Paul Revere by Cyrus Dallin, North End, Boston

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The Irrelevant Ghoul

The Irrelevant Ghoul
A noun, a verb, and 9/11

Sunday, May 17, 2009

PRESIDENT OBAMA'S NOTRE DAME COMMENCEMENT SPEECH A RESOUNDING SUCCESS




After weeks and weeks of MSM coverage of Mr. Obama's impending appearance at Notre Dame University's commencement along with the abortion protesters, the day finally arrived, and Mr. Obama disarmed the 12,000 people who gathered to hear him talk about how we need to come together as a nation and listen to each other's side of the abortion issue without demonizing the opposing view.


In the post below titled "Beth's Posts," you will read an example of how NOT to approach this volatile issue. Mr. Obama addressed this in his speech and did a great service to this country by encouraging people to respect their opponents' opinions by not using invective and demeaning language to vilify the other side.


Good advice; good speech. Bravo, Mr. President, for showing people how to act like adults and not school yard bullies.




Obama entered the arena to thunderous applause and a standing ovation from many in the crowd of 12,000. But as the president began his commencement address, at least three protesters interrupted it. One yelled, "Stop killing our children."


The graduates responded by chanting "Yes we can," the slogan that became synonymous with Obama's presidential campaign. Obama seem unfazed, saying Americans must be able to deal with things that make them "uncomfortable."


The president ceded no ground. But he said those on each side of the debate "can still agree that this is a heart-wrenching decision for any woman to make, with both moral and spiritual dimensions.


"So let's work together to reduce the number of women seeking abortions by reducing unintended pregnancies, and making adoption more available, and providing care and support for women who do carry their child to term."


He said he favored "a sensible conscience clause" that would give anti-abortion health care providers the right to refuse to perform the procedure.

Before taking on the abortion issue, Obama told graduates they were part of a "generation that must find a path back to prosperity and decide how we respond to a global economy that left millions behind even before this crisis hit an economy where greed and short-term thinking were too often rewarded at the expense of fairness, and diligence, and an honest day's work."

23 comments:

(O)CT(O)PUS said...

"a sensible conscience clause"

I haven't yet found a so-called "conscience clause" that is "sensible." Is it sensible for emergency room workers to deny a morning after pill to a woman who has just been raped? Do we suddenly exempt Jehovah's Witnesses from performing blood transfusions? Is it sensible to withhold the sale of contraceptive products on religious grounds? Shall all Jews or Unitarians be forced to abide by Catholic or Southern Baptist teachings?

Under original civil rights legislation, it is considered a federal crime to deny a public accommodation. Suddenly, we are going to make medical exceptions on religious grounds? No way!!

Norris Hall said...

I was impressed by Obama's willingness to find common ground on the issue of abortion.
Working to create conditions that would make abortions unnecessary would have broad support by both sides of the issue.

Better to find area where we can all agree on and work together, rather than shout at each other through megaphones and call each other "baby killers" and "Taliban freaks"

When no one listens it' a waste of time to discuss.

bluepitbull said...

Both of you are only saying that because you have a leader who holds the majority and would block any motion to overturn roe v wade.

It's really easy to look like a unifier. What is truly hard is to bring one's true beliefs to the front and let them be open to scrutiny. Obama has yet to do that.

Shaw Kenawe said...

Mr. Obama talked about his position on Roe v. Wade.

The American people support a woman's right to control her body.

While George Bush was president and the Republicans were in control of Congress, nothing was initiated to overturn RvW.

Why didn't Mr. Bush overturn it when he had the chance to bring a test case?

He didn't. And Bush is anti-abortion.

8(O)PUS,

I agree. If someone is anti-abortion, that person should not be in a profession that deals with the legal right to abortion.

dmarks said...

Blue: Shaw is right. He's not hiding anything on this, and is rather unequivocal on his views favoring abortion.

Even though Shaw changed the subject from abortion to "a woman's right to control her body"

Ruth said...

The issue isn't abortion, it's birth control, for the extremists, and to the Supremes it's about women's ability to bear responsibility for her own decisions.

Pres. Obama is doing a great job of giving a basis for working with all segments of society. After watching the speech on CSpan, I was taken aback by media's giving the protestors more exposure than his points, but not surprised.

Shaw Kenawe said...

No, dmarks, I'm not changing the subject. A fertilized ovum implants itself in a woman's body, it needs her body to grow.

So long as men and women have sex, there will be unwanted pregnancies--there's no changing that. No government has the right to force a woman to carry an unwanted pregnancy.

A morning-after pill will prevent the ovum from implanting in the woman's uterus. This should not be a problem with those anti-abortionists who call the fertilized egg a "baby."

It is not a baby, it is a dividing cell, a blastocyse, with no heart, brain, or nervous system.

And yes, I believe the living woman has precedence over a collection of cells

If there were universal, free birth control, abortion would be rare.

Unfortunately, those who scream the loudest about "killing babies" are also AGAINST BIRTH CONTROL.

The only explanation for this insanity is that those people are against a woman's sexuality. They want her to pay the ultimate price for having sex.

Insane.

(O)CT(O)PUS said...

The issue is NOT just about abortion, NOR gay gay rights, NOR stem cell research, NOR contraception, NOR any of these.

It is about some denominations forcing their doctrines upon a general populace, about imposing ecclesiastical authority and power over all persons, even non-believers. This is not only offensive to non-believers, it is downright oppressive.

In this regard, I see little difference between theo-con Bishops and Ministers versus Taliban Mullahs.

bluepitbull said...

Thats a far stretch, even for you. No one forces these people to attend church services, no one forces people to go to these schools. That's the great thing about America, you can shop around.

Mullahs? Please.

dmarks said...

Shaw: No, the issue is abortion. Norris was right. It's not about baby killers (murderers vs "Taliban freaks" (those who want to control a woman's body)

"The only explanation for this insanity is that those people are against a woman's sexuality. They want her to pay the ultimate price for having sex."

That is such an out-of-touch mischaracterization. According to the ABC News poll of January 22, 40% of women favor abortion "To End Unwanted Pregnancy"... LESS than men (43%). The actual poll numbers make sense when you realize that opposition to abortion has nothing to do with punishing for sex, etc.

Octo: It is about abortion, not denominations. If you want to bring denominations into it, it works both ways: there are also denominations that favor abortion and want the government to accept their policies, too. But it is all diversionary to claim it is about denominations. It is about abortion yes vs no. Even Pres. Obama acknowledged this.

"This is not only offensive to non-believers, it is downright oppressive"

I kind of doubt you feel so "oppressed" by those theists who want the government to adopt views favoring abortion. Of course, if the believers agree with you, it is OK for them to act on their beliefs.

"In this regard, I see little difference between theo-con Bishops and Ministers versus Taliban Mullahs."

If such divisive language is OK, then it is OK to similarly stretch things in order to incite an emotional response and equate the other side with "baby killers" or Nazis. After all, the Beths who call those who favor abortion "Nazis" are no worse than those who equate the opponents of abortion to "mullahs".

But no, of course it is not ok. There are no Mullahs or Nazis on either side, are there?

Shaw Kenawe said...

No one has yet addressed my comment about moral consistency.

Those who believe abortion is morally wrong under all circumstances must also be against war, under all circumstances.

I don't take anti-abortionists seriously unless they can state to me that they are against all wars, just and unjust.

Mr. Bush, while he was in the WH, showed his moral inconsistency by telling the American people and the world that it was morally justifiable to invade Iraq in order to rid it of Saddam Hussein and to give Iraq the precious gift of liberty--a gift Bush said was from God.

If Mr. Bush and those who supported the Iraq invasion believe that it was acceptable to have the Iraqi people [men, women, children, pregnant women, fetuses] suffer and die during the invasion for a greater good, then those same people would be morally inconsistent to condemn abortion.

If a woman determines that the greater good of her family or of her personhood is served by not completing an unwanted pregnancy, is she also not making the same determination as Bush did for a country? Is a woman less deserving of autonomy than a country?

Mr. Bush made the decision to invade Iraq--without the majority consent of the people--because he believed it was for their greater good. And pregnant women and fetuses died as a result.

But Bush is against abortion.

He does not believe that a woman should make a determination for the greater good of her family or herself--he believes THAT decision is immoral, and not the one he made when he invaded Iraq.

Moral inconsistency.

dmarks said...

"I don't take anti-abortionists seriously unless they can state to me that they are against all wars, just and unjust"

Tell me, do you apply this to those against the death penalty also? Do you say they are morally inconsistent the same way?

"Mr. Bush made the decision to invade Iraq--without the majority consent of the people"

We don't have national referenda on matters. The closest thing to majority consent we have is when our represenatives (Congress) vote for something. And they did vote "Authorization for Use of Military Force Against Iraq "

Shaw Kenawe said...

dmarks,

Without the majority consent of THE IRAQI people.

THEY didn't get a chance to agree to the invasion and all that would do to them and their country.

The Catholic Church is adamantly against capital punishment, BTW. And plenty of innocent, poor minorities have been put to death as a result of prejudice and often sloppy or underhanded police tactic.

Yeah. I'd put the death penalty there, too. For all the fundamental Christians [see George Bush] who believe it's moral to put criminals--even sicko murderer rapists to death, how do they reconcile the Bible where God says:

"Vengence is mine, sayeth the Lord." Deuteronomy 32:35


Matthew 5:38-48
38 "You have heard that it was said, "AN EYE FOR AN EYE, AND A TOOTH FOR A TOOTH.' 39 "But I say to you, do not resist an evil person; but whoever slaps you on your right cheek, turn the other to him also. 40 "If anyone wants to sue you and take your shirt, let him have your coat also. 41 "Whoever forces you to go one mile, go with him two. 42 "Give to him who asks of you, and do not turn away from him who wants to borrow from you. 43 "You have heard that it was said, "YOU SHALL LOVE YOUR NEIGHBOR and hate your enemy.' 44 "But I say to you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, 45 so that you may be sons of your Father who is in heaven; for He causes His sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. 46 "For if you love those who love you, what reward do you have? Do not even the tax collectors do the same? 47 "If you greet only your brothers, what more are you doing than others? Do not even the Gentiles do the same? 48 "Therefore you are to be perfect, as your heavenly Father is perfect.

How does GWB or anyone who believes in capital punishment reconcile that?

dmarks said...

So, you dislike anti death penalty activists unless they are opposed to all wars?

"THEY [Iraqis] didn't get a chance to agree to the invasion and all that would do to them and their country."

That's kind of an odd point, considering that totalitarian dictatorships like that have no mechanism of any kind for gaining consent for anything. FDR, it turns out, did not have the consent of the average German, Japanese, or Italian during WW2 either. The US war against Japan was probably a lot less popular among Japanese than the idea of overthrowing Saddam Hussein was among the Iraqis. WW2 Japan was a lot more united behind its Emperor, with less of a restive minority problem than Iraq had. The same is probably true of WW2 Germany, as compared to Iraq.

Shaw Kenawe said...

FDR, it turns out, did not have the consent of the average German, Japanese, or Italian during WW2 either.We were attacked by the Japanese and so in turn that brought us into war with Germany and Italy.

Iraq didn't attack the US.

Saddam Hussein was a dictator, so is Fidel Castro, so is the head of China, so was the military head of Pakistan Mushareff.

You can't compare WWII and what we did in Iraq. So please don't use that as an example.

Saddam Hussein was not a threat to the security of this country the way the Germans and Japanese were in WWII. German Uboats were patrolling off the east coast of the US, and the Japanese posed a real threat in the Pacific.

Saddam Hussein was a paper tiger.

dmarks said...

"Iraq didn't attack the US."

That's not how the real history went. He fired on US peacekeepers in the no-fly zones many times. This was an unprovoked act of aggresion, and was one of many violations of the cease-fire.

Sure, he did not attack the US mainland. But, yet again, neither did Japan.

"You can't compare WWII and what we did in Iraq. So please don't use that as an example."

There are several important similarities, enough to make it worth discussing and comparing in regards to whether or not the people in these countries wanted us to invade.

"Saddam Hussein was not a threat to the security of this country the way the Germans and Japanese were in WWII."

Less than Japan, which attacked us in a bigger way than Saddam's Iraq did. But more than Germany, which had not set its sights on us yet.

KIND AND GENTLE TRUTH101 said...

Dmarks: I'm not a pansy Lib. I believe our planes had every right to shoot down Iraq planes in the no fly zone. Our guys had every right to destroy any bunkers used to launch rockets against us. But how do you justify the invasion and destruction of a country that was no threat to the security of the US? Saddam was the asshole over there. Not the average Iraqi. Had Bush ordered the bombing of Saddam's 40 palaces the message would have been sent and the job done. I'm no fan of proportionality. But I certainly don't like to see the innocent punished along with the guilty. We got just about everyone in the "deck of cards." Around 50 creeps. We also got around 100,000 innocent Iraqis who were only guilty of being Iraqi.

dmarks said...

How much of that 100,000 was the result of Saddam and the other terrorists using civilians as human shields, and direct executions by Saddam and the other terrorists?

But, you do make some good points about alternate strategies. Do you know if any of these were presented? One alternative pushed by Kucinich and his ilk was to reward Saddam by ending sanctions.

(I'm not one of those trolls, btw. When have I ever called someone a pansy lib?)

KIND AND GENTLE TRUTH101 said...

I remember General Shinseki saying we would need 300 to 400,000 troops to do the job of occupying Iraq correctly. I also remember Shinseki being fired for that.

(O)CT(O)PUS said...

BluePitBS: "Thats a far stretch, even for you. No one forces these people to attend church services, no one forces people to go to these schools. "

The poorest of reading comprehension skills, even for you. If you look at my comments above, you will notice that I am talking about what occurs when denominations try to change secular law and force their doctrines upon a general populace. Like attempts to turn the U.S. Constitution into a document that discriminates against segments of the population. Like attempts to turn women into criminals for having an abortion. Like the estimated 2,000 fringe denominations that want to turn the USA into a theocracy. Like harassing mourners at military funerals to make anti-gay statements.

It is about imposing one religious authority over all persons, over me and members of my family, over non-believers. This is religious oppression.

Then again, those who deliberately misread comments are not interested in discussing issues. Those who deliberately misread comments do so to stalk and harass others; an honest and civil debate is not in your repertoire.

Shaw Kenawe said...

8(O)PUS,

If you visit bluepitbull's blog, you'll see where he devoted an entire posting to me because I pointed out a really awful grammatical error that he made in a comment.

He completely misinterpreted what I commented on, and then went on to re-misinterpret, misread, misunderstand all my comments.

I suspect that a lot of this is attributable to bringing a fair amount of prejudice to reading anything a liberal writes on his blog. Or just plain poor reading comprehension.

This makes it all but impossible to have any reasonable discussion with bluepitbull.

(O)CT(O)PUS said...

Shaw: "a fair amount of prejudice to reading anything a liberal writes on his blog. Or just plain poor reading comprehension."

Both and neither, let me explain. Yes, there is a partisan prejudice, and yes, there is a "selective reading bias [along with a tendency to misrepresent]."

But this dude is also a shameless narcissist gaming for attention, and one who relishes harassing, staking, and bullying commenters at liberal discussion forums.

At the Zone, we don't waste time on him. We delete his comments on sight.

(O)CT(O)PUS said...

Shaw, one of my favorite colleagues and wisest of contributors said this:

Bloggingdino: "Life is short, and every second you spend corresponding with mean-spirited idiots is a second of life you won't get back and in which you can't do something else. "

Bloggingdino is also author of our community commenting policy.