Voter's Guide


#1

After reading a Voter’s Guide for Serious Catholic’s I was disappointed that unjust war and the death penalty (no matter how well deserved) were not on the non negotiable list. Does the Holy Father consider the Iraq invasion unjust or a war of choice? And why didn’t you simply come out and endorse George Bush who as Governor of Texas had no problem with the death penalty? I am a Catholic who voted proudly for John Kerry as did my uncle, a Catholic priest. Should we stop going to mass on Sundays?


#2

The reason they were not listed as a negotiable is that war and the death penalty are not intrinsically evil.

The Church recognizes that War must sometimes be used (in fact God commanded war at times). The same is true for the death penalty.

Abortion and Homosexual acts are always 100% evil, at every time and place and for every person.

The Pope has made no judgment on the justice of the Iraqi war, in fact the Catechism Pope John Paul published leaves the final temporal decision of the justice of war to the secular authorities.

The same is true for Capital Punishment.

The Pope has deliberately and specifically left those decisions to the secular governments.


#3

[quote=AUSTINCATHOLIC]After reading a Voter’s Guide for Serious Catholic’s I was disappointed that unjust war and the death penalty (no matter how well deserved) were not on the non negotiable list. Does the Holy Father consider the Iraq invasion unjust or a war of choice? And why didn’t you simply come out and endorse George Bush who as Governor of Texas had no problem with the death penalty? I am a Catholic who voted proudly for John Kerry as did my uncle, a Catholic priest. Should we stop going to mass on Sundays?
[/quote]

Because wars can be just(not making any judgements on this one)Capital punishment can also be considered.Regardless,of whether the war in Iraq to you is just or unjust and whether or not you beileve in capital punishment ,the fact isthere are aproximately 4,000 unborn childre a day killed unjustly by abortion.That over rides your argument.God Bless


#4

[quote=AUSTINCATHOLIC] Should we stop going to mass on Sundays?
[/quote]

No, but you should go to confession.

Unjust war=intrinsicly evil.
Whether x war is unjust=negotiable and Catholics may disagree and vote to reflect that.

Death penalty=not intrisicly evil however, many Church leaders believe there are alternatives that can protect society and serve justice. Again negotiable.

Direct Abortion=always and everywhere intrinsicly evil. Non-negotiable.

Scott


#5

Here is the Catholic Doctrine on the Death Penalty

Another kind of lawful slaying belong to the civil authorities, which is the legitimate avenger of crime, naturally tend to this end, since they give security to life by repressing outrage and violence

  • Council of Trent

This is infallible teaching and cannot be denied by a Pope.

St Thomas Aquinas -

if a man be dangerous and infectious to the community, on account of some sin, it is praiseworthy and advantageous that he be killed in order to safeguard the either community

Summa Theologica II-II, Q64 Article 2

A description of Church doctrine by one of it’s best theologians.


#6

I think it is dangerous to vote for a person strictly on how they believe regarding one issue.

the fact isthere are aproximately 4,000 unborn childre a day killed unjustly by abortion.That over rides your argument

Under this logic a scoundrel who opposes abortion but supports any number of terrible things, as long as they “sum” in evil to less than 4000 deaths a day, would be preferable over a good man whose only fault is that they favor legalized abortions.

In fact let’s take this to an extreme. Suppose Mr. A opposes abortion but once slaughtered a man in cold blood on a whim and is unrepentant for doing so. Assuming he could be elected in the first place, the above logic would almost certainly dictate that Mr. A would be preferable to a regular guy who is pro-abortion. In fact Mr. A could say that if elected he will have 1000 random people shot on the street every day, but since 1000 is less than 4000 he would still be a better candidate. That’s obviously ridiculous but follows from the logic given.

I am very anti-abortion, please don’t misunderstand me. But it’s very important to consider what kind of man each candidate is and vote that way. Is he honest? What principles does he believe in? Does he HAVE principles? Does he actually want to do a good job? Only then should you consider the issues.

From one point of view Bush is a liar who broke the trust of those who voted him into office, who went to war under false pretenses and who is, furthermore, setting the precedent for the U.S. to go to war without being attacked, an action which has caused enormous suffering in Iraq and which may cause even more terrific suffering on a larger scale in a way we cannot yet foresee. Now I’m not saying I agree with this point of view. But I do know many people have it. If that’s the point of view held by the original poster on this thread, if they truly believed that potential overall suffering that would follow by putting Bush back into office more than compensates for the suffering of legalizing abortion, then I think they acted completely in accord with their conscience by voting Kerry and I don’t see why confession would be necessary.

On the other hand, I would most certainly NOT agree with a Kerry supporter who voted for him just because, for example, he likes Kerry’s stance on Social Security over Bush’s, because I cannot think of any reasonable way to put Social Security over abortion as a priority issue.


#7

Just to cast my vote and my :twocents:

Non-negotiable issues are issues that must always be wrong and never right, hence the phrase “non-negotiable.”

War can be just or unjust–it isn’t simply always wrong and cannot be non-negotiable. The problem, too, with calling one unjust is that the Just War Doctrine clearly states that the decision must be in the hands of the government since only they have all the facts–not even the Pope can speak infallibly on this issue, to my knowledge (infallibly on the doctrine, but not on a specific war he does not have all the facts on).

Capital punishment is not banned biblically either. In some instances, God demanded it–so to say it is always wrong is to say God was wrong. We are free to personally support or oppose it, as we have other ways to punish, but to say it is non-negotiable is inaccurate.

Non-negotiable means, under no circumstance is the issue acceptable.

Blessings


#8

[quote=Jeremy]I think it is dangerous to vote for a person strictly on how they believe regarding one issue.

Under this logic a scoundrel who opposes abortion but supports any number of terrible things, as long as they “sum” in evil to less than 4000 deaths a day, would be preferable over a good man whose only fault is that they favor legalized abortions.

In fact let’s take this to an extreme. Suppose Mr. A opposes abortion but once slaughtered a man in cold blood on a whim and is unrepentant for doing so. Assuming he could be elected in the first place, the above logic would almost certainly dictate that Mr. A would be preferable to a regular guy who is pro-abortion. In fact Mr. A could say that if elected he will have 1000 random people shot on the street every day, but since 1000 is less than 4000 he would still be a better candidate. That’s obviously ridiculous but follows from the logic given.

I am very anti-abortion, please don’t misunderstand me. But it’s very important to consider what kind of man each candidate is and vote that way. Is he honest? What principles does he believe in? Does he HAVE principles? Does he actually want to do a good job? Only then should you consider the issues.

From one point of view Bush is a liar who broke the trust of those who voted him into office, who went to war under false pretenses and who is, furthermore, setting the precedent for the U.S. to go to war without being attacked, an action which has caused enormous suffering in Iraq and which may cause even more terrific suffering on a larger scale in a way we cannot yet foresee. Now I’m not saying I agree with this point of view. But I do know many people have it. If that’s the point of view held by the original poster on this thread, if they truly believed that potential overall suffering that would follow by putting Bush back into office more than compensates for the suffering of legalizing abortion, then I think they acted completely in accord with their conscience by voting Kerry and I don’t see why confession would be necessary.

On the other hand, I would most certainly NOT agree with a Kerry supporter who voted for him just because, for example, he likes Kerry’s stance on Social Security over Bush’s, because I cannot think of any reasonable way to put Social Security over abortion as a priority issue.
[/quote]

The other issues taken into account were stem cell issue and gay marriage.Furthermore, one can not call the support slaughter of the most helpless and innocent of all society a fault.Nobody who could support that, especially a Catholic,who should know better would I vote for.God Bless


#9

I had a problem with the Voter’s Guide too, although I am anti-abortion. For one thing, I think that all sins are non-negotiable, not just those five sins listed in the voter’s guide. The Voter’s Guide seemed to be thinly veiled propaganda to vote for George Bush. George’s wife, Laura, refers to herself as “pro-choice,” and George himself is not fully pro-life. I heard that he believes that abortion is okay if the health of the mother is in danger (or something like that).

As far as I am concerned, everyone who voted for George Bush voted for a partially pro-choice (or should I say pro-abortion) candidate. Maybe they all need to go to confession. Actually, I don’t pretend to judge what sins other people are guilty of. I have only myself to answer for.

One day, I was listening to Catholic Radio. A priest from “Priests for Life” was speaking. He was trying to explain why no one should ever vote for a pro-abortion candidate. He said something like, “You wouldn’t vote for a terrorist, would you!” to emphasize his point.

At that moment, a vivid picture came into my mind. I remembered that a teen-age boy had gotten into serious trouble for wearing the wrong T-shirt. The T-shirt had a picture of George Bush on it with the caption “World Class Terrorist.”

The thought occurred to me that a president has the power to start or stop a war. He has the power to stop a criminal from being executed. Presidents decide these things.

Women are the ones who decide to have an abortion (immoral as it is). Even if a president could overturn Roe vs. Wade and all of the laws in the country could be changed back to the way they were before, women would still have abortions. Medical science has advanced so much that even if all of the doctors in the United States refused to do abortions, women could still travel to Canada or Europe to have them, or they could probably order an abortion pill over the internet.

I don’t enjoy having a “war president,” I don’t trust George Bush, and I pray that these four years will be over before he ruins the country. I’m not even holding my breath waiting for him to appoint a pro-life Supreme Court Justice. I just don’t think it will happen.


#10

[quote=Listener]I had a problem with the Voter’s Guide too, although I am anti-abortion. For one thing, I think that all sins are non-negotiable, not just those five sins listed in the voter’s guide. The Voter’s Guide seemed to be thinly veiled propaganda to vote for George Bush. George’s wife, Laura, refers to herself as “pro-choice,” and George himself is not fully pro-life. I heard that he believes that abortion is okay if the health of the mother is in danger (or something like that).

As far as I am concerned, everyone who voted for George Bush voted for a partially pro-choice (or should I say pro-abortion) candidate. Maybe they all need to go to confession. Actually, I don’t pretend to judge what sins other people are guilty of. I have only myself to answer for.

One day, I was listening to Catholic Radio. A priest from “Priests for Life” was speaking. He was trying to explain why no one should ever vote for a pro-abortion candidate. He said something like, “You wouldn’t vote for a terrorist, would you!” to emphasize his point.

At that moment, a vivid picture came into my mind. I remembered that a teen-age boy had gotten into serious trouble for wearing the wrong T-shirt. The T-shirt had a picture of George Bush on it with the caption “World Class Terrorist.”

The thought occurred to me that a president has the power to start or stop a war. He has the power to stop a criminal from being executed. Presidents decide these things.

Women are the ones who decide to have an abortion (immoral as it is). Even if a president could overturn Roe vs. Wade and all of the laws in the country could be changed back to the way they were before, women would still have abortions. Medical science has advanced so much that even if all of the doctors in the United States refused to do abortions, women could still travel to Canada or Europe to have them, or they could probably order an abortion pill over the internet.

I don’t enjoy having a “war president,” I don’t trust George Bush, and I pray that these four years will be over before he ruins the country. I’m not even holding my breath waiting for him to appoint a pro-life Supreme Court Justice. I just don’t think it will happen.
[/quote]

There are sins that are intrinsically evil.St.Paul differentiates mortal and venial sins.We are supposed to pray for our leaders to make decisions that please God.I saw a Maryknoll voters guide that looked like an endorsement for Kerry.The gravity of the sins they promote are what you are suppose to base your vote on if they don’t line up perfectly with the law of God.The murder of the innocents cries to heaven for vegeance,Bush has made alot of prolife moves and tried to put a pro-life judge in last term,the dems shot him down.It is always amazing to me that concernfor slaughtered unborn children seems to be outwieghed by social issues or fear.More praying for Pres.Bush will do more good than worrying.God Bless


#11

[quote=Lisa4Catholics]Furthermore, one can not call the support slaughter of the most helpless and innocent of all society a fault.Nobody who could support that, especially a Catholic,who should know better would I vote for.God Bless
[/quote]

The murder of the innocents cries to heaven for vegeance

Lisa, the point is that it’s not black and white. There is not the “Evil” party and the “Good” party. Both of the candidates in the past election have done or have said they will do things that can be considered morally reprehensible. I do not believe there is any easy measure to compare “moral reprehensibility” as if you were measuring two sticks.

I do not want to get into a political debate, but ask yourself how many innocents have died in Iraq and elsewhere due to U.S. policy under Bush? How many will die in the future? More than zero, that’s for sure. Why are their claims for “vengeance” null and void?

No one here I think would say that they voted for Kerry instead of Bush because they liked his education or Social Security policies better. I think if you ask any good Christian why they voted for Kerry instead of Bush, you will also hear references to murder of innocents and a desire to prevent futher unjustified bloodshed.


#12

Hoo Boy, this issue has been talked to death!

This thread is probably still applicable and is a good starting point:
B4U Complain about the Voter’s Guide . . .

I don’t know if search results are good over the long haul, but:
forums.catholic.com/search.php?searchid=482423
displays 60 threads on Voter’s Guides in the Politics II forum.

If the above link stops working, just search for “guide” in the politics forum.


#13

[quote=Jeremy]I think it is dangerous to vote for a person strictly on how they believe regarding one issue.
[/quote]

You are SOOO right! Just because Hitler wants to kill Jews can’t be the sole reason to vote against him. Heck, he does a pretty good job of making the trains run and keeping our streets clean. We have to look at the overall affect on society. Aren’t we Germans, on average, better off under Hitler? And won’t Herr Hitler return our society to a more equitable position in the community of nations? These one issue people drive me nuts! They are so myopic!


#14

Please relax with the sarcasm :slight_smile: In particular I find it highly personally offensive for you to suggest that I would in any way support Hitler or his terrible regime.

I did not say that you should never ever vote one issue. Clearly if a candidate says “I’ll order all Jews murdered if elected”, then that’s a good time to vote on the one issue.

I did say that it is dangerous to vote one or two issues only without considering the other issues, and I stand by that. Listening to some folks, Bush can do whatever he wants to in office, anything at all, as long as he votes against abortion, or at least more against abortion than the other guy. This man may very well be instituting a new era in American history, where pre-emptive war is standard policy and where torture is acceptable when the bad guys are really, really bad. But these folks aren’t even interested in discussing this possibility, simply because Bush is more anti-abortion than Kerry. That’s what I mean by dangerous.


#15

[quote=Jeremy]Lisa, the point is that it’s not black and white. There is not the “Evil” party and the “Good” party. Both of the candidates in the past election have done or have said they will do things that can be considered morally reprehensible. I do not believe there is any easy measure to compare “moral reprehensibility” as if you were measuring two sticks.

I do not want to get into a political debate, but ask yourself how many innocents have died in Iraq and elsewhere due to U.S. policy under Bush? How many will die in the future? More than zero, that’s for sure. Why are their claims for “vengeance” null and void?

No one here I think would say that they voted for Kerry instead of Bush because they liked his education or Social Security policies better. I think if you ask any good Christian why they voted for Kerry instead of Bush, you will also hear references to murder of innocents and a desire to prevent futher unjustified bloodshed.
[/quote]

You have to look at what proportionately would be worse and I did,as far as look at how many died in Iraq it is not near the number of the unborn.I pray for the war to end as well as the people over there.It is so easy to be less sympathetic to the unborn because you will not see their mangled bodies on cnn.I agree that neither party is all good or all evil,when I decided who to vote for I can sleep at night.With alot of survivors of abortion including my husband who would have had an older brother an aunt that eats pain pills and has become atheist because she killed two in abortion a freind who had a five month abortion and gets suicidal and a whole society who have started to believe that humans are merely commodities.No, nothing compares to this issue,you don’t know why the Holy Father calls this the culture of death and you don’t know why Mother Teresa said what she said.All these actions have consequences,the good Christians can explain to God why they feel the lives of 4000 a day that God created are not important,why they would vote for gay marriage,an abomination to God,no I can sleep at night,I pray for the people in Iraq and pray for the END of our own HOLOCAUST which the democratic party has espoused and supported and promised to keep legal.Over 45 million since 1973:mad: In the scheme of things NOTHING evil compares to it,with the exception of the apathy of people who simple don’t care or are afraid to offend:rolleyes: Go to priests for life look,look what happens everyday in the name of choice.God Bless


#16

[quote=Jeremy] I did not say that you should never ever vote one issue. Clearly if a candidate says “I’ll order all Jews murdered if elected”, then that’s a good time to vote on the one issue.

I did say that it is dangerous to vote one or two issues only without considering the other issues, and I stand by that.
[/quote]

Congratulations. I take it you are against one issue voting except when you are not?

How is the death of six million Jews different from the death of 6 million babies (4 year term X 1.5 million abortions/yr)?

Abortion trumps all at the moment. Why? Listen to JPII:
"The common outcry, which is justly made on behalf of human rights – for example, the right to health, to home, to work, to family, to culture – is false and illusory if the right to life, the most basic and fundamental right and the condition for all other personal rights, is not defended with maximum determination."
Christifideles Laici


#17

Lisa, please understand that as I said I am very anti-abortion, I believe very strongly in the sanctity of life and I very much agree that it is a horrible evil perpetuated in this country.

As I said I don’t want to get into a political debate. The election is over and as you said the best thing we can do right now is ask God to guide the hand of our elected leaders so that they do his will as closely as possible. However I do believe that there are other issues at stake here which must be considered even given the horrible nature of abortion. Consider the following worst case scenarios and current events:

*A terrorist borne of the Iraqi war even becomes the next bin Laden and masterminds a nuclear strike in NYC, killing millions

*The North Korea powderkeg finally explodes. Tokyo and Seoul are devastated and tens of millions in Japan, China and both Koreas are killed or maimed in the ensuing war.

*Right now there are around 45 million people infected worldwide with the HIV virus. Would we have an cure for AIDS today if the 100+ billion dollars spent in Iraq so far had been directed toward health care research? We’ll never know now, the money is gone. And that’s just one problem – what about other conditions whose cures need funding, like cancer and heart disease? What about putting that money toward education so that we can train the scientists who can come up with these cures?

These are just some examples. Each of these has a possibility for inflicting evil on the world the equal of abortion. We must elect our leaders with all of these things in mind. Abortion is one of the key issues of our time but that doesn’t mean we can close our eyes to everything else. We have a responsibility not to.

edit:

Congratulations. I take it you are against one issue voting except when you are not?

How is the death of six million Jews different from the death of 6 million babies (4 year term X 1.5 million abortions/yr)?

I was assuming that a candidate who actively endorses murder would be a bad person in other ways too, and that the other candidate wasn’t suggesting anything equally heinous in other areas. However if candidate A proposed policies which will likely result in a war or wars killing millions of innocents, while candidate B proposed policies in favor of abortion which will likely allow the the killing of millions of innocents…I don’t see an obvious answer. Seems like there’s a lot of room for disagreement, seems like it’s possible for two people who value life to vote different ways, and it definitely seems uncalled for if people on one side accuse people on the other of not caring about the sanctity of life.


#18

[quote=Jeremy]Lisa, please understand that as I said I am very anti-abortion, I believe very strongly in the sanctity of life and I very much agree that it is a horrible evil perpetuated in this country.

As I said I don’t want to get into a political debate. The election is over and as you said the best thing we can do right now is ask God to guide the hand of our elected leaders so that they do his will as closely as possible. However I do believe that there are other issues at stake here which must be considered even given the horrible nature of abortion. Consider the following worst case scenarios and current events:

*A terrorist borne of the Iraqi war even becomes the next bin Laden and masterminds a nuclear strike in NYC, killing millions

*The North Korea powderkeg finally explodes. Tokyo and Seoul are devastated and tens of millions in Japan, China and both Koreas are killed or maimed in the ensuing war.

*Right now there are around 45 million people infected worldwide with the HIV virus. Would we have an cure for AIDS today if the 100+ billion dollars spent in Iraq so far had been directed toward health care research? We’ll never know now, the money is gone. And that’s just one problem – what about other conditions whose cures need funding, like cancer and heart disease? What about putting that money toward education so that we can train the scientists who can come up with these cures?

These are just some examples. Each of these has a possibility for inflicting evil on the world the equal of abortion. We must elect our leaders with all of these things in mind. Abortion is one of the key issues of our time but that doesn’t mean we can close our eyes to everything else. We have a responsibility not to.

edit:
I was assuming that a candidate who actively endorses murder would be a bad person in other ways too, and that the other candidate wasn’t suggesting anything equally heinous in other areas. However if candidate A proposed policies which will likely result in a war or wars killing millions of innocents, while candidate B proposed policies in favor of abortion which will likely allow the the killing of millions of innocents…I don’t see an obvious answer. Seems like there’s a lot of room for disagreement, seems like it’s possible for two people who value life to vote different ways, and it definitely seems uncalled for if people on one side accuse people on the other of not caring about the sanctity of life.
[/quote]

Mother Teresa said,that the biggest threat of nuclear war is abortion,also,as she was complaining to Our Lord asking Him why he doesn’t send a scientist who would come up with a cure for aids and caner He said to her I did,they were aborted.Pope John Paul11 said a nation without children is a nation without hope.Pray about it and ask for understanding,the tradgedy of abortion has consequences,ask yourself what could they be.God Bless


#19

[quote=AUSTINCATHOLIC]After reading a Voter’s Guide for Serious Catholic’s I was disappointed that unjust war and the death penalty (no matter how well deserved) were not on the non negotiable list. Does the Holy Father consider the Iraq invasion unjust or a war of choice?
[/quote]

Dear Austin,

It should be recalled that the “Voter’s Guide for Serious Catholics” is not something the Holy Father has had any thing to do with, nor that matter is it even a church document or publication. Nor does the “non-negotiable” list come from any church document. In fact the Holy Father has never uttered such words.

The editorial content is the private initiative of a group of Catholic laymen and the financing for its distribution includes some non-Catholic Republican Party operatives.


#20

[quote=katherine2]Dear Austin,

It should be recalled that the “Voter’s Guide for Serious Catholics” is not something the Holy Father has had any thing to do with, nor that matter is it even a church document or publication. Nor does the “non-negotiable” list come from any church document. In fact the Holy Father has never uttered such words.

The editorial content is the private initiative of a group of Catholic laymen and the financing for its distribution includes some non-Catholic Republican Party operatives.
[/quote]

This is irrelevant. If there is something in it that is contrary to Church teaching, let’s hear it. As the five non-negotiables are clearly defined as intrinsicly evil in Church documents, it is perfectly reasonable to refer to them as non-negotiable colloquially.

If Bush had said “were going to war just so we can kill Muslims and steal Iraq’s oil” then you would have an intrinsicly evil case a could conceivably vote for an abortion supporter. I can already hear whining, “but that is what Bush’s real unstated agenda is”! I’m sorry, but that is private interpretation and not binding on anyone. The non-negotiables are binding and anyone openly supporting them is off the table in terms of voting for them.

Scott


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