The Corner

Culture

Twenty Things That Caught My Eye Today: Michael Hickson, Foster Care, Syria, Hamilton & More (July 6, 2020)

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2. Wesley J. Smith: The Deadly “Quality of Life” Ethic

The doctor did not base his decision on the seriousness of Michael’s illness, but on his continuing disability. This is a classic example of applying the invidious “quality of life” ethic, which deems people with disabilities, the elderly, the chronically ill, and the dying to have a lower moral worth than the healthy, able-bodied, and young; this ethic sometimes translates into denying the weak and vulnerable medical care that others would receive readily.

3. Sarah Zagorski: The Supreme Court dealt a devastating blow to low-income women by siding with the abortion industry

In Louisiana, abortion proponents argued that laws such as Act 620 disproportionately affect low-income women. Poor women don’t have the resources to take off work and travel across state to a qualified practitioner, they argue.

But they cleverly forget to mention that it is precisely low-income women who are the ones disproportionately affected by sloppy abortion physicians because these women are the most vulnerable in crisis.

This week’s decision by the Supreme Court is no victory for low-income women. Women like my mother are in need of protection from an abortion industry that recognizes their vulnerability can be used for profit. This decision, in fact, will set women back decades, to a time where powerful individuals, such as doctors and judges, wield power over vulnerable populations because no one, not even the highest court in the land, will protect them.

4.  Carter Snead: The Way Forward After June Medical

June Medical Services was a grave disappointment and a missed opportunity. But Chief Justice Roberts’s concurrence—the controlling opinion for purposes of precedent—leaves pro-life litigants on a better jurisprudential footing than before.

5. Sister Norma Pimentel: Covid-19 has come to our migrant camp. It makes ending the MPP policy even more urgent.

This MPP policy fails to address people with dignity. We should not have people forced to wait for asylum — trying to find safety for themselves and their families — while camped outside in the elements for months at a time. It is contrary to our laws and the dictates of humanity. The story of these asylum seekers has faded from the front pages of U.S. newspapers and from television screens but the cruel and unfair situation continues.

6. Politico: Pandemic unleashes a spike in overdose deaths

The pandemic-fueled uptick in overdose deaths also coincides with the Trump administration’s legal battle to strike down the Affordable Care Act at the Supreme Court. Eliminating the law without a replacement would, among other things, eliminate protections ensuring coverage of benefits including addiction and mental health services.

7. Rebecca Smith Masterson: There’s a better way to do foster care

I do not envy the judge faced with a choice between allowing a three-year-old to remain where he has lived for almost two years, but losing the opportunity of living with his biological half-siblings, versus placing siblings together, but removing a child from the only mother he’s ever known. While I don’t envy this decision, I do firmly believe that both options should be equally available to every judge faced with this situation. Right now, they are not equally available.

Currently, the laws in the majority of states favor blood ties in every situation without regard for the individual circumstances of the child.

8. Inez Feltscher Stepman: The Last Fourth of July?

Just two years ago, the media laughed at the president for wondering where the movement to remove historical statues would end, and whether it could distinguish between Jefferson Davis and Thomas Jefferson. Today, rioters have destroyed monuments to abolitionists alongside Confederate generals; Ulysses S. Grant and Abraham Lincoln are targeted alongside Stonewall Jackson and Robert E. Lee. It’s not merely symbols of the CSA that protesters find offensive, it’s any hero of the United States who is now the enemy.

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But it’s not just historical inaccuracies that plague the 1619 Project and its rioting adherents. Their central narrative is wrong. America was founded in 1776, and at the cornerstone of the American system rests not slavery, but the fundamental equality and dignity of every human being, naturally endowed with inalienable rights. The United States, like all fallible human civilizations, has not always lived up to the greatness of its creed. Its heroes, like all men in all eras and countries, are flawed and made terrible mistakes.

As a first-generation American, my ancestors didn’t land on Plymouth Rock; they neither kept nor fought to free slaves, and they didn’t storm the wide beaches of Omaha under the American flag. But I consider George Washington to be my Founding Father, and 1776 to be the birthday of my country, which well deserves fireworks to celebrate 244 years.

9. Archbishop Broglio Issues Statement on U.S. Naval Orders Prohibiting Participation in Off-Base Indoor Religious Services

Participation in the Sunday Eucharist is life blood for Catholics.  It is the source and summit of our lives and allows us to receive the Body and Blood of the Lord.  Certainly, the Navy personnel who fall under this restriction are dispensed from the obligation to attend Sunday Mass, because no one can be required to do what is impossible.

10. Francis X. Maier: Escape Clause

There’s a curious quality of theater to the current wave of street demonstrations, monument desecrations, public confessions of guilt, news media hysteria, official cowardice, the irrelevance of the Church to the angry young, and Big Tech’s shoveling money at organizations committed to upending their economic system.

The wind is strong.  I find myself bouncing from fear, to fury, to emotional fatigue.  And there’s a small part of me, and I’m not alone, that longs irrationally for a purifying fire: Burn it all down, and start over.  “The worse, the better” – the line so often (and wrongly) attributed to Lenin – starts to make sense.  But that road leads into very dark corners of the heart.

11. As covid-19 saps Vietnam’s economy, private charity is blossoming

12. Black Americans and the Fourth— and Fifth— of July

American patriotism then, as Douglass also suggests, is inseparable from a kind of pride—the pride that comes from the experience of having, and being enabled to have, an active hand in the thriving condition of one’s economic, social, and political life. Absent such participation, one ends up with Tocqueville’s nightmare vision of disengaged individuals pettily concerned with security and physical wellbeing, entirely lacking public spirit and initiative, and irritably critical of a bureaucratic regulation regime on which they are entirely dependent. But what if the promise of such participation is continually held out to a people and repeatedly frustrated? Such has been, in large measure, the black experience since Emancipation.

13. Coronavirus: Trainee priest treating patients during crisis

14. Nobody’s Martyr: The Millions Interviews Shannon Reed

Shannon Reed: I am obsessed with the mythologies around teaching, and often ruminate about how they hurt teachers (and, more selfishly, me). What never seems to get factored into the conversation, but which might be changing now, due to what the pandemic has taught us, is that our society cannot function without teachers. We really ought to be doing everything we can to keep good teachers in the profession, including giving them the opportunity to become good teachers, and pulling in as many new ones as we can. Eliminating those belittling misconceptions would so help with that.

15. The New York Times: Five Years and 100-Plus Stories: What It’s Like Covering ‘Hamilton’

16. Christianity Today: the Gospel Takes Center Stage in ‘Hamilton’

In one church I spoke at, a woman approached me after my sermon and told me that Hamilton saved her life. One particular night, she listened to the soundtrack of Hamilton as she seriously contemplated suicide. When she heard George Washington sing, “Dying is easy, young man / Living is harder,” something shifted inside of her. She realized that taking her life would be the easy way out—that the harder path was choosing to live. God used this story to literally save this woman’s life.

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18. Crux: Opus Dei chief takes graduate seminar in coronavirus heroism

19. Gucci’s first model with Down syndrome goes viral

Goldstein is signed with Zebedee Management, a talent agency dedicated to increasing the representation of people with disabilities in media. She has appeared in numerous campaigns since signing with them in 2017, including a Nike campaign for the Women’s World Cup last year.

20. Matthew Hennessey in the WSJ: My Father the Car Radio

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