And so it has come to pass in these strange and dangerous days that an American cardinal is being criticized—and even exhorted to resign—for expressing support for an American president.
But those who are critical of New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan for taking part in a conference call with President Trump, and later complimenting the president for his efforts, are conveniently overlooking that there are 1.7 million children—19 percent of them not Catholic—being educated in more than 6,000 Catholic schools in this country, and that Catholics run more than 600 hospitals and 1,600 long-term care and other health facilities.
Of course, Cardinal Dolan took the president up on his offer to confer about ways the Covid pandemic is impacting Catholic facilities. This is an important issue and the Church needs the president’s help. Beyond that, His Eminence is not beholden to the Democrat party or its surrogates in the media. He is responsible for his large and diverse New York flock, which has been hit harder by the virus than anywhere else in the country, and has been repeatedly under attack by the party in power in New York State.
In a 2018 opinion piece for the Wall Street Journal, His Eminence pointed out that the Democrat party “that once embraced Catholics now slams the door on us.” The fake Catholic group “Faith in Public Life,” which is funded by billionaire abortion advocate George Soros, led the charge against Cardinal Dolan because he didn’t take the president to task for his policies to protect the U.S. borders or his stance on climate change.
God forbid a cardinal should believe the commonsense teaching of the Catechism that nations can actually protect their own people! And God forbid a cardinal should fail to promote the politically motivated, scientifically ignorant myths about climate change!
Those two shortcomings, to the group’s thinking, disqualify the president from calling himself “pro-life.” But that is just a convenient distraction from the holocaust of the unborn that this president is doing more to stop than any previous president has done. He has signed a law allowing states to defund abortion businesses, including the nation’s number one abortion cartel, Planned Parenthood. He has cut Planned Parenthood’s federal funding by $60 million by making it ineligible for Title X funding. He has appointed some 200 pro-life federal judges, including Supreme Court Justices Neil Gorsuch and Brett Kavanaugh. And that’s just to name three.
Cardinal Dolan’s critics embarrass themselves with their feeble arguments. The Catholic Church is—in the words of the late Cardinal John J. O’Connor—“unambiguously pro-life,” which (of course) means Cardinal Dolan is as well, and he recognizes the president’s work on behalf of the unborn on the national and international level.
The Catholic Church in the United States is not some minor denomination with a few thousand adherents. It is a robust, diverse congregation that is the largest religious institution in the country. The Church cannot be isolated from civil authority, and the leader of one of the largest dioceses in the country should not be expected to snub the president of the United States because he might not agree with every one of the president’s policies. Nor should Cardinal Dolan be subject to calls for his resignation because he was cordial to the president on the April 25 call and emerged from a meeting with the gall to praise Trump rather than lambast him.
You might recall that back in 2012 Cardinal Dolan invited then-President Barack Obama, perhaps the most pro-abortion president ever elected to the White House, to the annual Al Smith Dinner in New York.
Somehow, the pro-abortion media, politicians, and their billionaire supporters didn’t have any problem with that interaction of a cardinal with a president. Somehow, Obama’s support of abortion without restrictions wasn’t reason enough in the minds of these people for a pro-life Catholic leader to distance himself from the president.
We live in a country whose constitution protects and encourages the most passionate diversity of viewpoints, and provides for the effective interaction of Church and state while insisting on their mutual autonomy. One of these days, it would be nice for the Left to respect those arrangements and practice what it preaches about diversity and tolerance.
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