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View Diary: Where were the bishops when Troy Davis died? (264 comments)

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  •  You're half right. The Church teaches that, yet (4+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    marykk, NWTerriD, Matt Z, maf1029

    also opposes the imposition of capital punishment, as the Georgian bishops' actions show.

    What many people--including Catholics--often don't know, but that I suspect you do know, is the different levels of authority of teaching by the hierarchy on doctrinal matters.  I forget the levels, because I find them conceptually offensive even as a Catholic myself, but I believe they are something like definitive and authoritative, where:

    Abortion, artificial birth control, gay marriage, cloning, stem cell research

    are opposed definitively, which puts them above

    Capital punishment, war, socioeconomic injustices

    which are merely opposed authoritatively, aka at a lower level.  

    I'm sure I don't have it exactly right; it's been awhile since I looked it up.  But I'm long over obedience to the hierarchy and their doctrinal priorities as expressed by the USCCB etc.  When the result is un-Christlike behavior, it's a result to be jettisoned in favor of modern adaptation in the name of Christ's Love of & for all.

    Before elections have their consequences, Activism has consequences for elections.

    by Leftcandid on Sun Feb 19, 2012 at 11:53:15 AM PST

    [ Parent ]

    •  Then I'm wholly right. (0+ / 0-)
      You're half right. The Church teaches that, yet also opposes the imposition of capital punishment, as the Georgian bishops' actions show.
      That statement makes me entirely right, not half right. That's pretty much exactly what I said.

      And no, it's not that the Church's teaching on the death penalty is of a different theological note than her teachings on other life issues. It isn't. It's that there is the teaching (the death penalty is permitted) and then there is the prudential judgment of how to apply to it to a specific case (is it the best choice in this particular set of circumstances, for this particular criminal).

      The first is an infallible and irreformable act of the Magisterium; the second is the personal judgment of men (even if, as was the case with JPII, he is an organ of that Magisterium), which in recent times has been to reject the death penalty in nearly all cases.

      •  This is why I don't value the teachings so much. (2+ / 0-)
        Recommended by:
        maf1029, marykk

        It's hard to find a case in recent times, as you say, wherein Catholic authorities championed the death penalty, or failed to oppose it, even if they acknowledge a State's right to impose it.  That's why you're half right: it's a split decision.  They'd do well to recognize a similar split decision for reproductive rights as well, but of course they will not anytime soon.   Recent times are the relevant times with regard to social issues (although we can go way back to at least one particular example re: social issues that remains quite relevant today, hint hint).

        Why the personal judgment of men people is subordinate to the actually-quite-fallible and certainly reformable-should-people-so-choose act of the Magisterium is not so much beyond me as I am way over it.  

        Before elections have their consequences, Activism has consequences for elections.

        by Leftcandid on Sun Feb 19, 2012 at 01:00:47 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  The difference: (0+ / 0-)

          one is intrinsically evil (and therefore admits of no exceptions), whereas the other can be a moral good if applied justly and prudentially.

          •  So sayeth some. Others might declareth BS. (1+ / 0-)
            Recommended by:
            marykk

            The Magisterium hath been complicit in much intrinsic evil over the centuries.  Much moral good, too, but the infallible declarations of what is intrinsically evil ring hollow from the hierarchy these days.   It's important to know what they say, but ever less important to abide by an ever increasingly obsolete code.

            Before elections have their consequences, Activism has consequences for elections.

            by Leftcandid on Sun Feb 19, 2012 at 02:40:19 PM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  The Magisterium... (0+ / 0-)

              ... is not a moral agent. It cannot be complicit in intrinsic evil. Men can be complicit, but not the Magisterium. The Magisterium defines articles of faith, it doesn't do good or evil.

              And obsolescence isn't a category that applies to moral truth. If it was true then, it is true now. Otherwise, you might as well just throw Christianity out altogether, since the Gospels are certainly obsolete by your standard. You might as well throw any possibility of moral philosophy whatsoever out, because hey, who know when the truth, "It is wrong to steal," might just up and expire on you.

              •  It is wrong to steal, but we both know that it's (0+ / 0-)

                sometimes more wrong than at others.

                Obsolescence doesn't apply to transcendent moral truth, but it certainly does apply to abortion, birth control, gay marriage, stem cell research, & cloning.  Modes of moral philosophy that mistake their contemporary cultural morality for transcendent moral truth can and should be at times thrown out.

                Before elections have their consequences, Activism has consequences for elections.

                by Leftcandid on Sun Feb 19, 2012 at 07:11:37 PM PST

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            •  Tipoff (1+ / 0-)
              Recommended by:
              Leftcandid

              When someone says he's a Catholic and starts with the Magisterium stuff, he's a trad.  Dead giveaway.  And in no way here to further the mission of the dK .

              If you think you're too small to be effective, you've never been in the dark with a mosquito.

              by marykk on Sun Feb 19, 2012 at 05:10:04 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

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