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Truth And Candor

September 25, 2018 Featured Today No Comments

By DONALD DeMARCO

Archbishop Charles J. Chaput, in his book, Strangers in a Strange Land: Living the Catholic Faith in a Post-Christian World, makes two most important points when he reminds all those who love life that “candor is not the enemy of love” and that “real hope begins in honesty.” Candor may disturb one’s complacency. It may seem rude and uninviting. Honesty, on the other hand, might be seen as a harbinger of the unacceptable.
But more is at stake in the world today than avoiding candor and honesty while bowing to the power elite. The avenues of communication must be repaired so that people can work together and so that civilization may flourish. The virtuous natures of candor and honesty must be recognized and restored.
The pro-abortion movement, including members of the LGBTQ, has become unrestrained in its boldness. The rainbow flag, which does not include all the colors of the rainbow and symbolizes the LGBTQ movement, now waves at the U.S. Embassy in Macedonia. Disney’s Mickey Mouse now sports rainbow ears. The city of Atlanta, Ga., has spent $200,000 on a rainbow crosswalk. A pro-homosexual group in Malta uses the rainbow flag as an altar cloth. Force has met with compliance. How far will things go? Restraint is not part of the LGBTQ vocabulary.
The New York City Pride Parade on June 24, 2018 featured a float bearing the words, “Thank God for abortion.” The float is the brainstorm of a woman who identifies herself as a “queer feminist.” She contends that she was “blessed” with two abortions and wanted to provide a spectacle of “autonomy and conviction.” The fundraising associated with the event exceeded its goal of $6,000. Here, shamelessness is combined with desperation. No human being can claim “autonomy” for herself.
Abortion does not confer autonomy; it destroys the life of another and is often followed by profound regret on the part of the aborting woman. Putting this view on public display should provoke disgust, not raise money.
It is interesting that pro-abortion advocates have now appropriated the notion of God that pro-life people were forbidden to use. This theology, however, is horribly inverted. Why would a God, who presumably blesses people, bless them for destroying what He has created? Is the God of life also the God of death? Is this God one who cannot make up His mind? If abortion is a blessed event, what adjectives could describe giving birth to a child? Would this be unblessed, even sinful?
How do women who promote abortion view their own birth? Do they rail against their own mothers for not preferring the more “blessed” event? To rationalize abortion is to turn the world upside down.
In Canada, a corporation that operates ferries in British Columbia displays rainbow flags on every vessel in its fleet. “We’re loud and proud of all our customers and crew,” states the company’s Facebook page. But in this instance, the corporation has met resistance. A pro-life group in B.C. finds it “offensive to be confronted with the sexual politics of the loud, aggressive and abusive political movement that the Pride flag represents.” Speaking candidly, the group sees the flag as “a divisive symbol that signifies a lust for power over other groups — it is not a symbol of inclusivity!” The group is threatening legal action.
One might imagine an American flag with only 30 stars and 5 stripes and its supporters claiming that it is “inclusive”!
Candor is not an enemy of love. But if candor is to remain consistent with love it must be related to truth. The more society goes off the tracks, the more unpopular, even the more dangerous, it is to tell the truth.
At the same time, it becomes more urgent to tell the truth. There are a number of inconvenient truths, to borrow Al Gore’s successful phrase, that should be told, perhaps even shouted from the housetops: 1) The rainbow flag is not inclusive, it is divisive; 2) The LGBTQ alliance is arbitrary, aggressive, ideological, and dangerous; 3) Abortion is not a blessed event; 4) God is pro-life, as clearly evidenced from His creation; 5) Abortion is bad for women, lethal for the unborn child, and harmful to both the family and society; 6) Reason, not force, carries conviction.
Christians and pro-life people of all denominations, as Archbishop Chaput points out, find themselves “strangers in a strange land.” Their world has changed drastically and they have been morally evicted from it.
How is communication possible when candor and honesty are ineffective, and in some instances even regarded as hate crimes? Yet these twin virtues should never be abandoned. If hope seems distant, it becomes unreachable when we lose faith in them.
Communication is possible only if there is a common basis. Force does not achieve conviction. A memorable scene in The Godfather (1972) comes to mind, in which Luca Brasi held a gun to Halley’s head and “made him an offer he couldn’t refuse…that either his brains, or his signature would appear on the contract.”
Reason is a universal faculty by which people can discuss things realistically and come to an agreement. Force, in the absence of reason, cannot produce conviction. We communicate through reason. There is no other basis. One may think that reason is a limitation and that we become free when we are free from reason. But without reason, the inevitable result is not communication but chaos, and ultimately war.
Dialogue can take place only when there is respect for the “logos,” that common reality that is reached through reason and binds people together. It is a matter of being both candid and truthful to say that the LGBTQ movement lacks the reasonableness that makes it possible for all to share. It is truly exclusive, divisive, irrational, and dishonest.
(Dr. Donald DeMarco is professor emeritus, St. Jerome’s University, a senior fellow with Human Life International, and author of Why I Am Pro-Life and Not Politically Correct.)

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