The most recent mass-shootings have grabbed the attention of the country. I have lots of thoughts on this issue, but I think sometimes it is better to quote others than to give my own rant. My early morning routine helps me organize my thoughts for the day. I probably spend an hour each morning, reading through Catholic Twitter to get my news – I usually browse through around 20 accounts. There were three quotes I read over the past few days on Catholic Twitter on the horrible shootings in El Paso and Dayton that really struck me. One quote has really annoyed me, another quote I posted in the Ricochet Catholics Group, and the final quote I posted at the Firing Line Group. @bossmongo suggested that I should share this final quote on the Member Feed and I thought I should add the others as well.
I’ll start with the final quote first. It comes from John Zmirak, from his article Nazi Gun Control: Three Words that Go Together. He ends his interesting take on an old argument for 2A rights with this:
The issue of gun rights turns, finally, on a question about human nature — about common citizens like you and me. Are we responsible adults made in the image of God, with the primary right and responsibility of caring for ourselves and our dependents? Or are we dim-witted, passive sheep, who must look to our protectors in the government for food, protection, and guidance in our everyday decisions? May we defend ourselves and our loved ones when confronted with threats of violence, or is it our duty to surrender passively, then wait for the police to come tag their bodies? Are we free citizens, who may arm ourselves in self-defense and when absolutely necessary resist acts of tyranny? Or are we helpless peasants?
I don’t think I can find anything to argue against there. I can answer each of those questions very easily.
As we survey the carnage and the responses to that carnage from last weekend, let’s take a minute to look at the second quote, that I posted in the Ricochet Catholics Group. It is from Mother Teresa:
The greatest destroyer of love and peace is abortion, which is war against the child…Any country that accepts abortion is not teaching its people to love, but to use any violence to get what they want.
Boy howdy do we live in a violent, murderous society. We see legislatures cheer when abortion is made legal at any time during pregnancy; and even sometimes after birth. Well over 2000 babies per day are killed by abortion. After the Columbine shootings in 1999, Archbishop Charles Chaput (archbishop of Denver at the time) said this (for those keeping count, this is a bonus quote, it is not the quote that annoyed me):
When the most dangerous place in the country is a mother’s womb and the unborn child can have his or her head crushed in an abortion, even in the process of being born, the body language of that message is that life isn’t sacred and may not be worth much at all. In fact, certain kinds of killing no longer even count officially as “killing.” Certain kinds of killing we enshrine as rights and protect by law. When we live this kind of contradiction, why are we surprised at the results?
Indeed. Why are we surprised?
This isn’t a problem government can solve. This is a problem left to us.
So what was it that infuriated me? It was this, from the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), as tweeted out by Fr. Thomas Petri, OP:
We call on committees… to formulate policies…. to address a social disease….
— Fr. Thomas Petri, OP, STD (@PetriOP) August 5, 2019
So this is where we are. This is what we get from our leaders. Committees to formulate policies, so as to address a social disease. Pathetic. At one point in time, the Catholic bishops held some moral authority. Maybe they still do with the lefties, but with me, I am shaking my head.
Going back to the first quote – it is a quote in essence about freedom. Freedom requires responsibility. Freedom is not a license to do what we want, but the right to do what we ought.
Pope St. John Paul II, pray for us.
St. Gabriel Possenti, pray for us. (Yes, we bad-ass Catholics have a patron saint of handguns)
St. Teresa of Calcutta, pray for us.