Pastoral Council: Thoughts for Reflection
June 28, 2015
Two weeks ago, this column wrote about a man who decided to become a woman. In the past week, the news has been focused on a white woman who claimed that she was black. Pressed into resigning from her position at the NAACP, the woman, Rachel Dolezal, said that she remains committed to fighting for “what is right and good in this world.”
I don’t want to rush to judge her actions, but if in fact she is white, then all that is “right and good in this world” does not include the truth. In Dolezal’s view, there must be a good that ranks higher than truth – that has more to do with her intentions and her notions of personal freedom – than with reality.
For a people who are Children of God, this makes no sense. Right and good must be rooted in objective truth, or nothing at all can be said to be either good or right for everyone. St. John Paul II said, “when freedom is detached from objective truth it becomes impossible to establish personal rights on a firm rational basis; and the ground is laid for society to be at the mercy of the unrestrained will of individuals or the oppressive totalitarianism of public authority.”
As for Dolezal, she rationalized her deception by calling it “how I identify,” and then added , “I hope people can understand that family is fluid.”
Come again? If family is fluid – under the circumstances, that has to mean that the family has no specific members, roles, or boundaries, but rather it depends on who I happen to like at the moment – then the family, the primary building block of society, is unstable and not at all a solid thing. If the building blocks are unstable, then the foundations that uphold civilization will be washed away in a torrent of feelings and passions that are untethered from reality.
No one knows where all this will lead, but this we know for certain: the Catholic Church, because she is the primary guardian and bulwark of the truth, will be the primary target of the powers of deception.
In the next couple of columns, we’ll look at the principle that ties Bruce Jenner, Rachel Dolezal, identity politics, and the crisis within the Catholic Church together.
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