Seamless Garment

The Freaks are Us

Hollywood has produced a terrific, though historically inaccurate, movie based on the life of showman P.T. Barnum. It is a singing and dancing extravaganza that is highly compelling, though the songs are of the pop variety. Even so, the opening sequence alone, which recapitulates the story of Barnum’s fictional life, is worth the price of [...]

The Clarity of Cardinal Cupich

Cardinal Blase Cupich of Chicago is all for clarity. It has been a consistent theme, as when in September of 2017 he issued a decree banning guns in all parishes, schools and other facilities across the archdiocese “so there would be absolute clarity on our position.” His official statement put “clarity” in italics. When he [...]

Was the Seamless Garment Always a Scam?

Back in my New York days, when I was the greenest of greenhorns, I used to watch the three card monte players around Times Square. These are the guys who flip three playing cards around on an upturned box and goad the audience to “pick the red, pick the red, pick the red.” And they [...]

Pro-Life Redefined at the Vatican

Fair is foul and foul is fair at the Pontifical Academy for Life (PAV). Archbishop Vincenzo Paglia, President of the PAV, recently redefined the term “life” for the Catholic Church, stating that the PAV will now refocus its pro-life mission to include issues of migration, arms control, poverty and the environment. He suggested that to [...]

The New Pro-Life Movement: Been There, Done That

What would the pro-life movement be without its perennial infighting? From the absolutists vs. the incrementalists to the Seamless Garment vs. everyone else, it is a feature of our movement that just never goes away. The latest controversy over something mislabeled as “new” is evidence that there is nothing new about these internecine fights. Rebecca [...]

Out to Destroy the Pro-Life Movement

When the Supreme Court imposed abortion on the country in 1973, the New York Times announced that the issue was at long-last decided, settled, put away for good. As a kind of exclamation point or perhaps stake through the heart, no less than the Southern Baptist Convention praised the Roe v. Wade decision as good [...]

There is No Equivalence

Here’s a simple exercise in basic reasoning. On a spectrum of bad things to do, theft is bad, assault is worse and murder is worst. There’s a similar texture of ill will connecting all three crimes, but only a very confused conscience would equate thieving and homicide. Both are serious matters. But there is no [...]

A Seamless Garment That Fits

It has been the taunt of those advocating the moral legitimacy and legalization of abortion since the modern pro-life movement began: “You're not pro-life; you're just against abortion. You couldn't care less about the lives of mothers or children after the nine months of pregnancy are over.” The accusation as made is truly false. In [...]

Odium Naturae: The Thread of Madness

In the 1980’s, at the height of his influence among American bishops, Joseph Cardinal Bernardin of Chicago, alluding to the robe of Jesus for which the Roman soldiers cast lots, proposed that Catholics treat a host of political issues as one.  The “seamless garment” of respect for human life, for the Cardinal, implied opposition to [...]

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