Continuing from last week we cite below the teachings of the United States Bishops who assure the purity of our Catholic Faith so as to inform the conscience of the American voter:
Preferential Option for the Poor and Economic Justice
“Economic decisions should be assessed according to whether they protect or undermine the dignity of the human person. Policies should foster the creation of jobs for all who can work with decent working conditions and just wages. Barriers to equal pay for women and those facing unjust discrimination must be overcome. Catholic social teaching supports the right of workers to choose whether to organize and join a union. We bishops support legislation that protects consumers from the excessive rates of interest charged by lenders. Welfare policies should reduce poverty and dependency and strengthen family life. There should be a safety net for those who cannot work. Faith-based groups deserve recognition as effective partners in poor communities. Government bodies should not require Catholic institutions to compromise their moral or religious convictions to participate in government health or human service programs.
Promoting Justice and Countering Violence
“Promoting moral responsibility, curbing violence in media, supporting reasonable restrictions on access to assault weapons, and opposing the use of the death penalty are particularly important in light of a growing ‘culture of violence.’ An ethic of responsibility, rehabilitation and restoration should be a foundation for the reform of our broken criminal justice system. A humane rather than a strictly punitive approach to offenders should be developed.
Combating Unjust Discrimination
“It is important for our society to combat any unjust discrimination, whether based on race, religion, sex, ethnicity, disabling condition, or age as these are grave injustices and affronts to human dignity. Where the effects of past discrimination persist, society has the obligation to take positive steps to overcome the legacy of injustice.
Care for Our Common Home
“Care for Creation is a moral issue. Protecting the land, water and air we share is a religious duty of stewardship and reflects our responsibility to born and unborn children. Pope Francis asks ‘What kind of world do we want to leave to those who come after us?’ The Conference of Bishops of the United Sates offers a distinctive call to seriously address global climate change. The United States should lead in contributing to the sustainable development of poorer nations. It is important that we address the rising number of migrants who are uprooted from their homeland. They are not currently recognized as refugees and are thus not afforded legal protections that ought to be due to them. Our nation’s efforts to reduce poverty should not be associated with demeaning population control programs, which are condemned by Pope Francis. Instead of resolving the problems of the poor and thinking of how the world can be different, some can only propose a reduction in the birth rate.
Communications, Media and Culture
“Print, broadcast and media shape the culture. To protect children and families, responsible regulation is needed that respects freedom of speech, yet also addresses policies that have been harmful. Regulation should limit concentration of media control and resist management that is primarily focused on profit.
“St. John Paul II wrote that ‘solidarity is a firm determination to commit oneself to the common good.’ The United States has the responsibility to take the lead in addressing the scandal of poverty and underdevelopment. Our nation should help to humanize globalization. The US policy should promote religious liberty and other basic human rights. Asylum should be afforded to refugees who hold a well-founded fear of persecution in their homelands. Leadership on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is an urgent priority. Defending human life, building peace, combating poverty and despair, and protecting freedom and human rights are not only moral imperatives—they are wise national priorities that will make our nation and world safer.
– Fr. Gerard Gordon