Setting the Record Straight

Contrary to what some of his supporters contend, not everyone who criticizes Barack Obama is a racist. The fact is, unless these Obama apologists are complete morons, they know that this is nonsense – even while they are in the midst of making the charge. It's a shabby little game in which the "race card" is deployed as a way to cut off any criticism of Obama.

There is a parallel phenomenon in the Christian community and, in recent days, I have seen it first hand as a result of my defense of Father Pavone. Because I have helped to expose the contemptible actions taken against him by his bishop, the "anti-Catholic" card is now being played against me.

Let me be perfectly clear about this. While the people doing this are certainly entitled to their own beliefs, they are not entitled to their own facts. Here is just a tiny part of what they are conveniently leaving out of the equation.

Since I started Life Dynamics, well over half my employees have been Catholic, including three of my personal assistants. The attorney who represents us is Catholic. The majority of our donors are Catholic, and the only person I have ever given authority to make major decisions for Life Dynamics other than me is Catholic.

In addition to Priests for Life, I also work hand in hand with groups like Human Life International (HLI), American Life League, Pro-Life Action League and numerous other Catholic organizations. I was very close to HLI founder, Father Paul Marx, and remained in regular contact with him until his death. It may also surprise some to know that Father Marx was a faithful and long-time donor to Life Dynamics. In 2002, I received the first annual Cardinal Von Galen Award from HLI and, in 2004, I was given the Cardinal O'Connor Pro-Life Hall of Fame Award by Legatus. I was also given the 2009 Blogger of the Year award by American Life League.

Moreover, I have consistently made it clear that the Catholic Church and its associated organizations were on the frontlines of the pro-life battle when the vast majority of my fellow Southern Baptists were perfectly comfortable looking the other way. I have also shown no reluctance to publicly defend the Catholic Church or state that, without its commitment to this cause, there would have never even been a pro-life movement.

I could go much further down this track, but the point is that these efforts to portray me as "anti-Catholic" are absurd and despicable. The people doing this are motivated by the fact that I do not ascribe to the view that the Catholic hierarchy, or any other church's hierarchy, is to be installed upon a pedestal and given authority that is absolute and beyond scrutiny. In their minds, that makes me "anti-Catholic" in the same way that criticizing Obama's stimulus plan makes someone a racist in the minds of some hardcore Obamanistas.

In fairness, it should be noted that self-pious bigotry is not a disease that only infects Catholics. Over the years, many non-Catholics have felt the need to call my office and warn me that if I continue to associate with Catholics – or as they describe them, "that cult of cloven-hoofed heretics" – I will eventually find myself with a window seat on the Hell Bound Express. Regrettably, a couple of these nitwits have checked in with me in the last couple of days. It seems they are quite amused that a bunch of Catholics would like to see me rotating over a low flame because of my aggressive defense of a Catholic priest.

The irony about this is that none of these people would now be attacking me if I had simply abandoned Father Frank when Bishop Zurek dropped him in the grease. Of course, it may not be ironic at all. It could be that it reflects the simple reality that these people are just opposite sides of the same coin – though both would become enraged at such a suggestion.

Before closing, I want to bring up a couple of other issues. First, notice how quiet the pro-choice mob is being. Obviously, these people understand the concept that when your enemy is in self-destruct mode, the smartest thing to do is keep your mouth shut. My prediction is that, once all of this is resolved, they will have plenty to say.

Second, I can assure you that if the things that are going on behind the scenes of this regrettable situation are ever made public, the people who are now blindly defending Bishop Zurek are going to be stunned at what they learn. I can also assure you that these revelations will not be coming from me.

Finally, I want to make you aware of an interesting phone call I received yesterday. It was from Dr. Levon Yuille who is an African-American pastor in Michigan and unwavering defender of the unborn. He told me that, a couple of years ago, he was giving a speech at a pro-life banquet and that, afterward, he was milling around chatting with a small group of attendees. He said that he can't remember why but, for some reason, Father Frank's name came up. At some point in the conversation, he said this well-dressed woman standing nearby suddenly blurted out that, "Father Pavone is getting too big for his britches and we're going to take him down."

Dr. Yuille said he found this incident bizarre but that he had forgotten about it until he heard what Bishop Zurek was doing. After some discussion, we both concluded that it is a long shot to assume that her statement and this situation are related. But who knows?

Who Do You Trust?

Recently, the Ohio legislature was debating a piece of abortion legislation when State Representative, Connie Pillich became unhinged and began shrieking that attempts to restrict abortion indicate that we don't trust women.

First off, this seems to be an odd assertion given that most of the people in the pro-life movement are women and, yes, that includes most of its leaders. Apparently, Ms. Pillich is hoping that the public is simple-minded enough to just accept at face value her charge that a predominately female entity does not trust women and seeks to squash them underfoot.

Beyond that, however, saying we shouldn't have laws against abortion and should, instead, trust women to make their own decisions, is no different than saying we shouldn't have laws against rape because men should be trusted to make their own decisions. It's also no different than opposing laws against armed robbery on the basis that we should just trust each person to make his or her own decisions about whether stealing is right or wrong. In fact, this philosophy can be just as easily applied to any subject.

As for this particular issue, the abortion lobby's basic argument is that since women are the ones who get pregnant, they are the only ones qualified to make the decisions that are right for them. Using that concept, imagine the following hypothetical, but quite realistic, scenario. A pregnant woman has an abortion scheduled for tomorrow, but goes into premature labor today and gives birth. Also imagine that the baby survives. (And yes, abortions are done on babies who have reached the point of viability. For proof, all you have to do is check out abortion clinic advertising in the Yellow Pages.)

The question is: under these circumstances, should it be legal for her to kill that baby? Remember, she already decided that she doesn't want it and arrangements were in place to have it killed the next day anyway. So why should she lose her "right to choose" because of circumstances that were beyond her control? Is she not still the one best qualified to make the decisions that are right for her? Otherwise, what we're saying is that we trust women to make good decisions while they're pregnant, but at the moment they're no longer pregnant we no longer trust them.

It should also be pointed out that, from the baby's perspective, there is no distinction between being butchered inside the womb or outside. Naturally, the mental images created by the latter might cause the rest of us to feel a little queasy, but we could comfort ourselves by just looking the other way and referring to it by some high-sounding sanitized term like "reproductive choice ex-utero." Since Roe vs. Wade, our society has developed a real talent for inventing that sort of self-deluding rhetoric.

So again, do we still trust this woman to make the right decision or not?

Look, the cold hard reality is that every statute enacted denies someone the legal ability to make certain decisions. In fact, that is what they are intended to do. The law is a response to the realization that all human beings--men and women--are capable of making decisions that are dangerous, immoral, destructive, etcetera. And the law exists to keep those decisions from being inflicted upon other innocent human beings.

Now, to Ms. Pillich and her fellow travelers who are out there chanting this mindless "we trust women" mantra, I have a challenge for you. If you do indeed trust women, prove it. Start promoting an overhaul of the American legal system so that it exempts women from all legislation. By doing this, you would be making sure that women have the legal right to make their own decisions about everything – driving drunk, embezzling money from their employers, writing bad checks, using cocaine or selling their bodies in prostitution. Female business owners would even be allowed to decide for themselves whether to discriminate against minorities.

The list goes on and on, but the common element is that every law enforceable against women is, by definition, a statement that we don't trust them. Clearly, that makes such laws irreconcilable with your philosophy and demands that they be eliminated. If you are "pro-choice," you simply cannot tolerate the fact that women are being denied these choices. Either you trust women or you don't.

Of course, we both know that you are not going to accept my challenge and we both know why. You know that doing so would expose your "trust women" rhetoric as pure undiluted nonsense. To put it succinctly, this line of argument is nothing more than a diversionary scam you people dreamed up to keep from having to defend a barbaric practice that you know cannot be defended.

As for my fellow pro-lifers, it is important to understand that when your enemies are reduced to making idiotic and irrational arguments like this, what they are telling you is that you are winning and they are out of ideas. Today, death merchants like Connie Pillich are seeing a tidal wave of pro-life sentiment rolling across America and they know there is nothing they can do to hold it back. So be encouraged, ratchet up the pressure, and savor the beautiful sounds of pro-aborts squealing like pigs stuck under a fence.

Free Father Frank

As many of you probably know, our friend Father Pavone has been literally exiled by his bishop and barred from doing the pro-life work God clearly put him here to do. Moreover, the justifications being given for this are devoid of even the slightest merit.

What is being done to Father Frank is both unprincipled and indefensible, but the much larger problem is what this is doing to the cause you and I serve. With every day that Father Frank is kept off the battlefield, the pro-life effort suffers a major setback. Not only do we lose his indispensable contributions, but those of us who are his friends are forced to use up resources in his defense that would be better directed at the abortion lobby. The fact is, this petty nonsense is taking the lives of unborn children and it has to stop ... NOW!

We must all be willing to give this bishop the benefit of the doubt and assume that he is not acting out of malice but, instead, simply doesn't understand the irreparable harm he is doing. In that spirit, I am asking you to contact him today and ask him to correct this injustice. Be respectful but resolute. Make it clear that there is no defense for what is being done here and that Father Frank should be immediately freed to return to his calling.


Most Reverend Patrick J. Zurek Roman Catholic Diocese of Amarillo Post Office Box 5644 Amarillo, Texas 79117

Phone: 806-383-2243


Mark Crutcher of Life Dynamics