Politicizing Terri

“And those of us who read liberal blogs also know that this grandstanding by
the congress is a purely political move designed to appease the religious right
and that the legal maneuverings being employed would be anathema to any true small
government conservative.” – Hullabaloo

Since when does someone have to be a conservative Republican to look out for the
underdog? I’m getting really sick of the Left accusing the Right of grandstanding
and manipulating people by supporting pro-life causes. Heaven forbid they accept
. Are some Republicans using Terri’s
condition, the fight over abortion, and the stem cell debate to get votes? Probably.
Are they all? There are probably as many of them doing that as there are Democrats
spinning gay rights and environmental issues into votes. When are Americans going
to wake up and realize both sides are corrupt and self-serving?

Anyhow, I am not a conservative. Most of my good buddies are not conservatives.
Stop labeling us as such on account of life issues! While you’re at it, stop accusing
all Republicans of being evil soul-sucking wet blankets who only care about money
and power. Sometimes watching the news and reading blogs is like watching immature kids fighting at recess. “You’re a booger head!”, says the Lefty to the Righty. “You smell like poo!”, responds the Righty to the Lefty.

Then again, abusus non tollit usus. Sometimes criticism is deserved:

“By now most people who read liberal blogs are
that George W. Bush signed a law in Texas that expressly gave hospitals
the right to remove life support if the patient could not pay and there was no hope
of revival, regardless of the patient’s family’s wishes. It is called the Texas
Futile Care Law. Under this law, a baby was removed from life support against
his mother’s wishes in Texas just this week. A 68 year old man was given a temporary
reprieve by the Texas courts just yesterday. ”

After this Schiavo business calms down, Dubya ought to be taken to task for his hypocrisy. However, just because Bush was wrong to sign that law in Texas doesn’t make a cruel death for Terri Schiavo right, either.

Two wrongs don’t make a right. Three lefts do. And three lefts make a right. Keep that in mind the next time you hear extremists from both sides calling each other names.

This entry was posted in government, law, and politics and tagged , , , , , on by .

About Funky Dung

Who is Funky Dung? 29-year-old grad student in Intelligent Systems (A.I.) at the University of Pittsburgh. I consider myself to be politically moderate and independent and somewhere between a traditional and neo-traditional Catholic. I was raised Lutheran, spent a number of years as an agnostic, and joined the Catholic Church at the 2000 Easter Vigil. Why Funky Dung? I haven't been asked this question nearly as many times as you or I might expect. Funky Dung is a reference to an obscure Pink Floyd song. On the album Atom Heart Mother, there is a track called Atom Heart Mother Suite. It's broken up into movements, like a symphony, and one of the movements is called Funky Dung. I picked that nickname a long time ago (while I was still in high school I think), shortly after getting an internet connection for the first time. To me it means "cool/neat/groovy/spiffy stuff/crap/shiznit", as in "That's some cool stuff, dude!" Whence Ales Rarus? I used to enjoy making people guess what this means, but I've decided to relent and make it known to all. Ales Rarus is a Latin play on words. "Avis rarus" means "a rare bird" and carries similar meaning to "an odd fellow". "Ales" is another Latin word for bird that carries connotations of omens, signs of the times, and/or augery. If you want to get technical, both "avis" and "ales" are feminine (requiring "rara", but they can be made masculine in poetry (which tends to breaks lots of rules). I decided I'd rather have a masculine name in Latin. ;) Yeah, I'm a nerd. So what? :-P Wherefore blog? It is my intention to "teach in order to lead others to faith" by being always "on the lookout for occasions of announcing Christ by word, either to unbelievers . . . or to the faithful" through the "use of the communications media". I also act knowing that I "have the right and even at times a duty to manifest to the sacred pastors [my] opinion on matters which pertain to the good of the Church, and [I] have a right to make [my] opinion known to the other Christian faithful, with due regard to the integrity of faith and morals and reverence toward [my and their] pastors, and with consideration for the common good and the dignity of persons." (adapted from CCC 904-907) Statement of Faith I have been baptized and confirmed in the name of the Father, Son and Holy Spirit. I, therefore, renounce Satan; I renounce all his works; I renounce all his allurements. I hold and profess all that is contained in the Apostles' Creed, the Niceno- Constantinopolitan Creed, and the Athanasian Creed. Having been buried with Christ unto death and raised up with him unto a new life, I promise to live no longer for myself or for that world which is the enemy of God but for him who died for me and rose again, serving God, my heavenly Father, faithfully and unto death in the holy Catholic Church. I am obedient to the Magisterium of the Catholic Church. That is, I promote and defend authentic Catholic Teaching and Faith in union with Christ and His Church and in union with the Holy Father, the Bishop of Rome, the Successor of St. Peter. Thanks be unto Thee, O my God, for all Thy infinite goodness, and, especially, for the love Thou hast shown unto me at my Confirmation. I Give Thee thanks that Thou didst then send down Thy Holy Spirit unto my soul with all His gifts and graces. May He take full possession of me for ever. May His divine unction cause my face to shine. May His heavenly wisdom reign in my heart. May His understanding enlighten my darkness. May His counsel guide me. May His knowledge instruct me. May His piety make me fervent. May His divine fear keep me from all evil. Drive from my soul, O Lord, all that may defile it. Give me grace to be Thy faithful soldier, that having fought the good fight of faith, I may be brought to the crown of everlasting life, through the merits of Thy dearly beloved Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ. Amen. Behind the Curtain: an Interview With Funky Dung (Thursday, March 03, 2005) I try to avoid most memes that make their way 'round the blogosphere (We really do need a better name, don't we?), but some are worth participating in. Take for instance the "interview game" that's the talk o' the 'sphere. I think it's a great way to get to know the people in neighborhood. Who are the people in your neighborhood? In your neighborhod? In your neigh-bor-hoo-ood...*smack* Sorry, Sesame Street flashback. Anyhow, I saw Jeff "Curt Jester" Miller's answers and figured since he's a regular reader of mine he'd be a good interviewer. Without further ado, here are my answers to his questions. 1. Being that your pseudonym Funky Dung was chosen from a Pink Floyd track on Atom Heart Mother, what is you favorite Pink Floyd song and why? Wow. That's a tuffy. It's hard to pick out a single favorite. Pink Floyd isn't really a band known for singles. They mostly did album rock and my appreciation of them is mostly of a gestalt nature. If I had to pick one, though, it'd be "Comfortably Numb". I get chills up my spine every time I hear it and if it's been long enough since the last time, I get midty-eyed. I really don't know why. That's a rather unsatisfying answer for an interview, so here are the lyrics to a Rush song. It's not their best piece of music, but the lyrics describe me pretty well.

New World Man He's a rebel and a runner He's a signal turning green He's a restless young romantic Wants to run the big machine He's got a problem with his poisons But you know he'll find a cure He's cleaning up his systems To keep his nature pure Learning to match the beat of the old world man Learning to catch the heat of the third world man He's got to make his own mistakes And learn to mend the mess he makes He's old enough to know what's right But young enough not to choose it He's noble enough to win the world But weak enough to lose it --- He's a new world man... He's a radio receiver Tuned to factories and farms He's a writer and arranger And a young boy bearing arms He's got a problem with his power With weapons on patrol He's got to walk a fine line And keep his self-control Trying to save the day for the old world man Trying to pave the way for the third world man He's not concerned with yesterday He knows constant change is here today He's noble enough to know what's right But weak enough not to choose it He's wise enough to win the world But fool enough to lose it --- He's a new world man...
2. What do you consider your most important turning point from agnosticism to the Catholic Church. At some point in '99, I started attending RCIA at the Pittsburgh Oratory. I mostly went to ask a lot of obnoxious Protestant questions. Or at least that's what I told myself. I think deep down I wanted desperately to have faith again. At that point I think I'd decided that if any variety of Christianity had the Truth, the Catholic Church did. Protestantism's wholesale rejection of 1500 years of tradition didn't sit well with me, even as a former Lutheran. During class one week, Sister Bernadette Young (who runs the program) passed out thin booklet called "Handbook for Today's Catholic". One paragraph in that book spoke to me and I nearly cried as I read it.
"A person who is seeking deeper insight into reality may sometimes have doubts, even about God himself. Such doubts do not necessarily indicate lack of faith. They may be just the opposite - a sign of growing faith. Faith is alive and dynamic. It seeks, through grace, to penetrate into the very mystery of God. If a particular doctrine of faith no longer 'makes sense' to a person, the person should go right on seeking. To know what a doctrine says is one thing. To gain insight into its meaning through the gift of understanding is something else. When in doubt, 'Seek and you will find.' The person who seeks y reading, discussing, thinking, or praying eventually sees the light. The person who talks to God even when God is 'not there' is alive with faith."
At the end of class I told Sr. Bernadette that I wanted to enter the Church at the next Easter vigil. 3. If you were a tree what kind of, oh sorry about that .. what is the PODest thing you have ever done? I set up WikiIndex, a clearinghouse for reviews of theological books, good, bad, and ugly. It has a long way to go, but it'll be cool when it's finished. :) 4. What is your favorite quote from Venerable John Henry Newman? "Ten thousand difficulties do not make one doubt." 5. If you could ban one hymn from existence, what would it be? That's a tough one. As a member of the Society for a Moratorium on the Music of Marty Haugen and David Haas, there are obviously a lot of songs that grate on my nerves. If I had to pick one, though, I'd probably pick "Sing of the Lord's Goodness" by Ernie Sands.

5 thoughts on “Politicizing Terri

  1. Funky Dung

    A leaning is one thing, but swallowing one side’s rhetoric whole is another. I am not a conservative as John Q. Public understands the word, and I am offended when called one. This conversation has given me some insight into my blogging habits, both reading and writing. I need to be more diverse in the causes I support. I’ve gotten so tied up in life science and family issues that I’ve lost sight of the beatitudes and Christ’s preview of judgement (Matthew 25).

  2. Funky Dung

    DLW, have you seen the videos at Terrisfight.org? If you had, you might not be so quick to believe she’s truly unresponsive. If she has demonstrated a tenth of the responsiveness previous nurses and her parents have described, she does not fit the state of Florida’s definition for PVS.

  3. Jerry

    Funky, I’m for supporting various causes for the beautitudes, but the systematic killing of 1.6M people, as you’ve pointed out before, trumps many things.

    Also, it’s easy to blog about something like abortion, where wrongs often occur because people have the wrong idea about when life/personhood (depending on the debate) begins, or what options are there, but as for poverty, blogging about poverty can be useful, but real poverty work may take place in “the big blue room”, and not on the Internet (good articles on the nature of poverty and effective outreaches are of course an exception!).

    There are those who do have “marches against poverty” amongst the chronically-inflammed activists in the University community, and while I admire the general sentiment, I find marching to be an odd way to fight poverty. Ask anyone on the street if he thinks being poor is bad, and he’ll probably agree with you.

    Americans have a fair amount of agreement that some sort of public effort, to say nothing of private charity, to fight poverty. Following up on that sentiment requires elbow-grease, not “an immediate discussion”, to quote “The Life of Brian”. Abortion, however, is the current counterculture, and while we need concrete charity for women and children, there’s a lot of teaching and clarification to do as well.

  4. alektra

    Personally, I consider you leaning right more than anything. I know I lean more left, except I don’t in issues like this. I also appreciate Blessed Mother Theresa and St. Francis and try to emulate their patience and kindness toward all.

    But sometimes, the extremes are there to point out the problems the other side has so that neither “gets away” with inconsistencies. This problem Bush has is very infuriating. His stance on the death penalty disgusts me, especially as someone who has seen what jail time does to a mentally handicapped person, let alone holding them responsible to capital punishment. And people reading the newspapers don’t understand that there are few good men (and there are just few women in general) in politics, including the President.

    If we could have the Pope or someone like him run for office, I think I’d actually agree on “In God We Trust” on our money. Right now, I think it defiles my idea of who and what God is.

  5. dlw

    regardless of the good intentions of many like yourself, the reason this issue is getting so much attention by the gov’t is that it also is a (cost) effective wedge issue.

    People involved with Terri’s situation say she is in a Permanent Vegetative State. She does not respond to external input. Maybe it is time to let her go?

    I don’t know about that for sure. I do believe that we believers will all be resurrected some day and so to keep someone in a PVS alive indefinitely doesn’t seem to serve the establishement of the kingship of God. I do know that this issue is being manipulated for partisan political gain and that there are many other important issues that deserve more attention than they are currently getting.


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *