Where are the signs of intelligent Catholic life?

Well, here we go again. In “Right to work,”(God Lives, Feb. 26), we are told that being in a union is a natural right of man, but that no worker can be forced into a union (which is what happens). 

On illegal immigration, we are told that all people have the right to migrate, but nations have the right to defend their borders (but not really). 

On making money and achieving some wealth, we are told that we are required to make as much as we can, but that enjoying it is wrong (so give it to the Church or liberal non-profits).

And that we must be pro-life, but that voting for pro-abortion politicians is OK as long as the reason you are voting for them is not because they are pro-abortion (so the majority of Catholics vote against their faith). 

Beam me up, Scotty. There’s no intelligent Church down here. 

Craig Niehaus, Glendale, Mo.

Public vs. private unions

President Franklin D. Roosevelt clearly differentiated between private sector trade unions and public sector unions. “Meticulous attention should be paid to the special relationships and obligations of public servants to the public itself and to the government. All government employees should realize that the process of collective bargaining … cannot be transplanted into public service. It has its distinct and insurmountable limitations. … The very nature and purposes of government make it impossible for … officials … to bind the employer [taxpayers].”  

What I believe Msgr. Campion is really talking about is the private sector’s right to collective bargaining. In fact, the National Labor Relations Act in 1935 excluded federal, state and local employees. In 1943, a New York Supreme Court judge further wrote on the dangers of public unions. 

The most insidious result of public sector unions’ collective bargaining “rights” has led to the solidification of the alliance between organized labor and the Democratic Party.  

There is no moral problem with right to work. Rather, public sector employees in right to work states can choose whether to join a union or not — to have their dues go toward electing Democrats or not. 

Rose Wilkes, Elmhurst, Ill.

‘Right’ response to Syria

Re: “Tempered response” (Editorial, Feb. 19). 

Over the past several months I have generally disagreed with your staff. However, on this issue you are definitely on to something. 

U.S. actions can bring about unintended consequences. It seemed the “right” thing to do to invade Iraq, remove Saddam Hussein and set up a “democracy.” But somewhere along the line something has gone terribly wrong — Christians are being slaughtered and forced to flee! 

Egypt, Libya, Syria — each of these countries in some way has protected their minority populations under Hosni Mubarek, Moammar Gadhafi, Bashar-al Assad. What happens when these governments topple? 

Larry Reichert, Hays, Kans. 

Making amends

The recent uproar over the Obama administration’s plan to violate conscience rights produced two amazing results: 

(1) Catholics learned that contraception is a sin; and 

(2) they learned this NOT from the pulpit, but from the secular media! 

Who could have predicted such a strange turn of events? After all, for more than 40 years there has been almost complete silence regarding the immorality of contraception. It is quite possible that Catholics under age 50 never heard of such a sin. As Greg Erlandson put it, “This exposes a major catechetical failure that is coming home to roost” (Spectator, Feb. 19). One hopes that there are bishops, priests, teachers out there who would agree, offer a “mea culpa,” and start to make amends.  

Charlotte Ellis, Santa Rosa, Calif.

Giving of total self

Re: “Komen reversal dismays pro-life supporters” (News Analysis, Feb. 19). 

Many clergy and laity did not follow Pope Paul VI’s message on contraception in the 1960s, and look at the mess we got ourselves into, which he predicted.  

I was given some wonderful advise by a woman in politics Anita Yeckel after I gave a speech on abortion and contraception at a Knights of Columbus meeting. 

She liked the speech, but said we need not to dwell on the “not” on contraception, we need to dwell on the gift we give to one another in marriage when we give ourselves totally to one another in marriage when we are not contracepting. After all God gave himself totally to all of us on the cross, not just part of himself. Wouldn’t it just make sense that your marriage would be so great if husbands and wives would give themselves totally to one another? 

Jackie Baumgartner, Festus, Mo.

Unseen blessings

I enjoyed Mark Shea’s article on the anointing of the sick (“Divine doctoring,” Feb. 12). As one who suffers from mental illness, I look forward to receiving this sacrament two to three times a year. The initial benefits may not be as visible as Shea’s, however, this does bring a not so small amount of comfort. It is a reminder of the unseen and what the spiritual world has to offer us with its numerous graces and blessings.  

Glenn Slaby, New Rochelle, N.Y.