Even if you add scare quotes to the term as if you are the only one who can validate a prolife perspective. This needs to be said, because:
The falsehoods and calumny upon which he routinely rests his arguments is bad enough. That he suggests prolife is a heresy while demanding all people of good will align with the party that supports a variety of ungodly positions including, but not limited to, ESR (that's embryonic stem cell research), assisted suicide and the right to die, the modern drugs and sex culture despite the era of AIDS, as well as unchecked abortion rights from conception to birth, is appalling.
Worse, however, is the idea that someone stumbling around looking for some voice about Catholicism might find this and think it's true. After all, that's how I found Mark ages ago.
I had seen Scott Hahn talking about Confession on EWTN in a hotel room as I was traveling to Florida. I wasn't able to discover who Hahn was, so when I cam home I went looking to find him. That's when I stumbled across Mark who, at the time, had recently written a glowing review of the actor John Rhys Davies because Davies had just made an impassioned defense for Christian West demographics against the encroachment of Islamic influence.
That seemed sane to me, and it countered the impression many of us non-Catholics had that the Catholic Church had long ago rolled over and surrendered to the forces of the day. Seeing other pieces by Mark, such as a stirring call to arms after the 9/11 attacks, or his observation that the LGBTQ movement embodied a clear and obvious threat not only to the dignity of human relations, but also a threat to religious liberty, suggested he was one to read. Plus, as my wife said, he wrote the way I talked. That he was a Tolkien fan sealed the deal.
Granted, I didn't agree with everything I saw Mark write at that time. Nonetheless, the better seemed to outshine the bad, and his writings, among others, became a help for us getting our heads around Catholicism from an American Evangelical perspective.
Because of that and the fear that others might stumble upon him now and confuse his political zealotry with the actual Catholic Faith, I find it necessary to point out, again, that being prolife in ways Mark's support for the political Left does not agree with is not a heresy. Some might call it Christian virtue.
UPDATE: File under Wolf in Sheep's Clothing. Apparently his follow up to 'Murderous suicidal prolife heresy' is an article for Catholic Weekly in which he emphasizes the need for Christian unity and hot it is Satan who would have us turn on one another.
Geeesh. Again, so that those stumbling about looking for what Catholicism is all about can be warned, especially since there are still those who point to Mark as a valid outlet for learning about Catholicism and Catholic social teaching.
A Suicide Cult? Where does that idea come from? I have yet to see any pro-life activist set him or herself on fire or anything like that.ReplyDelete
His rationale is that some prolife people have questions about the COVID vaccine.Delete
So if you don't get the vaccine, you're suiciding is his logic.
He's old and morbidly obese, so a prime candidate for the vaccine unless he's already recovered from the Wuhan flu. The virus isn't a threat to people under 25 except in odd circumstances and it isn't a threat to those between 25 and 45 absent immunosuppression or obesity, so the calculus of what's optimal differs. This isn't that difficult to understand, but partisan Democrats who make use of these assessments as a hook to send another volley at the opposition are determined to not understand it. We have one such creature among our Fakebook friends; I'm inclined to remind him that one of the most resistant segments of the public would be blacks, among whom 25% are fully vaccinated. Seems odd to be lobbing insults at 'Trump supporters' when the President was responsible for the program which brought the vaccine online as quickly as it did, the President has touted the results of that program, and the population segment as resistant as any is the one most hostile to the former President. Asking partisan Democrats to stop being a**holes is futile, of course.Delete
Blacks are one of the most anti-vaccine segments of the population? Sounds plausible, but I'd be interested in seeing where you got this information. Louis Farrakan is probably an Anti-VaxerDelete
Mark frames everything as murdering racist fascist idiot MAGA gun cult cult or agree with the teachings of Christ which just happen to coincide with all of his opinions and alliances.Delete
Hi! New commenter here. Stumbled across your blog from someone's link.ReplyDelete
I have found that those who live their lives mostly online are generally miserable people. And I take issue with those who are "professional Catholics," meaning they make their living off their professed Catholic faith, who really don't show any evidence of joy, charity, or any other fruit of the Holy Spirit, quite frankly. It's not just Shea, but a number of Catholic "mommy bloggers" have gone down a similar path, if not the same. Platforms of such magnitude are not good for the average person and then you need to "brand" yourself to monetize your life. The result has been about as miserable as the people writing. I have often thought that many should quit for the good of their families and for the good of their faith. Too many Catholic "influencers" are stuck in perpetual therapy to deal with their online life, have had marriages that have fallen apart, or they go off the rails in some stupid way and then turn on those who really are on the same team. It's probably difficult to give up a platform that gives you immediate affirmation and/or monetary compensation, but what are we asked to do for the good of our eternal souls? It's just...sad.
Social media has been a mixed bag for Catholics, mostly bad in my opinion, (Twitter has been bad for everyone) and the wisest of those I know have largely pushed it to the peripheries of their lives.Delete
Welcome and thanks for stopping - my Hoosier wife would appreciate the name. I'm also of two minds about social media. I see some good, and handled correctly, it can be a nice venue for people to stop by and kick things around. That's what I do. Here's my observations, am I nuts or am I onto something?Delete
But it is tempting to be sure. I prefer it when my readers disagree with me, since that keeps me behaving myself. Since they generally don't do worse than 'what are you talking about Dave?', I find it keeps me grounded. But you're absolutely right, and it's saddened me to watch some I truly valued back in the day unravel and become among the worst that defines the worst of Internet discourse, whatever their motivations.
You have probably also stayed somewhat civil in your musings or responses and that helps. There's a fair bit of "what goes around comes around" I think. My first round of dropping off Catholic bloggers was in the mid 2000's, even before the social media explosion. There was just too much snark for me by some post-ers, and they would just get worse when they got challenged or trolled. (I do think trolls are terrible people, btw. Anonymous vitriol doesn't do anyone any good.) I do blame my solidly Midwestern sensibilities though. The worst offenders to me have always been those on the coasts, especially the miserable East Coast...cynical and overly serious people over there, IMO- not all obviously, but that is just my impression, LOL (Not trying to pick fights, just sharing my experience.) Anyway, some of those I unfollowed early ended up in situations I mentioned above, doing themselves no favors along the way and I think it was largely personality. I mean, I can't imagine social media being good for a Hilaire Belloc type. And if you tend to be cranky about particular things you also tend to attract those who are cranky in the same ways as you, which feeds the beast in both of you. I've seen too much of that for my liking in friends over the years. Fortunately the wiser of my friends have reigned it in and toned it down after seeing how little they liked themselves at times, but I completely digressed! Mea Culpa!Delete
And yes, I have definitely seen the good aspects to online interaction as well and even made a few friends along the way! But those have all started with fundamental good will towards each other. That is just key, I think.
And Thank you for your welcome :) I may actually drop in from time to time. I like the retro feel of blog interactions. I'd kind of forgotten what it was like!Delete
Yes, I get a kick out of the fact that blog comments sections are considered to be somewhere between VHS tapes and butter churns. But I think while many are still rather nasty places to be, others have sort of toned down over the years. I try to keep mine on that level and it usually works. There might be a few moments of snark, but on the whole things go rather smoothly here. You're right about what happened over the years, but seeing the alternative to blogs, it almost looks like blogs are the last bastions of civility on the Internet.Delete