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doctrine by lottery: you can't win if you don't play

By Diogenes (articles ) | Feb 23, 2004

Herewith a locally enacted statute:

The City of Cincinnati and its various Boards and Commissions may not enact, adopt, enforce or administer any ordinance, regulation, rule or policy which provides that homosexual, lesbian, or bisexual orientation, status, conduct, or relationship constitutes, entitled, or otherwise provides a person with the basis to have any claim of minority or protected status, quota preference or other preferential treatment.

So, how is a dutiful Catholic to respond? Well, we've got the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith's opinion on the matter, and the opinion of the local ordinary, Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk. Hey, pick one:

[U.S. Bishop] As I and many others understand this amendment, it provides that no protection can be offered to homosexual persons on the grounds of their homosexual orientation, whether they engage in homosexual behavior or not.

[CDF] An individual's sexual orientation is generally not known to others unless he publicly identifies himself as having this orientation or unless some overt behavior manifests it. As a rule, the majority of homosexually oriented persons who seek to lead chaste lives do not publicize their sexual orientation. Hence the problem of discrimination in terms of employment, housing, etc., does not usually arise.

Pick one:

[U.S. Bishop] It is, therefore, possible in the city of Cincinnati to discriminate freely against persons of homosexual orientation in such matters as housing, employment and public accommodation. I believe now, as I believed at the time of its passage, that Article XII is as detrimental to the public good as the ordinance that it invalidated.

[CDF] Homosexual persons, as human persons, have the same rights as all persons including the right of not being treated in a manner which offends their personal dignity. Among other rights, all persons have the right to work, to housing, etc. Nevertheless, these rights are not absolute. They can be legitimately limited for objectively disordered external conduct. This is sometimes not only licit but obligatory.

Pick one:

[U.S. Bishop] It is not right to mistreat persons or to be legally able to mistreat persons on the basis of their homosexual orientation.

[CDF] Sexual orientation does not constitute a quality comparable to race, ethnic background, etc. in respect to non-discrimination. Unlike these, homosexual orientation is an objective disorder and evokes moral concern.

Pick one:

[U.S. Bishop] All human beings have certain basic human rights. To provide by law for the potential violation of these rights because of sexual orientation is simply unjust.

[CDF]There are areas in which it is not unjust discrimination to take sexual orientation into account, for example, in the placement of children for adoption or foster care, in employment of teachers or athletic coaches, and in military recruitment.

Pick one:

[U.S. Bishop] The Catechism of the Catholic Church, a sure guide to official church teaching, makes it clear both that homosexual activity is wrong and that unjust discrimination on the basis of homosexual orientation is wrong.

[CDF] Including "homosexual orientation" among the considerations on the basis of which it is illegal to discriminate can easily lead to regarding homosexuality as a positive source of human rights, for example, in respect to so-called affirmative action or preferential treatment in hiring practices. This is all the more deleterious since there is no right to homosexuality which therefore should not form the basis for judicial claims.

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Show 2 Comments? (Hidden)Hide Comments
  • Posted by: Fr. William - Feb. 24, 2004 2:50 AM ET USA

    Thank you, Diogenes. Once again, you are right on... And in this case, you give us Archbishop Daniel Pilarczyk's statements, in black & white, that directly contradict more than the "opinion" of the Church, but basic, fundamental Teachings of the Church. Archbishop Pilarczyk, please come back home the Roman Catholic Church, with humility and obedience, for you are a successor to the apostles (not a protestant minister trying to invent his own church). We're praying for you, Archbishop.

  • Posted by: - Feb. 23, 2004 11:56 AM ET USA

    A healthy, direct, old-fashioned concept of sin has become a tough sell for those entrusted with spiritual guidance in the public square, to-wit: the bishop has fallen into empathy with the "I can't help what I am" position. CDF is making the unnecessary and tortured distinction between "closet" and "in your face" of primary importance. Yes, where is a Catholic to look for leadership?

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