This blog post from the always fluent Lisa Graas got my attention today, given that I’ve been trying lately to make sense how the CCHD decides to give away our money.
The Chicago Worker’s Collaborative (CWC) receives CCHD funding through the Chicago Archdiocese. As a part of their “Boycott Arizona” campaign, the CWC has targeted the Arizona Diamondbacks baseball team, demanding that Major League Baseball remove its franchise from Phoenix.
The CWC home page displays the following action items:
“Demand that Arizona not have baseball franchise!”
“Sign petition moving Cubs spring training to Florida.”
“Sign petition to move All Star (sic) out of Arizona.”
Fortunately, the CWC protests took place in front of Chicago’s Wrigley Field, otherwise the Archdiocese would have been helping to buy plane tickets to Phoenix.
Lisa contacted the head of CCHD in Chicago, Rey Flores, who has been praised lately for some CCHD grants directed to pro-life organizations. Lisa rightly questions the way Flores distinguishes between life issues and social justice in his reply to her.
Life issues are social justice issues, and they are “preeminent” among all social justice issues, so it is not really appropriate to say that we must work for “both” social justice “and” a Culture of Life as if the two are different things or as if they can be made up of realities which are diametrically opposed to each other. This misunderstanding, that there is somehow a distinction between “social justice” and “life issues” has the real world impact of making many Catholics believe that it’s okay to abandon the preeminent life issues if the goal is to advance other social justice issues.