by Bradley Eli, M.Div., Ma.Th.  •  •  July 3, 2018    3 Comments

Supreme Court to decide who gets life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness

America’s Christians are hoping President Donald Trump’s reshaping of the U.S. Supreme Court will bring death to the Culture of Death that supports abortion, euthanasia, same-sex “marriage” and the killing of consciences of those forced to participate in this deadly culture.

Cases destined to come before the High Court will determine who gets the rights to “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” proclaimed in the Declaration of IndependencePro-lifers and Democrats are all abuzz about whether Trump’s future mix of justices will overturn Roe v. Wade that took away what was previously called an “unalienable right” to life from some 60 million Americans by legalizing abortion in 1973. They’re spurred on in this regard by Trump’s well-known campaign promise to nominate justices who would overturn Roe v. Wade.

But such a monumental decision by the Supreme Court would simply allow states to determine who gets to live and who dies. A more sudden way this case may come before the Supreme Court — and one which would immediately kill the abortion industry — is for Trump to sign an executive order establishing personhood for unborn babies and thus guaranteeing their right to life under the Fourteenth Amendment.

Such an executive order may not be far off. Trump, in his letter to the National Right to Life Committee (NRLC) on June 28, declared that children in the womb have a fundamental right to life.


In this letter to NRLC, Trump stated, “We all have a duty to defend the most basic and fundamental human right — the right to life. As President, I am dedicated to protecting the lives of every American, including the unborn.”


If the president turns his dedication into an executive order, the Supreme Court’s vetting of its constitutionality would dwarf the controversy that arose over the High Court’s examination and recent approval of Trump’s highly publicized travel ban.


Trump’s move toward legally establishing personhood for the unborn already enteredinto legal text last October when the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released their 2018–2022 plan stating that life begins at conception and, therefore, deserves legal protection.


In the introduction of this plan, the government agency declared, “HHS accomplishes its mission through programs and initiatives that cover a wide spectrum of activities, serving and protecting Americans at every stage of life, beginning at conception.” These regulations are on a collision course with the so-called right to abortion and this collision will ultimately occur in the midst of Trump’s future mix of Supreme Court justices.


As President, I am dedicated to protecting the lives of every American, including the unborn.Tweet

But regardless of how courts will view a baby’s right to life, another pressing issue for the Supreme Court will be vetting a doctor’s right to refuse to kill babies. The push for doctors and health care professionals to participate in this deadly practice was resisted by Trump in January when he formed, within HHS, the Conscience and Religious Freedom Division. In the accompanying press release, HHS explained the role of this new division is to  “restore federal enforcement of our nation’s laws that protect the fundamental and unalienable rights of conscience and religious freedom.”

The division pledges to protect the rights of health care providers who refuse to perform, accommodate or assist in sterilizations, abortions and other procedures that violate their religious beliefs. A doctor’s freedom to follow their conscience, based on sincerely held religious beliefs, will be weighed by the Supreme Court against a women’s fallacious right to kill her unborn child.

This same division will also protect health care providers who refuse to kill their patients. The deadly practice of physician-assisted suicide was broadcast in the 1990’s by Dr. Jack Kevorkian, a medical pathologist who helped dozens of terminally ill people commit suicide. It wasn’t until the highly publicized suicide of Brittany Maynard in 2014, however, that assisted-suicide became widely accepted. Eight states and Washington, D.C. have legalized suicide.

Not only will the Supreme Court have to uphold the liberty of Americans to reject killing the elderly and the infirm, but the practice itself may also come under their purview. Trump’s latest addition to the Supreme Court, Justice Neil Gorsuch, has written that such a practice itself violates the natural law principle that human life is intrinsically valuable.

The High Court must also balance the right to same-sex “marriage” it established in the 2015 case of Obergefell v. Hodges with the rights of Americans to refuse to serve what they understand are sham marriages. The Supreme Court punted two such cases back to the lower courts. The first involved a Christian baker from Colorado, who refused to make a wedding cake for a same-sex wedding. The second case involved a florist from the state of Washington, who likewise refused to make flowers celebrating a so-called same-sex wedding.

Neither case addresses the central issue of business owners’ right of declining service to same-sex couples who attempt to marry. In deciding the case of Colorado’s Masterpiece Cakeshop, Justice Anthony Kennedy admitted that this issue is not yet settled. Speaking of the Christian baker, Jack Phillips, Kennedy, in his majority opinion, verified there’s still a “delicate question of when the free exercise of his religion must yield to an otherwise valid exercise of state power” to regulate same-sex “marriage.”

He added that “the outcome of some future controversy involving facts similar to these” is yet to be decided by the High Court. What makes it certain that such a case will come before the Supreme Court is the fact that many other cases are now working their way through the lower courts involving, not only bakers, but also florists, printers, photographers, videographers and calligraphers who all agree that their religious beliefs won’t allow them to offer their services for same-sex wedding ceremonies.


Fr. Rutler’s Weekly Column

July 8, 2018
There is no limit to the excuses ideologues will make to promote theory over fact. Consider attempts to justify Aztec human sacrifice in the interest of “multiculturalism.” Archeological discoveries of massive numbers of victims are being explained away as not really significant. The estimable scholar, Victor Davis Hanson, has written: “For the useful idiot, multiculturalism is supposedly aimed at ecumenicalism and hopes to diminish difference by inclusiveness and non-judgmentalism. But mostly it is a narcissistic fit, in which the multiculturalist offers a cheap rationalization of non-Western pathologies . . .”
Like hyperbole about the Spanish Inquisition, refuted by the latest scholarship, the “Black Legend” would have us believe that the Spaniards destroyed a benign and creative civilization in Mesoamerica. The Franciscan friar Bernardino de Sahagún, a missionary and pioneer anthropologist who translated the Gospel into the Aztec Nahuatl language, represents the best of a not unblemished Hispanic cultural imperative that led to the abolition of human sacrifice, though at a cost, for many Spaniards were cannibalized by the Acolhuas, Aztec allies. Similarly, it was the influence of Christian missionaries like William Carey that banned the Hindu practice of “sati,” the cremation of widows on their husbands’ funeral pyres in the Indian principalities. Between 1815 and 1818, 839 widows were burnt alive in Bengal province alone. A general ban was enforced by Queen Victoria in 1861, the year her own husband died, but sati was still practiced in Nepal until 1920.
One estimate has 80,400 Aztec captives sacrificed in 1487 at the re-consecration of the Great Pyramid of Tenochtitlán. Although the actual figure may have been lower, the cutting out of hearts from victims still alive is an intolerable barbarity, graphically depicted in the film Apocalypto, which shows such rites among the earlier Mayan people. A mixed-race descendant of Cortez, Fernando de Alva Cortés Ixtlilxóchitl, calculated that 20% of the infants and children in the general “Mexica” area were sacrificed annually to appease rain deities, along with men and women sacrificed in honor of the serpentine god Quetzalcóatl, the jaguar god Tezcatlipoca and the aquiline warrior god Huitzilopochtli.
In the sixteenth century, Montaigne, anticipating Dryden’s “noble savage,” sought to cut the primitive cultures a little slack because he saw barbaric acts among his own European peoples. Those who were scandalized by his analogy then are like those today who commit atrocities under the veneer of progressivism. In 1992, a writer in the leftist Die Zeit of Hamburg rhetorically bent over backwards to deny that the Mesoamericans had committed human sacrifice. We know what happened in his own country among the National Socialist eugenicists.
Sacrifices on the altars of ancient temples cannot match the millions of infants aborted today in sterile clinics. Pope Francis has said, “Last century, the whole world was scandalized by what the Nazis did to purify the race. Today, we do the same thing but with white gloves.” Perhaps five centuries from now, revisionists will deny that abortion was ever legal.

About abyssum

I am a retired Roman Catholic Bishop, Bishop Emeritus of Corpus Christi, Texas
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