Friday, May 27, 2011

Remembering on Memorial Day

Here is a good article from Blackfive for Memorial Day reading.  It's from 2004. Note the quote from the fallen Major's letters where he says how much he "loved serving under George Bush."  Note also how the reporters following turned tail and ran without covering the story.  

Monday, May 23, 2011

Priest Abuse Scandal and John Jay College Study, II

Others agree with me about homosexuality being among the root causes of the scandal despite what the John Jay report says. As Bill Donohue comments,   The report “says that 81 percent of the victims were male and 78 percent were post-pubescent,” he reiterated. “Since 100 percent of the abusers were male, that's called homosexuality, not pedophilia or heterosexuality.”

Here is an article from Catholic New York with some additional points from the study.

A Faux Catholic

Just a brief  thought on the newly-resigned, fired really, ambassador to Malta, Doug Kmiec.   He's crazy!
Despite the fact that he was sent packing for spending too much time writing about inter-faith concerns and that he was told to leave and not let the door hit him on the way out, Kmiec still waxes poetic about Obama.   
“The President’s open affirmation of the significance of Divine grace in our hectic, information-overloaded existence is reminiscent of the message of hope and social justice that brought me to his side in 2008 to help him win the Catholic vote,” Kmiec observed. 
Affirmation of Divine grace?  Obama doesn't even go to church (except on Easter during the years when he's President). What could possibly make a seemingly sane, self-proclaimed pro-life Catholic attorney and professor like Kmiec make such a ridiculous remark? 

Friday, May 20, 2011

Priest Abuse Scandal and John Jay College Study

Regarding the John Jay College study , Archbishop Dolan made the point up front in his statement that the Catholic Church is the only professional agency to commission a study that looks into the whys and wherefores of sexual abuse of minors.   The prevalence of sexual abuse in families, schools and other institutions of our society certainly doesn't absolve priests of their wrongdoing, but the fact that the media continually points the finger at the Catholic Church suggests they are overlooking the log in their own eye.  Dolan seems to be unflagging in his reminders to the public at large that the Church has dealt with and is dealing with the abuse scandal.

Back in 2004,  the equally unflagging Catholic League reported that less than 2% of priests have been accused of abusing minors while 2% of athletic coaches nationwide have records of sexual abuse.  The rate of sexual abuse among Protestant clergy is 2%-3%.   This report also cites the 2004 Hofstra University study on sexual abuse by Carol Shakeshaft who comments that sexual abuse is 100 times more likely in the public schools than in the Church.   Why don't we ever hear about that? This article and this one point out the media bias in reporting.  

The John Jay College study (this is apparently the second part, the first having been released in 2004) concludes that there was no one specific cause of abuse in the Catholic Church, not celibacy, not homosexuality.  Rather, the social changes of the 60s and 70s affected priests in much the same way the rest of society was afffected.  Seems to me that begs the question, doesn't it? 

The sexual revolution of the 60s certainly didn't advocate celibacy so that can't be considered a factor, but the 60s did promote a libertine lifestyle and a sexual freedom that, with very little stretch of the imagination, could easily have influenced the acceptance of homosexuals into the seminaries.  Reading the report might disabuse me of my own conviction that homosexuality, as endorsed and promoted by the social revolution of the 60s and then adopted by liberal factions within the Church in the post-Vatican II days, lies somewhere at the bottom of the priest abuse scandal.  By the way, most studies report that 80%-90% of victims in the case of the Church were adolescent boys, not girls, not young children. 

Thursday, May 19, 2011

The College Racket

I can find almost nothing positive to say about the modern-day state of affairs concerning going to college except that I think our family will, mercifully, emerge relatively unscathed from the whole business.  If I had it to do over again, I might have tried harder to buck the system and suggest to my kids that they look for a job or apply to one of the local city colleges and be done with it.  I might even have caved in to the idea of the "gap year," that prerogative of the upper-middle class whereby parents pay--not as much as they've been paying for private school and not as much as they would be paying for college--so that their young 'uns can go out into the world and have an "experience." 

I read somewhere that America's love affair with college will end when parents and kids begin to see that four years of higher education doesn't pay off economically.  Maybe that's beginning to happen.  In this Pew Research Center study, 57% of those surveyed say that higher education doesn't provide good value for the money.  Then again, 94% of parents surveyed  say they "expect" their children to go to college.    Of course that begs the question of whether or not they want their kids to go to college (as well as whether or not the kids want to go).  Among those surveyed who have not gone on to college, 57% say they prefer to be working and making money.  Makes sense.  Surprisingly, this study claims that most Americans do not go to college.  Obviously, there are many angles and avenues to explore on the subject and the aforementioned study probes more deeply than I've done here.

Though most parents expect their children to attend college, colleges are now scrambling to adjust to the coming decline in applicants.  We parents who went through the boom (when the children of us baby-boomers applied to college) are now to witness the bust that we've been promised.   The number of high school graduates is going to slump beginning about now until the year 2019.  Just as they did back in the 70s, colleges are thinking up new ways to fill their classrooms and dormitories.  This time around,  the targeted populations will be transfer students from community colleges, international students and the newly-invented minority that has become popular in the last few years, the first-generation college student.    What next.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Catholics at Commencement

Fortunately Bill Donohue refuted the charges made by certain Catholic professors that House Speaker John Boehner was not Catholic enough to deliver the commencement address at Catholic University of America's (CUA) Saturday graduation.  Victor Nakas was the CUA spokesman who,  in my opinion, gave too mild of a statement regarding the selection of Boehner to give the address.  Pooh on diversity in the Catholic community!  CUA  is supposed to be shoring up its Catholic identity and standing up for Catholic orthodoxy in higher education.  Why not just let these pseudo-Catholics have it?! 

Naturally, some of these faux Catholics who protested Boehner's presence are affiliated in various ways with Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good, a group that could more accurately be named Catholics-In-Name-Only in Alliance for the Good of Liberals and Progessives!   (Funny, no?)

Monday, May 9, 2011

Do You Do the Dougie?

If she's not digging up the White House lawn or dreaming up new dietary requirements for families across the country, Michelle is doin' the Dougie! She loves Beyonce, her favorite performer on the entire planet! And she loves "moving." I wonder why Jackie Kennedy, of whom our current First Lady is supposedly the reincarnation, never got down with America's kids and did the frug or the Wah Watusi in one of her Oleg Cassini dresses. Can you imagine? Watching Michelle pander to pop culture makes me long for the days of Laura Bush in a sensible suit.

Saturday, May 7, 2011

O death, where is thy sting?

A little late, perhaps, but it is Easter for another five weeks or so. This is an Easter sermon of St. John Chrysostom (chrysostomos meaning 'golden-mouthed'), Archbishop of Constantinople in the 4th C.

Is there anyone who is a devout lover of God? Let them enjoy this beautiful bright festival! Is there anyone who is a grateful servant? Let them rejoice and enter into the joy of their Lord!

Are there any weary with fasting? Let them now receive their wages! If any have toiled from the first hour, let them receive their due reward; if any have come after the third hour, let him with gratitude join in the Feast! And he that arrived after the sixth hour, let him not doubt; for he too shall sustain no loss. And if any delayed until the ninth hour, let him not hesitate; but let him come too. And he who arrived only at the eleventh hour, let him not be afraid by reason of his delay.

For the Lord is gracious and receives the last even as the first. He gives rest to him that comes at the eleventh hour, as well as to him that toiled from the first. To this one He gives, and upon another He bestows. He accepts the works as He greets the endeavor. The deed He honors and the intention He commends.

Let us all enter into the joy of the Lord! First and last alike receive your reward; rich and poor, rejoice together! Sober and slothful, celebrate the day!

You that have kept the fast, and you that have not, rejoice today for the Table is richly laden! Feast royally on it, the calf is a fatted one. Let no one go away hungry. Partake, all, of the cup of faith. Enjoy all the riches of His goodness!

Let no one grieve at his poverty, for the universal kingdom has been revealed. Let no one mourn that he has fallen again and again; for forgiveness has risen from the grave. Let no one fear death, for the Death of Our Saviour has set us free. He has destroyed it by enduring it. He destroyed Hades when He descended into it. He put it into an uproar even as it tasted of His flesh. Isaiah foretold this when he said, “You, O Hell, have been troubled by encountering Him below.”

Hell was in an uproar because it was done away with. It was in an uproar because it is mocked. It was in an uproar, for it is destroyed. It is in an uproar, for it is annihilated. It is in an uproar, for it is now made captive. Hell took a body, and discovered God. It took earth, and encountered Heaven. It took what it saw, and was overcome by what it did not see.
O death, where is thy sting? O Hades, where is thy victory?

Christ is Risen, and you, O death, are annihilated! Christ is Risen, and the evil ones are cast down! Christ is Risen, and the angels rejoice! Christ is Risen, and life is liberated! Christ is Risen, and the tomb is emptied of its dead; for Christ having risen from the dead, is become the first-fruits of those who have fallen asleep.

To Him be Glory and Power forever and ever. Amen!