For too long in America, people of good will sharing the Catholic faith have been divided [into Catholics who believe everything in the Catechism, and Catholics who dissent from parts of it. That's the divide that matters; if we'd all quit being cafeteria Catholics on issues like abortion or torture and start being Catechism Catholics, things would improve]. We have been told, or we have convinced ourselves, that unless there is perfect agreement on every issue, there can be no friendship [Who's talking about friendship? I can be friendly toward pro-abort Catholic quislings. But I don't have to accept their quislingism, do I?]. This is mistaken.
Pope Benedict XVI wrote recently in Caritas in Veritate:
“Clarity is not served by certain abstract subdivisions of the Church's social doctrine, which apply categories to papal social teaching that are extraneous to it. It is not a case of two typologies of social doctrine, one pre-conciliar and one post-conciliar, differing from one another: on the contrary, there is a single teaching, consistent and at the same time ever new.”
The pope was not saying the reform of the tax system or the economy was of the same order of importance as honoring the gift of life [Understatement alert!!!], but he was reminding us to be honest with ourselves and not overlook the consistency of church teaching calling us to love our neighbor in the most tangible and obvious way -- by meeting the needs of those less fortunate than ourselves [But not necessarily by enacting schemes of confiscatory taxation controlled by an increasingly powerful centralized government, you know. Charity isn't found on the IRS 1040].
Of course, one must never meet the needs of the infirm, the aged, or the poor by sacrificing the unborn [Well, except for maintaining the politically correct face when it comes to ESCR, something lots of Catholics are getting to be good at doing]. But when President Obama has committed, as he has, [Oh, really? Cite chapter and verse, please; Obama has consistently talked out of both sides of his Teleprompter on this one] to maintaining the Hyde Amendment prohibition of the use of taxpayer funds for abortion, is it really the spirit of Vatican II [Of course not! How dare Kmiec insult the Spirit of VII this way! As we know, the Spirit of VII is a Flexi-Spirit, able to bend to the prevailing cultural winds with remarkable agility!] to insist that the law also prohibit private individuals from opting to pay an extra premium for reproductive services [which they will then use to have their unborn children dismembered or burned alive or otherwise gruesomely murdered]?
No Catholic in good conscience could support our neighbor’s personal choice to purchase such reproductive coverage, [which they will then use to have their unborn children dismembered or burned alive or otherwise gruesomely murdered] and we offer the fullness of our faith [not to mention science, 3 and 4-D ultrasounds, and the testimony of millions of post-abortive traumatized women] to form individual conscience in order that this basic precept is understood.
But is it proper to insist that the law simply coerce the hearts and minds of others [Oh, wow, so we shouldn't have speed limits, either, or drug laws, or laws against drunk driving, or laws against rape or the murder of the privileged born, either! I mean, like, wow, how coercive of us to be so insensitive to the hearts and minds of speeders and druggies and drunks and rapists and those who murder the already-born!!]? Was it not once the calling of the church to convert, not coerce [Yeah, don't you just hate it when priests spend all their time lobbying instead of preaching and administering the sacraments? Oh, wait...]? Do we not commit injustice by continuing to place the health of millions of uninsured in jeopardy when we ask the law not just to protect the conscience of Catholic health care practitioners, but to impose by law our view of conscience on non-Catholic health care workers as well [by insisting that people not be facilitated in their twisted and evil desire to have their unborn children dismembered or burned alive or otherwise gruesomely murdered]? Yes, “here on earth, God’s work is our own,” as Ted Kennedy’s older brother JFK told us, but our Lord Jesus did his own preaching and healing, he did not expect Caesar to do it for him. [Um, dude, doesn't that bit about healing actually undermine your whole argument, such as it is? I mean, like, Jesus didn't wait around for Caesar to build hospitals and tax the middle class--He just healed people.]
I could go on, but like I said, this gets repetitive quickly. What I noticed the most were Kmiec's careful constructions to avoid mentioning exactly what we're talking about, when we point out the funding for abortion that may very well end up in the public plan. This isn't about government programs to train people how to smoke marijuana for medical reasons, which people of faith might legitimately agree with or disagree with; this is about using government money to fund, finance, and grow the abortion industry by paying for people to participate in the killings of their own children. Even if there's some kind of fake "wall" between government money collected for health care and private funds used to pay for abortion, we can be sure that such a wall will not long endure, and that any appearance that the government will pay for poor women--or any women--to kill their unborn infants will quickly be followed by the full reality of the practice.
But Doug Kmiec couldn't be where he is today if he hadn't shown an eager willingness to gloss over the ugliness of abortion at every opportunity. One hopes that he is enjoying his earthly reward for such a service. He is clearly in need of serious prayers.