By Tom Quiner
President Obama extended “warm wishes” to Pope Francis.
Here is what he said:
“Just as I appreciated our work with Pope Benedict XVI, I look forward to working with His Holiness to advance peace, security and dignity for our fellow human beings, regardless of their faith.”
It is the word “dignity” that stands out. What does that mean? The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) explains it this way:
“The Catholic Church proclaims that human life is sacred and that the dignity of the human person is the foundation of a moral vision for society. This belief is the foundation of all the principles of our social teaching.”
Dignity is the foundation of Catholic social teaching. Pope Francis’ entire life seems to have been devoted to human dignity in extraordinary ways. I’m sure he appreciates that President Obama invoked the word dignity. But the USCCB goes into more detail on what human dignity means to the Church:
“In our society, human life is under direct attack from abortion and euthanasia. The value of human life is being threatened by cloning, embryonic stem cell research, and the use of the death penalty. The intentional targeting of civilians in war or terrorist attacks is always wrong.”
President Obama has a different interpretation on what dignity means. He is for abortion. He has made that clear. He views pre-born human life as disposable and in dire need of containment. To that aim, he imposed the HHS Mandate on the country by presidential edict to expand the reach of abortion and birth control.
He directs taxpayer dollars to experimentation on human life under the guise of embyronic stem cell research.
The Church also takes a dim view of drone attacks as currently utilized by the president. And a growing chorus of voices from the president’s party are increasingly calling for the liberalization of euthanasia and assisted suicide laws, again in contradiction to human dignity.
The bishops explain why:
“We believe that every person is precious, that people are more important than things, and that the measure of every institution is whether it threatens or enhances the life and dignity of the human person.”
The president and his party do not believe that every person is precious. They have used their considerable political might to create adversarial relationships between the state and human dignity. They are a direct threat to human dignity.
Frankly, I don’t know what kind of relationship the president had with Pope Benedict XVI, do you? Did you ever hear news about them working in tandem on an issue?
Contrast it with President Reagan’s warm and close relationship with Pope John Paul II. They collaborated behind closed doors to confront and defeat communism in Eastern Europe.
In the case of the new pope and the current American president, the more likely scenario is confrontation.
Pope Francis will stand up for the little guy, the preborn.
The president will use his considerable clout to aid and abet abortionists, such as Planned Parenthood.
The Pope will promote the dignity of traditional marriage based on timeless theological, philosophical, and secular tradition.
The president will continue to promote the newest liberal fad, so-called same sex marriage, which removes human dignity from the equation and elevates human urges to the forefront.
The pope will simply respond that human life is sacred.
The president will simply respond, “it is not.”