Commentary by Susan Brinkmann, OCDS
A Catholic judicial nominee and a popular news host who endured brutal attacks for their faith show how perseverance can pay off.
The Washington Examiner is reporting on the triumph of Appeals Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett, a committed Roman and Notre Dame law professor, who was confirmed by a vote of 55-43 yesterday to the 7th Circuit Court of Appeals.
Barrett came under fire by Democratic Senators such as Dianne Feinstein of California who grilled her for how passionately she had spoken about the role of faith in her life. During the hearing last month, Feinstein worried that Barrett would not uphold Roe v. Wade because of her traditional Catholic beliefs.
“The dogma lives loudly within you,” Feinstein said at the time. “And that’s of concern when you come to big issues that large numbers of people have fought for for years in this country.”
Women’s groups, such as NARAL Pro-Choice America, were vehemently against Barrett’s nomination, citing her support of pro-life groups such as the Susan B. Anthony List, March for Life, Family Research Council, Priests for Life, and Heartbeat International, in a letter that recognizes “life from conception.”
They also cite Barrett’s writings in which the accomplished lawyer states her belief that Roe was incorrectly decided and for her support for the repeal of the controversial birth control mandate that forced religious employers to provide insurance coverage for services that violate their beliefs.
“With a lifetime appointment, Barrett can impose her extreme anti-choice ideology onto women and families for much longer than Donald Trump will occupy the White House,” NARAL president Ilyse Hogue said in a statement after Barrett’s victory.
“Barrett’s confirmation proves that the anti-choice GOP is more concerned with advancing its out-of-touch agenda than upholding our basic human rights, and this confirmation should concern anyone who believes in a truly independent judiciary.”
It’s hard to overlook the hypocrisy in this statement. As everyone knows, the only “truly independent judiciary” NARAL would ever approve is one that was stacked with pro-abortion zealots.
Barrett’s triumph was a big win for all women – not just the women that NARAL and similar women’s group tend to agree with.
As Catholic League president Bill Donohue explains: “What do these ‘women's groups’ have in common? They hate women who disagree with them, they hate the Catholic Church, and they love abortion. And now the three-time losers have lost again. Maybe if they spent more time trying to defend women and children raped by their Hollywood pro-abortion and anti-Catholic male friends, they would finally win one.”
Another prominent Catholic professional, the new Fox News host Laura Ingraham, came under fire this week before her first show was even finished.
According to Donohue, the Observer published an article by Joe Lapointe which refers to Ingraham as “The Church Lady” and a "fundamentalist Catholic extremist" who “appeared before us in purple vestments that highlighted the gleaming gold cross on her chest.”
Ingraham is an accomplished lawyer, journalist and cancer survivor who converted to Catholicism. She is the mother of three adopted children, a girl, Maria Caroline from Guatemala, and two boys, Michael and Nikolai, from Russia. She is good friends with EWTN host Raymond Aroyo.
This faithful and feisty host considers faith to be a gift and isn’t afraid to take on those who attack believers.
“There is a hostility toward religious faith today that didn't exist thirty or forty years ago - a creeping secularism that is attempting to push religion to the margins of the culture,” she writes in her book, Of Thee I Zing.
“The religiphobes have done a bang up job. From portraying people of faith as idiots and Koran burners to casting all clergy as pedophiles and money grubbers, the seculars have done their worst. I have news for them: if wacky sermons, off kilter fashion and scandalous behavior haven't killed religion after all these years, what chance does Richard Dawkins have?”
As we learn in Full of Grace: Women and The Abundant Life, the Fathers of our Church have called upon women to "save the peace of the world."
Let us offer three cheers - and a lot of prayer - for these two strong Catholic women who are fulfilling that mandate with grace and faith!
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