Friday, August 14, 2009

Senate Bill Will Not Address End-of-Life Care: Will President Obama now apologize to critics of H.R. 3200?

Senator Charles E. Grassley of Iowa said that the Senate Finance Committee "dropped end-of-life provisions from consideration entirely because of the way they could be misinterpreted and implemented incorrectly." Could be? It gets better. The Iowa Senator then admits that the House legislation was "so poorly cobbled together that it will have all kinds of unintended consequences."

President Obama, who always seems to be calling for "reason, calm and dialogue," should follow his own advice. Speaking to a crowd of about 1,800 at Portsmouth High School in New Hampshire, Obama was quoted as having said that opponents of H.R. 3200 [and most especially those concerned over Section 1233] "will try to scare the heck out of folks and they'll create bogeymen out there that just aren't real." But this bogeyman was real. Which is why the Senate Finance Committee is dropping the end-of-life provisions.

This isn't the first time the president has attempted to demonize his opponents. Just recently he went on record as saying that Americans who disapprove of homosexuality are clinging to "worn arguments and old attitudes." Clearly no one has ever gifted Obama with a copy of Dale Carnegie's best-selling book.

Sophocles, in Antigone 1. 1023, says, "Stubborness and stupidity are twins." How so? Dr. Montague Brown explains as he makes the distinction between tenacity and stubborness: "Tenacity is the dedicated adherence to something we know to be worthwhile. As such, tenacity is positive. It involves a clear purpose - to persevere in what is good - and welcomes new evidence and perspectives that clarify or enrich that good...Tenacity is particularly evident when the adherence required is difficult. If my perseverance requires great effort of body or mind, or if it requires me to face a great deal of peer pressure and perhaps even ridicule, then my holding fast to my good purpose shows strength of mind and courage. In such cases, there may be little to gain in terms of social standing, but much in moral standing. Tenaciously holding to what is true and good not only benefits me in terms of virtue; it also works to ensure the stability of these goods in the community....Stubborness is the uncompromising insistence on having our own way. As such, stubborness is negative. It involves a kind of blindness, along with a willful rejection of evidence and the perspectives of others. Stubborness is particularly evident when the compromise required is easy. If the evidence I need to convince me to change my mind is readily available, or if accepting another's perspective would mean giving up little of importance, then my refusal to yield is not reasonable, but is motivated by stubborness. There is little to lose except my desire to be in control. Such rigid clinging to my own will hurts the community, because I refuse to cooperate with others, and it also prevents me from becoming successful and virtuous." (Dr. Montague Brown, Ph.D, The One-Minute Philosopher, pp. 162-163, Sophia Institute Press).

Is President Obama tenacious or stubborn? Is he interested in creating real and meaningful dialogue or demonizing his opponents? His track record, thus far, provides us with an answer.


Betty said...

Obama doesn't care what people of faith think. We "cling to guns and religion" remember? It's almost as if he doesn't consider us to be "real Americans."

Francis J. said...

Bottom line: Obama lost face on this one. The man who promised us "change" and a new politics is just like his predecessors. Any change is merely cosmetic. Obama is Washington politics as usual.

Samantha said...

Like so many others, I was put off by Obama's remark about Cambridge Police "acting stupidly." For which he apologized. But what really made me angry was when the president appeared on "The Tonight Show" and told Jay Leno that he'd been practicing at the White House's bowling alley but wasn't happy with his score of 129. Then he remarked: "It was like the Special Olympics or something."

Eunice Kennedy Shriver founded the Special Olympics as a non-profit organization dedicated to individuals with mental and physical disabilities. The organization does so much good and the president's remarks were grossly offensive. He apologized.

Are you noticing a pattern here? And while the liberal media consistently gives him a free pass on such idiotic and hateful remarks, it goes after Sarah Palin with a vengeance.

Matt Lauer would assure us that this is not bias. Which is why I tune him out.

Paul Anthony Melanson said...

Gaudium et Spes, No. 27 teaches us that, "..whatever is opposed to life itself, such as any type of murder, genocide, abortion, euthanasia or wilful self-destruction, whatever violates the integrity of the human person, such as mutilation, torments inflicted on body or mind, attempts to coerce the will itself; whatever insults human dignity, such as subhuman living conditions, arbitrary imprisonment, deportation, slavery, prostitution, the selling of women and children; as well as disgraceful working conditions, where men are treated as mere tools for profit, rather than as free and responsible persons; all these things and others of their like are infamies indeed. They poison human society, but they do more harm to those who practice them than those who suffer from the injury. Moreover, they are supreme dishonor to the Creator."

In its Declaration on Euthanasia, the CDF teaches that suicide "is to be considered as a rejection of God's sovereignty and loving plan." (No. 3). In a sarcastic comment left at this Blog, Mary Alexander of "Against all Heresies" implied that the teaching of the CDF is not very timely. But this teaching belongs to the Catholic moral tradition which treats suicide as a species of wrongful killing (see Aquinas, S.t., 2-2, q.64, a.5).

Michael Cole said...

You were right Paul. Sarah Palin was right.

Site Meter