On the topic of the Supreme Court decision upholding the Partial Birth Abortion ban:
Geoffrey R. Stone is the Harry Kalven, Jr. Distinguished Service Professor of Law at the University of Chicago. Prof. Stone writes this seriously perplexing bit of prose over at the equally perplexing Huffington Post. Emphasis and [Commentary] mine:
What, then, explains this decision? Here is a painfully awkward observation: All five justices in the majority in Gonzales are Catholic. The four justices who are either Protestant or Jewish all voted in accord with settled precedent. It is mortifying to have to point this out. But it is too obvious, and too telling, to ignore. Ultimately, the five justices in the majority all fell back on a common argument to justify their position. There is, they say, a compelling moral reason for the result in Gonzales. Because the intact D & E seems to resemble infanticide [Resemble? What would they have to do for Stone to see it as actual infanticide? Pull the baby all the way out and stomp it to death?] it is “immoral” and may be prohibited even without a clear statutory exception to protect the health of the woman.
By making this judgment, these justices have failed to respect the fundamental difference between religious belief and morality. To be sure, this can be an elusive distinction [So elusive in fact, it doesn’t even exist], but in a society that values the separation of church and state, it is fundamental. The moral status of a fetus is a profoundly difficult and rationally unresolvable question. [The claim that the moral status of a fetus is unresolvable is fatuous at best, however Prof. Stone would have us err on the side of death]
Leaving the blatant anti-Catholicism aside, Prof. Stone’s contention that “these justices have failed to respect the fundamental difference between religious belief and morality.” is one of the most inane comments I have ever heard.
Without the belief in a dignity conferred upon man by the Creator, there is no morality. Any belief system that does not recognize the inherent dignity of man because he is created in the image and likeness of God, confers no dignity upon man at all. The 20th century has confirmed this truth many times over. Without God, there is no morality. Morality becomes a moving target.
Without God, morality is defined by those with power. The powerless are left to die with no rationally resolvable moral status.
April 25, 2007 at 3:20 pm
I hate how they make having a well-formed conscience a bad thing. I mean, obviously, we should all lay aside our consciences and make our decisions based on precedent. Hmm, I believe that in the realm of morality, precedent was set by Adam & Eve. So clearly we should all stop trying to do anything but sin, and just follow precedent.
April 25, 2007 at 6:46 pm
Speaking of precedent, I believe the amount of precedent used in Roe V. Wade is also zero.
April 26, 2007 at 4:12 am
Precedent only matters when it favors them. Morality on matters when it favors them. To disagree means you are a religious zealot with no legitmite voice. Go figure.