JFK, abortion, and the usual suspects
(02-15-2013, 10:43 PM)Burdensome1 Wrote:
Quote:I believe in an America where the separation of church and state is absolute; where no Catholic prelate would tell the President -- should he be Catholic -- how to act, and no Protestant minister would tell his parishioners for whom to vote; where no church or church school is granted any public funds or political preference, and where no man is denied public office merely because his religion differs from the President who might appoint him, or the people who might elect him.

I want a Chief Executive whose public acts are responsible to all and obligated to none, who can attend any ceremony, service, or dinner his office may appropriately require of him to fulfill; and whose fulfillment of his Presidential office is not limited or conditioned by any religious oath, ritual, or obligation.

I ask you tonight to follow in that tradition -- to judge me on the basis of 14 years in the Congress, on my declared stands against an Ambassador to the Vatican, against unconstitutional aid to parochial schools, and against any boycott of the public schools -- which I attended myself. And instead of doing this, do not judge me on the basis of these pamphlets and publications we all have seen that carefully select quotations out of context from the statements of Catholic church leaders, usually in other countries, frequently in other centuries, and rarely relevant to any situation here. And always omitting, of course, the statement of the American Bishops in 1948 which strongly endorsed Church-State separation, and which more nearly reflects the views of almost every American Catholic.

I do not speak for my church on public matters; and the church does not speak for me. Whatever issue may come before me as President, if I should be elected, on birth control, divorce, censorship, gambling or any other subject, I will make my decision in accordance with these views -- in accordance with what my conscience tells me to be in the national interest, and without regard to outside religious pressure or dictates. And no power or threat of punishment could cause me to decide otherwise.   -John F. Kennedy

Address to the Greater Houston Ministerial Association

By denying that the Church's social teaching had any place in the civil domain, JFK provides a textbook perfect definition of the heresy of Americanism.  Condemned by Leo XIII, he could have been excommunicated for it. 

Huh.  I wrote a ten page paper on Testem Benevolentiae a couple years ago and don't recall any condemnation of the idea that the Church's social teaching has no place in society.  I do however recall five errors which the pope denounces: Rejection of external guidance in the spiritual life; natural virtues considered more advantageous for man than spiritual virtues; active virtues preferred over passive virtues; religious vows are not appropriate for the modern age and; a new method of evangelizing non-Catholics should be adopted, rejecting past methods. 

I also recall that he allowed that certain cultural adaptions can be made, according to the times and places in which the Church is operating. 

I'm not saying Pope Leo didn't condemn the idea that the Church's social teaching has no place in society. I'm just not sure he taught it in Testem Benevolentiae.  But then, I've slept a few times since I wrote that paper.
(02-15-2013, 11:13 PM)Tim Wrote: Burdensome,
You do realize your argument is not substantiated by facts ?  You do need to understand that the world back then was different. No fault divorce, the Enovid-E pill, and abortion were still off in the future when JFK was murdered. Both parties had liberals and conservatives then, it wasn't all on either side. Loking back then and judging by today's light is a mistake. While JFK was a rounder with prettty women, sex as it is today was not the way back then. Richard Daley, the Mayor of Chicago and a Kennedy ally and close friend, fought the downstate pols to keep the pill illegal in Illinois. He was double crossed by the Republicans in 1964.


What does this have to do with JFK's speech in which he publicly announces he will not act as a Catholic in office? 

Burdensome1, wasn't the hierarchy of the Church pretty liberal in the west at that time?  And hadn't that been the case for several decades already?

Does anyone know exactly what it takes to be excommunicated?  I looked it up once and gave up because of the complexity of the issue.
Perfect Bombay bombing, there.  I'm learning the characters on FE, slowly.  

That's why it's called the "phantom heresy", I suppose.  

This speech was always advanced to me as the pinnacle of Americanist thought.  If not, the speech still runs far afoul of the syllabus on matters of state vs. Church and public education.  I still say excommunication was the only way.  
Quote:What does this have to do with JFK's speech in which he publicly announces he will not act as a Catholic in office? 

Nothing.  We just have a lot of bromance for JFK in here.

Quote:Burdensome1, wasn't the hierarchy of the Church pretty liberal in the west at that time?  And hadn't that been the case for several decades already?

Some of the Cardinals were certainly in the Kennedy camp.  Other than that, I'd say that could use its own thread to deal with differing opinions on what the American Hierarchy was like pre-VII.

Quote:Does anyone know exactly what it takes to be excommunicated?  I looked it up once and gave up because of the complexity of the issue.

Used to take not much.  Now its almost impossible.  Another whole thread, there.
(02-15-2013, 11:46 PM)Burdensome1 Wrote: We just have a lot of bromance for JFK in here.

No, actually you're wrong about that.  See Tim's posts above.  No JFK bromance here!  Just a little lack of precision in arguing.  Tim's right, but about the wrong thing. 
1. Kennedy based his Catholic speech on a statement released by the American Catholic Bishops in 1948.  If someone was to be excommunicated, I am not sure why it would be the guy who was just repeating what his church leaders had taught him.

2. Pope Leo XIII noted that separation of Church and State was good in America as it allowed Catholics to practice their faith in an overwhelmingly Protestant Country.  The error is in wanting to use American model as an absolute to be applied on all counties, especially Catholic ones.   Interestingly enough, Kennedy's speech never calls for a universal right to religious liberty and quietly notes the situation is different in other countries, and explains that in Catholic Countries like Ireland there is not tyranny.

3. Also Kennedy didn't say he would completely ignore his faith in office. He said:

Quote:But if the time should ever come--and I do not concede any conflict to be even remotely possible--when my office would require me to either violate my conscience or violate the national interest, then I would resign the office; and I hope any conscientious public servant would do the same.

But I do not intend to apologize for these views to my critics of either Catholic or Protestant faith--nor do I intend to disavow either my views or my church in order to win this election. 

4. Kennedy's speech is open to criticism and the Jesuits of American Magazine did criticize it for going too far. But, you can't blame the speech for ushering in abortion on demand and other evils. 
Per and Burden,
  His argument was about abortion being a Kennedy plan and had nothing to do with what JFK said in that speech. That was to change the subject. What's more is Someone 1776 has just shown above where the idea came from and no it's not worthy of a latae setentiae, or excommunication. Get a grip, will you. These boogey men are not under every bed. The very first thing you must remember is conservative is not the same as Catholic. We conserve the Faith, not political hooverframus. The threat was the Progressives changing things and now here come the Conservtives to do their thing.

(02-15-2013, 07:28 PM)Burdensome1 Wrote:
Quote:Surely, there is something more timely to debate than the Kennedys,

You/re right, I should never have bound and gagged you and forced you into this thread.  Mea culpa.


On the internet since the mid 90's, still no idea why people write this post, complaining about what other people are talking about.  No clue.  It's still just about the silliest thing you could post IMO.

If you've been on the internet since the 90's & still don't research your subject any better than you did this one, I'd say it's time to do some changin' :shrug:
Quote:If you've been on the internet since the 90's & still don't research your subject any better than you did this one, I'd say it's time to do some changin'

What is at issue? 

1.That JFK made a speech specifically to Protestants in 1960 that many credit with his election.  In it, he says that he will not govern as a Catholic, and is even willing to resign rather than do so. 

2.That this empowered Catholic politicians to govern in the same way, and combined with the seamless garment and other pseudo-Catholic ideas, this has given us the modern era of "Catholic" politicians such as Biden and Pelosi.

3.That Charles Curran, et al were advisors to the Kennedy family during the evoution of this concept which would be firmly and publicly in place as a Catholic political principle within a decade of Curran's first meeting with the Kennedy family.

4.That the Kennedys were raised by Joe to be dismissive of Catholic moral teaching and indeed (as is manifest in their personal lives) they were totally dismissive of it.

5.That the Kennedy family was a political machine, homogenous in ideology, Catholic in name only, that was the standard bearer in the political realm for dissent from the teachings of the Church.

I simply found the fact that Curran was involved interesting in the sense that some things are just so perfect. 

What I do find is a sick, twisted sentimentality for the Kennedys in all aspects of Catholicism.  Liberal, conservative, and now traditional.  Poor dead John was an abuser of women, a serial adulterer (what's worse than "serial"?  Addicted?), and his brother Teddy actually killed one of his own concubines.  You want a picture of what went wrong with Catholic politics?  It's the Kennedys.  I submit that Pelosi doesn't exist without Ted, and Ted doesn't exist without Jack paving the way, all in the sense of defying the hierarchy and making it look reasonable and patriotic.

As for the issue of excommunication, tell me again that what the Bishops meant and what Leo XIII meant was that, rather than rule according to their informed Catholic conscience, elected officials should resign...and knowing that they don't actually resign, they should in fact rule contrary to their informed Catholic conscience.  How someone can even espouse that one on a traddy Catholic board (where NOBODY gets a pass, not even the Pope) is evidence of the bizarre relationship Catholics still have with these evil people. 

You people will bray on all day, every day, about JPII's heresies, but when someone talks straight about the Kennedys, some of you actually want to circle the wagons for these degenerates.  The Kennedys have had a much more direct effect on your Catholic life than JPII ever did IMO.  The NO parishes aren't all screwed up morally because JPII wrote about orgasms in "love and resposnsiblilty".  They're screwed up because Americans in the diocese ignore Catholic teaching, and they learned this by watching leading Catholics do it and get away with it.  Who would this be?  The Kennedys, people, the Kennedys. 

So, all you Kennedy apologists can go get stuffed.  I didn't live through it, I have no relationship to those people other than to occasionally pray for their souls.  My opinion of them is not clouded by some myth of poor ethnic Catholic crusaders.  That's just dumb. 


What, pray, is the "textbook perfect definition of the heresy of Americanism"? Did St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas succumb to the heresy when they denied, e.g., "the Church's social teaching had any place in the civil domain" with respect to prostitution? They did that when they argued for legalized prostitution, no?

Granted, abortion is a more grievous matter than prostitution. But where is a Catholic American politician supposed to draw the line? Should a Catholic American politician threaten to toss adulterers, fornicators and contracepting couples into the hoosegow? Is that the only way he can be faithful to the Church's social teachings?  

Where do my obligations as a Catholic impinge on my duties as an American citizen? As an anarchist, I regard taxation as theft and imperial war as mass murder. Yet others in this forum regard Austrian economics--which is descriptive science, not prescriptive moral code--as a matter more worthy of condemnation. Go figure.

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