Sunday, December 09, 2012

Catholic Secrets for a Happy Marriage



Habits for a Happy Marriage

RICHARD FITZGIBBONS, M.D.

In my 34 years of working with Catholic couples, I have observed seven major conflicts that create severe marital stress. The good news is that these weaknesses can be overcome.



The sacrament of marriage is a fulfilling and challenging vocation that requires cheerful, self-giving love and sacrifice. An understanding of this call to self-giving, its support from the Lord's love, the weaknesses that can interfere with marital love, and their resolution is vital for the health of Catholic marriages.

Before he became pope, John Paul II wrote a book titled Love and Responsibility, in which he presented the importance of self-gift in marital friendship and betrothed love. He said in this kind of love – which includes, but is more than, sexual intimacy – the spouse surrenders him or herself to the other so that one no longer thinks primarily of "me" but of "we."



This oneness and flow of love between a husband and wife are in some ways called to model the love and openness within the heart of God, the Trinity. John Paul II later wrote, "God is revealed in the communion between man and woman, for this communion images the love that God himself is" (Letter to Women, 7).



Unfortunately, too few Catholic couples are aware of the weaknesses that harm their personalities and of the habits, virtues and graces that can assist in their healing. Marital self-giving and happiness can be limited by a number of emotional or character weaknesses that enter the marriage or develop during years of married life.



In my 34 years of working with Catholic couples, I have observed seven major conflicts that create severe marital stress: excessive anger, selfishness, controlling behaviors, emotionally distant behaviors, anxiety/mistrust, weaknesses in confidence, and sadness/loneliness. The good news is that these weaknesses can be overcome through growth in self-knowledge, virtues and grace.











Forgiveness for Excessive Anger



Excessive anger is one of the major sources of marital and family stress. Couples benefit from knowing that they have basically three options for dealing with anger: denial, expression and forgiveness. Forgiveness is the most effective for diminishing marital anger.



An immediate forgiveness exercise can be used whenever one feels overly angry. Here, a person thinks repeatedly, "Understand and forgive, understand and forgive." This exercise usually diminishes feelings of anger, and only then should one begin to discuss the hurt or disappointment that caused the anger initially.



Likewise, past forgiveness exercises are important to resolve anger from previous hurts in the marriage or in the family background. Here, the spouse might imagine oneself as a child thinking, "I want to understand and forgive the parent who hurt me the most." This forgiveness is essential for marital happiness because most couples bring into their adult life unresolved anger that, under stress, can be misdirected at each other.



Every time a spouse forgives, a certain amount of anger is removed from his or her heart. The virtue of patience is also essential in this process, as it is required to gain mastery over the passion of anger.











Generosity for selfishness



Selfishness harms marriages severely because it turns a spouse inward and interferes with cheerful self-giving. The selfish spouse thinks "me" not "we" and regularly overreacts in anger. Selfishness is the major cause of separation and divorce, and many popes have written that selfishness is the major enemy of marital love.



Unfortunately, we live in a culture in which selfishness is epidemic. The use of contraception further intensifies the negative attributes of self-centeredness and mistrust and should be avoided for the good of the marriage.



Instead, a commitment to grow daily in generosity, humility, chastity and temperance is helpful in diminishing this personality conflict. The sacrament of reconciliation is also helpful in resolving selfishness and excessive anger.











Respect for controlling behaviors



Controlling behaviors harm marriages in numerous ways. They can cause one's spouse to feel sad, angry, insecure, anxious, exhausted and discouraged. These behaviors can be caused by modeling a controlling parent, selfishness and pride, or compensation for strong feelings of insecurity.



The controlling spouse needs to understand how he or she is harming the marriage and family. Prayer, respect and a greater love for the goodness in one's spouse are helpful in putting an end to the repetition of a controlling weakness. The "victim" spouse can also work to correct this behavior by communicating regularly that the Lord is in control.











Cheerful self-giving for emotionally distant behaviors



One of the most common complaints that I hear in marital therapy is that a spouse is emotionally distant, most often the husband. This weakness can be the result of hurt feelings in the marriage or in previous relationships. However, the major conflict that we typically uncover is a parent who was not affectionate or complimentary. Current neuroscience suggests that such modeling begins in early childhood and is difficult to overcome without a strong commitment to do so.



Healing occurs by making a commitment to repeat a parent's good qualities but not his or her emotionally distant behaviors. Forgiveness of the parent and a daily decision to show more vulnerability and compassion can help to break this control from the past, and a commitment to making five positive comments for each negative comment can strengthen marital friendship.



The regular reception of the Eucharist and meditation upon the Lord's loving heart are also very helpful.











Trust for anxiety

Every time a spouse forgives, a certain amount of anger is removed from his or her heart.





Excessive anxiety can result in significant stress and sadness in married life. Unhealthy anxiety, as with other emotional conflicts, can pull a spouse away from his or her marriage and family. This can be the result of a number of factors, including a weakness in trust, strong insecurities, financial worries or weaknesses in faith.



In a conference for priests many years ago, an archbishop stated that he believed the major source of emotional stress in the priests of that archdiocese was the feeling of being overly responsible. His advice was that one should work hard in fulfilling God's will but take mini-breaks to give back to the Lord all of one's responsibilities and worries. This unburdening process is very effective in diminishing anxiety.



Anxiety in marriage can diminish by setting aside time daily to talk, preferably after dinner for a half hour while the kids do chores or their homework. Setting aside time for date nights and fighting against materialism by growth in the virtue of temperance are also important.











Gratitude for weaknesses in confidence



Weaknesses in confidence are major causes of irritability, a tendency to be critical and conflicts with pornography. Women are more fortunate than men in that the majority of them have experienced more affirmation and affection from their mothers than men have from their fathers.



Confidence can be fostered by being grateful for one's God-given gifts, by forgiving those who have damaged confidence, by receiving fraternal support from groups such as the Knights of Columbus, and by being thankful for one's work and trusting the Lord with it.











Hope and love for sadness



All of the conflicts presented thus far can result in marital unhappiness and loneliness. A commitment to grow in self-knowledge and to develop virtues can protect spouses from unhappiness. A common source of sadness is the failure to rely upon God's love in a culture that is increasingly driven to exclude God.



For those spouses with unresolved loneliness with a parent, the Catholic faith can be enormously helpful with its teaching that one always has Our Lady as another loving mother, St. Joseph as another loving father and the Lord as one's best friend. Working with a spiritual director in these areas has resolved sadness in many spouses.



Healthy Catholic marriages and families are dependent upon spouses working to maintain healthy personalities. This can occur through a daily commitment to overcome weaknesses by growth in good habits, virtues and graces that can strengthen romantic love, the marital friendship, and the openness and oneness that is meant to image God.

















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ACKNOWLEDGEMENT





Richard Fitzgibbons, M.D. "Habits for a Happy Marriage." Columbia Magazine (November, 2010): 17-19.





Reprinted with permission of the author. Read this issue of Columbia online here.



To find out more about the Knights of Columbus and why all Catholic men should join the Knights, go here.



THE AUTHOR





Richard Fitzgibbons, is the director of the Institute for Marital Healing in West Conshohocken, Pa. He teaches at the John Paul II Institute for Studies on Marriage and Family in Washington, D.C., and is a consultant to the Congregation for the Clergy at the Vatican. He is the co-author with Robert Enright, of Helping Clients Forgive: An Empirical Guide: An Empirical Guide for Resolving Anger and Restoring Hope, 2000, American Psychological Association Books. He co-chaired the task force of the Catholic Medical Association that produced the document, "Homosexuality and Hope." His website is maritalhealing.com.



Copyright © 2010 Columbia Magazine



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Monday, November 12, 2012

Gerard van den Aardweg Ph D says:Gay "Method Used in Nazi Germany Before the War Against Scientists"

1. Dr. Rick Fitzgibbons says:


May 28, 2012 at 1:52 pm

It is important for readers who are “on the fence” regarding this contentious issue of same-sex attractions (SSA) and marriage marriage to understand Dr. Robert Spitzer’s recent repudiation of his own research on recovery from SSA. I have read the news articles about Dr. Spitzer’s repudiation of his work on “reparative therapy” and I have read his 2003 article on this subject. If you read his article you will be aghast at Dr. Spitzer’s repudiation which is based entirely on politics and flies in the face of what it means to honor science as a truth-seeking endeavor. I say this because there is nothing—nothing—wrong with the science that Dr. Spitzer reports in that article. He used accepted scientific methodology in his study by asking 200 people a series of what is known as “objective” or “standard” questions. By this I mean that each person received the same set of questions without probing and follow-up by Dr. Spitzer (thus minimizing bias). This method is perfectly acceptable in the psychological sciences. In the article, Dr. Spitzer spent five paragraphs (a large amount of space for an academic journal) stating why it is likely that the participants were telling the truth. He found that this large sample (again, by the standards of the psychological sciences) showed scientifically that the participants wanted to change their sexual orientation and they did to varying degrees. Those who then entered into heterosexual marriages reported satisfaction with those marriages. What is important to note is that they reported approximately the same average level of satisfaction as heterosexual couples. If the participants were lying, it is likely that they would have reported marital satisfaction far higher than the average heterosexual couple. They did not.

It is important to note that the editor of the journal denied Dr. Spitzer’s request to rescind the article because it did not have fatal flaws. This is very telling for those politically desperate to claim some sort of victory with Dr. Spitzer’s apology and condemnation of his own science.

It is alarming that Dr. Spitzer experienced profound pressure from certain quarters after he published the article. I know this for a fact because I have talked directly with a psychologist who talked directly with Dr. Spitzer about this. No scientist should be faced with pressure after publishing a study that follows aceptable procedures. Instead of Dr. Spitzer’s repudiation being some kind of victory for same-sex advocates, a picture is emerging that should make every citizen in America, who is concerned about truth, recoil in horror. We have here a reputable scientist who is hounded until he says he is wrong, and he was not wrong. There is a political movement that seemingly will stop at nothing to get its own way. Readers, is this the kind of situation in which you want to allow children to be raised? Please reflect carefully on this post, and what happened to Dr. Spitzer if you are “on the fence.” And one more thing, if in the future you read a statement by Dr. Spitzer stating that he was not pressured, please do not believe it. He has caved in already. Why do we expect differently in the future? We need to defend the right of children with SSA to know the truth the serious medical and psychiatric illnesses associated with the lifestyle, as well as its origins and resolution.

2. Gerard van den Aardweg Ph D says:

May 29, 2012 at 11:27 am

Sometime after his 2003 publications, I spoke with Dr. Spitzer on the telephone, and asked him if he would continue his research and possibly even try to help those persons with homosexual problems for whom it is so difficult to find an understanding, change-directed professional guide. His response was more than definitive: he didn’t want to have anything to do any more with the issue of homosexuality. He had been attacked so violently, with so much hatred, on account of his study theta he had nearly broken down emotionally. He could not go through this ordeal a second time. I clearly understood hell had broken loose against him. I thought: and this is “free” America, where a well-intentioned, humane psychiatrist who looks for the truth is stoned for having the courage to publish a careful study, with a most careful conclusion, that merely calls into question the gay dogma that homosexuality would be irreversibly programmed? Do those who were responsible for this character murder realize this was precisely the method used in Nazi Germany before the war against scientists who did not accomodate to the idelogy that was in power THEN?

Gerard van den Aardweg Ph D

author of various books on homosexuality

The Netherlands

http://www.hprweb.com/2012/05/same-sex-attractions-in-youth-and-their-right-to-informed-consent/

Same-Sex Attractions in Youth and Their Right to Informed Consent

May 21, 2012 By Dr. Richard Fitzgibbons, M.D.

This paper was presented at the Twenty-Third Workshop for Bishops in Dallas, Texas, on February 16, 2011, sponsored by The National Catholic Bioethics Center and the Knights of Columbus.



Youth have the right to be provided with the accurate medical and psychological knowledge about homosexuality by pediatricians, mental health professionals, school counselors, educators and parents. Presently, well-organized attempts are under way to attempt to block youth from being given both the appropriate scientific knowledge, and informed consent about: same-sex attractions, gender identity disorder, transsexual issues, the psychological needs of a child for father and mother, and marriage.

One example of this activity is the American Psychological Association publication, Just the Facts 1, that was sent to all the school superintendents in this country two years ago. It was sponsored by a coalition of 13 national organizations, including the American School Counselors Association, and the American Academy of Pediatrics. Just the Facts advised schools that all forms of sexual attraction are normal, warned against psychotherapy for homosexual attractions, encouraged on-campus gay clubs, and cautioned schools about the scientific literature—such as studies by the National Association for Research and Therapy of Homosexuality (NARTH)—that presents heterosexuality as normative.

NARTH responded by sending a scientific statement on homosexuality 2 that was pertinent to youth to the school superintendents and then, later, so did the American College of Pediatricians (ACOP) 3. Their statements presented issues related to the lack of genetic origins of same-sex attractions, the fluidity of such actions, the serious dangers to psychological and medical health from homosexual behaviors, the resolution of same-sex attractions, and the right to informed consent.

In response to the ACOP statement, Dr. Francis Collins, the director of the National Institutes of Health, dismissed the peer-reviewed articles on the NIH website, cited by ACOP, as being “misleading and incorrect.” He went on to state: “ . . . it is particularly troubling that they are distributing it in a way that will confuse children and their parents.” When ACOP asked Dr. Collins to identify the specific research that was misleading and incorrect, he failed to identify a single peer-reviewed article.

Adolescent Mental Health Disorders and Households

Another example of the impact of political correctness upon psychological science and youth was from a study in the November 2010 issue of the leading journal of child and adolescent psychiatry, the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. 4 In this study of the prevalence of mental disorders in U.S. adolescents, the first table presented the socio-demographic characteristics. Three categories were listed in regard to parents: never married, previously married, and married/cohabiting.

Several years ago the failure to separate married and cohabiting households would have led the editors to return the article to the authors. They would have requested that, given the numerous research studies on the emotional and physical harm to children in cohabitating households, the authors separate the research findings under two different headings.

Seven months before the publication of this study of adolescent psychiatric illness, a report on child abuse by the Department of Health and Human Services, found that children living with two married biological parents had the lowest rates of harm — 6.8 per 1,000 children — while children living with one parent, who had an unmarried partner in the house, had the highest incidence, at 57.2 per 1,000 children. 5 Children living in cohabiting households are eight times more likely to be harmed than children living with married biological parents.

Another research study, Pediatrics, concerning the dangers to children in cohabiting households, demonstrated that children, residing in households with unrelated adults, were nearly 50 times as likely to die of injuries, than children residing with two biological parents. 6 Children in households with a single parent, and no other adult in residence, had no increased risk of inflicted-injury death. Another study revealed that the cohabitation experience for adolescents is associated with poor outcomes, and that moving into a cohabiting stepfamily, from a single- mother family, decreased adolescent well-being. 7

The author of the adolescent research study, and the editors of the Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, chose to ignore the overwhelming research that demonstrates the danger to children from living in cohabiting households. Also, the author has failed to respond to the requests of professionals, who have requested the data in the study, in order to analyze the differences between married and cohabiting households. A more in-depth analysis of the first study, of the prevalence of mental health disorders in adolescents, could be helpful in the efforts to protect children and marriage. For example, the extensive research on children in homes without fathers, shows the harm done to the mental health of such children, to families and to the entire culture. A large and growing body of research indicates that mothers and fathers bring distinctive talents to parenting, and that the children are most likely to thrive when they are raised by their own mother and father.

The Right to Informed Consent in Youth

Just the Facts violates the right to informed consent in youth in regard to the positions taken by the American Psychological Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the American School Counselors Association, in regard to diagnosis, proposed treatment, the risks and benefits of not receiving treatment, and the health risks associated with the homosexual lifestyle. It fails to present the diagnosis of gender identity disorder, the fluidity of sexual attractions in youth, the absence of a biological basis for Same Sex Attraction (SSA), and the serious emotional conflicts in youth with same-sex inclinations, such as a lack of secure attachment relationships with a parent or same-sex peers. Also, it does not identify the serious high-risk behaviors, compulsive masturbatory and sexual behaviors, depression, and excessive anger in those with homosexual inclinations. These numerous conflicts: should not be ignored, are not caused by the culture, and should be addressed, rather than denied.

The next area, in which the criteria for informed consent are violated, is the nature and purpose of proposed treatment and youth. There is a failure to recommend treatment, in spite of serious emotional, behavioral and sexual problems. Even worse, strong advice is given against treatment, except that which affirms a homosexual identity. Also, the risks of not receiving treatment are not identified.

One benefit of treatment of same-sex inclinations that Columbia University psychiatrist, Dr. Robert Spitzer, found in his 2003 study of men and women out of the homosexual lifestyle for at least five years, was that 87 percent found therapy to be helpful in terms of feeling more masculine or more feminine. Also, 93 percent found therapy helpful in developing more intimate, nonsexual relationships with those of the same sex. 8

The Origins of Same-Sex Attractions

Today, there is a consensus that there is not a genetic or hormonal origin of homosexuality. A 2008 American Psychological Association publication stated: “although much research has examined the [possibilities] on sexual orientation, no findings have emerged that permit scientists to conclude that sexual orientation is determined by any particular factor or factors. Many think that nature and nurture both play complex roles. . . .” 9 In addition, Dr. Francis S. Collins, M.D, Ph.D, former director of The Human Genome Project, wrote: “There is an inescapable component of heritability to many human behavioral traits. For virtually none of them is heredity ever close to predictive…An area of particularly strong public interest is the genetic basis of homosexuality. Evidence [indicates] that sexual orientation is genetically influenced but not hardwired by DNA, and that whatever genes are involved represent predispositions, not predeterminations.” 10

Emotional Conflicts in Males with SSA

In our clinical work over the past 34 years, with perhaps three to four hundred men and women with same-sex attractions, we have found that the most common cause of same-sex attractions in males is an intense weakness in masculine confidence that is associated with strong feelings of loneliness and sadness. This insecurity arises from a number of factors, including same-sex peer rejection in early childhood as a result of a lack of eye–hand coordination. This challenge in boys interferes with male bonding in sports, and with secure same-sex attachments. Other origins of male insecurity and sadness are an emotionally distant father relationship, a poor body image and, finally, sexual abuse victimization.

Several major research studies of adult and adolescent males with SSA have also demonstrated low self-esteem as being a major conflict in their lives. The first study from the Netherlands, of 7,076 adults, demonstrated that lesser quality of life in men was predominantly explained by low self-esteem. 11 The authors recommended the importance of finding out how a lower sense of self-esteem comes about in homosexual men. The other 2011 U.K. study of 10,000 adolescents was notable for boys, with some same-sex experience, reporting less self-esteem, and more experiences of forced sex. 12

Other causes of male same sex attractions are a mistrust of women, arising from conflicts with a controlling, angry, and overly dependent mother, or from significant rejection by females. Finally, selfishness and sexual narcissism are factors in some males.

Emotional Conflicts in Females with SSA

In our clinical experience, the most common origin of SSA in females is a mistrust of males, originating primarily from conflicts with fathers, who are excessively angry, alcoholic, abusive, or highly narcissistic. The next conflict, present in women, is a weak feminine identity that can arise from a lack of secure attachment in the mother relationship, peer rejection and loneliness, or from a poor body image. Also, struggles with loneliness, and inability to establish a loving relationship with a man, can lead to intense loneliness, and an attempt to escape this sadness through a homosexual relationship.

A 2010 study of 7,643 women, between the ages of 14 and 44, drawn from the National Survey of Family Growth, conducted by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), found that women who grew up in households, where their biological fathers were absent, were three times more likely to have had homosexual partners in the year prior to the survey, than were women who grew up with their biological fathers.

Fluidity of Attraction in Youth

Dr. Laumann’s research, 13 at the University of Chicago, has shown that “sexual orientation was found to be unstable over time, in both males and females.” In another study, 14 Kinnish demonstrated that sexual attraction/orientation is inherently flexible, evolving continuously over the life span, and that women demonstrate greater fluidity than men.

Serious Health Risks Associated with SSA

Well-designed research studies, published in leading peer-reviewed journals, 15 have shown a number of psychiatric disorders to be far more prevalent in teenagers and adults with SSA: major depression, anxiety disorders, substance abuse, suicidal ideation, suicide attempts and sexual abuse victimization. Many of these studies were done in countries where homosexuality is widely accepted, such as in New Zealand and the Netherlands.

Youth have the right to know the recent research that demonstrates the serious health risk of acquiring cancer in the homosexual life style. A major study published in the journal, Cancer, in May 2011, revealed that men in California with SSA are twice as likely to report a cancer as heterosexual men. Most troubling was the median age of onset of cancer in the men with SSA—41 years old. 16

Gay-Lesbian-Bisexual (GLB) youth, who self-identified during high school, report disproportionate risk for a variety of health issues and problem behaviors, including suicide, sexual risk behaviors, multiple substance abuse use, and victimization. 17 In addition these youth are more likely to report engaging in multiple risk behaviors and initiating risk behaviors at an earlier age than their peers.

Young men who have sex with men (MSM) are at extremely high risk for contracting a sexually transmitted infection. According to the CDC, the number of MSMs, ages 13 to 24, with newly diagnosed Human immunodeficiency virus (HIV), is increasing each year, and almost doubled since 2000. The number infected increased by 11percent in 2001, and by 18% in 2006. 18

A 2008 study found the HIV new-infection rate in the U.S. is 40 percent higher than estimated. 19 Boys who begin to engage in sexual activity with males at an early age are more likely to become HIV positive, or contract a Sexually Transmitted Disease (STD). Intensive condom education has failed to prevent infections. According to Dr. Philip Alcabes, an epidemiologist at Hunter College: “It looks like prevention campaigns make even less difference than anyone thought.”

A study of young men, aged 17–22, who have sex with men, found that 22 percent reported beginning anal sex with men when aged 3 to 14; of these, 15.2 percent were HIV positive. 20 Of those who began sex when they were 15 to 19, 11.6 percent were HIV positive. While of those who began sex with men when they were 20 to 22, only 3.8 percent were HIV positive. It is clear that every year that a male, with SSA, delays sexual involvement, he reduces his risk of HIV.

In a study of 137 young males with SSA, aged 17 to 21, 30 percent admitted to at least one suicide attempt. 21 Forty-four percent attributed this attempt to family problems, including marital discord, divorce, and alcoholism. Other factors included: a history of sexual abuse in 61 percent, substance abuse in 85 percent, illegal activities in 51 percent, effeminacy in 36 percent, and prostitution in 29 percent. The data on the 10,587 youths, from the national longitudinal study of adolescent health, revealed that 1 percent reported same-sex attraction only, whereas 5 percent reported attraction to both sexes. 22 Those with SSA were twice as likely to perpetrate violence, and were also at greater risk for experiencing and witnessing violence.

HIV and SSA

In March 2010, the CDC reported that the rate of new HIV diagnoses among men, who have sex with men (MSM), is more than 44 times that among other men, and more than 40 times that among women. 23 The rate of primary, and secondary, syphilis among MSM is more than 46 times that of other men, and more than 71 times that of women. The factors that were listed as causing higher HIV prevalence included greater risk of HIV transmission to receptive anal sex and other sexual activities, complacency about HIV risk particularly among young MSM, difficulty consistently maintaining safe sexual behaviors over the course of a lifetime, and homophobia.

Partner Abuse and SSA

A 2002 study of abuse revealed that 7 percent of heterosexual males reported being abused, whereas 39 percent of males with SSA reported being abused by other males with SSA. 24 Other research demonstrates partner abuse reported by 35 percent to 55 percent of participants.

Study of Same-Sex Unions

One of the largest studies of same-sex couples revealed that only seven of the 156 couples had a totally exclusive sexual relationship. The majority of relationships lasted less than five years. Couples with a relationship lasting more than five years incorporated some provision for outside sexual activity in their relationship: “The single most important factor that keeps couples together past the 10-year mark is the lack of possessiveness. . . . Many couples learn very early in their relationship that ownership of each other sexually can be the greatest internal threat to their staying together.” 25

Same Sex Adoption

The Catholic Medical Association offers this medical opinion on same sex adoption in its publication, Homosexuality and Hope: “Research on same-sex unions demonstrates that they are markedly different from marriage in that exclusivity and permanency are not present, or desired, in the vast majority of these unions. Same-sex unions suffer a significantly higher prevalence of domestic abuse, depression, substance-abuse disorders, and sexually transmitted diseases. 26 Physicians should caution their patients about the dangers of same-sex unions, and advocate against children being placed in such unstable relationships. The overwhelming body of well-designed research demonstrates that the healthiest environment for child development is a home with a mother and father who are married.” 27

The extensive research on the serious psychological, academic, and social problems in youth raised in fatherless families demonstrates the importance of the presence of the father in the home for healthy child development. Clinical experience would indicate that the deliberate deprivation of a mother to a child, while not studied as extensively, causes even more severe damage to a child because the role of the mother is so crucial in establishing the ability to trust and to feel safe in relationships.

Research on Children Raised in Same Sex Unions

Extensive research exists that demonstrates the importance of gender complementarity to the healthy development of children. This literature from peer-reviewed journals cites the importance of both mothering and fathering for the healthy development of a child. Research published in 2010 by Marquardt, Glenn and Clark demonstrated the following troubling negative factors in donor conceived individuals: on average, young adults conceived through artificial insemination were more confused, felt more isolated from their families, were experiencing more psychic pain, and fared worse than a matched group of children, who were conceived naturally, in areas such as depression, delinquency and substance abuse. 28

Two major studies that claim no psychological damage to children, who were deliberately deprived of the benefits of gender complementarity in a home with a father and a mother, were published in 2010 by Gartrell and Bos 29 and Biblar and Stacey’s. 30 In the Gartell and Bos article, all data are self-reports by mother and child. Lesbian mothers well know the political agenda of the research. Also, there is no direct comparison group, only a normative group by Achenbach, when he formed the Child Behavior Checklist (CBCL) , that was used in the study.

Again, in the Biblar and Stacey research, in 31 of the 33 studies of two parent families, it was the parents who provided the data, which consisted of subjective judgments. As in the study published in Pediatrics, this created a social desirability bias in that the homosexual parents knew, full-well, why the study was being done. They knew the political agenda. Also, of the 33 studies in two-person families, only 2 studies included men. This was an examination of published studies of women, not men, and the title implies both.

Treatment of SSA

The goals of therapy are to help the person identify the underlying causes of his or her SSA, which often includes low self-esteem, sadness, loneliness, anger and anxiety. Mental health professionals who treat males with unwanted same sex attractions, often find that treating conflicts in male confidence to be an essential aspect of successful therapy. Therapy that is initiated to treat emotional conflicts that are associated often with promiscuous sexual behaviors regularly includes a spiritual component, as in the treatment of addictive disorders.

There have been numerous reports of successful therapy of SSA. Success depends on many factors, including: the professional expertise of the mental health professional, the relationship between therapist and client, length of treatment, presence of significant support for treatment, and the presence of other psychological problems, particularly addictions. Spitzer’s study of 200 men and women, who had sought professional help to deal with SSA ,and who were out of the lifestyle for five years, found that 64 percent of the men, and 43 percent of the women, subsequently identified themselves as being heterosexual. 31 Contrary to the claims made by the opponents of therapy, they did not experience an increase in psychological conflicts as a result of therapy.

Dr. Spitzer commented on his study: “Depression has been reported to be a common side-effect of unsuccessful attempts to change orientation. This was not the case for our participants, who often reported that they were ‘markedly’ or ‘extremely’ depressed {prior to treatment} (males 43 percent, females 47 percent), but rarely that depressed {after treatment} (males 1 percent, females 4 percent). To the contrary, {after treatment}, the vast majority reported that they were ‘not at all’ or ‘only slightly’ depressed (males 91 percent, females 88 percent).” 32

Dr. Jay Wade, at Fordham University, published a 2010 research study that showed that men with unwanted SSA can experience healing by developing healthy, non-sexual relationships, i.e., friendships, with other men. They also reported: a decrease in homosexual feelings and behavior, an increase in heterosexual feelings and behavior, and a positive change in psychological functioning. 33

Research on the Benefits of Courage

A 2009 doctoral dissertation on Courage demonstrated that an increased rate of chastity is negatively correlated with psychopathology: an increased rate of chastity is positively correlated with happiness; the time in Courage is positively correlated with a history of increased religious participation, and extended participation in Courage is positively correlated with chastity. 34

Gender Identity Disorder and Transsexual Issues

Gender identity disorder is a childhood psychiatric disorder, in which there is a strong and persistent cross-gender identification, with at least four of the following: repeated stated desires to be of the opposite sex; in boys a preference for cross-dressing or simulating female attire and, in girls, wearing stereotypical masculine clothing with a rejection of feminine clothing such as skirts; strong and persistent preferences for cross-sex role in play; strong preference for playmates of the opposite sex, and intense desire to participate in games and pastimes of the opposite sex.

Boys who exhibit such symptoms before they enter school are more likely to be unhappy, lonely, and isolated in elementary school. They often suffer from separation anxiety, depression, and behavioral problems, and become targets to be victimized by bullies and even pedophiles. Often they experience same-sex attraction in adolescence, and if they engage in homosexual activity, they are more likely, than other boys, who are not involved in drug and alcohol abuse or prostitution. They are also at greater risk to attempt suicide, to contract a sexually transmitted disease, or to develop a serious psychological disorder as an adult. A small number of these boys will become transvestites or transsexuals.

A loving and compassionate approach to these troubled children is not to support their difficulty in accepting the goodness of their masculinity or femininity, which is being advocated in the media, and by many health professionals who lack expertise in Gender Identity Disorder (GID), but to offer them, and their parents, the highly effective treatment that is available.

The following interventions for boys with GID are helpful:

• Increasing quality time for bonding with the father ;

• Increasing affirmation of the son’s masculine gifts by the father;

• Participating in, and support for, the son’s creative efforts by the father;

• Encouraging same-sex friendships, and diminishing time, with opposite-sex friends;

• Coaching the son in the development of athletic confidence and skills, if possible;

• Slowly diminishing play with opposite-sex toys;

• Encouraging the boy to be thankful for his special masculine gifts;

• Slowly leading the boy into team play, if the athletic abilities and interest improve;

• Working at forgiving boys who may have hurt him;

• Communicating with other parents whose children have been treated successfully for GID, and those who have come to appreciate and to embrace the goodness of their masculinity;

• Addressing the emotional conflicts in a mother who wants her son to be a girl;

• In those with faith, encouraging thankfulness for one’s special God-given masculine gifts.

GID vs. Transgendered Child

Some medical centers are, unfortunately, going further, providing hormone treatments to GID children, whom they label as transgender, although there is no such diagnosis in the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM IV). All children with cross-gender feelings should be evaluated for GID before any hormonal treatment is considered.

Sexual Reassignment Surgery (SRS)

Paul McHugh, MD, University Distinguished Service Professor of Psychiatry and past Chair of Psychiatry at Johns Hopkins University, has a much different view of the attempt to change the sex of children. His studies of transgender surgery brought the procedures to an end at Johns Hopkins. He has stated that “treating these children with hormones does considerable harm, and it compounds their confusion. Trying to delay puberty, or change someone’s gender, is a rejection of the lawfulness of nature.” 35 A 2011 follow up of sexual reassignment surgery (SRS) from Sweden demonstrated that persons, after sex reassignment, have considerably higher risks for mortality, suicidal behavior, and psychiatric morbidity than the general population. 36

In our professional opinion, the vast majority of youth who express a wish to be of the opposite sex have GID, and have the right to the highly effective treatment that is available for this disorder.

Pope Benedict and Homosexuality

Pope Benedict communicated profound wisdom for youth and adults on homosexuality in his book, Light of the World: “Sexuality has an intrinsic meaning and direction which is not homosexual. The meaning and direction of sexuality is to bring about the union of man and woman, and in this way give humanity posterity, children, future. This is the determination internal to the essence of sexuality. Everything else is against sexuality’s intrinsic meaning and direction. This is a point we need to hold firm, even if it is not pleasing to our age.” 37 Youth have the right to be provided informed consent about the serious medical and psychiatric illnesses, and risks, of the homosexual lifestyle. Pediatricians, mental health professionals, physicians, nurses and school counselors have a clear legal responsibility to do so, and parents, family members, educators, and clergy a grave moral responsibility.

1. Just the facts about sexual orientation and youth: a primer for principals, educators and school personnel. (2008) American Psychological Association ↩

2. O’Leary, D., Byrd, D., Fitzgibbons, R. and Phelan, J. ( 2008) A Response to the APA Fact Sheet, www.narth.com ↩

3. American College of Pediatricians (2009). On the promotion of homosexuality in schools. www.acpeds.org. ↩

4. Merikangas, K. R., et al. (2010) The Lifetime prevalence of mental disorders in US adolescents: results from the national comorbidity survey. J. Am Acad Child Adolesc Psychiatry, 49:975-80. ↩

5. Abuse, Neglect, Adoption and Foster Care Research, National Incidence Study of Child Abuse and Neglect (NIS-4), 2004-2009, March 2010, Office of Planning, Research and Evaluation. ↩

6. Schnitzer, P.G. (2005). Child deaths resulting from inflicted injuries: household risk factors and perpetrator characteristics. Pediatrics 116:697-93. ↩

7. Brown, S. L. (2006) Family structure transitions and adolescent well-being. Demography 43:447–461. ↩

8. Spitzer, R.L. (2003) “Can some gay men and lesbians change their orientation? Archives of Sexual Behavior, 32:403–17. ↩

9. American Psychological Association ( 2008). “Answers to Your Questions for Better Understanding of Sexual Orientation and Homosexuality.” ↩

10. Collins, Francis S. (2006). The language of god, a scientist presents evidence for belief. New York: Free Press. ↩

11. Sandfort, T.G., et al. (2003) Same-sex sexuality and quality of life: findings from the Netherlands Mental Health Survey and Incidence Study. Arch Sex Behav. 32: 15-22. ↩

12. Parkes, A., et. al. (2011). Comparison of teenagers’ early same-sex and heterosexual behavior: UK data from the SHARE and RIPPLE studies. Journal of Adolescent Health, 48, 27-35. ↩

13. Laumann, E. et al. (1994). The social organization of sexuality: sexual practices in the United States. University of Chicago Press. ↩

14. Ken Nish, K. K., et al. (2005) . “Sexual differences in the flexibility of sexual orientation: a multi dimensional retrospective assessment.” Archives of Sexual Behavior, 34:173–83. ↩

15. Catholic Medical Association (2008) Homosexuality and Hope, www.cathmed.org ↩

16. Boehmer, U., et al. (2011) Cancer Survivorship and Sexual Orientation. Cancer, May 9. ↩

17. Garofolo, R. et al. (1998). The association between health risk behaviors and sexual orientation among a school-based sample of adolescents. Pediatrics 101:895–889. ↩

18. Centers for Disease Control (2008) Trends in HIV/AIDS Diagnoses among men who have sex with men. MMWR Weekly, June 27, 57: 681:686. ↩

19. Altman, L. ( 2008). HIV study finds rate 40% higher than estimated, New York Times, August 3. ↩

20. Lemp, G. et al. (1994). Sero-prevalence of HIV and risk behaviors among young homosexual and bisexual men. JAMA 272:449–45. ↩

21. Remafadi, G. et al. (1991). Risk factors for attempted suicide and gay and bisexual youth. Pediatrics 87:869, 875. ↩

22. Russell, S. T. et al. (2001). Same-sex romantic attraction and experiences of violence in adolescents. Am J Public Health, 91:903-6. ↩

23. Retrieved from www.cdc.gov/nchhstp/newsroom/msmpressrelease.html. ↩

24. Greenwood, G. et al. (2002) . Battering victimization among a probability-based sample of men who have sex with men. American Journal of Public Health, 92:1964–69. ↩

25. McWhirter, D. and Mattison, A. 1985. The Male Couple: How Relationships Develop. Prentice Hall. ↩

26. D. O’Leary, One Man, One Woman: A Catholic’s Guide to Defending Marriage (Manchester, NH: Sophia Institute Press, 2007): 149-68. ↩

27. Byrd, A.D. (2004). Gender Complementarity and Child-rearing: Where Tradition and Science Agree. Journal of Law and Family Studies 6.2: 213. ↩

28. Marquardt,T., Glenn, N., & Clark, K. (2010). My Daddy’s Name is ‘Donor’: A New Study of Young Adults Conceived Through Sperm Donation: A study of young adults conceived through sperm donation. Institute for American Values. Retrieved from www.familyscholars.org/assets/Donor_FINAL.pdf ↩

29. Gartrell, N. & Bos, H. (2010) US national Longitudinal Lesbian Family Study: Psychological Adjustment of 17-year-old Adolescents, Pediatrics, Volume 126, Number 1, July 2010 p. 28-36. ↩

30. Biblarz, T. J. & Stacey, J. (2010). How does the gender of parents matter? Journal of Marriage and Family. 72, 3-22. ↩

31. Spitzer, R.L. (2003) “Can some gay men and lesbians change their orientation? Archives of Sexual Behavior, 32:403–17. ↩

32. Ibid., p. 412. ↩

33. Karten, E. Y., & Wade, J. C. (2010). Sexual orientation change efforts in men: A client perspective. The Journal of Men’s Studies, 18, 84-102. ↩

34. Harris, S. (2009). Mental health, chastity and religious participation in a population of same-sex attracted men. Doctoral dissertation. ↩

35. Paul McHugh, “Surgical Sex,” First Things, November 2004. ↩

36. Dhejne C, et al, (2011) Long-Term Follow-Up of Transsexual Persons Undergoing Sex Reassignment Surgery: Cohort Study in Sweden. PLoS ONE 6(2): e16885. ↩

37. Pope Benedict XVI and Peter Seewald (2010) Light of the World: The Pope, the Church and the Signs of the Times. San Francisco: Ignatius Press, 151–152. ↩



Filed Under: Articles Tagged With: Featured, gender identity disorder, marriage, same-sex attractions, the psychological needs of a child for father and mother, transsexual issues

About Dr. Richard Fitzgibbons, M.D.

B.S. from St. Joseph's University; M.D. from Temple University School of Medicine, Dept. of Psychiatry, Hospital of the University of Medicine, and the Philadelphia Child Guidance Center

Richard Fitzgibbons, M.D., is the director of the Institute for Marital Healing, located outside Philadelphia, and has worked with several thousand couples over the past 30 years. In 2000, he co-authored the book, Helping Clients Forgive: An Empirical Guide for Resolving Anger and Restoring Hope, with Dr. Robert D. Enright, University of Wisconsin, Madison, for American Psychological Association Books. Dr. Fitzgibbons has given many conferences on marriage in New York, Philadelphia and Washington, and numerous conferences to priests in various dioceses, religious communities, and to seminary spiritual formation teams. He is a board member of the International Institute for Forgiveness.

Comments

3. Fr. James Cheney says:

May 22, 2012 at 9:00 am

Dr. Fitzgibbons – keep up the great work – I rely a lot on your work in helping the students stay informed about the issues of SSA et al

4. S. Mack says:

May 24, 2012 at 12:37 pm

Thank you.

5. cc says:

May 24, 2012 at 5:03 pm

Dr. Fitzgibbons…I hope you never stop speaking the truth. Perhaps it will eventually be understood by a majority of people.

6. Dr. Rick Fitzgibbons says:

May 28, 2012 at 1:52 pm

It is important for readers who are “on the fence” regarding this contentious issue of same-sex attractions (SSA) and marriage marriage to understand Dr. Robert Spitzer’s recent repudiation of his own research on recovery from SSA. I have read the news articles about Dr. Spitzer’s repudiation of his work on “reparative therapy” and I have read his 2003 article on this subject. If you read his article you will be aghast at Dr. Spitzer’s repudiation which is based entirely on politics and flies in the face of what it means to honor science as a truth-seeking endeavor. I say this because there is nothing—nothing—wrong with the science that Dr. Spitzer reports in that article. He used accepted scientific methodology in his study by asking 200 people a series of what is known as “objective” or “standard” questions. By this I mean that each person received the same set of questions without probing and follow-up by Dr. Spitzer (thus minimizing bias). This method is perfectly acceptable in the psychological sciences. In the article, Dr. Spitzer spent five paragraphs (a large amount of space for an academic journal) stating why it is likely that the participants were telling the truth. He found that this large sample (again, by the standards of the psychological sciences) showed scientifically that the participants wanted to change their sexual orientation and they did to varying degrees. Those who then entered into heterosexual marriages reported satisfaction with those marriages. What is important to note is that they reported approximately the same average level of satisfaction as heterosexual couples. If the participants were lying, it is likely that they would have reported marital satisfaction far higher than the average heterosexual couple. They did not.

It is important to note that the editor of the journal denied Dr. Spitzer’s request to rescind the article because it did not have fatal flaws. This is very telling for those politically desperate to claim some sort of victory with Dr. Spitzer’s apology and condemnation of his own science.

It is alarming that Dr. Spitzer experienced profound pressure from certain quarters after he published the article. I know this for a fact because I have talked directly with a psychologist who talked directly with Dr. Spitzer about this. No scientist should be faced with pressure after publishing a study that follows aceptable procedures. Instead of Dr. Spitzer’s repudiation being some kind of victory for same-sex advocates, a picture is emerging that should make every citizen in America, who is concerned about truth, recoil in horror. We have here a reputable scientist who is hounded until he says he is wrong, and he was not wrong. There is a political movement that seemingly will stop at nothing to get its own way. Readers, is this the kind of situation in which you want to allow children to be raised? Please reflect carefully on this post, and what happened to Dr. Spitzer if you are “on the fence.” And one more thing, if in the future you read a statement by Dr. Spitzer stating that he was not pressured, please do not believe it. He has caved in already. Why do we expect differently in the future? We need to defend the right of children with SSA to know the truth the serious medical and psychiatric illnesses associated with the lifestyle, as well as its origins and resolution.

7. Gerard van den Aardweg Ph D says:

May 29, 2012 at 11:27 am

Sometime after his 2003 publications, I spoke with Dr. Spitzer on the telephone, and asked him if he would continue his research and possibly even try to help those persons with homosexual problems for whom it is so difficult to find an understanding, change-directed professional guide. His response was more than definitive: he didn’t want to have anything to do any more with the issue of homosexuality. He had been attacked so violently, with so much hatred, on account of his study theta he had nearly broken down emotionally. He could not go through this ordeal a second time. I clearly understood hell had broken loose against him. I thought: and this is “free” America, where a well-intentioned, humane psychiatrist who looks for the truth is stoned for having the courage to publish a careful study, with a most careful conclusion, that merely calls into question the gay dogma that homosexuality would be irreversibly programmed? Do those who were responsible for this character murder realize this was precisely the method used in Nazi Germany before the war against scientists who did not accomodate to the idelogy that was in power THEN?

Gerard van den Aardweg Ph D

author of various books on homosexuality

The Netherlands





Sunday, November 04, 2012

I Trust Steven Ertelt of LifeNews and Will Vote for Romney


Many long time pro-lifers such as Dale Alquist of EWTN, Lesfemmes and I have our problems with Mitt’s speaking with fork tongue . For example on Aug 28 Jed LewisonFollow for Daily Kos wrote:



That's not true—Romney was against all abortion until last Monday, when he decided to support abortion in cases of rape, incest, or when the woman's life was in danger. But he didn't support abortion in cases "merely" involving health—that exception was entirely new. Never fear, though, Greg Sargent reports Romneyland has already walked that back.

But there is no shift, Romney spokesperson Andrea Saul tells me. She emails:

“Gov. Romney’s position is clear: he opposes abortion except for cases of rape, incest and where the life of the mother is threatened.”

That means no health exception.





I wrote to Steven Ertelt of LifeNews: “ It appears to me that many pro-lifer are saying Obama is really bad so vote for Romney because he is a bit better and will defeat our present enemy. Might this not be like the USA alliance with Stalin to defeat Hitler.”



Steve truly trusts that Romney will appoint pro-life judge and Romney's top judicial advisors include pro-life stalwarts.



Finally, Newsmax.com said:



"I feel that all people should be allowed to participate in the Boy Scouts, regardless of their sexual orientation," Romney says in the video, prefacing his support for gays and lesbians by stating his belief "that the Boy Scouts of America does a wonderful service for this country. I support the right of the Boy Scouts of America to decide what it wants to do on that issue."



Romney again is talk with a fork mouth that is trying to appeal to both sides. Maybe he will be able to be true to the last quote and support the right Americans to decide what it wants to do on that issue and overturn Roe so states can decide for themselves.



I don’t trust Mitt, but I do trust Steven Ertelt of LifeNews and will vote for Romney.



Fred Martinez

Election Could Decide Fate of Abortion for 40 More Years

Dear LifeNews.com Readers,

While the economy dominates the election, for those of us who long for the day unborn children are protected by law from the violence of abortion, there is much at stake in this election.

Next January, our nation marks 40 years of virtually unlimited abortion under Roe v. Wade and more than 55 million unborn babies have lost their lives in this national travesty ever since. The next president will have an opportunity during the four-year term to leave an indelible mark on the nation's high court.

Consider this: the average age of retirement from our nation's highest court is 71.

Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg is 79

Justice Antonin Scalia is 76

Justice Anthony Kennedy is 76

Justice Stephen Breyer is 74

We already know where Obama stands on Roe and four decades of killing children and hurting women -- he's appointed two pro-abortion Supreme Court justices in Elana Kagan and Sonia Sotomayor. They will keep Roe in place for another generation.

With Mitt Romney, he has repeatedly called for overturning Roe v. Wade. He has said he would appoint the kinds of judges who would not make law from the bench as they did in 1973 with Roe, but who would strictly interpret the Constitution.

Romney's top judicial advisors include pro-life stalwarts like former Supreme Court nominee Robert Bork and pro-life Harvard professor Mary Ann Glendon. Leading pro-life attorneys like Jordan Sekulow, David French, and James Bopp have confirmed they trust Romney as president when it comes to judges.

LifeNews is continuing to work seven days a week to inform pro-life voters about the important implications of the presidential race like this. We're informing hundreds of thousands of pro-life people about what is at stake.

LifeNews needs your help to continue our pro-life Election 2012 efforts. As you can see, the fate of millions of unborn children rests on the results of this election.

Please make an online donation NOW to support LifeNews.com as we promote pro-life values this election. We have just days left until Election Day!

Sincerely,

Steven Ertelt, Editor

LifeNews.com

Romney or Obama will be the next President.

Romney agrees with you 85% of the time, Obama agrees with you 0%

NOTHING in life is ever perfect. Certainly nothing in politics ever is. Back in the 1980s people like you were ranting how Reagan had betrayed the Conservative movement. Now you all want to claim him as your political god father.

A rational adult accepts that 85% of something is better then 100% of what you stand against. Romney will work with you, Obama will work against you. A rational adult mind would accept 85% of something is better then 100% of nothing.

And spare me the self serving rhetoric about waiting for 2016. I am been hearing the same thing from you die harders since 1988. You always want to excuse your inaction this election by claiming you will get them next election. Well we are at the last ditch now. There is no more falling back. You either stand here or there will be no place left to stand.

So just strip away the self serving rationalizations and admit sour grapes that your candidate lost the 2012 GOP nomination is the motivating factor here.





Mitt Romney Kinda Sorta Maybe Supports Gay Rights



During a cozy getaway with the Log Cabin Republicans at a Virginia farmhouse last week, Mitt Romney allegedly came around on some important LGBT issues. Of course, he was riding a carousel at the time, so where he’ll stop nobody knows.

Log Cabin Executive Director R. Clarke Cooper told The Nation‘s Ben Adler that the governor not only supports ending workplace discrimination – though not necessarily the “current form“of the Employee Non-Discrimination Act – but also gay adoption, hospital visitation rights for same sex couples and the repeal of “Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell.”

Adler then points out that “the Romney campaign has undermined Cooper’s claims on two of those”:

Back in May, Romney told Fox News that “[gay couples] have a right,” to adopt children. But the very next day he told CBS affiliate WBTV in Charlotte, North Carolina, that he was observing a national consensus, not asserting a belief of his own. “That’s a position which has been decided by most of the state legislatures,” said Romney. “So I simply acknowledge the fact that gay adoption is legal in all states but one.”

Regarding hospital visitation rights, Romney surrogate Bay Buchanan said after Monday’s presidential debate that Romney believes decisions on gay marriage and related issues such as hospital visitation and adoption should be left up to the states. This was off-message to both the right and the left. It blatantly contradicts Romney’s pledge to support a federal ban on gay marriage. But it also implies that Romney would reverse the Obama administration’s 2010 executive order requiring hospitals participating in Medicare and Medicaid to recognize the visitation rights of gay couples.

Buchanan later clarified her statements, insisting that she had “referred to the Tenth Amendment only when speaking about these kinds of benefits – not marriage.” Romney does support a federal ban on same-sex marriage but believes the issues of hospital visitation rights and gay adoption should be left up to the state.

This wavering between “ultra-conservative” and “relatively moderate,” however, threatens to alienate the ultra conservatives, like American Family Association nut-job Bryan Fischer. Adler rang up Fischer, who had this to say about a possible deal with LCR:

“If Governor Romney gives up any ground on ENDA that is a huge problem for social conservatives. ENDA will do to every Christian businessman in America what Obama’s abortion mandate does to hospitals, which is robs them of religious freedom and freedom of conscience and their constitutional right to freedom of association. I think if a President Romney were to give an impetus to an ENDA-like bill that would create a firestorm in his conservative base. It would not be smart politics for him to do that, as well as being wrong.”

Fischer later tweeted that “we need a clear, unambiguous, no loophole denial from Gov. Romney that he will support ENDA as president.” But, hey, if Bryan Fischer wants a “flat emphatic, unambiguous denial from Romney himself,” Romney should just give it to him, then take it back when R. Clarke Cooper is looking. It’s not cheating if you don’t get caught…or if you’re a Mormon. So if Mitt Romney continues to get in bed with both of them, he should really put a ring on it.





Full story here: http://www.queerty.com/mitt-romney-kinda-sorta-maybe-supports-gay-rights-20121025/#ixzz2AfSUjKn6

Mon Aug 27, 2012 at 05:03 PM PDT

Romney campaign denies Romney's claim that he supports health exception for abortion

by Jed LewisonFollow for Daily Kos

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Mitt Romney in an interview released by CBS News this afternoon:

My position has been clear throughout this campaign. I'm in favor of abortion being legal in the case of rape and incest and the health and life of the mother.

That's not true—Romney was against all abortion until last Monday, when he decided to support abortion in cases of rape, incest, or when the woman's life was in danger. But he didn't support abortion in cases "merely" involving health—that exception was entirely new. Never fear, though, Greg Sargent reports Romneyland has already walked that back.

But there is no shift, Romney spokesperson Andrea Saul tells me. She emails:

“Gov. Romney’s position is clear: he opposes abortion except for cases of rape, incest and where the life of the mother is threatened.”

That means no health exception.

So now the question is which side is telling the truth: Mitt Romney ... or his campaign?

And there lingers another important question. In the interview, Romney said that he believed the legality of abortion was a settled issue and shouldn't be a political topic. "The Democrats try and make this a political issue every four years," he said, "but this is a matter in the courts. It's been settled for some time in the courts."

Romney's claim that the legality of abortion is "settled" is a huge deal. If he sticks to that position, he'll basically be coming full circle to his 1994 position, which was that Roe v. Wade was the law of the land and that it was time to move on to other issues. It would be great if Republicans were actually willing to do that, but they're not. That's why time and time again Mitt Romney has pledged to overturn Roe v. Wade, a position utterly in conflict with his claim that Roe v. Wade is "settled" and shouldn't be an issue in elections.

Romney should be getting pounded by all sides on this: by pro-choice people to make sure he doesn't try to wiggle out of his abortion position all over again; by Democrats who should point out that this is yet another flip-flop—at least for however long it lasts; by "pro-life" people who clearly don't think there is anything "settled" about Roe v. Wade; and by the media, to illuminate what, if anything, Romney really believes.

Is he pro-life, pro-choice, or just pro-Mitt?



By Joan Vennochi


Boston Globe Columnist

October 11, 2012



Never underestimate Mitt Romney’s willingness to reinvent himself — anytime, any place, any issue.

He shifted his position on taxes during last week’s debate with a passive President Obama. This week, he tried to soften his stance on abortion, telling the editorial board of the Des Moines Register, “There’s no legislation with regards to abortion that I’m familiar with that would become part of my agenda.”

How quickly Romney forgets Roe v. Wade, the Supreme Court decision which struck down laws restricting abortion. Changing the law of the land was definitely part of his agenda — or so he repeatedly said on the presidential campaign trail. As he worked to woo suspicious pro-life voters during the primaries, Romney declared support for overturning the 1973 landmark decision and said he hoped to appoint justices who would reverse it. He also said he would cut federal funding for Planned Parenthood.

Writing for The National Review on June 18, 2011, under the headline “My Pro-Life Pledge,” Romney called for the reversal of Roe v. Wade, calling it “a misguided ruling that was a result of a small group of activist federal judges legislating from the bench.” He also said he would “advocate for and support” legislation “to protect unborn children who are capable of feeling pain from abortion.”

Continue reading below

Related

• Special section: Romney's record

• Biden, Ryan face high stakes in vice presidential debate

Romney’s campaign quickly clarified the comments the candidate made to the Des Moines newspaper, stating that “Mitt Romney is proudly pro-life and he will be a pro-life president.” Of course with Romney, being proudly pro-life depends on the meaning of pro-life — or is it the meaning of pro-choice?

Shannon O’Brien, the Democrat who lost to Romney in their 2002 race for governor of Massachusetts, said that whenever she hears about his staff “walking him back, the image I have is of this agitated dementia patient walking off in one direction. Then, the staff grabs him and walks him back to where he’s supposed to be.”

When it comes to abortion, Romney has been walking around in circles since he first ran for office in Massachusetts against Ted Kennedy.

During their iconic 1994 showdown in Faneuil Hall, Romney told voters. “I believe abortion should be safe and legal in this country. I believe that since Roe v. Wade has been the law for 20 years, that we should sustain and support that law and the right of a woman to make that choice.”

Kennedy, who didn’t buy Romney’s pro-choice persona then, famously dubbed his opponent “multiple choice” — a line that O’Brien threw back at Romney during their 2002 debate. However, in his effort to sell himself as a moderate to Massachusetts voters, Romney pledged once again to “preserve and protect a woman’s right to choose.” Scolding O’Brien for raising doubts about his pro-choice credentials, he said “Your effort to continue to try and create fear and deception here is unbecoming.”

He beat O’Brien and won the governor’s office. Then, when he started running for president, Romney began his well-documented switch to pro-life.

It began in 2005, when he told the Globe, “I believe that abortion is the wrong choice except in cases of incest, rape, and to save the life of a mother.” By 2007, he was saying that Roe v. Wade “cheapened the value of human life.” He said he supported an amendment to the Constitution that would legally define personhood beginning at conception. At times, he has also expressed support for constitutional amendments at both the state and federal level that would give constitutional protections to the unborn from the moment of fertilization.

If that’s what he believes, that’s what he believes. But is it really what he believes?

Paul Ryan, Romney’s vice presidential pick, opposes abortion with no exceptions for rape or incest; Romney supports those exceptions. The platform adopted by Republicans at their national convention explicitly calls for a constitutional ban on abortion, stating that “the unborn child has a fundamental individual right to life which cannot be infringed.” No exceptions are stipulated in the party platform.

In Tampa, during the week of the Republican National Convention, Romney’s oldest sister, Jane, told the National Journal that a federal ban on abortion is “never going to happen” on her brother’s watch if he is elected president.

“He’s not going to be touching any of that,” Jane Romney said after a “Women for Mitt” event.

That’s easy for her to say and hard for anyone else to trust.

Try BostonGlobe.com today and get two weeks FREE. Joan Vennochi can be reached at vennochi@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

If Romney is for Abortion on Demand, Why Vote for Him?

If Romney is for Abortion on Demand, Why Vote for Him?


I said I will not vote for Mitt. But, Obama is so in your face about making the USA an abortion/anti-family state that I’m having second thoughts.

Is it better to have the enemy in front of you?

Will Romney's create a liberal paradigm shift in the Republican Party not just for homosexual “special rights”, but also for abortion on demand that will never be reversed in that Party.

Lesfemmes wrote:

Did you hear what [Romney] said? Abortion for rape and incest and "health and life of the mother." That is Roe v. Wade and it equals abortion on demand. In Doe v. Bolton, the companion decision, the court defined the woman's "health" to include physical health, mental health, the woman's family situation, and her age. To sum up, it was abortion in the first three months for no reason; abortion in the last six for any reason. Unborn babies are just so much trash to both presidential candidates.



Romney is one of the men C.S. Lewis described as "without chests."



He has no heart and he appears to use his intellect to reason out whatever position is necessary to get elected. (Obama too, of course.) I'm guessing Romney embraces this position to make himself more palatable to the "women's vote." But to pro-life women, his position is repulsive and repugnant. To watch a grown man smile as he supports the murder of little babies is to see a bully at work.

[

http://lesfemmes-thetruth.blogspot.com/2012/08/obama-or-romney]



I’m back to leaning against voting for Mr. Abortion on Demand Romney.

Fred

PS Pat Buchanan is wrong in saying: "If Romney wins, the Supreme Court will likely leave the issue of same-sex marriage to be decided by the people and their elected representatives."



As Peter LaBarbera shows below "Though Romney pretends he opposed homosexual “marriage,” he did the opposite...Since the notorious Goodridge court opinion discovering a constitutional right to “gay marriage,” Romney has methodically lied about the judges’ legal authority and his own legal duty to enforce the Constitution."



If Mitt wins and does what he has always done and not what he says on pro-life/family issues which he appears never to do (see below), what happens if he is president?



The war for a pro-life Supreme Court is over(period). The war for a pro-life/family Republican is most likely over.



If Obama wins, in four years Obama will be as unpopular Bush was, will have a real chance to vote in a real pro-life/family president?







Mitt Romney's Liberal Paradigm Shift: a Republican FOR Homosexual 'Special Rights'



MEDIA ADVISORY, Feb. 4 /Christian Newswire/ -- Peter LaBarbera, founder of Republicans For Family Values, today criticized GOP presidential candidate Mitt Romney for his "novel pro- homosexual positioning in the GOP." On Dec. 16, Romney (the alleged "conservative" in the race) told NBC's "Meet the Press" that "it makes sense at the state level" to enact pro-homosexual "sexual orientation" laws. (Last week, CNN's Roland Martin reported that Romney told him that he opposes "gay marriage," but supports "gay rights.")



LaBarbera issued the following statement:





Mitt Romney just doesn't get it on the homosexual agenda, and if he doesn't get at after serving as governor of liberal Massachusetts -- where "gay marriage," homosexual adoption and pro- homosexuality indoctrination in schools ALL were advanced by the sort of pro-gay "sexual orientation" laws he's now espousing -- then he's not going to get it at the federal level.



Romney is already using his bully pulpit as a candidate to affirm "gay rights"-- even AFTER he's earned the backing of pro-family leaders who seemingly would have much to teach him about the danger and misuse of pro-homosexual laws. (Note that Romney uses gay-affirming "discrimination" rhetoric even with regard to the Boy Scouts' ban on homosexuals.)



I don't know any serious pro-lifers who are pro- homosexuality. We all have compassion for homosexual strugglers, but we draw the line at laws that would distort "civil rights" to include sinful and changeable homosexual behavior -- because these laws will be used to compel individuals, business and even ministries to violate their beliefs and support homosexual relationships (see the Weekly Standard article, "Banned in Boston," about Boston Catholic Charities electing to close down its historic adoption agency rather than place kids in homosexual households).



Romney is trying to shift the GOP's pro-family paradigm on homosexuality, and it's an unwise shift -- much like retreating from a principled position on pro- life (e.g., "I'm pro-choice but not pro-partial-birth abortion"). Due to Romney's potential for being the "Nixon-goes-to-China" president who advances pro-homosexuality agendas in the GOP -- I cannot support him.



Why do the same conservative pundits who have assailed Mick Huckabee and John McCain as too liberal, promote the fiction that Mitt Romney - who strongly defended abortion-on-demand and who remains in favor of anti-Christian homosexual special rights laws as a Mormon -- is a "conservative"?







Christian Newswire



http://chestertonandfriends.blogspot.com/2012/07/no-vote-for-romney-well.html



http://lesfemmes-thetruth.blogspot.com/2012/08/obama-or-romney



No vote for Romney? Well ...

In the most recent Gilbert Magazine, Dale Ahlquist, he of seemingly infinite Chestertonian knowledge, wrote an editorial entitled, "Why I won't vote for Mitt Romney."



I was intrigued.



I can think of many reasons not to vote for Romney, and I was curious to see if his reasons jibed with ones that had occurred to me.



He threw a curve ball - sort of.



Ahlquist talked about his experience as a lobbyist in 1996 and witnessing the Republican machine in operation determining the 2000 nominee. He saw the same process in operation this time around.



So he views Romney as a product of the party machine, and not the real choice of the voters.



Okay, I can see that.



He also alluded to some of the reasons why I will not vote for Romney. The Republican Party tends to pay lip service to social values such as the pro-life position on abortion, but once it suckers in the social conservatives it fails to deliver. Even worse for folks in my neck of the woods (New York) many of our local Republican Party elected officials and candidates would be Democrats in most other states. Heck, I'm currently represented by a Catholic Republican Congressman who supports abortion!



The Republican Party is really about money, he contends, and I agree. Big Business, as he puts it. Of course, the alternative is Big Government (that other major party).



And, to be honest, given Romney's track record, I still don't know how sincere he is on the issues that are important to me - like the Right to Life.



Where I might stray from Ahlquist's position is that Romney is still slightly better that Obama on some significant issues, and if I had to chose, and if I lived in a state where my vote might actually count, I would reluctantly vote for him. Romney is more likely to change some policies, and to chose judges who might be more reasonable. I think. I hope.



Of course, because of the Electoral College, my vote in New York doesn't matter. This state will give its Electoral votes to Obama no matter what happens in the next few months - unless they indict him, and even then he still might carry the state.



So I don't have to vote for either of the machine-chosen major party candidates. I hear Santa Claus is running. Hmm.....



But if I lived in a state like Ohio, I'd consider voting for Romney - sorry Dale. I don't want to see four more years of anti-life, anti-faith policies.



Ahlquist says he will vote for neither Obama nor Romney, concluding: "I will not play this game anymore."



I understand where he's coming from.



I'm just not there yet.

Posted by A Secular Franciscan at 3:29 PM

5 comments:



TS said...

Interesting post! I live in Ohio and will be voting for Romney, but what interests me is how Alquist seems to place the blame on the wrong place. Last time I checked, real, live Republican voters voted Romney as the nominee. So the fault lies there. If many are seduced by the media or money or - God help us - campaign ads, then well we deserve what we get. Anybody who votes based on a campaign ad ought get their right taken away, ha. So UNLESS the Republican party altered the votes cast in the primaries, then I'm okay with whatever. It's a democracy and it's certainly more democratic than in the '50s when candidates were nominatged in smoke-filled rooms.



It seems part of the ethos of many is a) to blame-shift and see everything in conspiratorial terms and b) to not recognize real advances when they come, as has happened in civil rights and the more open nomination process for the Republican party, to name two.

7:32 PM



Trubador said...

I am in the same predicament as Dale and ASF. I'm in California, so I may be in the same situation as ASF is in NY come November - so I could then afford to vote a 3rd way. But if CA comes into play, then I'm in a quandary. Do I tow the line YET AGAIN, or tack a different course?



Perry was my initial candidate of choice (from a weak list of candidates). Santorum became my de facto second choice. Twice on my blog (on Nov 3 of last year, and on Feb 1 of this year) I exclaimed quite forcefully my unwillingness to vote for Romney.



http://www.arbiterofcommonsense.blogspot.com/2011/11/romney.html



http://www.arbiterofcommonsense.blogspot.com/2012/02/vent.html



Given where things are at right now, and after the horrific ObamaCare decision by the SCOTUS, and what would be a disaster if "The One" got another four years... I'm at the proverbial crossroads/horns of a dilemma.



Re: Dale's take on the (R) party machine, he's right. Quoting from one of my posts:



"I have towed the line patiently and diligently for a looooong time. I voted for Bush Sr. in ’92 even though he went back on his word re: taxes. I swallowed Dole in ’96 when he placated the conservatives by picking Kemp as his running mate. I voted for Bush W. when he placated conservatives by picking Cheney as HIS running mate in 2000. And I held the line and re-elected Bush W. in ’04 even though he and the Republican congress started going off the reservation. I held my nose and voted for McCain when HE placated conservatives by picking Palin."



And here we are YET AGAIN with Romney and whomever his running mate will be (Jindal?...Rubio?... fiscal/social conservative Catholics to dangle in front of our noses like a carrot to a shackled beast of burden?).



And we ALL know the (D) party has it's own political machine (thug-ish Chicago Politics anyone???... anyone... Bueller... Bueller...).



A lot may happen over these next 111 days until Nov 6. Until then... right now... I just don't know.



*sigh*

1:59 PM



Tom said...

I'm still voting for Romney over Obama.

1:32 PM



A Secular Franciscan said...

It will be a tough choice for folks in states in play.

9:19 AM



Joe Anderson said...

Dale Ahlquist is dead wrong on this issue. To read why, visit my article here: http://asensiblelife.com/dale-ahlquist-mitt-romney/ ‎

9:18 PM

Post a Comment

what-hellish-choice.html



Did you hear what he said? Abortion for rape and incest and "health and life of the mother." That is Roe v. Wade and it equals abortion on demand. In Doe v. Bolton, the companion decision, the court defined the woman's "health" to include physical health, mental health, the woman's family situation, and her age. To sum up, it was abortion in the first three months for no reason; abortion in the last six for any reason. Unborn babies are just so much trash to both presidential candidates. Romney is one of the men C.S. Lewis described as "without chests." He has no heart and he appears to use his intellect to reason out whatever position is necessary to get elected. (Obama too, of course.) I'm guessing Romney embraces this position to make himself more palatable to the "women's vote." But to pro-life women, his position is repulsive and repugnant. To watch a grown man smile as he supports the murder of little babies is to see a bully at work.



Let's face it, politics seems to demolish virtue and magnanimity among men and make them bullying cowards. This was certainly a low moment for Romney. He also appears to have a death wish. Can he really believe that pro-lifers are so mindless they will support him no matter what he says? Ah...but they have no place to go? Some disagree. Dale Ahlquist, President of the American Chesterton Society, wrote in a recent issue of the Chesterton Review that he will not vote for Romney. The magazine is not on line, but here's an interesting post about the article which I have not read but hope to since I respect Dale's opinion.



Obama or Romney what a Morton's fork! God help us with these two despicable candidates as America's choice for president. May Our Savior give all voters wisdom and understanding as they go to the polls and rescue us from venal men.

Posted by Mary Ann Kreitzer at 8:45 PM

Labels: 2012 election, Morton's fork, Obama or Romney, politics, Romney favors abortion for rape incest and life of mother

12 comments:



servo said...

Rummy is so full of crap it's begun to spill over onto Ryan. So now we're granting 'health of the mother' now? What does he have left now- no abortions for comedy purposes?

August 27, 2012 9:43 PM



servo said...

Sorry to double-post, but had another Deep Thought.



"Can he really believe that pro-lifers are so mindless they will support him no matter what he says?"



To be honest, some of them will. They'll vote for Satan incarnate if he claimed he was kinda-sorta-more-anti-abortion than Moloch. I mean, they voted for McCain...



I can understand the lesser of two evils approach, but at what point can we consider the lesser so evil as not to be worthy of even grudging support?



If somebody is going to do that, so be it. I'm not going to bother.

August 27, 2012 9:48 PM



Anonymous said...

Paul Ryan holds the same position too.You will never find a candidate that is 100 percent pro-llife.

August 28, 2012 4:50 AM



Anonymous said...

I will probably vote for Romney and Paul Ryan here in California as at least I do not think either will make Catholic organizations and businesses pay for insurances that pay for the birthcontrol pill (a carcinogen that helps cause breast cancer and makes it worse) or abortions. The Catholic Church needs to get off the govenment dole as it has only made conditions for the Church worse, and let us face the fact that many people who call themselves Catholic are really not by any stretch of the immagination. Some of them do finally come around to Church teaching when properly catechized, but some never will do so because they never will believe in Church teaching.

August 28, 2012 12:10 PM



A Joyful Noise said...

Misunderstanding can occure when you don't hear all the facts.

Obama is SO much worse, that Romney will look like a saint comparred to OB.

August 28, 2012 5:21 PM



John J. Jakubczyk said...

Please consider what is currently at stake. The current president must be replaced. if he wins a second term, he will continue to run roughshod over the Bill of Rights, he will continue t fund Planned Parenthood - meaning more dead babies, and he will appoint judges who will shred the constitution.



Romney is not perfect and has lots of issues BUT he is far better than Obama, who thinks that he can get the Catholic vote all the while attacking our religious freedom.



Romney's pick of Paul Ryan showed real respect for our constituency. Ryan has NOT caved on his 100% pro-life position. His exact words were that Romney's position is a good start. It is far better than Obama.



So lets see - vote for Romney and we can -

Stop funding PP - good;

Select pro-life judges - good;

Stop ObamaCare - good;

Protect religious freedom - good;

Defend marriage - good;

Reinstate Mexico city policy - good.

Investigate PP for criminal activities - good.



We live in an imperfect world. We must do what we can with what we have.

August 28, 2012 10:59 PM



Ray Schneider said...

There is no such thing as a perfect candidate. Life is composed of decisions that involve compromise whenever anything becomes at all complicated.



If you watched the RNC then you saw testimonials from people whom Gov. Romney helped in all walks of life. You will not see anything like that from Obama.



Gov. Romney is a decent human being and he's been living an honorable life. He is more pro-life than the opposition by far. We live in a secular world that makes it difficult even to defend natural rights because it is a world that is degrading on almost every plane.



We can only do what we can do to hold off evil and that means vote for the least imperfect candidate and strive to increase virtue and goodness in the world.

August 31, 2012 2:06 PM



Anonymous said...

Romney has grandchildren born via a gestational surrogate through IVF. I don't think any candidate would fit your 100% pro-life bill.

August 31, 2012 3:02 PM



servo said...

You can't promote goodness by voting for evil, lesser or otherwise. It's amazing how hopelessly in thrall to the Republicans some people are. They'll keep shoveling crap your way if you keep taking it.



Decent human beings don't promote sodomy and child murder.

August 31, 2012 6:20 PM



Joe Anderson said...

Listen friends, we've got to get this right. This election is not a joke or some kind of game in the playground. This is about real issues affecting real lives.



We cannot sacrifice the good in our pursuit of the ideal. Romney is not the ideal candidate. We all know that. But he is good - especially compared to the only other possible option at this point - another term with President Obama. President Obama is both absolutely and relatively bad on all issues involving moral absolutes in this election: marriage, religious freedom, economic and other human freedoms and, most importantly, defense of the most weak and innocent in our society.



There is no moral or rational basis for not supporting Mitt Romney. Let me repeat that, there is absolutely no moral or rational argument for not supporting Romney in this election.



You can read my articles on these issues here: www.asensiblelife.com

October 13, 2012 9:37 PM



RecoveringFeminist said...



There is no discernible difference between Romney and Obama. I will not betray the Catholic Church and "sell" my vote for 30 pieces of silver. I will either vote third party or write in God. Viva Christo Rey!



The Lesser of Two Evils is Still Evil! http://lesseroftwoevilsisstillevil.blogspot.com/



Never compromise on the truth, Pope insists

http://www.catholicculture.org/news/headlines/index.cfm?storyid=15402



"... So we choose the lesser evil, thinking we have been saved from the great evil, when all the while satan's real purpose was to bring about the evil we have chosen... ." "The Father's Tale", p. 496, Michael O'Brien





We've had enough of exhortations to be silent! Cry out with a hundred thousand tongues. I see that the world is rotten because of silence!~~St. Catherine of Siena





If people are scandalized at the Truth, it is better to allow the birth of scandal, than to abandon the Truth.~~Pope St. Gregory the Great



In keeping silent about evil, in burying it so deep within us that no sign of it appears on the surface, we are implanting it, and it will rise up a thousand fold in the future. When we neither punish nor reproach evildoers, we are not simply protecting their trivial old age, we are thereby ripping

the foundations of justice from beneath new enerations.--Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn

October 16, 2012 5:19 PM



servo said...

Oh, so now voting for St. Lesser Evil is a moral and rational imperative. I guess I'm a bad, crazy guy then. Yeah, there is a reason not to vote for Romney- he is pro-abortion and kinda-sorta pro-gay. There is a reason one *could* vote for him, but saying they *have* to is nuts. This neo-con thinking in Catholic circles is getting ridiculous.



I guess people are never going to wake up and throw off the yoke of the Republicans. They have you right where they want you, and will just continue to string you along with garbage candidates.

October 16, 2012 10:43 PM

Why Dale Ahlquist is Wrong about Mitt Romney

http://asensiblelife.com/dale-ahlquist-mitt-romney/

The Public Square Add comments

Jul 152012





Dale Ahlquist is dead wrong and we have a duty to support Mitt Romney and the Republican Party in the upcoming general election. Here at A Sensible Life we cannot shy away from pointing out error, even when expressed by one whom we otherwise hold in high regard.

I was saddened to see Dale Ahlquist’s editorial in the May/June issue of Gilbert Magazine. As his thesis Mr. Ahlquist asserted that he would not vote for Mitt Romney in the upcoming presidential election. I have a great deal of respect for Mr. Ahlquist. Unfortunately, I found his reasoning in this case very weak and his conclusion to be both dangerous and unsound.

Mr. Ahlquist spent much of his editorial describing how George Bush became the Republican Party nominee for president in 2000 and dedicated additional space listing the deficiencies of the Bush presidency, ignoring the pro-life, pro-freedom successes of that same presidency. He admits his cynicism toward the Republican Party. Perhaps his uncurbed cynicism has blinds him to the real differences between the only two parties in this country who have any possibility of winning a presidential election. His uncurbed cynicism leads also to his unsupported assertion that the nomination of Mitt Romney is, “all about money.”

Mr. Ahlquist justly draws a parallel between the big business tendencies of the Republican Party and the big government tendencies of the Democrat Party. He also points out, correctly, that the Republican Party has contributed to the expansion of government rather than succeeding in reducing its scope. However, in the interest of making his case, Mr. Ahlquist overstates the role of Republican Party in growing government. He also ignores the support from the Republican Party for small business and fails to recognize that it is always the Democrat Party that pushes hardest for government expansion and that the Republican Party when in power generally slows or stops the growth, though rarely succeeding in actually reducing government reach. He also ignores the profound differences between the parties with regard to political philosophy; differences to be seen in the Republican view of the Constitution as an enshrinement of individuals’ rights and a curb to government power. This view of the Constitution is most evident in Republicans’ appointments to the courts, which for the most part have been excellent in the last thirty years. There have been some disappointments in this area but no Democrat would ever have appointed Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito or Antonin Scalia.

All of this said, the most glaring and disappointing deficiency in Mr. Ahlquist’s editorial is his failure to recognize the importance of the upcoming general election in the context of the ongoing battle for the soul of our country. He fails altogether to draw any distinction between the two viable parties in our country with regard to issues such as the secularization of the political philosophy of our national government, defense of life, protection of marriage, human freedom, freedom of conscience, regulatory and tax burdens on small business, etc. Is Mitt Romney perfect on these issues? No rational and informed individual would claim that he is. However, there are members of Congress who understand what needs to be done in these areas and stand ready to do so. Mitt Romney may not be the boldest leader on all the issues that lie before us but mark this well, without a Republican in the White House (and Romney is our only option at this point) there is absolutely no chance that the good men and women whom we have elected to Congress will make any progress on the road to fixing the ills of our country.

It is an impoverished view of our civic responsibility to suggest that because we do not wholly agree with the results of the nomination process we will refuse to vote in the general election (or we will vote for some unelectable third party candidate).

I cannot state this too strongly, a vote for President Obama is a vote for the current steep downward trajectory of our country; a vote for Mitt Romney is a vote for a presidency that will at worst decrease this trajectory and a presidency that has the potential (even if that potential be slim) to turn the trajectory upward. Make no mistake about it, to fail to vote for Mitt Romney in November is to cast half a vote for President Obama. This truth remains, no matter how loudly you claim non- support of the current administration.

Mr. Ahlquist to many stands as the arbiter of Chestertonian thought in the United States. It saddens me that he would publicly take this position and by doing so potentially draw many votes away from a much-needed victory in the battle for the American soul. Don’t forget, Mr. Ahlquist, God can write straight even with bent instruments like Mitt Romney and you and me. I will close with a remark of Chesterton’s from What’s Wrong with the World, “Men have never wearied of political justice; they have wearied of waiting for it.” Please do not weary of waiting for political justice here in the United States. And please do not express weariness, despair and cynicism by failing to do all necessary to replace the current secular administration with one that holds a brighter potential.