Transcript of “Staring into the Abyss” homily by Fr. Edward Meeks

Oct 21, 2020 |

[Iowans for LIFE ran a video of Fr. Edward Meek’s remarkable homily on October 13th and had a record number of visitors to our website. Many requested a transcript. Here it is.]

By Fr. Edward Meeks

I’ve been mentioning for the past two Sundays that I’m going to be speaking today on the November 3rd election, and I want to give you a little heads up as I begin. I will be going a little bit long this morning because I have a lot of ground to cover.

We are “staring into the abyss”

This will be for me, personally, the 14th presidential election I will have voted in since reaching the age of majority, and this one is unlike anything I have ever seen. I actually said this same thing about the last election in 2016, but the events of the last 4 years—in fact, of the past 6–7 months—have cast this upcoming election in a whole new and ever more dire light. I believe that at this moment in time and history, you and I find ourselves as part of a society that is staring into the abyss. And, how our nation votes on November 3rd will determine whether we collectively step off the cliff into that abyss or step back from it, if only temporarily.

Your vote should align with Church teachings

Now, let me preface my remarks by saying [that] it is not my place to tell you how you must vote. We do, after all, still live in a free country with free elections—at least for the time being. But, it is my place as your priest and pastor to help you see how your vote may or may not line up with the teachings of the Church. So, I will tell you emphatically that what I’m about to say to you should not be taken as an implicit endorsement of any candidate by Christ the King Church or by the personal Ordinariate of the Chair of St. Peter.

I’m taking this opportunity to speak to you personally, to share with you my own personal opinion. But, it’s an opinion both formed and informed by the Word of God and by the crystal–clear teaching of the Church for the purpose of helping you think through the choices. Because, again, there are certain realities about the candidates and their parties that directly impact our Catholic faith. And so, we must be aware of these realities before we cast our vote. And, my first allegiance is not to any political candidate or party, but to the truth of God and His Church. So, what I’m going to say is not politically- motivated because the stakes involved far transcend politics. But, what I’m going to say, I believe, has to be said.

“I grieve for what has become of America”

Now, let me begin by telling you that I have struggled mightily with this message—not because I’m afraid of the Truth (I think you know me better than that!)…To the contrary, the Truth is what motivates me every day of my life. I resonate completely with St. Paul who said, “Woe is me if I do not preach the truth of the Gospel.” (1 Cor. 9:16) Frankly, if I were not sold out to the truth, I wouldn’t even be standing in front of you today because I would not be a Catholic priest.

No, the reason from my struggle has to do with the vitriol and the vicious animosities that are evident in our society today…animosities that have played out tens of millions of times daily on social media and in the violence that has overtaken so many of America’s cities, and was even on full display in the recent Presidential Debate.

Brothers and Sisters, we live in a nation that is—sadly, tragically—divided; a nation at odds with itself. Jesus’ words in the Gospel of this past Friday (Oct. 9, 2020 from Luke 11:15-26) were never more true: “A house divided against itself cannot stand.” I grieve for what has become of America. And so, the last thing I want to do is to have this message contribute to that division in our country, and—least of all—to have it cause division in our parish. You and I are children of the same Heavenly Father. You and I are servants of the same Lord and Master. We are first Christians, Catholics; we are second, American; and, then, somewhere down the line from there we are Republicans or Democrats or Independents or whatever. Never forget that order.

And so, it has almost become a cliché to declare that we have “reached the tipping point” in our nation, but it is also true. And, it is time for faithful Catholics and other Christians to stand up courageously and forthrightly to confront the evil that has overtaken our culture and say, “Enough is enough!” Because whether you are aware of it or not, there are powerful forces in government at every level, as well as in the mainstream media, and in the Silicon Valley technocracy that are working aggressively to silence the Church through legislation, lies, intimidation, and censorship.

 “Think with the Church”

So for us faithful Catholics, the starting point of our choice of whom to vote for needs to be that we intentionally think with the Church. Think with the Church!—something that too many Catholics have failed to do for far too long—a fact that has largely contributed to the dire condition of our culture today. The Church has clearly and consistently based Her teaching on the Sacred Scriptures and on the living tradition embodied in 2,000 years of Her Magisterium. That teaching has led to an array of foundational principles when it comes to us as Catholics and our moral and civic responsibilities.

It’s not always easy to sift through the myriad of issues at play in Presidential politics. So, it becomes crucial, then, that we properly prioritize those issues, because some are clearly more important than others. We can respectfully disagree. And, we can have differences of prudential judgment and opinion around issues like the economy, taxation, immigration, national defense, trade, health care, climate change, and so on. But, don’t get side-tracked by the spurious “seamless garment theory” espoused by many in the Church that asserts that issues like immigration and the environment are of equal weight with abortion.

 “Non-negotiable values”

Because, there is a set of issues upon which Catholics must not disagree. Pope Benedict XVI specified those issues in his 2012 Apostolic Constitution entitled Sacramentum Caritatis, in which Benedict defined what he called our “non-negotiable values”—a concept which he repeated countless times during his pontificate. Among the list of “non-negotiable values” which he identified, chief among them are: 1) the sanctity of life from conception to natural death; 2) the sanctity of marriage as a life-long sacramental union of a man and a woman; 3) the preservation of religious liberty. They are “non-negotiable” because they are of paramount importance in Catholic moral theology. They are the moral principles where the Church draws a clear line in the sand. In all of the fog and the confusion and spin that surrounds every political season, we must, as faithful Catholics, conscientiously vote in such a way that best upholds and protects these “non-negotiable” values. Again: 1) the sanctity of life; 2) the sanctity of marriage; and 3) religious liberty.

Not that other issues are unimportant, but these three are foundational to who we are as human beings and to what kind of society we are constructing. As Pope Benedict wrote regarding these values (quote): “In the face of fundamental and inalienable ethical demands, Christians must recognize that what is at stake is the essence of the moral law, which concerns the integral good of the human person.” On these and other critical issues, there is one presidential candidate who stands in very public, very obstinate opposition to Church teaching, namely, former vice-president Joe Biden, along with the Democratic Party. And so, I’d like to share with you the five things that every Catholic needs to know about “Catholic” Joe Biden, and how these line up with the “non-negotiables.”

And, by the way, before I begin, and for the sake of those of you who might be a little bit squeamish about what I’m about to say, let me quote for you a principle from the Second Vatican Council’s Pastoral Constitution on the Church in the Modern World, entitled Gaudium et Spes. The Council Fathers wrote this (quote): “At all time and in all places, the Church should have the true freedom to teach the Faith, to proclaim its teaching about society, to carry out its task among men without hindrance, and to pass moral judgments even in matters relating to politics whenever the fundamental right of man or the salvation of souls requires it.” (paragraph 76)

Five things that every Catholic needs to know about “Catholic” Joe Biden

OK, then. The five things that every Catholic needs to know abou“Catholic” Joe Biden;

#1—Joe Biden is unabashedly pro-abortion. This fact is clear from his

long voting record, his public pronouncements, his allegiance to and

support of groups such as Planned Parenthood and NARAL, and from his party’s platform not only in this election year but in their platform going back decades. He and they support abortion for any reason or for no reason, right up to and even beyond the moment of birth. He and they oppose the effort in Congress to pass legislation requiring doctors who perform abortions to provide medical care to babies who survive the abortion, opting, rather, to let such babies simply die outside the womb with no care. He and they are pushing for the repeal of the Hyde Amendment, and action which would force all American taxpayers, including you and me, to fund abortions, to pay for them. Along with their anti-life positions on euthanasia, physician-assisted suicide, embryonic stem cell research, and other issues, the Democrat Party has become the party of death. And, “Catholic” Joe Biden is their standard-bearer—or, as he said in the first Presidential Debate: “I am the Democratic Party!”

#2—Joe Biden opposes the Church’s teaching on the sanctity of marriage. While he was vice-president, he publically endorsed same-sex marriage in 2012, three years before the Supreme Court ruling. And, in 2016 (while still the vice-president) he officiated over the “wedding” ceremony of two men, posting a photo of the ceremony on Twitter, with the captions: “Proud to marry Brian and Joe at my house. Couldn’t be happier! Two long-time White House staffers, two great guys!”

#3—A Biden presidency would be a danger to our already dwindling religious liberty. He and his party advocate for the repeal of the Religious Freedom Restoration Act, which protects the religious conscience rights of healthcare workers who decline to participate in abortions, and of Church-based adoption agencies that choose to place children only with married, heterosexual couples, among other things. Biden is also on record committing to restoring the Obamacare mandate requiring religious ministries and orders like the Little Sisters of the Poor to provide contraceptive and abortifacient drugs to their employees, despite the fact that that is a direct violation of their faith conviction and of Church teaching.

And, by the way, on the subject of religious liberty, Joe Biden is on the record as saying that as President he would not hesitate to re- institute a nation-wide pandemic lockdown if the science demands it.

Undoubtedly, such a lock-down would once again close our churches. Let me remind you of what it was like for us to have no public Masses and no sacraments for 11 weeks this past Spring.

#4—Although Joe Biden rejects the label of “socialist” his presidency would undoubtedly open the door for America to very quickly become a socialist country. Evidence for this assertion is in his signing on to the self-avowed socialist Bernie Sanders’ agenda. His selection as a running mate of Senator Kamala Harris, identified by bi-partisan groups, by non-partisan groups as the THE most leftist member of the U.S. Senate. His months’-long silence on the murder and mayhem being inflicted on America’s cities by Marxist–Socialist organizations, as well as the all-too-obvious and serious influence being exercised within the Democrat Party by leftist extremists.

“So, why,” you may ask, “should that be an issue of concern for Catholics?” One has only to consider the lessons of history and the teachings of the Popes to answer the question. For more than 200 years, wherever Socialism has sought to gain a foothold—in France (following the French Revolution), in the 20th Century and today in Latin America, in Eastern Europe, in Asia, or wherever—the Socialists have viewed the Church—especially and specifically, the Catholic Church—as an enemy to be destroyed, or that the very least, to be silenced and marginalized. Socialism is a soul-robbing ideology that always and inevitably leads to totalitarianism, where the government presumes to put itself in the place of God in the lives of its subservient citizens. For this reason, Socialism has been clearly and vigorously condemned and denounced by an unbroken string of no less than 11 consecutive Popes, from Pius IX in 1849 to Benedict XVI in 2005.

Mob rule is one of the chief tactics and strategies of Socialism. And, in a perverse twist of ironies, the same Socialist mobs who like to chant “Silence is violence”, reaped the benefits of the several-months- long silence of Joe Biden and his party as the mobs carried out their orchestrated campaign of violence in America’s cities. Again, Joe Biden is probably personally not a Socialist. But he and the Democrat Party can validly called out for giving aid, comfort, and encouragement to those who are, whether they be the demonic forces unleashed in the streets of America’s cities by Marxists, Nihilists, Anarchists, Revolutionaries or those in elected office in his own party who seek to push America so far to the left as to make it unrecognizable and to establish a socio-politic, socio-economic and political system that is openly hostile to the Church.

#5—Joe Biden’s position on these 4 moral issues as a very high-profile Catholic—a man who served in the U.S. Senate for more than three decades and then as vice-president for eight years, and now as a candidate for President—a very high-profile Catholic. His positions, then, serve to subvert and undermine the faith of nominal and poorly- catechized Catholics. As, for example, it gives rise to the misinformed effort known as “Catholics for Biden.” At least one of Biden’s campaign ads pictures his with Pope Francis and with a group of smiling nuns in an effort to portray himself as a devout Catholic. And, by the way, when you have to tell people what a good Catholic you are, does that not make you question how good a Catholic the person really is? Ironically, it’s another group of nuns—namely, the Little Sisters of the Poor—who would once again be targeted by a Biden presidency for enforcement of the Obamacare mandate. Furthermore, Senator Kamala Harris, [Biden’s] running mate, is on record calling the Knights of Columbus, quote: “An all-male extremist group”— “Extremist” because of the Knights’ clear support of Church teaching on the “non- negotiables” that we’re talking about here. And, by the way, Deacon Bud, Father Rob and I are all members of the Knights of Columbus…and, yeah!—we’re all male. What of it? I leave it up to you to decide if we’re also “extremists.”

Also, isn’t it interesting that the same leftist media which gives high praise to Joe Biden’s “Catholicism”, while characterizing the Catholicism of Judge Amy Coney Barrett as “dangerous and extremist.” The perennial failure of many of our Bishops to call out Biden and other Catholic politicians who publically defy the Church’s most cherished moral teachings only serves to confuse many Catholics and many others in our society, causing them to think, “Oh, I guess what he holds isn’t that bad.” Isn’t that bad?—: the willful destruction of 61 million babies in the womb, including, by the way, 23 million black babies—Isn’t that sad? I ask you, “What could be worse?”

In its document entitled, “Living the Gospel of Life,” the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops declared abortion to be the pre- eminent moral issue of our time. The right to life undergirds all other rights. That’s why it’s mentioned first in the Declaration of Independence. And, it represents government’s most important responsibility. So, don’t let anyone—be he a priest, a bishop, or a cardinal—tell you otherwise. Abortion is, I believe, spiritually-speaking both the primary cause and the primary symptom of a society in a downward death spiral. As I said, it’s time for faithful Catholics to stand us and say, “Enough is enough,” to all office-holders and politicians who claim to be devout Catholics while publically and obstinately contradicting the Church and subverting her teachings.

Sobering reflection by Archbishop Fulton Sheen

In conclusion, we are as a nation—as I stated earlier—I believe, staring into the abyss, stemming from our culture’s wholesale rejection of God and His law—a rejection manifested most tangibly in five decades of legalized abortion. Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen once wrote these words almost 60 years ago–quote: “A nation always gets the kind of politicians it deserves. If a time ever comes when the religious Jews, Protestants, and Catholics ever have to suffer under a totalitarian state which would deny to them the right to worship God according to the light of their conscience, it will be because for years they thought it made no difference what kind of people represented them, and because they abandoned the spiritual in the realm of the temporal.”

And so the bottom line, Brothers and Sisters, is: VOTE! And, when you do, think with the Church—while also understanding this: that no one running for public office is ultimately the solution for what ails America. Only God is! That’s not a statement of resignation to the inevitable. It is, rather, a statement of hope. The late Father Richard John Neuhaus once wrote: “Christians have not the right to despair, for despair is a sin. And, we have not reason to despair, quite simply because Christ is risen.” You and I are called to be salt and light in a dark and dying world. And, you and I as faithful American Catholics are engaged in the battle for the soul of our beloved Nation. Let’s take that call seriously.

I’d like to conclude this homily with a quote from the Old Testament that you’re no doubt familiar with. It’s one of my very favorite Scripture quotes and one which is most pertinent and most compelling for today—2 Chronicles 7:14—Almighty God declares this: “If my people, who are called by My Name, will humble themselves and pray, and seek My face and turn from their wicked ways, then…then…will I hear from Heaven and forgive their sin and heal their land.” God bless you! And may God continue to bless America!

[If you appreciate receiving pro-life content like this, support Iowans for LIFE’s pro-life educational outreach. Donate online today.]

“Why I can’t vote pro-choice”

Oct 15, 2020 |
catholic voters guide

By Joe Stopulos

I had been asked to do a Catholic voters guide edition of the show [MAN UP on Iowa Catholic Radio/click to listen above].  I initially rejected the idea because  of the polarization of the topic and the fact that usually those conversations tend  to stay very high level and not get into actionable steps.  The more I thought and prayed about it, one issue continued to come to light, and it is this.  That if we could draw up a perfect catholic political candidate for office, a person of integrity and virtue, who followed all of the teachings of the church and was bold in standing up for those convictions; a person who on paper voted 100% of the way I believe the Church would have us vote. If this person existed, but happened to have one notable exception to being in line with the teachings of Christ and the Church, that exception being in favor of abortion rights, I could not vote for them.   Even if every single other issue was perfectly in line with the Church, I could not vote for them.  Even if they have the most upstanding personal moral character, I could not vote for them

The more I thought about this, the more I could not help shake that notion.


I think of it like this:  If today, that person I described was, instead of being pro-abortion, was pro-slavery, could you vote for them?   If they agreed with 100% on every other issue, but just happened to slip up on the issue of slavery, would you vote for them?  I do not think this is an apples and oranges comparison.  Both of those are clearly mortal sins.  Both of those are a disgrace to our country.  Both of those are an outrage before our Lord.   The reason we do not think this way is because of the culture we live in.   


The founding fathers knew that slavery was against the moral order.  They spoke out against it.  They also knew they would never be able to form the union with the southern states if they didn’t allow it.  Thomas Jefferson famously said about slavery, “”But as it is, we have the wolf by the ear, and we can neither hold him, nor safely let him go. Justice is in one scale, and self-preservation in the other.”  So, while they knew it was wrong, they pushed it off to the following generation of leaders to fix.  Instead of being fixed in the following generation, the slave trade grew exponentially therefore making it more difficult to stop.  Here is a quote from a book I recently read on the topic:

“Thanks to both the South’s total reliance on slavery and the growing antislavery sentiment of the North, the arguments regarding slavery began to change.  Southern advocates began to argue the morality of slavery – particularly John C. Calhoun, an ardent white supremacist – and insisted that the federal government enshrine slavery for all time, force free states to return escaped slaved, and allow for the expansion of slavery into new territories. The positive argument for slavery was actually a new development – before the rise of abolitionism, even the slaveholder had tolerated, but derided the immorality of slavery.  Calhoun infamously stated that the key tenet of the Declaration of Independence, that “all men are created equal” produced “poisonous fruit” – such as the argument that slaves ought to be free.”

End quote. From slaveholders like Thomas Jefferson and George Washington who understood that it was amoral, but tolerated it, the landscape shifted over time to a vehement promotion of the goods of slavery.

I believe a similar thing has happened on the issue of abortion.  Not too long ago, Bill Clinton talked about abortion rights in the context of “safe, legal and rare”.  Today, we hear “shout your abortion”, it is “a positive good”, its “healthcare”.  The days of “safe, legal and rare” are long gone on the pro-abortion side.  Which isn’t totally surprising.  Safe and legal make sense, but rare?  Rare would imply that we do not want to have them for some reason.  It would mean that there is something in abortion that would lend itself to wanting to be rare.  That is heresy today.  At least the people on the pro-abortion side 30 years ago were able to admit it is something we did not to see the proliferation of.  They understood, rightly, that this is not a good thing.  But, as the progressive movement has shifted the landscape those people have been left behind.  Today, like slavery in the south in the 1850’s, it is a positive good.


The progressives in favor of abortion have changed the language such that it numbs you to what is actually taking place.  It is now “healthcare” and a  “women’s right to choose”, instead of what it actually is, the murdering of unborn persons. This same thing happened during the years of slavery. In order to numb society to the  evils of slavery, the pro-slavery contingent purposefully used language to help desensitize people to the atrocity.  I should warn you that the following language is extremely offensive, and should serve to remind of you of the atrocity of slavery and the mindset enabling it:

  • During the days of slavery, Blacks were called “dregs of humanity,” and were considered “exactly intermediate between the superior order of beasts such as elephant, dog, and orangutan, and European or white men.”[4]
  • Other slave owners referred to the slave’s “ignorance, brutality, obscenity, animal appetite, viciousness, and illegitimacy,” and called them “ignorant, perverse, wicked, the pest of white men, and agents of satan.”[5]
  • Today in America, the same dehumanizing terms are used as an effective weapon against the preborn. The following terms, used by anti-life writers to describe the unborn, are all extracted from pro-abortion literature; they liken babies to:
    • “Just like fingernail clippings or warts;”
    • Products of conception, contents of the uterus;
    • Little worms or maggots;
    • Blob of tissue, parasite, leech;
    • A kind of venereal disease;


These types of deceptions keep you from realizing the horrors of abortion and dehumanize it completely. Here is an actual summary of what happens in an abortion. Again, this is rather graphic, but important to understand:

Suction Aspiration (Suction Curettage)

The woman’s cervix is dilated and a suction instrument with a blade-like tip is inserted into the uterus. The placenta and the embryo or fetus is cut into pieces and suctioned out. This procedure is usually performed up to 16 weeks gestation.

Dilation and Extraction (D & X) procedure

The woman’s cervix is dilated for approximately two days before delivery with absorbent laminaria that are inserted into the entrance of the uterus. The day of the surgery, they are removed and the membranes are ruptured. An ultrasound is used to locate the fetus’ position in the womb. The doctor locates the fetus’ lower extremities, inserts large, grasping forceps through the vagina and cervical canal and into the uterus where he can grasp the child’s leg. The leg is pulled through the vagina until the lower extremities, torso, shoulders, and upper extremities are delivered. The child is situated spine up, face down with the head lodged at the opening of the cervix. There is usually not enough dilation for the skull to pass through. The doctor runs his fingers along the spine to find the base of the skull. Blunt, curved scissors are inserted into the skull and spread to enlarge the opening. The scissors are removed and a suction catheter is inserted into the skull to remove the brain. The head collapses and the now dead child is delivered. The placenta is removed with forceps and a suction curette is used to scrape the uterine wall for any tissue left in the womb. This procedure can be performed from 20 weeks into the pregnancy (second trimester) until full terms (40 weeks LMP).21

This is not healthcare.  This is not a women’s right.  This is not a positive good.  It is murder.  Plain and simple.  But, we, like the people who grew up in the south in the 1800s, have been purposefully deceived and desensitize.  Like the people in the south in the 1800s, we have been told that these are not human beings, we have been told this is a positive good for society.   

And they have been successful in doing so. In 2017, approximately 18% of U.S. pregnancies ended in abortion.  In 2016, approximately 34% of all pregnancies in New York City ended in abortion. More than 60 million legal abortions have occurred in the United States since 1973. 60 million. That is the population of entire state of Iowa, 20 times. That is the equivalent of the entire metro areas of NY, LA, Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Philadelphia, and Phoenix.  The numbers are staggering. 60,000,000 children who never had an opportunity to live.


Catholic voter guide

Joe Stopulos, host of MAN UP on Iowa Catholic Radio

This issue is also personal to me.  I had a lot of time to think about this while I was spending the night in the hospital after the birth of my fifth child a few weeks ago.  I have heard the heart beats of all of my children at 8 weeks.  I have seen them all in their 20 week ultrasound.  For anyone who hasn’t seen one, you are basically watching a fully formed human on a TV screen.  Head, arms, feet, toes, spine, heart, face, nose, everything.  It’s an incredible moment. In addition to my own children, I have a niece and a nephew who both gave me new perspective on the issue of abortion.

My during my sister’s third pregnancy, a test early on revealed that her child was going to be born with some serious complications and special needs.  This news was obviously not expected, but we all banded together and embraced what was going to be a life changing situation for my sister and brother-in-law, and our entire family.  It is in situations like this where abortions are common; where a person who is not as strong as my sister to make the life affirming decision, or someone who has been told it is just a clump of cells, or someone who has been convinced by the pro-abortion movement that this child is better off not being born and you are doing them a favor.  As the pregnancy processed, none of the signs changed, and while we held out hope for a healthy child, we prepared for the arrival of our special needs family member.  Fast forward a few months, and when she was born, she was a perfectly healthy baby girl.  Grace is also my god-daughter.  I shudder to think how many Graces out there are not alive today because of a faulty test.  Because of a society that says if you are not perfect in the world’s eyes, you are not worth being in the world.  Because of a child being a burden is too much to bear and you are encouraged to discard them in order to concentrate on your career, or other aspirations.

Another example in my life is of my nephew Alex.  My sister-in-law unexpectedly when into labor at 24 weeks.  For those of you who don’t have kids, that is about halfway through a pregnancy.  My wife and I don’t even start talking about names until well after that.  Point being, it is extremely early in the pregnancy.  Luckily for us they live 45 minutes from the University of Iowa Children’s hospital.  She gave birth to our nephew Alexander and he weighed in at 1 lb. 8 oz and could fit in your hand.  That said, he was just a little person.  Not a potential person.  Not a clump of cells.  A person.  Albeit, a very very little person.  Today, he is a perfectly healthy 6 year old.  He has zero complications.  He might be the most energic and smiley 6 year old I know.  The pro-abortion movement would say children at 24 weeks are not children.  They don’t have a right to live if the mother doesn’t want them to live.  People, this is demonic.  It is actually demonic.  When you see my nephew Alex and my niece Grace and you look at their faces and realize how many million children like them do not exist today under the guise of the “right to choose”, “women’s rights”, or “healthcare”


As I said before, we are a product of the culture we live in.  Every one of us is inherently influenced by our surroundings.  Just like the people who were in favor of slavery in the 1800s, I have empathy for many of the pro-choice people today.   It is easy to sit here in 2020 and look down on all of the people who were pro-slavery.  Earlier this year a favorite thinker of mine, Robert P. George, who is a professor at Princeton wrote this:

  • Sometimes ask students what their position on slavery would have been had they been white and living in the South before abolition. Guess what? They all would have been abolitionists! They all would have bravely spoken out against slavery, and worked tirelessly against it.
  • Of course, this is nonsense. Only the tiniest fraction of them, or of any of us, would have spoken up against slavery or lifted a finger to free the slaves. Most of them—and us—would have gone along. Many would have supported the slave system and happily benefited from it.
  • So I respond by saying that I will credit their claims if they can show evidence of the following: that in leading their lives today they have stood up for the rights of unpopular victims of injustice whose very humanity is denied, and where they have done so knowing:
  • (1) that it would make them unpopular with their peers, (2) that they would be loathed and ridiculed by powerful, influential individuals and institutions in our society; (3) that they would be abandoned by many of their friends, (4) that they would be called nasty names, and
  • (5) that they would risk being denied valuable professional opportunities as a result of their moral witness. In short, my challenge is to show where they have at risk to themselves and their futures stood up for a cause that is unpopular in elite sectors of our culture today.

With the context of history, I do not fully condemn people for having certain views at certain times.  I would like to think many of those same people, if alive today, would be horrified at the stances they had, but were a product of the culture they grew up and lived in.

I believe, that just as we look back to the 1800s with horror at the sins of slavery on our nation, and just as we look back at the child sacrifice rituals of the Aztec and Inca cultures, we will similarly look back in our history with horror at the proliferation of abortion.  How casually we destroyed millions of human lives in the name of convenience and selfishness.

A couple final notes to mention.  Recently, Chrissy Teigen posted on Instagram an emotional picture and message explaining that they had lost their son Jack due to miscarriage.  The baby, I believe, was around 18 weeks.   The outpouring of support and condolences from all corners of the internet was overwhelming, in the 10,000,000 of millions of responses.  And rightfully so.  This person lost a baby.  She didn’t lose a clump of cells, or a potential baby, she lost her son, Jack.  We as a society have to understand this, and I believe most people in their hearts do.  What else could it be other than a baby?

Furthermore, to emphasize that I think we do understand this, we have laws that criminally punish people for the destruction of Bald Eagle eggs.   Under the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act the first criminal offense is a misdemeanor with maximum penalty of one year in prison and $100,000 fine. The second offense becomes a felony with maximum penalty of 2 years in prison and $250,000 fine. We are not talking about fully formed Bald Eagle, but an egg.

My nephew Alexander, was a human being at 24 weeks.  He was a human being at 20 weeks.  He was a human being at 8 weeks. He was a human being from the moment he was conceived.  We understand that with Eagles, I sure hope we can as a society understand that for humans.

All of that said, I know many people who are practicing Catholics who will echo the words of Jeannie Gaffigan, the wife of comedian Jim Gaffigan, that she wrote in the Jesuit publication America Magazine last week on this issue.  She says, and I quote

“How can we strive to heal the tragedy of abortion without acknowledging the deep wounds and life-threatening crises that drive people to it? How arrogant we are to condemn women of any color living in poverty, faced with the unimaginable and horrific circumstances that would drive them to seek an abortion, without taking a good look at how we have failed them by not offering adequate health care, child care, education and employment opportunities? Do we ever stop to think about how far we are from achieving a “culture of life” in light of the well-documented and video-recorded police brutality against Black Americans? Are refugee children, homeless pregnant women or the prisoners on death row not also “society’s most vulnerable”?”

Healthcare, racism, education, child care; these are all extremely important issues.  That said, those are issues with which we can have a debate on the best way to fix them.  To just turn a blind eye to the horrors and evils of abortion in the name of a preferred healthcare or education policy is not the answer.  We need people, especially people like Jeannie Gaffigan, to stand up to the pro-abortion candidates and say “I really want to support you for all of these reasons, but cannot because of your abhorrent stance on abortion.”  And I am not saying to then go support the other candidate if you don’t like them.  I have not voted in elections for specific offices (even president) where I did not believe I had a good choice.  But, to equate the importance your preferred education or healthcare policy on the same plane as the widespread legal murdering of children, is not an honest weighing of the issues.

It is with all of that in mind, that I cannot, under any circumstance support a candidate who is pro-choice. Just as I could not support a candidate, not matter how much I liked them, or hated the person they were running against, who was pro-slavery.  And furthermore, even if the candidate says “I am not personally for abortion, but I am not going to infringe my beliefs on a woman and her doctor”, that is the same thing as saying “I would not personally own slaves, but I am not going to infringe on the rights of someone to own slaves.”  If you “are not personally for abortion” there is probably a good reason for that.  We need to have politicians who can stand up against the radical pro-choice progressives of this country.

If all Catholics and Christians (and other believers) stood up and unanimously said, “we will not support any more candidates who are in favor of abortion” politicians would respond.  I have a lot of friends who are practicing Catholics who support many of the positions of certain pro-choice politicians, yet abhor abortion, and still vote for the candidate.   I am saying, if we all stand up against this, we can make change.  If we do not donate another dollar to pro-choice politicians, or cast one more vote for them, while explaining to them why, we will make progress.  If we, as Christians band together, regardless of our stances on education, immigration, healthcare and the like, and make it clear we will not go along with the pro-abortion movement any more, we can, and we will make change.   

[Thanks to Joe Stopulos and Iowan Catholic Radio for permission to publish Monday’s edition of “MAN UP.” You can listen to this show every Monday morning at 9AM and 9PM at 1150AM and 88.5 and 94.5FM.]

Joni Ernst responds to concerned Iowan

Oct 14, 2020 |
Senator Joni Ernst


Senator Joni ErnstThank you for taking the time to contact me about federal policies impacting life and funding for Planned Parenthood Federation of America. It is important for me to hear from folks in Iowa on matters such as this.

I am committed to defending life, because protecting our most vulnerable is an important measure of any society. In fulfillment of that commitment, I have supported a number of measures to protect the sanctity of life at every stage of development, safeguard women’s health, and shine a light on the realities of abortion.

On January 16, 2019, I introduced a bill to redirect federal funding away from Planned Parenthood of America – the nation’s single largest provider of abortions. This legislation would ensure the preservation of federal funding for women’s health care services, as funds no longer available to Planned Parenthood would continue to be offered to other eligible entities such as federally qualified health centers. Not only do federally qualified health centers greatly outnumber Planned Parenthood clinics nationwide, but they also provide greater preventative and primary health care services – including voluntary family planning services, excluding abortion – regardless of a person’s ability to pay.

Taxpayers should not be forced to subsidize the abortion industry, nor should they be forced to foot the bill for an organization like Planned Parenthood. As such, I am also a cosponsor of the No Taxpayer Funding for Abortion and Abortion Insurance Full Disclosure Act of 2019. This legislation would codify the Hyde Amendment, which prohibits federal funds from paying for abortion, and improve disclosure requirements related to insurance coverage of abortion.

Please know that I will continue to keep your views in mind moving forward. Feel free to contact my office with additional information, as I always appreciate hearing from Iowans.

[This is the letter an Iowans for LIFE board member received from Senator Joni Ernst to an inquiry about taxpayer funding of Planned Parenthood.]

“We are staring into the abyss”

Oct 13, 2020 |
Fr. Edward Meeks


Why are Supreme Court nominations so contentious these days? It didn’t used to be this way, you know. Abortion poisoned the process. Abortion has poisoned America. Abortion poisons everything. A Catholic priest, Fr. Edward Meeks, delivered a riveting homily (above) last weekend in his parish in Towson, MD. The theme pulled no punches:

“Abortion is the primary cause and the primary symptom of a society in a death spiral.”

He called out Catholic politicians, Joe Biden specifically, who oppose Church teachings in the public square:

“It’s time for faithful Catholics to stand up and say ‘enough is enough’ to all office holders who claim to be devout Catholics while publicly and obstinately contradicting the church and subverting Her teachings.”

You can listen to his entire homily above

You really should. Fr. Meeks points out that the stakes are high:

“We as a nation are staring into the abyss, stemming from our culture’s wholesale rejection of God and His law, a rejection manifested most tangibly in five decades of legalized abortion.”

He quotes the Venerable Fulton Sheen:

“A nation always gets the kind of politicians it deserves. If a time ever comes when the religious Jews, Protestants and Catholics ever have to suffer under a totalitarian state, which would deny to them the right to worship God according to the light of their conscience, it will be because for years they thought it made no difference what kind of people represented them in Congress, and because they abandoned the spiritual in the realm of the temporal.”

Pro-abortion politicians threaten our religious liberty, because they know that the Church is their most formidable adversary. Why do you think they shut down churches during a pandemic while allowing rioters to pillage our communities?

These politicians make the case that human abortion is really all about ‘healthcare’ and ‘women’s liberation.’ They put the temporal first at the expense of the spiritual.

Fr. Edward Meeks pushes back and implores his parish to “think with the Church.” Think … and vote … pro-life.

If we allow abortion, we can allow anything. You’ve seen what’s happened since Roe: 61 million unique human beings have deprived of their life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness.

Yes, we are staring into the abyss. You are called to vote with the Church by voting pro-life. It’s that simple.

Iowa Judge Voter Guide

Oct 7, 2020 |

We have put together a comprehensive voters guide for you to read before you go to the polls to vote. Please click on the link below to open the guide. Much is at stake.

Click Here: Iowa Judge Voter Guide

Iowans for LIFE responds to the Des Moines Register

Oct 2, 2020 |
Iowans for LIFE responds to the Des Moines Register

By Maggie DeWitte

Iowans for LIFE responds to the Des Moines RegisterContrary to Danielle Burmeister’s October 2nd guest editorial, evidence does NOT suggest that abortion rates are reduced under Democratic presidents. Just the contrary. Let’s clear the air on several issues she touched upon.

She points out that NBC News reports that 30% of Republicans vote on a single issue: abortion. However, abortion is at least six issues, not one. For starters, Democrats want to federalize abortion and make it available for all nine months of a pregnancy in all fifty states. In Iowa, restrictions apply after 20 weeks.

The Hyde Amendment

The Biden ticket makes it clear they want to abolish the Hyde Amendment and make taxpayers pay for abortions in the U.S., even faithful Catholics, who consider abortion a grave sin. This is the second Life issue at stake this election. The third: a Biden presidency would quickly negate the Mexico City policy which prevents the U.S. government from using taxpayer dollars to export abortion to other countries.

Born-alive legislation

The fourth life issue is one-party’s refusal to support born-alive legislation. Hundreds of babies survive abortion every year. This law would require doctors to treat these survivors like any other baby instead of letting them die. It would sanction doctors who don’t. How could anyone oppose such compassionate legislation? And yet Democrats have blocked it more than 80 times.

A fifth: if the progressive wing of the Democratic Party has their way, they’d impose Medicare for All on the country. If it passes, it requires Catholic doctors and nurses to violate their consciences and participate in abortions, or lose their jobs.

The racism of abortion

And perhaps the worst part of this whole conversation, considering the times in which we live, is the sixth life issue. Abortion is racist.

The African-American community is disproportionately impacted by human abortion, because nearly half of all black babies in the womb are aborted. Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, actively called for the reduction of undesirable populations, whom she called “human weeds.” But even Sanger opposed abortion. Today, blacks represent only 13% of our population, but 35% of all abortions. One party calls for more funding of Planned Parenthood, even though they know it affects blacks far more than any other group. The African-American birth rate is already below-replacement level because of abortion.

Do they actually want it to plunge even further?

So you can see that abortion is far more than a single issue. I haven’t even touched upon Kamala Harris’ plan to require “pre-clearance” on any pro-life legislation passed at the state level.

Snopes weighs in

As to Ms. Burmeister’s assertion that abortion rates drop more under Democratic presidents than Republican, even Snopes calls this false:

“At most, one can argue that the rate of decline appeared to slow during the presidency of George W. Bush before increasing under President Barack Obama’s administration, but such an observation would be based on a comparison between only two administrations and would do nothing to demonstrate causation.”

The real cause of the drop in the abortion rate

So what is the cause of the decline of abortion rates between 2008 and 2016? In fact, the cause is specific. Most of the pro-life strides come at the state level.

During Obama’s two terms, the Democrats suffered their largest drop of power since the Eisenhower years. When he came into power, his party controlled both chambers of 27 state legislatures, but only 13 when he left, including Iowa. In all they lost 816 state legislative seats, plus 13 Governorships.

Mr. Obama’s lack of coattails allowed pro-life representation to soar at the state level, resulting in a smorgasbord of life-saving legislation. In other words, any honest assessment of the data, as Snopes makes clear, needs to look at cause and effect, not just effect. The cause: more pro-life legislators elected at state levels; the effect: a decline in human abortion.

What can you do to support life? PRAY at the 2020 Life Chain this Sunday.

Sep 29, 2020 |
2020 Life Chain

2019 Life ChainIowans for LIFE asks you to join us at the 2020 Life Chain from 2 to 3:30PM on Sunday, October 4th.

Prayer moves mountains. Prayer sustains this movement and changes hearts and minds through the mysterious grace and power of the Holy Spirit. And prayer unites Catholics and Protestants, men and women, and even friend and foe.

The LIFE CHAIN is your opportunity to make a beautiful witness to thousands of citizens in our fair city that the dignity of human life matters so much, that you’re willing to publicly stand up and proclaim it.

YOU are needed. And YOUR friends are needed at this event, so reach out to them. If they’ve never attended and don’t know the ropes, offer to pick them and drive them.

Here are the details:

DATE:  Sunday, October 4, 2020

TIME:  2 to 3:30PM (stay as long as you can, but don’t worry if you have to leave early)

PLACE:  St. Teresa Catholic Church @ the corner of University and Merle Hay Rd. Park in the parking lot on the West side of the church, where you can also pick up a sign.

QUESTIONS: Call Iowans for LIFE at 515-255-4113.

True or False: Abortion rates drop under Democratic presidents?

Sep 25, 2020 |
true or false

true or falseProgressive Catholic voters are spreading info that a vote for Democrats is actually a pro-life vote. Here’s how they express their rationale:

“For anyone who opposes Trump but hesitates to vote Democrat because of the abortion issue, here’s some food for thought:

Neither party wants to see abortions increase. The difference is in strategy:  the Republicans’ approach of “Make it illegal” vs. the Democrats’ approach of “make it unnecessary.”  Which is more effective? The numbers speak for themselves.”

This trope rolls around every election cycle. The graphic below is pretty convincing, isn’t it? How should pro-life Catholics (the term should be redundant) respond to their kids and friends who throw this in their faces every four years?

Let’s deconstruct the argument in a Q & A format.

Q. Generally speaking, is it really true? Do abortions really decline more during Democratic presidencies than Republican?

A. No, not according to Snopes who label the assertion false:

“The claim that abortion rates fall under Democrats, while true, ignores the fact that rates have also continued to decline through Republican administrations as well.

The claim, then, that abortion rates (at least since their mid-1980s peak) have risen when Republicans have held the White House is therefore equally false. At most, one can argue that the rate of decline appeared to slow during the presidency of George W. Bush before increasing under President Barack Obama’s administration, but such an observation would be based on a comparison between only two administrations and would do nothing to demonstrate causation.”

Q. The chart above shows a nice decline during the Obama years compared to the George W. Bush years. So how do you explain that?

A. Most of the pro-life strides come at the state level. During Obama’s two terms, the Democrats suffered their largest drop of power since the Eisenhower years. When he came into power, his party controlled both chambers of 27 state legislatures, but only 13 when he left, including Iowa. In all they lost 816 state legislative seats, plus 13 Governorships.

Mr. Obama’s lack of coattails allowed pro-life representation to soar at the state level, resulting in a smorgasbord of life-saving legislation. In other words, any honest assessment of the data, as Snopes makes clear, needs to look at cause and effect, not just effect. The cause: more pro-life (Republican) legislators elected at state levels; the effect: a decline in human abortion.

Q. Progressive Catholics assert that “neither party wants to see abortions increase.” Is that accurate?

A. No. Democratic support groups encourage women to “shout their abortion,” even running billboards with those words. The doesn’t sound like a good way to decrease abortions, does it?

Nor do the Democrats’ reproductive policies. They call for an end to all regulations on abortion for an entire nine months of a pregnancy; they call for taxpayers to pay for it by a combination of ending the Hyde Amendment and passing Medicare for All; and they call for an end of the Mexico City policy, which prevents the use of taxpayer money to pay for abortions in other countries.

Each of these policies, if enacted, will increase the quantity of abortions, not decrease it.

Q. Let’s look at the chart again. There was a huge drop in abortions during the Clinton administration. How do you explain that?

A. The data cited comes from the CDC, which is not reliable when it comes to abortion reporting.  Even more, the state with the most abortions in the U.S., California, stopped reporting their numbers during the Clinton years.  So of course numbers would drop: California isn’t included.

By the same token, Republicans won control of the House of Representative for the first time in 4 decades, and installed a conservative, pro-life Speaker in Newt Gingrich to counter President Clinton’s abortion sympathies.

Q. Are there any other reasons why abortion rates have been steadily dropping since the 80s?

A. Stricter abortion laws at the state level, as demonstrated above, have made a difference. But there’s been a change in attitude, too. Women have an opportunity to see their baby in the womb via ultrasounds. Something like 8 out 10 women who view an ultrasound decide not to abort. And pro-life groups like Iowans for LIFE have been educating women on healthy alternatives to abortion and on the sanctity of life. It has made a big difference.

Q. How accurate is abortion data?

A. Not as accurate as pro-lifers would like, because chemical abortions aren’t reported with the accuracy of surgical abortions.

Even the Guttmacher Institute (Planned Parenthood’s research group) admits that reporting on medical/chemical abortion is spotty.  As the brick and mortar abortion businesses close, the abortion industry has found a new and innovative way to kill babies and harm women. Here in Iowa, the RU-486 abortion pill is now being delivered via the U.S. Postal Service.

Q. Does any of the above matter to progressive Catholic voters?

A. It should. The Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches that the means do not justify the ends:

1756 It is therefore an error to judge the morality of human acts by considering only the intention that inspires them or the circumstances (environment, social pressure, duress or emergency, etc.) which supply their context. There are acts which, in and of themselves, independently of circumstances and intentions, are always gravely illicit by reason of their object; such as blasphemy and perjury, murder and adultery. One may not do evil so that good may result from it.

Not only does the Democratic party want to eliminate state abortion regulations and have taxpayers pay for abortions, they insist upon removing conscience protections for Catholic doctors and nurses who do not want to participate in abortion procedures.

So to the question: do abortion rates drop under Democratic presidents? No, they don’t. They decline IN SPITE of them. And if the party has an opportunity to implement their more ‘progressive’ reproductive policies they now call for, look for a spike in human abortion, not the decline that we’re seeing during the current administration.

A gash in American history

Sep 24, 2020 | Comments Off on A gash in American history
a gash in American history

a gash in American historySomething happened halfway between Herbert Hoover’s presidency and Donald Trump’s that scarred our nation. To this day, it is the elephant in the voting booth.

The wound manifests itself in a variety of ways, most recently on display in the Brett Kavanaugh confirmation hearings. It is again on display in the aftermath of Ruth Bader Ginsberg’s death (may she rest in peace). 

Ginsberg’s replacement?

Amy Coney Barrett, a circuit judge on the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Seventh Circuit, is a leading contender to replace Ms. Ginsberg. Barrett’s Catholicism led adversarial Senators to grill her aggressively in her last confirmation hearing.

Like Barrett, Joe Biden identifies as a Roman Catholic. He even acknowledges his Church’s position on life:

“I’m prepared to accept that at the moment of conception there’s human life and being:”

But he qualifies this view:

“… but I’m not prepared to say that to other God-fearing, non-God-fearing people that have a different view.”

However, he IS willing to allow these other ‘God-fearing’ and non-God-fearing people to impose their views on pro-life taxpayers and Catholic doctors and nurses, whom they insist must pay for and perform abortions.

Although she is not yet formerly nominated, nor may not be, a media frenzy has already been unleashed. A liberal website, Refinery 29, headlined a piece, “the Potential RBG Replacement Who Hates Your Uterus.”


“People of Praise”

Barrett is a member of a religious group called “People of Praise.” Newsweek suggested they were the inspiration for Margaret Atwood’s novel, “The Handmaid’s Tale.” They weren’t. Newsweek was forced to correct their piece.

Look for more media hysteria in the days to come. So what is the cause of all of this hysteria?

Consider the 90 year sweep since the Hoover presidency. Ninety-seven percent of judges put forward for the Supreme Court received an affirmative vote in the first half of this sweep.

97% verses 75%

Something strange happened in the second half: judges on average received but a 75% affirmative vote rate.

Let that soak in:  97% verses 75%. And President Trump’s two nominees have only been approved by 52% of Senators.

Something profound happened to alter the way judges were confirmed midway between Hoover and Trump.

And consider this: a voice vote was used 17 times to confirm judges in the first half of this ninety year sweep, and none since.

A voice vote is essentially unanimous approval.

A gash in American history

The Supreme Court inflicted a gash in American history on January 22nd, 1973 which altered the political landscape to this day. It made it more difficult to confirm judges who affirmed the original intent of the Constitution.

Of course, Iowans for LIFE refers to the Roe v Wade decision and the even more insidious Doe v. Bolton decision, decided the same day. They opened the door to human abortion for the entire nine month sweep of a pregnancy.

Roe and Doe weren’t subtle decisions. In an instant, they created a multi-billion dollar industry known as Big Abortion which seduced and coerced formerly pro life politicians to recant their sins and convert to a new, anti-life faith.

In an instant, it opened the door to not just a trickle of abortions, but a bloody gusher.

Sixty million abortions later, this single court decision remains the elephant in the voting booth.  The vast majority of election match-ups pit a pro-life candidate against a pro-abortion candidate.

Is the term ‘pro-abortion’ fair?

Some readers of this blog will bristle at our use of the term ‘pro-abortion,’ and yet it is an apt term. A generation ago, a pro-choice president, Bill Clinton, said that “abortion is a fundamental Constitutional right” that should be “safe, legal … and rare.”

Presidential candidate, Hillary Clinton, reiterated her husband’s view in 2008 in even more passionate terms when she said she wanted abortion “safe, legal, and rare, and by rare, I mean rare.”

And yet this makes no sense.

If candidates like Mrs. Clinton believe human abortion is a “fundamental Constitutional right,” how could it ever be rare?

And it especially makes no sense when her party campaigns for taxpayer funded abortions for the full nine months of a pregnancy. This policy will make Big Abortion bigger and richer as it makes abortion more prevalent.

The more abortions, the more lucre for Big Abortion and the greater the campaign donations for ‘pro-choice’ politicians.

60 million abortions is not rare

Yes, ‘pro-abortion’ is really a more honest expression. It is acutely honest in light of 60 million abortions since Roe, a figure which is certainly not “rare.”

The last great social gash in our history was slavery, and the riches it bestowed upon the slaves’ oppressors. Writing in the National Review, historian Victor Davis Hanson described the slave issue this way:

“But by 1861, an array of other differences had magnified the great divide over slavery. The plantation class of the South had grown fabulously rich — and solely dependent — on King Cotton and by extension slave labor.”

Today, many issues divide us, but none like human abortion.  As with slavery, the money is big for human abortionists.  When the late-term abortion “doctor,” Kermit Gosnell was arrested in his home, the police found $240,000 in CASH under his bed.

Shouldn’t we vote on more than a single issue?

Some readers of this essay will demur and claim that other issues need to be considered when voting for a candidate, that single issue voting makes no sense.

Do you really believe that?

After all, you can’t talk about immigration if the immigrant was aborted.

After all, you can’t talk about the price of health insurance if you were aborted.

And after all, you can’t talk about gay marriage, or gender reassignment, or plastic straws if you’ve been aborted.

The life issue is foundational. Besides, it is not a single issue. It is at least six as we covered last week.

The only nation founded on a Creed

This nation was built upon a creed that acknowledged life (along with liberty and the pursuit of happiness) as a fundamental, immutable, God-given right.

A vote for a pro-abortion candidate is a denial of this divine right for the millions of unique individuals who will be aborted before the next election cycle.

Abortion is a blight on America. It is a laceration that bleeds the blood of the innocent by obscene bucketfuls day by day, hour by hour, minute by minute.

It must stop.

Today, vote for candidates who affirm the dignity of the human person from fertilization to natural death.

The myth of the single issue pro-life voter

Sep 16, 2020 | Comments Off on The myth of the single issue pro-life voter
single issue pro-life voter

single issue pro-life voter“How can you vote for that man and that party?”

the daughter sobbed hysterically to her shellshocked parents.

“You’re nothing but a single issue pro-life voter. I can’t even talk with you right now!”

In a conversation between a group of pro-lifers, the scenario above was reported not once, not twice, but three times. Has anything like this happened to you?

These conversations often occur between a Millennial son or daughter, indoctrinated by our universities, and their more conservative, pro-life parents. Sometimes the child lives at home, sometimes he or she lives elsewhere, established in their own lives and careers. Either way, the challenge of traversing the political landmines of our our age is daunting.

Conversations are difficult, because they quickly become emotionally-charged. What’s a parent to do?

If your child asks for whom you are going to vote, you might respond,

“why do you ask? I’m happy to discuss the issues with you if you really want to know.”

They usually don’t. Chances are, they want you to agree with them, and if you don’t, there isn’t going to be a real conversation. More likely, the exchange will quickly become emotionally-charged, and ultimately unproductive.

Focus on issues

The best approach is to focus on issues and what you think are the best policies to solve the issues. Avoid personalities. After all, who would vote for someone they like, but would pursue destructive policies?

By the same token, who wouldn’t vote for someone they don’t like, but would pursue constructive policies when compared to the other candidate?

Iowans for LIFE is concerned with life issues. Readers of our blog know that they are often accused of being a single issue pro-life voter. So when your child hurls an emotionally-charged accusation at you that “you’re nothing but a single issue pro-life voter,” remain calm. Take a deep breath. Say something like this:

Issue one

“Actually, you’re mistaken. The life issue is far from a single topic when it comes to politics and public policies. It is six. Thank-you for respecting me enough to clear the air on this important subject.

I believe that it is always immoral to kill an innocent human being, which is what I always taught you. My belief is grounded in my faith and in science. In a recent survey of biologists, 96% of biologists stated that human life begins at fertilization.

And yet one political party calls for abortion-on-demand for the entire nine months of a woman’s pregnancy. That’s around 800,000 human beings killed every single year. I can’t vote for a party that calls for that, and that’s just one life issue.

Issue two

The second is they want taxpayers to pay for it. Have you read about Medicare for All? It’s in the language of their proposed legislation. Even more, one party calls for the end of the Hyde Amendment, which prevents the use of taxpayer money for abortions. I can’t in good conscience vote for a party that demands that I pay for the killing of innocent human life.

It gets worse.

Issue three

The third life issue is one-party’s refusal to support born-alive legislation. Hundreds of babies survive abortion every year. This law would require doctors to treat these survivors like any other baby instead of letting them die. It would sanction doctors who don’t. How could anyone oppose such compassionate legislation?

If possible, it gets still worse.

Issue four

The fourth issue is Medicare for All. If it passes, it requires Catholic doctors and nurses, and other people of faith, to violate their consciences and participate in abortions, or lose their jobs. It’s already happening in some locales. It just happened to a young, female doctor in Portland last year.

I’ve heard candidates … I’m sure you’ve heard them, too … tell us we Catholics can’t impose our religion on someone else. What do you think they’re doing but imposing their own religion on us? I can’t vote for a party that calls for that.

Issue five

And it get even worse with the fifth life issue. The abortion party wants to end the Mexico City Policy, which prevents the U.S. government from using taxpayer dollars to export abortion to other countries.

Issue six

And perhaps the worst part of this whole conversation, considering the times in which we live, is the sixth life issue. Abortion is racist.

The African-American community is disproportionately impacted by human abortion, because nearly half of all black babies in the womb are aborted. Margaret Sanger, the founder of Planned Parenthood, actively called for the reduction of undesirable populations, whom she called “human weeds.” But even Sanger opposed abortion. Today, blacks represent only 13% of our population, but 35% of all abortions. One party calls for more funding of Planned Parenthood, even though they know it affects blacks way more than any other group. The African-American birth rate is below-replacement level, because of abortion.

What can be more racist than that?

Again, thank-you for respecting me enough to explain why the life issue is far more complex than a single issue. I’m always interested in discussing other issues like immigration, the economy, and foreign policy. But these subjects pale in comparison to the 60 million deaths directly attributable to abortion since 1973.

There is no nuance between parties or candidates on the life issue. That’s why I vote for the life candidate every time.”