities today talk much about diversity, but one of the most underrepresented groups on campuses is single mothers. Universities, especially Catholic universities, must design programs and housing to meet their needs. Such programs would benefit not only the mothers and their children but also other students. Perhaps they’d learn that “it takes a dorm to raise a child.”
While I don’t want a dorm raising anyone’s child (they can barely creep out of their safe-spaces), I do support directing women to help, and there certainly is help. That said, when the world is so intent on telling them what they can’t possibly do, they fail to provide any real alternatives to killing their child. Seriously, sometimes all it takes is a pastor who is spending a little more time giving real, moral, viable alternatives than “vote for Democrats and everything will be great,” like the pastor in this story did: https://wsvn.com/news/us-world/mother-of-5-overcomes-obstacles-graduates-with-honors-from-law-school/ This is a lot of what crisis pregnancy centers, Gabriel Projects, and similar groups do. They connect women with the resources they need to take care of themselves AND their children.
Besides supporting programs to help mothers and children, the pro-life movement also has to support birth control as a means of avoiding unwanted pregnancies. Planned pregnancies do not get aborted; many unplanned pregnancies do.
Oh my gosh! Well, kudos for just coming out and saying it, Fr. Reese! While still evil, it’s almost refreshing than the typical beating around the bush that your partners in crime do all the time. Unbelievable. He’s not going to be silenced for this load of evil? Wow. Good job, Jesuits. This guy just pitched for Satan, but you’re all going to look anywhere but at him.
Those who consider artificial contraception to be wrong must also recognize that abortion is a greater evil. When forced to choose, one must choose the lesser of two evils.
No. No. No. And no! You’re going to really try to go with “Let’s do evil so that good might come of it?” You can’t stop evil by committing evil. Catholic 101. Common sense 101. Just so people can’t claim Fr. Reese isn’t peddling a load of hooey…
From the Catechism of the Catholic Church:
1759 “An evil action cannot be justified by reference to a good intention” (cf. St. Thomas Aquinas, Dec. praec. 6). The end does not justify the means.
1760 A morally good act requires the goodness of its object, of its end, and of its circumstances together.
1761 There are concrete acts that it is always wrong to choose, because their choice entails a disorder of the will, i.e., a moral evil. One may not do evil so that good may result from it.
Using your logic, it’s just fine to target civilians if it will mean ending a war, right? Oh yeah, in that circumstance you will foam at the mouth, but when it comes to abortion you’re going to suggest that we commit evil to stop evil. Yes, it is the exact same principle. Artificial birth control always brings about death, whether it be spiritual, mental, or physical. There is ZERO way round it. And, hey, Fr. Reese, there’s actually another way to stop abortions. In fact, there are many of them that will have lasting effects that aren’t evil. And, by the way, we aren’t stuck with birth control or abortion by any stretch of the imagination. I’m starting to feel you have completely lost it.
The contraceptive mandate of the Obama administration will do more to reduce the number of abortions than all of the legislative gimmicks of Republican legislators.
This argument has been made ad nauseum since the dawn of birth control. Are you really naïve enough to think that a) abortifacients don’t exist and b) that there’s not a myriad of serious irreparable health issues to the users that you are pretty much now promoting???? Do you know what a SEXUALLY TRANSMITTED DISEASE is??? Only one type of birth control stops those -abstinence. All the others do a poor job of most everything. So, yay! Let’s promote artificial birth control as the solution for everything, Fr. Reese, so we can see how many more people can be spontaneously aborted, scarred , and die due to the long-term side effects of artificial birth control. Can you really be this much of an idiot? THESE are the results of trying to stop one evil with another and this is what you’re promoting for society. Banner.
If European Catholic institutions can pay money into national health programs that perform abortions, then American Catholic employers can pay for insurance programs that pay for birth control.
People can do all sorts of stupid things. This doesn’t make them moral, just, or sane.
And while I would be happy to see Planned Parenthood put out of business, closing clinics that provide health care and birth control to women before replacements are up and running is irresponsible and counterproductive.
Planned Parenthood is totally and utterly unneeded and irrelevant. There are far more free health clinics that are truly helping people with diseases and screenings than Planned Parenthood ever did without trying to cause more of them. That’s what Planned Parenthood does, it creates new clients. Their business model is the bomb. Evil but brilliant. You’re either brainwashed, stupid, or evil here, Father. Which is it? All three?
The goal of supporting mothers and children and decreasing the number of unplanned pregnancies should receive bipartisan support. While many people doubtless support these programs as ends in themselves, there is no reason the pro-life movement should not support them as means of reducing abortions.
First of all, pro-lifers do support decreasing unplanned pregnancies and supporting mothers and their children. We just don’t believe in doing it by giving a woman a loaded revolver and telling her to pull the trigger. That’s you.
The number of abortions in the United States peaked in 1990 at 1,429,247. Working together, we could reasonably get abortions down to under 100,000 per year — far too many, but an achievable goal and better than where we are today.
Maybe if all of our priests instead taught the Truth we’d achieve something. There’s something that hasn’t been tried. Unfortunately, as long as the likes of you are allowed to run unchecked by your order, we won’t know. #silenceThomasReeseSJ #CatholicCyberMilitia #reformtheJesuits