Listening around to the various radio and video comments (with the usual pattern: European broadcasters cowardly fearing reprisals, American ones proudly extolling the military prowess of the operation) one element has attracted my attention: the subdued, almost shameful satisfaction of the European mood against the open rejoicing – in the street, or even with a marching band on the studio of a famous conservative commenter – experienced the other side of the pond.
Let me first point out to the fact that from a religious point of view you don’t wish death to anyone, let alone hell. You wish their repentance and conversion instead. But this is merely, so to speak, the starting position. From a practical point of view, we must deal with people who do not wish to repent, much less convert and that are in total military opposition to us.
Now I can pray for the conversion of the mad Egyptian doctor Ayman al-Zawahiri, the new number one of Al Qaeda, as much as I wish, but as long as this doesn’t happen (and frankly: don’t hold your breath, either) the chap is an enemy and a military objective and must be treated accordingly.
This is nothing irreligious, let alone un-Catholic. Catholics don’t “do” pacifism, nor are they ready to treat their enemies as if they were friends. When you are an enemy I can pray for you if I can, but I’ll treat you as such.
We are at war with terrorists. War means that military operations will be put in place, which are aimed at having the enemy either surrender or die. Osama was no exception. This being undoubtedly the case, it is not clear to me why the achieving of such a momentous military objective as the elimination of the commander-in-chief of the enemy camp should be welcomed with less than strong and vocal rejoicing.
On the 7th october 1571, the Christian Armies inflicted an utter defeat to the Ottoman fleet at Lepanto. The rejoicing and public celebrations were, notwithstanding the heavy tribute of blood on both sides, immense. This is right so.
What has happened in the early hours of Monday morning in a residential compound in Pakistan does, admittedly, not reach the scale of the victory in Lepanto, but still has the same character: a clear military success over the main enemy of the time. In addition, the complete success of the operation – with no casualties to be lamented on the American side – makes the event even more worth rejoicing.
Is there not rejoicing when, in war-time, the sinking of a prestigious enemy ship is announced, or when the conquest of an important military post is achieved? In both cases blood has flown, but in both cases the accent is not on a kind of sadistic joy for sufferance inflicted, but rather a patriotic joy for a victory obtained. It is not unChristian in the least; on the contrary, it is the way a Christian lives the battle and supports his side.
Osama Bin Laden’s elimination is – I do not think anyone can doubt this – an extremely important symbolic victory for the West. It’s the enemy flag now symbolically planted in front of the Western military camp, and a loud and clear reminder of what happens to the enemies of the West. There’s nothing wrong or irreligious in that, nothing whatever.
It is right to rejoice. Of course it is. I envy the spontaneousness and youthful energy of a country able to get on the streets, some of them in the night and in their pyjamas, to celebrate such a momentous event.
Of course in Europe there wasn’t so much to celebrate. It being clear to everyone that Europe has cowardly chosen to depend on the US military effort in order to have more money to waste in bureaucracy and unChristian socialist policies, there was no way we could see this feat as, in some way, belonging to us too. Still, I can’t avoid thinking that old and weary Europe was more absorbed with the worry about possible future attacks, whilst the youthful and enthusiastic US citizens were bravely defying every enemy, ready for combat and certain of victory.
Ask yourself now which continent is undoubtedly the more Christian, and you’ll have all the answers you need.
Condomgate continues to rage and, if it was necessary, shows with increasing evidence the damage made to the Catholic cause by the careless example chosen by the Holy Father.
As I have (easily) predicted in the past, the discussion is now – among cafeteria catholics and all those who don’t want to accept Church teaching whenever it doesn’t suit them – about the Pope not having justified the use of condoms in certain circumstances, but having justified it anyway or, in some other version, being wrong in not doing it. In both cases, dissent is rearing its ugly head. This is a serious matter because we are not talking of individual weakness here, but of rebellion. Rebellion is the realm of Satan and his minions. A Catholic must accept the teaching and when he sees himself unable to understand it he must pray that he may get the right understanding. If he fails, he must pray more. Submission to the Church is first, understanding of it is second. Credo quia intellegam, non intellego ut credam.
With the basis of reasoning clear, let us examine the condom question again. I have often repeated that a sinful behaviour doesn’t justify particular modalities to carry the sinful activity. It doesn’t, because the activity is unjustified. This must be the cornerstone of every reasoning in the matter.
A killer is not justified in his killing his victims in a less cruel way. A violent husband is not justified in punching his wife whilst wearing boxing gloves. A sodomite is not justified in wearing a condom whilst committing sodomy. Therefore, it can’t be said “Pope Okays use of condom by sodomy” any more than it could be said “Pope Okays use of boxing gloves in beating wife”. This must be clear because these are simple facts (and rather basic facts) of Catholic moral teaching.
Now, the army of “understanding” journos goes on saying “oh well, what about the case of husband and wife? Should the Church not give her assent to the use of a condom by a husband with AIDS to protect his wife’s health by an intercourse we know is going to happen?”. This is as logical as to ask: “Should the Church not give her assent to the use of boxing gloves to protect his wife’s health by an attack we know is going to happen?”.
The answer to this is: the husband with AIDS must refrain from intercourse exactly as the violent husband must refrain from beating his wife. That the use of boxing gloves might be, from the part of a husband, a first step & Co, & Co. doesn’t change an iota in the answer to the questions.
This is where the profoundly secular thinking of the “compassionate” troops clearly shows up. In their reasoning we find the complicity with sin so typical of the anti-Christian world. Wrong behaviour is simply seen as inevitable. People are, in fact, not even asked to avoid it because I can’t credibly say to a violent husband that he is supposed not to beat his wife whilst endorsing his use of boxing gloves.
The simple truth (a truth with necessitates of a Christian prospective to be properly understood) is that not having sex is not more impossible than not beating one’s wife. Whilst there might be difference in the degree of difficulty to achieve this (some people have a very strong sex drive) there is no doubting the fact that none of the two are impossible to achieve.
The lawmakers all the world over reason the same way. They don’t give to imprisoned child rapists sheep and hens so that they have something to rape whilst in jail; nor do they give to the jailed violent husband some substitute animal in order for him to perform his necessary bodily function of being violent. They both land in a jail with no way to give in to their tendencies and – unsurprisingly – they don’t die.
Similarly, even in the changing world of criminal law felonies remain forbidden even when due to compulsion and the compulsion may diminish the severity of the punishment , but can never exclude it. You can’t decriminalise violent drunken behaviour because one is a drunkard, or child rape because one acted “compulsively”. Simple common sense.
Also, lawmakers never say “let us find authorised ways of practising child raping or bestiality, because they are going to happen anyway”. That’s not how it works. Moral imperatives don’t tolerate justified way of violating them because when you accept the justification, you are destroying the moral imperative. No raping. No domestic violence. No bestiality. No sodomy. No infection of your spouse. These are the only acceptable answers.
Sex is not unavoidable. Sodomy, as exceptionally pervert, is even less unavoidable. Hundreds of millions of people live in chastity every day and he who thinks that the army of singles – even in the most corrupted Western countries – is composed of people who just need to have sex has a very skewed perception of the real world outside of the film industry.
We live in a world where progressive (often: homosexual, or lesbian, or promiscuous) journalists tell us that sex is something that just must happen. Bollocks. Every village of Christian Europe, everywhere, in all centuries past, tells a very different story. Not in the sense that people were saints, but that celibacy was something accepted and lived in a way simply unacceptable (because inconvenient) to the modern thinking by a great number of people.
The argument “but they are going to do it anyway so let us find ways to limit the damage” smacks of saying “but rapes through african militias are going to happen anyway so let us find ways to have the girl raped in a more gentle way”.
He who says that shows that he hasn’t a great problem with rape, after all.