President Biden’s ‘litany of compassion’ must also include the unborn child
In My Father’s House / Paul Thomas Moore
In responding to the pro-choice presidency of Joe Biden, I’m going to try and take a leaf from the book of Dr. Anthony Fauci, who said he “took no pleasure” in contradicting former President Trump on COVID.
When Dr. Fauci felt he had to correct the record during Trump’s administration, he avoided confrontation, but patiently steered the conversation back onto more solid scientific ground. Even now, he is not one to divert attention from fighting COVID to finding fault with his previous boss.
Dr. Fauci perfectly models the diplomatic, civil approach that President Biden recommended for all of us in his inaugural address.
Too often, unfortunately, I for one harbor a spirit of cynicism-criticism against those with whom I disagree.
That’s no way to build a relationship, a country or a faith community.
As Dom Roberto, a 17th-century Italian hermit wrote, “The kingdom of mercy would be of no use if there were none who needed mercy; because it would be a kingdom without subjects.”
WORDS OF HUMANITY, MINUS A REALITY
So, I’ll try to be nice. I agree with San Francisco Archbishop Salvatore J. Cordileone, who commented that President Biden, in his inaugural address, “gave a moving call to unity and healing . . . a ‘Litany of Compassion’ — bringing before the eyes of the nation the suffering of people across a wide spectrum of issues.”
Like Archbishop Cordileone, however, I felt someone was missing from the litany: the unborn child. I’m glad to hear words of humanity issuing from the Tenant-in-Chief of the White House. I only hope he will come to recognize the reality of the tenant in the womb.
As a Catholic, I don’t take any pleasure in saying this, but you can’t clutch your rosary in one hand, and uphold abortion rights on the other without being called on it.
In her very first press conference on Inauguration Day, White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki responded to a question about President Biden’s plans for taxpayer funding of abortions (we later learned he plans to increase funding here and abroad) by changing the subject. Psaki preferred to talk about the President’s faith, “I will just take the opportunity to remind all of you that he is a devout Catholic . . . who attends church regularly.”
It is disingenuous to deflect a question about abortion by bringing up the President’s Catholic faith. Such an approach seeks to cloud the distinction between what President Biden stands for and what his Catholic faith stands for — the insinuation being there’s not much difference.
This spiritual confusion can aid and abet misinformed abortion choices, resulting in wounded souls and psyches inside and outside the faith.
The unborn are not the only victims of abortion.
I watched a TV show recently ironically called “The Good Doctor” (this one isn’t named Fauci), where a surgical resident was being pressured into performing an abortion. She resisted, in the end admitting she herself had an abortion when she was a teenager. She said she didn’t regret her choice, as she felt the pregnancy would have imperiled her future as a doctor, thereby depriving patients of her services.
Still, as a Christian, she didn’t like to think about the abortion, or want to perform one if she could help it. If that’s not a house divided against itself, what is?
What President Biden is proposing in terms of healing and uniting the country is great as far as it goes. However, why can’t the litany of compassion include support for the unborn and women in crisis pregnancies? As well, the 60 million abortions in the U.S. since Roe. v. Wade present a crying need for national as well as individual healing, regardless of one’s position on the issue.
Having said that, I will approach the new administration with a spirit of hope. As Blessed Concepción, the first Mexican laywoman to be beatified, wrote, “People who come into our lives are as pieces of canvas on which we must paint the image of Jesus.”
Joseph Robinette Biden Jr., I’m painting you pro-life.
PAUL THOMAS MOORE is a Catholic commentator and singer-songwriter. He and wife Mary Louise attend St. Mary of Lourdes in Germantown Hills. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.