Sunday, November 29, 2009

2009 Keep Mass in Christmas Campaign

I seem to recall that once upon a time I had a blog. At any rate, on this the first of Advent, it is time once again for our annual Keep Mass in Christmas Campaign!

Are you seriously angry that people don't reference your holiday while making embarrassing public displays of greed? Do you live in an alternate universe? Are you some kind of robot?

If you answered yes, or no, to any of the questions above, you need to join The Sci Fi Catholic's Keep Mass in Christmas Campaign, where we prefer to tell Christians to remember the proper way to celebrate Christmas, rather than telling everybody else, for whom celebrating Christmas wouldn't make much sense anyway.

Cracking a joke at an opponent's expense, for example, can demolish that person's argument if the joke succeeds in diverting attention away from the issue and causing the opponent to appear silly. Presidential debates and other forums for political candidates often show the success these tactics find. So does the following story from the floor of the British Parliament: A member named Thomas Massey-Massey introduced a bill in Parliament to change the name of Christmas to Christtide, on the ground that mass is a Catholic terms that Britons, being largely Protestant, should not use. Another member, it is related, rose to object to the argument. Christmas, he said, might not want its name changed. "How would you like it," he asked Thomas Massey-Massey, "if we changed your name to Thotide Tidey-Tidey?" Amid the laughter that followed, the bill could gain no further hearing.

--S. Morris Engel, With Good Reason: An Introduction to Informal Fallacies
, pp. 219-220

Keep Mass in Christmas.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Pro-Life Update

I look up briefly from my studies to note an e-mail in my in-box from Americans United for Life, which is urging people to write or call their congressmen today. I reprint the notice here:

As I write this, I've just come from a meeting on Capitol Hill, and I have an update for you on the battle to keep abortion out of health care. The bottom-line message I bring you from the Congressmen and Senators we talked with is this: now is the time to act . . . and we need YOU to win the day. Senator John Thune, Chairman of the Senate Republican Policy Committee told us, "This is when it gets down to the serious moment."

The message of the day was that your Congressman really needs to hear from you. A vote on the U.S. House health bill H.R. 3942 could come to the floor as early as this SATURDAY. We heard today that after the wins of two pro-life politicians, Bob McDonnell in Virginia and Chris Christie in New Jersey on Tuesday, abortion supporters in Congress are "really sweating." It’s up to us now to be sure they understand that Americans do not want abortion in health care reform.

The House Health Care BillYesterday, the House Rules Committee announced that the "rule" for considering the health care legislation will include language put forward by Representative Brad Ellsworth, D-Ind. which the House leadership is FALSELY describing as "pro-life." Rep. Ellsworth claims his Amendment would "prevent tax-payer funded abortions." Unfortunately, his amendment does NOT prevent taxpayer funding of abortion.

The Ellsworth Amendment allows the public option to pay for abortion on demand and allows government dollars to go to private plans that cover abortion. This amendment would undermine the only pro-life amendment that truly protects life in health care reform: the Stupak-Pitts Amendment.

Our pro-life friends on the Hill are concerned that the pro-abortion House Leadership will deny the Stupak-Pitts Amendment a vote. But without that amendment, pro-life Members cannot vote for health care reform.

Following this is a request for calls and e-mails to congressmen to make the following requests:

Ask him to vote AGAINST a "closed rule"
(the rule is a procedural vote that determines whether a bill can receive a vote and a closed rule will shut out the Stupak/Pitts Amendment).

Insist that House leadership ALLOW A VOTE on the Stupak/Pitts Amendment to prohibit abortion funding (and no other watered-down substitution like the Ellsworth Amendment).

AUL has a handy e-mail page here.