Archive: September, 2012
I love it when the Catholic “Cheering Squad” comes out for President Obama. It usually happens whenever he does something that the church finds objectionable, like forcing religious institutions to subsidize birth control or speaking out against legislation that would ban sex-selective abortions.
My “Catholic” brothers and sisters, and mostly the sisters, are so concerned that the rest of the non-Catholic world might look askance on the principles of our faith, that they go on the offensive and try and use our religion as political cover for their social justice poster boy.
And it’s happened again, with the recent poll that has Obama leading among “Catholics.” At first glance, this seems ominous for both the GOP and the church itself, given that Obama is unabashedly liberal and stands in opposition to traditional marriage, the sanctity of unborn human life and a host of other issues that form the backbone of our faith. They’ll say that this is it, the Republicans have lost the blue collar values voter, the ones who hang their rosaries on the nightstand (you know, so they can cling to them better.)
If President Obama wins re-election in the Fall, it will not be because Mitt Romney has run a mediocre campaign.
It will not be because the media has helped him fool the American public into believing that he is a good President.
It will not be because he has a pretty wife, two charming daughters, a winning manner and an ability to make us forget about the Reverend Wright and Bill Ayers.
So Mitt Romney is Thurston Howell III, as David Brooks so colorfully noted.
He is also a mean-spirited elitist who thinks that 47% of the country, the part that doesn't pay taxes or gets some kind of public benefit, is lazy.
He gets his ascot in a twist when he thinks of the unwashed masses sitting at home on subsidized couches eating subsidized potato chips in front of subsidized wide-screens.
A lot of troubling things have happened over the past week.
We already know that there was bloodshed in Libya, and that there may still be blood spilled in Cairo.
The transformation is complete. Caroline Kennedy has gone from being a bittersweet symbol of an innocent and happy time in our nation's history to a shill for a party her father would never have recognized.
At the Democratic National Convention last week, JFK's daughter, the one who posed so fetchingly on Macaroni and frolicked around her father's desk in the Oval Office obliterated the last vestiges of a magical Camelot with her attack on the church that gave sustenance to generations of Kennedys, most notably her beloved grandmother and Aunt Eunice.
Caroline made the following statement at the podium:
Today, with the crisp promise of autumn in the trees and the normal hum and growl of a regular Monday in my ears, it was only natural that I’d think life was good. The heat of this oppressive summer, while not over, was suspended, and the mundane tasks that fill my waking hours were more than manageable. It was going to be a good week.
And then I looked at the calendar, and realized that tomorrow is 9/11, eleven years out. The cool, sun-dappled air was the same as it was on the day that the towers fell, a day so exquisite that had it not marked the single most horrific attack of the last fifty years, it would have been remembered by for its late-summer glory. And for those few moments, before I realized that we had come full circle one more year, it almost seemed as if forgetting was possible.
And of course, it’s not. I am not the person that I was on September 10, 2001. Older but not wiser, I no longer expect the best of people, my Sagittarian optimism and naivete sharpened into cynicism. I see enemies now where, before, I only saw those with differences of opinion. And that’s because it seems you can no longer have simple differences of opinion in this post-9/11 world.