Finally, Catholic professors - 75 in all from the Catholic University of America,
Fordham University, and some others are speaking out and are taking House Speaker
Boehner, a Roman Catholic to task. They have written him a letter criticizing him and
other Republicans for the budget that they shepherded through the House of Representatives
saying it "guts long-established protections for the most vulnerable members of society;
including the poor, the elderly, and the disabled, and grants tax cuts to the weathy
and to corporations."
I wish that they had also included the Republicans' abysmal record on animal issues,
but sadly they did not. Still I am happy that they have finally spoken and taken the
initiative to criticize the the Republican party - a favorite it seems of the Catholic Church
and "most" Catholics. Not this one. Eight years of Bush opened my eyes and I found
that as a voting bloc their lack of concern for animal issues is dismal and disappointing.
My personal belief is that if you respect the unborn, that you will also be compassionate
to animals. Sadly, the Church and most Catholics don't see this as I do.
In the late 70's I left an Ohio Right to Life group when they kept on insisting that animals
are non-entities and only human life is precious. Sorry, didn't buy that then and never will.
Ps.145 says that God is compassionate to all His creatures.
I remember being on jury duty a few years ago. At a break when we were just talking,
in conversation I mentioned that I was Right to Life and I supported Animal Rights. One
astute man observed that this is unusual, and I had to admit that he was right because
most of my fellow Catholics never give much thought to animal suffering. I never feel
comfortable speaking about animal rights to the majority of them, and I was heart broken
to hear a "friend" say to me that animals are #1 for me and for him they are #99. I could
no longer hold him in the same regard as I had before this unkind revelation.
I applaud the 75 professors who said to Boehner -your politics are "anti-life." Even though
they are referring only to humans, I hope one day they will enlarge on this concept and
consider the animals as well.
When he reads the letter, Boehner will probably find it particularly hurtful to him because
the signers of the letter include faculty from Xavier University -his alma mater. Also among
the signers are professors from the University of Dayton which is located in his home state
The letter in its entirety can be found in the National Catholic Reporter but I'm grateful to
Kristina Chew for highlighting what she thinks are the salient points addressed to Boehner:
"Your record in support of legislation to address the needs of the poor is among the worst
"The 2012 budget you shepherded to passage in the House of Representatives guts long-
established protections for the most vulnerable members of society."
"The House budget radically cuts Medicaid and effectively ends Medicare. It invokes the
deficit to justify visiting such hardship upon the vulerable, while it carves out 3 billion in
new tax cuts for corporations and the wealthy."
Perhaps these Catholic voices are long in coming, but of course, I am glad they will be
finally heard. Re the issue of animal cruelty, I wrote to the presidents of both Duquesne
and DePaul Universities where I received my Bachelor and Master Degrees in Education
re the need to be compassionate to animals. Sadly, neither president as I recollect
responded in a caring fashion.
While the church is lagging behind in this matter, I am glad that people of compassion are
not looking to the church for enlightenment or guidance to do what is right. They are wisely
looking to their hearts and to the God of compassion.