Former three-time New York governor Mario Cuomo died at the age of 82. The accolades are coming in by the boat load. He’s being called “Super Mario.” He was a liberal. What do you expect?
Donna Douglas, who played Elly May Clampett on The Beverly Hillbillies and an “ugly” patient on a 1959 episode of The Twilight Zone (“Eye of the Beholder”) also died on January 1, 2015. Who do you think brought more joy to Americans? Donna Douglas or Mario Cuomo? I’ll put my money on Elly May.
Donna Douglas never argued for legalizing the killing of unborn babies. Mario Cuomo — a “good Catholic” — did like his pro-abortion Catholic son and Nancy Pelosi, also another “good Catholic.” Being Catholic doesn’t make abortion the moral evil that it is. Too many politicians hide behind the proposition that they can’t impose church doctrine on people of different faiths or no faith. It would be like saying that stealing, rape, and murder are opposed by the Catholic Church, therefore, a politician should legislate against them because they are part of “Catholic doctrine.”
Here’s how Mario Cuomo justified his anti-abortion/pro-abortion stance. We have a record of it in a speech he gave at our nation’s premier Roman Catholic university – the University of Notre Dame. The title of his message was “Religious Belief and Public Morality: A Catholic Governor’s Perspective,” delivered September 13, 1984.
It’s quite the stem winder and too clever by half. It’s a smart man’s attempt to get around a clear moral wrong. He gives away his operating assumptions with this line: “I can offer you no final truths, complete and unchallengeable.”
When have you ever heard a liberal make this claim? Liberals are always arguing that liberalism is final truth that is complete and unchallengeable. All anybody has to do is mention global warming (“the debate is over”), homosexual marriage (“we’ll sue you if you don’t agree with us”), raising taxes (“we need more of your money”), and abortion (“it’s a woman’s right, we’ll make you pay for them, end of discussion, and if you don’t agree with us you are waging war against women”).
For a liberal like Cuomo One (Mario) and Cuomo Two (Andrew), liberalism is all about “final truths.”
Opposition to something like abortion in the form of a law, Cuomo argued, “depends on a consensus view of right and wrong. The values derived from religious belief will not — and should not — be accepted as part of the public morality unless they are shared by the pluralistic community at large, by consensus.”
It seems to me that someone who claims to be opposed to abortion, as Cuomo claims he was (see below), would have spent a great deal of time using his speaking gifts to persuade people that abortion is a moral wrong and thus create a moral consensus against it. Here’s what he said in his address:
“As Catholics, my wife and I were enjoined never to use abortion to destroy the life we created, and we never have. We thought Church doctrine was clear on this, and — more than that — both of us felt it in full agreement with what our hearts and our consciences told us. For me life or fetal life in the womb should be protected, even if five of nine Justices of the Supreme Court and my neighbor disagree with me. A fetus is different from an appendix or a set of tonsils. At the very least, even if the argument is made by some scientists or some theologians that in the early stages of fetal development we can’t discern human life, the full potential of human life is indisputably there. That — to my less subtle mind — by itself should demand respect, caution, indeed . . . reverence.
“But not everyone in our society agrees with me and Matilda.”
Not everybody believed that slavery was wrong; that racism was wrong; that segregation was wrong. In fact, not everybody believed abortion was right in 1973 when the Supreme Court, in a 7 to 2 decision, legalized the bloody business in all 50 states…
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