Wednesday, March 17, 2010

USCCB and fair weather fans

One of the more interesting things about the current health care debate is the sudden realignment of the loyalties to the USCCB (United States Conference of Catholic Bishops). Old friends are now enemies, and vice versa.

The progressive held that since the USCCB was against the Iraq war this was the official Catholic position on the war in Iraq. Multiple appeals to documents released during the run up and initial phase of the war lent credibility to the idea the correct moral position was one of opposition.

However, since the bishops have come out against the current Senate bill the progressive Catholics have all but ignored the USCCB. Indeed some have insinuated that they are misled on abortion, they are in too deep with the NRLC (National Right to Life Coallition). Indeed, we are suddenly reminded of the fact that from a "required submission" standpoint that fidelity to the USCCB is only mandatory insofar as your local bishop agrees with it. Note: This is the correct view, it is simply the timing that bothers me.

Conversley, we have those on the right who have in the past and present criticized the USCCB for being too far to the left on political issues. From the Iraq War to immigration, these folks have referred to the USCCB as a left wing organization. Arguments abound about the right to differ with prudential matters with the USCCB. Again, the arguments are correct so far as the moral teaching of the Church is concerned, but the motivation is somewhat dubious.

Now with the USCCB coming out against the health care bill conservative Catholics now view the council as the vanguard of the Faith. Suddenly it is popular to agree with the USCCB among conservative Catholics.

It is enough to make one's head spin. One can only wonder what will happen when immigration is a hot topic again. The political shift might tilt the Earth's axis.

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