The occasional, often ill-considered thoughts of a Roman Catholic permanent deacon who is ever grateful to God for his existence. Despite the strangeness we encounter in this life, all the suffering we witness and endure, being is good, so good I am sometimes unable to contain my joy. Deo gratias!

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Something Is Rotten in Denmark

The Danish parliament passed a law, and did so overwhelmingly (85 to 24), requiring churches in the nation's established Evangelical Lutheran Church to perform homosexual marriages. Although a Lutheran priest may choose not to perform the marriage, the bishop must assign a replacement who will. How progressive and open of these Danish legislators to enact such a law, a law that displays their tolerance for everyone except Christians. Read more here.

And so another Western European democracy has decided to redefine religious freedom by forcing its own interpretation of religious belief on a religion. Given the number of European nations that have passed similar laws, I suspect it won't be too long before one of these nations demands that the Catholic Church knuckle under and follow suit. Only one thing is stopping them: how to exclude Muslims from such laws.

Can't happen here in the USA? We hope not but things seem to be moving in that direction.

This news from Denmark helps one understand why our founders expressed an inherent distrust of democracy which they believed would inevitably move towards a dictatorship of the majority. Only a constitutional republic with its checks and balances, well-defined governmental limits, and personal freedoms can protect all of the people from both the government and the mob. Of course the appreciation of our form of government will surely wane as our courts interpret these freedoms out of existence. Once that occurs we'll be no different from Western Europe, just another decaying, doomed society.

The politicians cleverly define these issues in terms of freedom  -- freedom to choose, freedom to marry whomever one wants, freedom to use contraceptives, and on and on -- while the real issue is exactly the opposite: the absence of freedom. It's not about freedom; it's about compulsion. It's about using the power of government to force believers to give up their religious freedom. The real question for our society is, "Will we be strong and determined and courageous enough to resist?"

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