Our Lady of the Wayside

Our Lady of the Wayside
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Monday 3 May 2010

General Election: Are We A One Issue People?

There is a lot of mixed opinion about what we should consider before deciding who to vote for. But I believe that if we looked at any mass killing of human beings other than abortion where hundreds of thousands of lives were being taken every year, such as in Nazi Germany for example, no-one (retrospectively at least) would say "We can't just vote on that one issue"!*@ Until abortion is ended, no other issue can compare with the huge and wholesale slaughter that deprives my unborn neighbour of his right to life, her right to own property, his right to work, her right to be educated, his right to have food on her table, his right to freedom. All rights are pointless if we do not have a right to be born! Fr Frank Pavone illustrates this perfectly in the following article, from his website, which is so good I am including it in this blog in full.
If we don't believe abortion is a big enough issue to be worth casting our vote on, how on earth do we imagine that any parliamentary candidate is going to? Read on...
by Clare McCullough

The following article was taken from the Priests for Life website www.priestsforlife.org

You Wouldn’t Even Ask….
By Fr. Frank Pavone

If a candidate who supported terrorism asked for your vote, would you say, "I disagree with you on terrorism, but where do you stand on other issues?

"I doubt it.

In fact, if a terrorism sympathizer presented him/herself for your vote, you would immediately know that such a position disqualifies the candidate for public office -- no matter how good he or she may be on other issues. The horror of terrorism dwarfs whatever good might be found in the candidate's plan for housing, education, or health care. Regarding those plans, you wouldn't even ask.

So why do so many people say, "This candidate favors legal abortion. I disagree. But I'm voting for this person because she has good ideas about health care (or some other issue).

"Such a position makes no sense whatsoever, unless one is completely blind to the violence of abortion. That, of course, is the problem. But we need only see what abortion looks like, or read descriptions from the abortionists themselves, and the evidence is clear. (USA Today refused to sell me space for an ad that quoted abortionists describing their work because the readers would be traumatized just by the words!)

Abortion is no less violent than terrorism. Any candidate who says abortion should be kept legal disqualifies him/herself from public service. We need look no further, we need pay no attention to what that candidate says on other issues. Support for abortion is enough for us to decide not to vote for such a person.

Pope John Paul II put it this way: "Above all, the common outcry, which is justly made on behalf of human rights -- for example, the right to health, to home, to work, to family, to culture -- is false and illusory if the right to life, the most basic and fundamental right and the condition for all other personal rights, is not defended with maximum determination" (Christifideles Laici, 1988).

False and illusory. Those are strong and clear words that call for our further reflection.

"I stand for adequate and comprehensive health care." So far, so good. But as soon as you say that a procedure that tears the arms off of little babies is part of "health care," then your understanding of the term "health care" is obviously quite different from the actual meaning of the words. In short, you lose credibility. Your claim to health care is "illusory." It sounds good, but is in fact destructive, because it masks an act of violence.

"My plan for adequate housing will succeed." Fine. But what are houses for, if not for people to live in them? If you allow the killing of the children who would otherwise live in those houses, how am I supposed to get excited by your housing project?

It's easy to get confused by all the arguments in an election year. But if you start by asking where candidates stand on abortion, you can eliminate a lot of other questions you needn't even ask.

For more election related articles and information, visit


For UK General Election Information:
Pro-Life Information on the election

See how your MP has voted on Life Issues in the past

Contact SPUC for a questionnaire for any prospective election candidates


  1. There is much that I disagree with you in relation to Fr Pavone, Clare.

    In 2008 he circulated a prayer during the presidential elections. It was a political prayer to keep pro-lifers and Catholics in line and loyal to the "pro-life" Republican Party.

    It was also a celebration of America and elevated the error of Americanism. Have you read Pope Leo XIII in the encyclical, Immortale Dei (1885)?

    Has the Good Counsel Network a position in relation to "Americanism?"

    There is also the question of various Bishops and Republican support for the war in Iraq. It is an unjust war and also the fact that Bush, the great "pro-life" increased funding for contraception under the Medicaid and Title X programme and sent money to Planned Parenthood.

    Fair enough if you wish to promote Fr Pavone and adopt a neo-con conciliar approach but what do the Good Counsel Network have to say about use of depleted uranium in Iraq, Gaza etc etc.

    The war in Iraq is equal to evil of abortion.

    As a lobby group I know you must keep all sides happy but promoting this Republican neo con hack is a bit much.

    Lobbying politicians and a single issue approach is also naive and a dreaful waste of time. My conclusion is Good Counsel Network are well intentioned, heart in right place but are neo conned alot.

    You would have us believe here that the best way to be Catholic or only way to be Catholic is to oppose abortion (be "pro-life") and go to Mass. There is much more to Catholicism than that, Clare.

  2. We quoted Fr Pavone, but did not canonize him. I agree with a lot of what he says about pro-life work, but I certainly wouldn't claim to have read everything he has written. Would you mind sending in an example of the prayer you are complaining about? I would also be glad to see your evidence of Bush funding contraception and Planned Parenthood. It is good to keep informed and have proof of such things.
    Americanism is a heresy and The Good Counsel Network reeejects all forms of heresy and schism. I am not American and I have no political affiliation to Republican or Democrat ideologies.
    All war is a great evil, the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan are great evils.
    Numerically speaking however, they do not come anywhere close to the number of abortions. Further, abortion brings the taking of life into almost every family, in a way that war cannot. Both are evils but to say that:
    "The war in Iraq is equal to evil of abortion." is your opinion which you are entitled to but it is neither the teaching of the Church or a proven fact.
    I totally deplore the use of depleted uranium in Iraq, since you ask.
    I am not too worried about keeping all sides happy. Just trying to do what I believe is right. We are not a lobby group either by the way, but a group which helps Motehrs-to-be.
    You state: "You would have us believe here that the best way to be Catholic or only way to be Catholic is to oppose abortion (be "pro-life") and go to Mass. There is much more to Catholicism than that, Clare."
    Just for the record, I would have you believe no such thing. However, Good Counsel has a particular work to do, helping expectant Mums, informing people about pro-life issues. Many of us are also involved in other apostolates in the Church and do not think being pro-life means we are doing all required to be Catholic.
    We have had the blessing to see 100's of women keep their babies through our work, Thank God. If you feel that pro-life or Catholic work should be done in a particular different manner, it is,no doubt an invitation from God for you to do it.
    Thanks for your interest in our blog, I hope that if you continue to read it you will gain a deeper understanding of where we are coming from. Rather than neo-con, I would rather go with Pope Benedict XVI's words that Catholics who obey the teaching of the Church and strive to live them are neither conservative or liberal, but radical, as Our Lord is radical. God bless.


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