Cardinal Dolan: Real Inclusivity Must Include Unborn Babies

Cardinal Timothy Dolan addresses a news conference at the offices of the New York Archdioc
New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan (AP Photo/Richard Drew)

ROME — New York Cardinal Timothy Dolan said Monday that the mantra of inclusivity must be stretched to include everyone, including unborn babies.

In a Wall Street Journal op-ed, Cardinal Dolan proposes that America is falling short of its ideal of true inclusivity by selectively applying it only to liberal causes.

“By accepting one dominant cultural narrative that presumes to define those who are ‘excluded,’ we are ignoring those who don’t tidily fit into the prevailing cultural story line,” he writes.

The cardinal lists a series of people who do not fit into that “dominant cultural narrative,” such as fragile unborn babies, “who have no legal protection in most states, with all of us forced to pay for the taking of their lives.”

In his hard-hitting essay, Dolan advocates for school choice, large families, conscience protections, and the rights of conservative Christians. He also slams proponents of euthanasia as well as priests, pastors, and bishops who confuse the faithful with a watered-down gospel message unworthy of Jesus.

One group to be brought into the big tent are parents “who must pay constantly increasing taxes to support monopoly government schools and who are denied the right to use tax dollars to send their children to the schools of their choice,” he asserts.

Citizens “who for ethical reasons cannot obey the tidal wave of bureaucratic decrees on healthcare and are forced to choose between their consciences and their jobs” are another group, he states.

In a thinly veiled swipe at San Diego Cardinal Robert McElroy (as well as Jesuit Father James Martin), Dolan calls for a warmer welcome and support for a “gay person trying his best, with God’s grace, to live according to biblical teaching, who hears church leaders call that morality unjust and oppressive.”

Cardinal McElroy recently proposed that the Catholic Catechism is mistaken to call gay sex “disordered” while suggesting that there is no real moral difference between active homosexuals and those who struggle to live chaste lives, an assertion that contradicts Christian teaching.

For his part, Father Martin has called for unconditional affirmation of active gays, rather than challenging them to live out the moral teachings of Christianity.

In Monday’s op-ed, Cardinal Dolan also urges greater care for young people “who are spiritually thirsty for a sense of awe, reverence, and transcendence but who have difficulty finding a church to satisfy their needs.”

Many young Catholics, in fact, who find this sense of awe and transcendence in the Traditional Latin Mass have been stymied in their spiritual search by recent measures by Pope Francis to squeeze the venerable tradition out of existence. Meanwhile, sloppy liturgies and anodyne homilies abound, doing little to offer the faithful a true sense of the sacred.

“Our beloved elders near the end of life” are another category of people to be better included and defended, the cardinal contends, especially when they are “coaxed into feeling useless, a burden, with euthanasia the answer.”

In his essay, Dolan also defends police while calling for better security for citizens from violent crime.

“Cops who face danger daily, who see their colleagues killed and wounded, their resources shrinking, and the criminals they apprehend released in an hour,” he proposes, are certainly one group that deserves to be included and no longer marginalized.

“Elderly people who are scared to take the bus or subway, or to walk down the block for milk and bread” are likewise to be provided with better protection, he writes.

All these good people are marginalized and excluded, he concludes, and the solution is a society that is inclusive “not merely for the groups now chic to defend, but for all.”


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