Friday, February 17, 2012

Quick Takes: Blogger rant, those crazy kids at Planned Parenthood, and a sincere thanks to MSNBC


1) I've had it with Blogger. First, last year they deleted an entire post and all the comments. (Oops!) They did this to untold blogs, but I am one of the few who never got the post restored. Next, they changed my preferred comments format to one I really dislike, which messes me all up. Then, they made it almost impossible to see that there are comments after the first 200, meaning that anyone who is not subscribed to the comments, but simply comes back to the blog to check for new ones, will not see them (unless they see the little "Load more" link which even I missed for days!). People will assume the conversation just ended, when in fact it is ongoing! And now, there is something wrong with the proper application of Blogger fonts, and apparently people are seeing my posts in SCRIPT?? I would not put entire posts in script, people!

I need help! Anyone out there know how to seamlessly transfer this whole stinking Bubble, comments and all, to a new home base? For cheap? Email me if you have the solution to all my bloggy headaches!

2) Modern feminists are so sadly misguided. There are bedrock fundamentals that they simply do not understand, and two quotes say it all, in my opinion.

Reader/commenter extraordinaire LJP (Love, Justice, Peace, in that order) summed things up nicely:

 "Suppression of what is distinctly woman = oppression of women"

Think about that for a minute! Imagine if the feminists understood it. And, consider a quote I saw on facebook, attributed to one Marilyn Dickstein Kopp: 
Many feminists insist that abortion is necessary for women to participate freely and equally in society. Anyone who disagrees, they argue, has merely adopted patriarchal standards and accepted women’s ‘place’ in society. Yet this argument demonstrates how deeply the roots of sexism run in our culture. Its premise is a sexist one—that women are inferior to men and that in order to be equal, we have to change our biology to become like men—wombless and unpregnant at will. What other oppressed group in history has had to undergo surgery in order to be equal?
Indeed. Again, women on the left are forever at war with their own biology, their own feminine nature. Why do they disdain their own bodies so much? What is it like to fight one's own nature so vehemently? I'll never understand.

3) Which brings me to one of the best of many excellent commentaries about the now-infamous HHS contraception/sterilization/abortifacient mandate. It comes from Patrick Thornton of

A fun sampling:

Women’s Health™ (yes, I’m going to keep writing it like that and in fact, every time you read it I want you to go “Ahhh” in your head in a kind of a sing-songy way like a chorus of angels would if the clouds had just parted and a powerful beam of sunlight was shining down upon the word) is different from regular health.
And it’s actually much more important.
We have been told repeatedly by our esteemed Commander in Health that it is so important that EVERY insurance program should cover it.  No matter what.
Not only should they cover it, but they should cover it WITHOUT a co-pay.
Because, you know, asking women to pay $20 for a prescription is evil and horrible and mean and most likely, (cringe) Republican.
These women are healthy. You can tell because they are not having babies.

Now, say your child has an ear infection or pneumonia, you can pay $20 for that because it’s not a Women’s Health™ issue, it’s just a plain-old, regular health issue.
If a young mother has a heart condition and needs medication, well she can pay $20 for that too because it is not a matter of Women’s Health™ (“Ahhh…”).  It’s just a matter of regular health.
If that same young mother wants to have sex without having a baby, well she damn well better not have to pay $20 for that!  Because as well know, that is a matter of Women’s Health™.
Read the rest, and find out what is not covered (surprise!!) under the umbrella of Women's Health™, here.

4) Those crazy kids at Planned Parenthood are at it again! If the late night comedians were not all abortion advocates, they would have endless fodder for their monologues. Here's a sampling from the past couple of days, just begging for some parody:

In the article, "Bill mandating abortion coverage in maternity insurance passes Washington State House" (yes, mandating abortion coverage is next), we hear the remarkable thoughts of local Planned Parenthood official Dana Laurent: 

“Just as no one anticipates breaking their leg, no one anticipates needing an abortion. It should be covered just as any other common medical procedure."

When I read that truly … um ... incredible statement, I crazily wondered on facebook why a woman engaged in the baby-making act wouldn't anticipate that babies might be made during that act? But All You Who Hope straightened me out: "You mean you've never gotten a high fever and cough and found out you needed an emergency abortion? Happens all the time." Yeah, I guess it does! Thanks, AYWH!

And for more Planned Parenthood humor (because with PP, you either have to laugh or cry), check out their tweet about Ohio college students having to choose between birth control and food. Yes, you read that right. If these poor Ohio students are not provided with free contraception, they risk malnutrition and starvation. You know, I sympathize. It was not so many years ago that I was in college, and I remember what it's like. I can envision a very sad scenario playing out right now at Ohio State:

‎"Hey, Orville, before we go back to the dorm so we can use each other for a quick hook-up (man, I haven't had sex since Thursday and I'm feeling weak), can you buy me some chicken wings? See, I can't actually afford food because no one will pay for my contraception -- hang on, I'm getting a call on my new iPhone; isn't it pretty? -- so, if you spring for dinner before sex, I can get at least one meal in today."

I know. It's tragic. These are brave young women, having to choose between sex and food. Thanks, Planned Parenthood, for championing their noble cause and introducing us to their unthinkable plight. Who wouldn't be willing to give up their religious liberties to ease these poor girls' burdens?

5) But in all seriousness, this ludicrous HHS mandate has helped to galvanize the faithful, bringing all stripes of Christians and non-Christians together. I was heartened to get this email from a dear Protestant friend:

Leila: I was just telling my sons last week that even though the pope is not the head of our church, he is in the ecumenical sense as he never backs down, Ever. And the day the Catholic Church backs down is the day we should all be very afraid. He always holds the line. Even if we do not agree with his line, he always holds it, and that fights evil and survives politics and changing mores. This current mandate for abortion will not even be the biggest fight; that is yet to come. But it is the pivotal one, for if we cannot agree that all created life has intrinsic value, how do you even get to the other issues? two cents...

Yes, it's going to be a difficult battle, but we're amassing some wonderful allies. :)

6) As we take in the troubling absurdity of the past few weeks and think ahead, part of the battle is going to be supporting our priests as they (finally?) begin to educate their congregations. For several decades, Catholics in the pews have heard nary a peep from the pulpit about the issue of contraception. I am blessed to have two parish priests who do not shy away from the topic. If you crave a good homily on the subject, sit back and listen to my own Fr. Oliver Vietor's homily of two Sundays ago, here. For those inclined to shout "White male celibate!" right about now, keep in mind that Fr. Vietor, a former Episcopalian minister, has a wife and six children.

And if after that fortifying homily you desire a Scripture that seems particularly relevant for Catholics these days, pray over Matthew 10:16-39. You'll understand when you read it.

7) Finally, a huge thank you to MSNBC's Mika Brzezinski! Who'd have thought that we'd get this refreshing defense of Rick Santorum's personal stand on contraception from a host on that network? Check it out:

I don’t think there’s anything wrong with believing that [that contraception is wrong], I really don’t. I don’t think that means he’s going to ban birth control across the board. Those are his personal beliefs. And I think that as a father, and a man who’s held public office, he’s lived up to them, it appears. 

Which makes it interesting for the conversation, and it’s a conversation probably every family should have, about birth control and its role in society with their own kids. He’s got his own, and he stands by them, and I think he’s an interesting part of the national conversation in terms of where our society is going. 

And there is a lot of risky behavior out there that happens to be connected to birth control. So there’s a whole other side to this conversation.  And not once did I say should it be banned, or should it not be covered by health insurance. But I think it’s OK to have those beliefs or those concerns.

Can I just say WOW, and God bless Ms. Brzezinski! I mean, what she says is common sense, but it's heartening to see it on a liberal cable news network.


Well, whew, that was kind of a long Quick Takes! Maybe I should have called them Slow Takes? 

Thanks to Jen (whom I miss, but I cannot wait for that book!), for hosting!



  1. It's amazing how much lack of reason there is in the so called "educated" world isn't it?

  2. I miss Jen's blog too. Her blog and your blog keep me on the right path.

    Sigh. I wish it were November. And I hope people wise up before it actually is November.

  3. I am becoming more & more discouraged. A facebook conversation this week with 20-something males revealed that they do, indeed, believe free contracteption is a human right and that this battle is completely about religion trying to take contraception away from women (instead of about the constitutionality of being forced to provide it.) One even compared this to slavery: "Emancipation, the Civil Rights Act, and the Americans with Disabilities Act were all violations to people who believed they were doing nothing wrong. Conscience is often a subjective and perverse yardstick."


  4. PS Leila, I use WordPress (a free account for me) and in my tools is this:

    If you have posts or comments in another system, WordPress can import those into this site. To get started, choose a system to import from below:

    Blogger Import posts, comments, and users from a Blogger blog.

  5. Women's Health (TM) is letting men off the hook of responsibility.
    Maybe we need to talk about maturity and setting boundaries.

    Why are women so eager to let the men have their cake and eat it too? Remember all that constant sobbing in the hook-up culture?

    Young Women: Do not let yourself be used by men. Being all you can be requires you set some standards regarding how men treat you and learning about your body and medicine.

    Yes, sex if fun. You will NOT die if you don't have sex. You may feel like you are going to die, but you will NOT. Go play basketball and work off that energy.

  6. Speaking as a 26-almost-27-year-old virgin, I will corroborate Lena's statement above. I'm alive and kicking, and living a pretty fantastic, fulfilled life with a busy career, many friends, a loving family, time for fun, etc. My virginity hasn't cramped that style at all.

    Is that really news to anyone?

  7. Come on over to Wordpress! I had blogs on both sites for the longest time, but I'll never go back to blogger EVER again!
    The news/politics/everything is depressing me lately. I hate seeing our government encroaching on our personal freedoms so blatantly right and left and NO ONE seems to care. It's always "someone else's problem"...until it's not. Where are these power grabs going to end?

  8. They weren't slow takes! I moved to WordPress too, but it was a learning curve. I do like it better though now that I'm there. Great PP humor. Undignified! Have a great weekend everyone. :-)

  9. “Just as no one anticipates breaking their leg, no one anticipates needing an abortion."

    Incredible is correct. As is nonsensical. For these situations to be even closely analogous one would have to say:

    "Just as no one anticipates breaking their leg WHILE REPEATEDLY STRIKING IT WITH A SLEDGEHAMMER, no one anticipates needing an abortion WHILE ENGAGING IN SEXUAL INTERCOURSE."

    The delusiveness of statements like this is what is incredible.

    Thanks for the shout-out, Leila! Once one accepts the Light of Truth, so much is illuminated (especially the obvious)...amazing!

  10. Can I just say what I'm thinking so often - you guys rock! Especially Leila, but so many of the regular commenters too. I'm a married European (English not mother tongue, so excuse my mistakes!), reading the blog almost daily, forwarding many posts and comments to my wife. And boy do I wish we had blogs like yours around here! You cannot imagine what you bring to so many people. Christ must be lauging with pure joy - thank you!!

  11. I love coming here since this unjust mandate came out. I enjoy reading what other Catholics (and even some non-Catholics!) have to say about it. This attack on our Church hurts my heart so much. But, I know that Jesus can bring so much good out of evil, and I look forward to seeing all the good He brings from this attack! I've already been seeing some good, but I look forward to seeing what else He has in mind!

  12. Yes, I believe that this is all about the babies. Because if they truly cared about reproductive health they would make prostate exams free along with the mammograms (and contraception etc etc). As it is all a man can do is go in if he's got an STD. That's it. And I want to point out that there are as many men diagnosed and die from prostate cancer (my own grandfather having it himself) as breast cancer.

    Yet it's easier to get a free mammogram and not have a urologist (or even a general doctor) look at you for free. I mean what's the big deal. You turn your head and cough unlike needing the equipment for a mammogram.

    Shouldn't Obama care about men's health too? And shouldn't Planned Parenthood? It says "parenthood" that would imply that men go there too. Haven't seen them there? Have you? Also haven't seen them care about prostate or testicular cancers. But they sure get worked up about mammograms which they outsource. Doesn't make sense to me other than this is all about preventing women from doing what women do, that is have babies.

  13. What iamlori and Stacy said. It was easy peasy lemon squeezy for me to migrate to WordPress, and I didn't lose a single post or comment. I've been at WP for three months now, and I haven't regretted the move one bit (I changed b/c Blogger froze me out for half a day).

    Plus the comment moderation tools are better.

  14. Love it all, Leila! I quoted your Protestant friend on FB and I'll tell you what, every time I think about what she said ("the day the Catholic Church backs down is the day we should all be very afraid") my heart just sings, because it is not going to happen. You know, I think Obama and Sebelius and their friend Nancy P actually thought they would see the Church back down but they haven't! 100% of the bishops have now spoken out against the blog, and my heart is sings every time I think of that, too! And Catholics are going to learn WHY the Church is opposed to contraception, and more secular commentators will admit that not all is rosy in the world because of the Pill, and the lies of PP are being exposed - oh, don't anyone be depressed! It is a great day to be Catholic!

  15. "against the blog" Sheesh! I think 100% of the bishops love your blog! :) The mandate, the mandate...

  16. Firstly, I wanted to tell you that when I read that made-up scenario from Ohio State and the whole PP ridiculousness, I couldn't stop laughing out loud for a good 2 or 3 minutes. Literally. It's that ridiculous. Secondly, I wanted to agree with Sharon! Although the the HHS mandate is troubling, controversial, and disheartening for Catholics, I think a lot of good will come out of it. Americans are being more educated about contraception etc..and also everyone is seeing the just how strong and united the Catholic Church is...and that no matter what happens, they will not back down from their beliefs. And that makes my heart sing as well :-)

  17. Your protestant friend sounds cool :)

    I'm hoping that this whole mess will lead to a massive entry of converts into the Catholic faith. We can hope!!

  18. "(Abortion) should be covered just as any other common medical procedure."

    I thought abortions were rare? And they only make up 3% of PP's services?

    Just kidding. I never thought that.

  19. Thank you and amen! I had to laugh out loud more than once at how rediculious this whole Womens Health really is, even though it truly is no laughing matter. I just wish the so called "educated" could see that.

  20. iamlori, I wonder what the guys would say if you asked whether diabetes medication should be "free" - no copay. And whether all other medications should be "free". I almost think that many of them would say, sure, it should be free - as though they've come to expect everything to be handed to them. Or maybe they would say, "No, that's different." If so, would they be able to say how it's different? Or would they just stop responding? Good for you for getting into discussions with them. You may be the only person they know who ever presents another perspective to them.

  21. Leila - Re: #1. You could look into
    I"m not sure what it all entails, but it might be an option.
    I do have another option but I need to talk with my husband first. I'll e-mail you soon regarding it all.

  22. I agree with others, Wordpress is a great platform.

  23. Very surprising--in a good way--so see a reporter from MSNBC say that. I wonder if she'll keep her job?:) There's so much insanity out there right now--thank you for this post, which made me laugh.

  24. That article from Catholicvote is one of my favorites.
    Bravo, sir! And the comments from everyone here sum it up very nicely. Good Quick Takes, Leila!! (doesn't a little part of you rejoice over this attack on our Church?) They know the Church doesn't backtrack so they are trying to force it they can say, see? That is NOT Christ's Church, She couldn't possibly be infallible in Her teachings! Not gonna happen!

    "If I were not a Catholic, and were looking for the true Church in the world today, I would look for the one Church which did not get along well with the world; in other words, I would look for the Church which the world hates. My reason for doing this would be, that if Christ is in any one of the churches of the world today, He must still be hated as He was when He was on earth in the flesh. If you would find Christ today, then find the Church that does not get along with the world. Look for the Church that is hated by the world, as Christ was hated by the world. Look for the Church which is accused of being behind the times, as Our Lord was accused of being ignorant and never having learned. Look for the Church which men sneer at as socially inferior, as they sneered at Our Lord because He came from Nazareth. Look for the Church which is accused of having a devil, as Our Lord was accused of being possessed by Beelzebub, the Prince of Devils. Look for the Church which the world rejects because it claims it is infallible, as Pilate rejected Christ because he called Himself the Truth. Look for the Church which amid the confusion of conflicting opinions, its members love as they love Christ, and respect its voice as the very voice of its Founder, and the suspicion will grow, that if the Church is unpopular with the spirit of the world, then it is unworldly, and if it is unworldly, it is other-worldly. Since it is other-worldly, it is infinitely loved and infinitely hated as was Christ Himself. ... the Catholic Church is the only Church existing today which goes back to the time of Christ. History is so very clear on this point, it is curious how many miss its obviousness..."- Archbishop Fulton Sheen

  25. To go off what Manda posted above, from Archbishop Fulton Sheen, I came across this article on yahoo news today

    and the comments underneath it are so disheartening. Almost ALL of the commenters say very mean things about the Catholic church and about the Pope and Cardinals...I mean really nasty and false things! I guess it just goes to show that the TRUE Church, Christ's Church, is just as persecuted and hated by everyone as Christ was.

  26. Remember the Church is built on the rock. People have bashed the church for over 2,000, and we're still here. The Church will be here after we're long gone.

    Here's a quote from John Paul II, "In their lives, in order to respect fundamental values, Christians also experience that suffering which can result from moral choices opposed to worldly behavior and which therefore can be heroic. But this is the price of the life of blessed happiness in the Lord." (Message for World Youth Day, Paris, 1997).

    The battle continues, but the Church will prevail. Saints have gone before us. We can look to them for strength and inspiration. Right now the Internet is our battlefield. It's not the only one of course.

  27. Great quick takes, Leila!

    And Lena, I LOVE the quote from JPII you posted! Wow, I needed to hear's easy to become so saddened and overwhelmed with the battle of good and evil, especially over this HHS debate. JPII's quote really reminds us to hang in there and keep the course! We are fighting the good fight!!

  28. @ Manda.
    Buddhism was around before Christianity by a long stretch.

    And wouldn't you say that Islam is hated far more than Catholicism?

  29. Johanne, sorry I put this on the other post!

    I wrote: "You mention that Buddhism has been around longer. But Buddhism is not about God. Buddha himself never claimed to be God, as Jesus did. And Buddhism has certainly changed over the years to reflect different moralities, no? The oldest standing institution in the world is the Papacy (heading the same Catholic Church). She has outlived every empire, and she is still vibrant and real. She still has not changed her Deposit of Faith."

    As for Islam, it actually grew out of a faulty understanding of Catholicism, strangely enough. And if you look at the quote carefully, Fulton Sheen is talking specifically about Christianity, and the churches that claim to be the one true church. Only the Catholic Church can rightly claim that for herself. That is his point. The Church is an extension of her Master.

  30. And I agree with everyone: This is a dark time for the nation, but oh my goodness, it is a great time to be a Catholic! We finally get to be uncomfortable and suffer, just as Jesus did, so that others might find their way out of the darkness of sin. God keep us strong and loving! These are the conditions under which the Church grows in faith, love and numbers.

  31. @ Johanne,

    Not sure what your point is about Buddhism. Buddhism isn't a religion, it's a philosophy and it doesn't claim to be the Church.

    Islam is in a sense a perversion of religion. They don't call themselves the Church. And no, I wouldn't say that "Islam is hated far more than Catholicism" at all. Muslims themselves may be hated by many, but more people hate the Catholic Church.

  32. O man, I was just kindly informed that I have been brainwashed by the Catholic Church. And that I belong to a cult who loves money, power and worships Mary. Oh, and the best one of all: that the Catholic Church is the most dangerous institution on Earth right now, even worse than the Mafia. LOL Gosh, I must be insane to belong to a dangerous cult that's 2000 years old. At least I can have a laugh here and there while fighting these so called 'educated' people :-)

  33. Nancy, welcome and thank you!

    Agnes, oh brother, ha ha!! That's where Matthew 10:16-39 comes in, eh?

  34. @Nancy
    I am no expert on how many people hate what but I see far far more hatred towards Muslims than Catholics. Look what has happened to the Muslims that want to build a temple ON THEIR OWN PROPERTY next to the site of the world trade center. I don't see national debate about whether or not Catholics should be allowed to build a church. It is also interesting to see that some of you feel that being hated is a feather in your cap. I'm not saying it isn't, but it's an interesting way of measuring one's righteousness.

  35. Nancy, I believe the uproar was because of the insensitivity and inappropriateness of the request and the location. Surely you can understand? Did you lose any loved ones in the 9/11 attacks?

    As for hating Islam: What branch/brand/sect of Islam? One of the problems of Islam is that there is no "pope". No way of knowing what is "real" Islamic teaching. So, what is it that is the object of the "hate"?

    Johanne, what do you think of Jesus? Because I find that most folks on the left think he was just a really nice guy, a peaceful man who just wanted everyone to get along, and let everyone be "free to be you and me". But he was hated and mocked and despised and ultimately tortured and killed. He made it very clear that what the world did to Him, it would do to His followers. So, it's not so much as a feather in our cap as it is a recognition that Jesus was right, and we are no greater than our master. The world would hate us, he said, as the world hated him. The minute the Church is "liked" by everyone is the minute we should feel a little bit concerned that we are not proclaiming the Truth as clearly as we were mandated to.

    The Church does one thing: Calls sinners to repentance and salvation. That alone is enough to make people wish we would just go away. The Church's teachings are standing in the gap, saying "no" to moral chaos and "yes" to virtue. It's a hard place to stand, but stand she will, till the end.

  36. This comment has been removed by the author.

  37. Johanne, first I'll just state that McVeigh did not bomb the building in the name of Christianity or in the name of Jesus. He was an agnostic. I tend to agree with this man on that point:

    Again, not a good analogy. And, if he had murdered in the name of say, Catholics, then I would never in a million years believe that the Catholic Church would ever be so insensitive as to build a huge Catholic church and cultural center next door. How horrible would that be? But again, he was an agnostic so the point is moot.

    Jesus was an important teacher in what way, and on what points?

    Also, you are right that a grave scandal in life is Christians who don't act like Christians. Christians who lack virtue and do not love are never going to bring people to God. I agree. I would never hold myself up as a great example of a Christian (thought you should have seen me before I was living as a believer, oh my!), but I do hope you will look to the real witnesses for the holiness of Mother Church, those who followed Christ beautifully, in imitation of Him: The saints.

    There are so many thousands of canonized saints (many hundreds being canonized just in the past few decades). You would admire those folks, who lived lives of what we call "heroic virtue" and true love for all (with God above all). I ask that you would look to the best that the Church has produced for evidence of her veracity and integrity, not the worst (average, everyday, petty, prideful sinners, like me). I even know more than one person here in my own hometown who are what I would consider saintly, holy Christians. Giving without thought of themselves, living lives of heroic virtue (quietly, not expecting any recompense), joyful, prayerful, faithful, loving, pure, with a heart turned totally toward God. There are saints all around us, really. Look to them when judging the Church. They are the Church's jewels. The rest of us are on a journey, so forgive us…. we do struggle and we do give scandal. That is our fault, not Jesus' or the Church's….


  38. *though you should have seen me before I was living as a believer.

    Typos, again. Sigh. Sorry!

  39. Leila,
    I would not agree with this: "Because I find that most folks on the left think he was just a really nice guy, a peaceful man who just wanted everyone to get along, and let everyone be 'free to be you and me'. "

    From my experience, most people on the far left think he is purely a fictional character; at best an amalgamation of several leaders/rabbis with a whole lotta myth thrown in.

  40. Mary, that is sad. I think that must be a relatively newer thing, this "Jesus as myth" (which even secular historians have dismissed as a fringe belief, not worthy of being taken seriously). It used to be much more that at least they acknowledged Jesus, but only as a "guru" of peace love and "can't we all just get along?"

    It is scary that people now want to rewrite history and say he never even existed. But not surprising.

  41. @Mary
    I live in a community that is about 85% far left (very far left!) and I don't know a single person who thinks Jesus is a fictional character. Perhaps some do, but I've never encountered it.

  42. I used to live in San Fran and now live in Mass, and my relatives live in Boulder, and I know lots of people who think he is a myth. But...interesting that you don't!


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