Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Penance Peace

I went to a reconciliation, formerly known as penance, service last evening for our area deanery. I did not look forward to going, and apparently I'm not the only one who feels that way in general. The priest who gave the homily (who I think was Fr. Thomas Brown at Sacred Heart) said most people put this service on par with going to the dentist. The thought of spilling the beans about yourself to another person, known as confession, is not pleasant.

And yet before I even got to the confessional, I felt a greater peace than I have in a long time. The priest talked of a God who loves us enough to keep himself on a cross until he died, and that was powerful. Often in Lent I think of Christ's journey to the cross, but last night I focused on what it took for Him to stay there. He could have easily shown the people who mocked Him that He was indeed the son of God and could come off. They would have been proven wrong in an amazing way.

But Christ kept His focus on the long-run, just as He had His whole life. He put aside the majesty and splendor He could have had in the short-run. He saw not only the people in front of Him, but all mankind. He gave us all a chance at future life with Himself and the Father and Holy Spirit.

When someone like myself becomes wrapped up in news stories of political fighting and even fighting within the Church, one can get angry and accusatory. But we pay a price in all that when we lose our own peace and best focus. I was really glad I went to the penance service to start concentrating where I should--on Christ's life, death, and resurrection to His present life where we can meet and know Him.

Thursday, March 1, 2012


I just found out about a movie which theorizes that the abortion industry even today is an extension of the eugenics movement. It's called Maafa 21 and you can get to the website here, and see it on Youtube here. The term "eugenics" was coined by Francis Galton, a cousin of Charles Darwin. In the 1860's, he applied Darwin's theory, in which survival of the fittest supposedly brought about all evolution to superior beings, to humans. He believed the Caucasian race was superior to any others. What is more, others started getting on the bandwagon and pushed for population control, warning against feeble-mindedness and inability to rise above poverty. Only intelligent, talented people were to marry each other and produce a better and better race. The movie documents many articles written by famous eugenicists of their day. The creators of the movie ask why the percentage of minorities stay the same. Are people of color being encouraged to keep their numbers down?

The scientists in the past believed the Negroid races were inferior to the white because of evolution. Many believed that the African came from the ape and the white person from the African. And even as recently as 2007, James Watson, co-discoverer of DNA, seemed to assume the same, considering remarks he made. He was quoted in The Times of London as suggesting that, overall, people of African descent are not as intelligent as people of European descent (as reported by NY Times here).

The eugenics movement is now being linked to the abortion industry in the United States. The claim the movie Maafa 21 makes is that the mass sterilization that became prevalent in the early 1900's is still at work today, though it might not be "forced" as it was early in the movement (a good article about forced sterilization is here at George Mason University's History News Network). This quote comes from the GMU link:

Even the United States Supreme Court endorsed aspects of eugenics. In its infamous 1927 decision, Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes wrote, "It is better for all the world, if instead of waiting to execute degenerate offspring for crime, or to let them starve for their imbecility, society can prevent those who are manifestly unfit from continuing their kind…. Three generations of imbeciles are enough." This decision opened the floodgates for thousands to be coercively sterilized or otherwise persecuted as subhuman. Years later, the Nazis at the Nuremberg trials quoted Holmes' words in their own defense.

This article also claims that only after eugenics became well-established in the US did it become part of the Nazi psuedo-scientific justification for genocide. It is interesting that the movie Expelled (Youtube trailer here) made the same connection to Darwin's theory, eugenics, and the Nazi's. Expelled exposed the current prejudice in academia against any theories which oppose Darwinian evolution.

I have not seen the entire Maafa 21 movie yet, just the first few sections. I hope to watch the whole thing eventually. And I think we must be careful in blaming abortion on this one factor alone. Statistics show a large proportion of non-white women have abortions. But there are things going on other than elite eugenicists doing clandestine operations to sterilize women as was the case before (as late as the 1970's in states such as North and South Carolina). Let us not forget the culture has changed so that sex is a constant temptation for young people who do not then want the ensuing responsibility. Also, sex crimes and even human slavery are increasingly parts of our abortion problem.

In fact, one thing the narrators of the Maafa 21 movie have not addressed is the apparent lack of responsibility related to unmarried, teenage pregnancy. I’m sure this factor, with its link to poverty, is a concern for many liberals. There is not always a sinister motive for those who approve of abortion, and in fact these persons can sincerely desire the welfare of African-Americans. They want the females to have more freedom to continue education and have a secure job before they have children. They want the children to be in a home with higher income and better chances for them to make it as well. This is why some African-Americans also see abortion as a freedom of choice issue. The narrators do themselves no favors when they mention welfare in a way that seems like an entitlement that African-Americans are owed. That is not likely to win a lot of sympathy in these days of huge national debt.

However, the movie makes some good points. I think many liberals have never even thought of the angle of genocide or been informed of it. As the movie points out, the press avoids this side of the argument against abortion. Not everyone believes a fetus is a full human being, which muddies the issue.

It does not hurt to examine the mindset of those who set up abortion clinics in poor and usually minority-race neighborhoods. Are they really there for the good of the people involved? Do they want to encourage responsibility or do they want to help people run away from it? Can human life be equated with money and the economy?

The creators of the Maafa 21 movie would contend that, just like latter-day eugenicists, those advocating abortion don't want more of the minority around. I understand the desire to see others be responsible with their own lives and those of their children. But though life without responsibility can be very tough, responsibility has no chance at all without life.