The God of Abraham asks us to turn our face outward to the world, recognising His image even in the people who are not in our image, whose faith is not mine, whose colour and culture are not mine, yet whose humanity is as God-given and consecrated as mine. ~Jonathan Sacks
On March 7, 2016, prominent Catholics Robert P. George and George Weigel published in the National Review “An Appeal to Our Fellow Catholics” to “reject [Donald Trump’s] candidacy for the Republican presidential nomination.” As a fellow Catholic to whom this appeal was addressed, I respond in this open letter, apologizing for both the purpose and language of this published piece.
While Professor George and Mr. Weigel opened their letter with a noncontroversial (if incomplete) statement of Catholic priorities, and a more questionable embrace of the Republican Party, they immediately shifted, not to a candidate-by-candidate, reasoned analysis, but to a direct and hostile attack on one candidate, Donald J. Trump. With no factual support for their assertion that Trump’s appeal rests upon racism and ethnic prejudice, George and Weigel fashioned a personal, conclusory, name-calling hit piece on this candidate whose voter base constitutes a culture distinct from the more polished, elite world in which the authors live.
Sadly, these authors cursorily urged Catholics to reject Trump’s candidacy because he is “manifestly unfit to be president of the United States” and because of “his vulgarity, oafishness, shocking ignorance.”
Many Catholics, myself included, were dismayed that these respected Catholic intellectuals drew upon the sort of language they disapprove of in the candidate Trump. This alone warrants an apology. I wish to assure candidate Trump and his voters that Catholics generally are called upon by Gospel and church law to respect people whose differences we might not understand and to treat all persons with dignity, even people with whom we most strongly disagree or don’t understand.
The Catholic laity is held to a higher standard than mere avoidance of hypocrisy. Our church law, and letters and directives from our popes, exhort us to engage our work in a manner that serves as ‘witness to Christ throughout the world.” (Decree on the Apostolate of the Laity, 1965). This fundamental mission entails concern and care for the dignity of every person, not merely the promotion of the church as institution and enforcement of Catholic principles via legislation and political mandate.
The dignity of every individual includes good reputation. Catholics are admonished to avoid name-calling, gossip and other harm to a person’s reputation in the community. Canon 220 of the 1983 Code of Canon Law provides:
“No one is permitted to harm illegitimately the good reputation which a person possesses or to injure the right of any person to protect his or her own privacy.”
These rights inhere in “the exceptional dignity which belongs to the human person.” (Gaudium et spes, 1965). There is no exception to this Catholic precept because an individual says something “vulgar” or behaves awkwardly or selfishly – or because a person supports a candidate who speaks to them in familiar sentiments and language. To the contrary, one’s protection against intentional harm to his or her reputation by others is embedded as a right in their very humanity.
Catholics can – and should – take action in the world to witness Christ and the fundamental principles of our faith. We may act to “protect both the common good … and the Church itself … even though [we] might thereby damage someone’s reputation.” (New Commentary on the Code of Canon Law, 2000). Thus, for example, Church penalties are imposed publicly for wrongful behavior only as a last resort and Church law admonishes that “care must be taken so that the good name of anyone is not endangered.” (Canon 1717, sec. 2).
The concern for reputation imposes on all Catholics an obligation to avoid intentional attacks and harm to another in favor of rational dialogue, critique and even correction. Deal Hudson’s essay “Will Pro-life Catholics Vote for Donald Trump?” models how Catholics can and should dialogue with respect to all candidates. Professor George and Mr. Weigel could have, similarly, offered an analysis to fellow Catholics of their perspective of Catholic political priorities and how each of the Republican candidates might further such priorities, or not.
Their piece, however, was not a factual, reasoned analysis supportive of substantive conclusions; rather, their letter was a perfunctory, verbal assault to harm candidate Trump’s reputation. Notably, they also cast shame and intimidation on any Catholic who might consider voting for Trump with assertions that anyone of “genuinely Catholic sensibility” would agree with their attack.
Accusing a public figure (and, by extension, his supporters) of being oafish, vulgar, ignorant and unfit is language reserved for those anxious to express hostility and tarnish the reputation of the targeted individual. This is language which, I daresay, no ordained person would ever use with respect to another person; nor should any Catholic lay person.
Finally, the authors conclude with one final insult. They accuse Trump of demagoguery, adding for emphasis, “we do not hesitate to use the word.” Demagoguery – “an appeal to people that plays on their emotions and prejudices rather than on their rational side” – implicates the candidate as well as every one of the candidate’s supporters. Lest fellow Catholics miss their point, the authors urge a rejection not just of Trump but of those people who are supporting him. Such people, George and Weigel insist, are making emotional and prejudicial decisions, without reason or analysis.
I find this seemingly class-based bias most shocking of all. Are we to understand that the NASCAR, blue collar crowd’s objection to the apparent export and loss of their jobs; their objection to illegal immigration – that they believe is forcing down the wages of the jobs they do have, but fueling profits of big business; their objection to Free Trade — that they believe is gutting small town America, while fattening Wall Street; their objection to the exorbitant cost of health care and the phase out of benefits; their objection to the denigration of their sons and daughters who have served in the military, bled, and died … that these objections clearly articulated and addressed by candidate Trump are merely fears, prejudices and emotions? Are we to understand that their support of Trump is therefore without rational basis?
It is hard to fathom a more stinging insult to the dignity of Trump’s voter base. This base undoubtedly includes many practicing Catholics who, in trying to meet basic needs and protect and provide for their families in a climate the working class perceives as hostile, rejoice in finally having some voice in the political process and hope for their future. As Republican Kurt Schlichter recently wrote of the “Donaldites” at Townhall.com:
Immigration and free trade are generally good, but they impose real costs and our base is getting handed the bill. These folks have been asking us for help, and what was our response? Shut up, stupid racists.”
It is embarrassing that prominent Catholic voices have joined this chorus.
Mr. Trump, I do not know for whom I am going to vote. I have not personally determined the extent to which you will promote the Catholic values I cherish, though other Catholics believe our faith is consistent with support of your candidacy.
What I do know is that I am ashamed of the personal attack on you and your base by my fellow Catholics.
Very good satire! I love it. Making fun of those who would defend Trump for his attacks against women and persons with disabilities. Brilliant.
Weisel and George are correct. Catholics are to vote for 1. Pro-Life candidate, which Trump thinks Planned Parenthood is good for women—Lie! PP kills children in the womb. 2. Vote for candidate with good moral character—Trump has none—when being adulterous to wife Ivanka—remember Bill Clinton’s sex escapades? Catholics are very foolish when voting for Trump—if he or Dems get in to Presidency, this country is sunk—USA has left God behind. as a nation—it’s only a matter of time.
@Terrian Williams, Trump is still pro life -_- if you actually listen to him rather than what the media shows you, then you would know that he said that he would defund pp from performing abortions but at the same time he did recognize that pp did a few other services for women. 2ndly, you say Catholics are foolish to vote for him? Okay what if he does become the republican nominate, then what? Are we suppose to vote for a democrat like Bernie or Hilary who are 100% pro-choice? Is that the plan here? At least trump has said numerous times that he will protect Christians overall in the United States and not do stuff like Obama which was fining the sisters of the poor. And also, at least trump is also for traditional marriage.
Where were all these ‘self-rightness’ Cath. folks when pro-abort Obama was running for Office?..It’s recorded that 54% of all Catholics voted for Obama! Bah Hmbug!
He says that now that he wants your vote, but he has been stable in his defense of pro-choice positions for many years. If you believe he is sincere about this now I’ve got a bridge to sell you
Amber I would remind you that when President R.Reagan was President of the Hollywood actors guild he was also pro-choice but when elected was pro life.
I thought this was a joke. We have a duty to tell the truth, and this is what George and Weigel were doing. Trump has said that he will slaughter the families (innocent women and children) of terrorists. He has said made veiled threats that his followers should riot if there is a contested convention and has said we should roll the bullets our troops shoot in the blood of pigs. He has supported the right to abortion for decades, employed showgirls and call girls in his casinoa, been divorced multiple times and bragged on radio about all the elicit sex he has with women he views as nothing more than objects….what more do you need? All of this is from the horse’s mouth. It’s as if you religious supporters want to plug your ears and live in fantasy land, but you have a commitment to God to open your ears. Trump has told you in countless ways that he is a destructive man with a vicious and evil will. Listen to what he says, watch what he does and stop being delusional.
Wow, St Louie comments, they are spot on. Beside, I placed Trump on Perpetual Adoration, may he be given the wisdom he needs.
And then there is
I AM CATHOLIC AND THOSE WHO THINK THAT CATHOLICS VOTED FOR THAT NASTY BEAST, ARE TOTALLY WRONG. DONT KNOW WHAT THATS HELL HAPPENED TO WIEGEL SENDING AN APOLOGY TO THAT FECAL MASS, HE SAYS ON” BEHALF OF ALL CATHOLICS” BUT I DO NOT BELONG TO HIS LIST OF CATHOLIC PEOPLE APOLOGIZING TO THAT ONE. I HAVE NOTHING TO APOLOGIZE FOR. HE IS ,IN FACT VULGAR, PRO ABORTION, ANTICHRIST, ETC.
HE IS NOT EVEN A PRESIDENT YET, AND IS ALREADY MENACING AND SAYING THAT IF HE IS NOT GIVEN THE PRESIDENCY, THERE WILL BE RIOTS ON THE STREETS. IS THAT A GOOD EXAMPLE OF CANDIDATE THAT YOU CAN REALLY TAKE INTO CONSIDERATION TO VOTE FOR? I
I DO NOT VOTE FOR GARBAGE, WHATEVER THAT BEAST WILL DO, WILL NOT FALL ON MY CONSCIENCE.
I completely agree …trump is a disaster…God help us if he is elected!
God help us if he is not.Hillary is proudly pro abortion ,the FBI director has pointed out how often everything she said about her e-mails were lies.Also how she lied to the American public about Benghazi .I hope you stay home rather than vote for “LYING HILLARY”
GO TO CONFESSION YOU HAVE A LOT OF HATRED IN YOU….. JESUS LOVES ALL !!
Anyone BUT Hillary !!!!
TRUMP—”Let me be clear—I am pro-life. I support that position with exceptions allowed for rape, incest or the life of the mother being at risk. I did not always hold this position, but I had a significant personal experience that brought the precious gift of life into perspective for me. My story is well documented, so I will not retell it here. However, what I will do with the remaining space is express my feelings about life, and the culture of life, as we approach the 43nd anniversary of the Roe v. Wade.
I build things. There is a process involved in building things. We tap into a lot of disciplines with engineering being one of the most important. The rules for putting structures together are as strict as are the rules of physics. These rules have stood the test of time and have become the path to putting together structures that endure and are beautiful. America, when it is at its best, follows a set of rules that have worked since our founding. One of those rules is that we, as Americans, revere life and have done so since our Founders made it the first, and most important, of our “unalienable” rights.
Over time, our culture of life in this country has started sliding toward a culture of death. Perhaps the most significant piece of evidence to support this assertion is that since Roe v. Wade was decided by the Supreme Count 43 years ago over 50 million Americans never had the chance to enjoy the opportunities offered by this country. They never had the chance to become doctors, musicians, farmers, teachers, husbands, fathers, sons or daughters. They never had the chance to enrich the culture of this nation or to bring their skills, lives, loves or passions into the fabric of country. They are missing, and they are missed.
The Supreme Court in 1973 based their decision on imagining rights and liberties in the Constitution that are nowhere to be found. Even if we take the court at its word, that abortion is a matter of privacy, we should then extend the argument to the logical conclusion that private funds, then, should subsidize this choice rather than the half billion dollars given to abortion providers every year by Congress. Public funding of abortion providers is an insult to people of conscience at the least and an affront to good governance at best.
If using taxpayer money to facilitate our slide to a culture of death was not enough, the 1973 decision became a landmark decision demonstrating the utter contempt the court had for federalism and the 10th Amendment. Roe v. Wade gave the court an excuse to dismantle the decisions of state legislatures and the votes of the people. This is a pattern that the court has repeated over and over again since that decision. Perhaps Roe v. Wade became yet another incidence of disconnect between the people and their government.
We are in the middle of a presidential political cycle and votes will be cast in just days. The citizens of this nation will have the chance to vote for candidates that are aligned with their individual worldviews. It is my hope that they will choose the builder, the man who has the ability to imagine the greatness of this nation. The next President must follow those principles that work best and that reinforce the reverence Americans hold for life. A culture of life is too important to let slip away for convenience or political correctness. It is by preserving our culture of life that we will Make America Great Again.”
Such elegant words, yet I wonder that you can talk of the reverence for life while still giving permission for babies conceived through violence; all children have the right to live, regardless of the conditions surrounding their conception. I want to see a president who will honor ALL life, not just those conceived under the most honorable conditions; if that president ends up being Mr. Trump then I’m for it.
Jude has my 100% agreement!!! He stated the facts right on target an I am a practicing Catholic. Too bad any apology had to be made. Individuals make errors in judgment and whether they are Catholic or not doesn’t mean people must listen to their advice !
Please God give all people wisdom and faith to elect the best president that will rely on your guidance to make major decisions for America!!
Trump 2016. Make America great again.
Amen! Trump for President 2016!
Trump SAID he is now pro-life and share the most potent argument for such a stance – a friend came to him, upset, explaining that the couple was considering an abortion. They ended up having the child who is now the ‘apple’ of his father’s eye (as described by Trump). This is the BEST argument against abortion – don’t kill your child – and Trump explained it perfectly. Weigel and the other man are probably in tight with the repub establishment which would explain their apparent urge to c’carry the water’ for them.
As someone famously said on the campaign trail recently, we are electing a president, not a Sunday school teacher. Regardless of which president you may choose, with a little research you will find lacunae, some of them serious, in his personal life; with some it is adulterous practices, with others racial prejudice and coarseness. But, since we elected these men president, their performance or failure in office are the criteria upon which we judge them. You say, “,,,if he or Dems get in to Presidency (sic), this country is sunk…..” Which leaves us wondering then just what you would recommend? ( Since I’ve seen “reasoning” of this genre before, I can’t help suspecting you are a partisan of Ted Cruz, yet another person who ignores his political provenance and his families strong ties to Wall Street and Texas oil money.)
Sir, do you believe that the author was employing satire, or were you employing satire? (It is actually quite unclear to me.)
The reason its unclear to you is that this guy’s “Good satire! I love it” comment isn’t clever, isn’t funny, but is worthless. BTW, his picture obscures his name . . . not that that matters much to anyone.
It is unclear to me as well…but I am still waiting for the apology from Mr. Weigle along with the other signers. It seems to me that none of these people have done their homework.
It saddens me that
collectively they would send out a letter such as this as these people are not being hurt by the current policies, they do not care about our loosing our jobs and a host of other things. The collective Catholic vote gave us obama. How many deaths is he responsible for due to his desire for all things muslim, and upheaval all over Europe and the middle East? He has single handedly taken down our prosperity,increased our debt irresponsibly, decimated our Armed Services and I could go on and on. He is a thug. He has ensured the demise of our Unborn, forcing us to go against our values on contraception and abortion. He is a transsexual, a muslim and hid anything that would tell us the truth . He is taking away our bill of rights one inch at a time.
Mr. Trump has been refreshingly honest, working with his own money, refused a paycheck should he become elected , pro life, willing to learn and change. He is not a Catholic so has other Christian values. He has been married to his current wife for 20 years.No one can find anything to smear him with. He has wonderful children. What more do you want? So what he used profane language. I wish this was all that the other candidates had done. Each of them has shown their true colors of deceit, corruption and sexual perversions. Why would any Catholic even consider any of them?
I want to thank you, Mrs Campbell. I was really taken aback at receiving a letter such as this. God bless our patriots and God bless America…we are a rebellious lot and proud of it!
Obama has been married to his wife for many years. Obama has wonderful daughters but what does that prove. Trump smears anyone opposing him, so does obama, trumps uses thug tactics, so does obama…
Carol, your examples point out there similarities. Thanks for the clarity
I agree! Voting for a wonderful man, Mr. Trump
Good for you Carol. From all the way down from Australia I am very pleased to see that you and like-minded Americans have been thoroughly vindicated by President Trumps performance.
Obama was a disaster not just for your country but for the world. Trump, like Brexit and the “miracle” overwhelming defeat of left-wing lunatics at our Federal election give some hope that the silent majority is finally making its voice heard.
I have always considered George Weigel a Catholic voice worth listening to, and value his excellent biography on St John Paul II. I was surprised and disappointed to learn of this unworthy attack on Donald Trump.
Excellent essay! There’s plenty to dislike about Trump, but I found that letter shameful, and was very disappointed in its various signers. It reeks of the worst sort of political diatribe, and can stand as an exhibit of what’s wrong with public discourse today, every bit as much as anything said by Trump. I found it rather shocking that Catholic intellectuals would stoop to this.
Though, I strongly dislike the idea of apologizing on behalf of somebody else. (And, Donald Trump is no fragile waif whose feelings we need be concerned about hurting.) I would much prefer that you merely express your disagreement.
This is pure political correctness that the Donald himself abhors. There is political correctness in Catholicism too. That is….be quiet, be nice and be tolerant of everything…. False humility. This is exactly how evil has been free to prosper in America. If every Catholic was a true watchman we would not have a growing Godless culture….a culture of death. I wonder if anyone apologized for St. Paul when he chastised the false prophet Bar-Jesus and said, “Your heart is not right before God…repent of this wickedness of yours…you son of the devil..you enemy of all that is right…full of every sort of deceit and fraud….Will you not stop twisting the straight paths of the Lord? etc. You can read it in Acts 13. I am not inferring that Donald is equated with Bar-Jesus; however, not much of Donald’s behavior that I have personally witnessed seems very Godly to me, especially his lust for making money. I heard out of his own mouth that his desire is to make money (for himself). The question is why a billionaire is still wanting to make money. My take on this Donald frenzy in America is completely about the almighty dollar and the idea of America being rich again, when the goal should be that Americans become righteous and Godly again. You know what the Scripture says about seek ye first the Kingdom of God and all these things will be added.
The National Review is a CIA front, just like Ms. magazine was/is on the left. They were put in place and run by William F. Buckley (an admitted CIA operative, you can Google it), to neutralize the authentic political right, especially groups like the John Birch society who warned credibly of the New World Order. Many Catholics have been conscripted into this intelligence operation and perhaps get cookies from the Prince of this World for so doing. It is time to wake up, good Catholics, and see through the smoke screen of the occult NWO for what it is. Our Church hierarchy is mostly “in on it” and need to be deposed. Weigel and crew and anybody writing for “The National Review” are shills (unwittingly or not) for the Satanic One World Government and Satanic Religion.
Three reasons why I, as a Catholic, cannot and will never vote for Donald Trump:
1) Jesus warned us that “You will know a tree by its fruit.” With Donald Trump, a ‘tree’ which is almost 70 years old, one need not look too far, nor too long ago to find the type of fruit falling from his tree. A careful review of his raunchy interviews with “shock jock” Howard Sterns in the early 2000’s reveals someone who, much like a 19 year old boastful young man at a frat house party, was proud of his prospective ability to “bed” many famous women if given the opportunity. The problem is that when Mr. Trumped was engaging in these prurient interviews, he wasn’t 19 years old – – he was in his mid-fifties. Truth be told, if he were not a super wealthy person, he would be called a dirty old man or a pervert. His son’s lame excuse that it was “just comedy” didn’t help. Is this the role model we want to be the leader of our great nation?
2) Of course, we as Catholics should be open and receptive to the conversion of any national political figure who in humility has reconciled past indiscretions with his Maker. With Mr. Trump, however, we see not the slightest hint of remorse, or contrition for his past womanizing ways. In fact, he was recently asked if he had ever (as in E-V-E-R) asked God for forgiveness. His answer dropped like a rotten mango from a 15 ft. high limb – – “No.” This total absence of humility contrasts sharply with his repeated mantra – – “Hey – – I’m a good Christian.”
3) Hearing Mr. Trump state that while he is now suddenly pro life [with no anecdotal evidence to support same] but that he supports Planned Parenthood because ‘they do wonderful work for women’ is akin to hearing a German citizen in 1942 Nazi Germany opine that while he is against killing millions of Jews, Hitler should be supported because of all the wonderful other things he was doing for the country.
Based upon these 3 reasons alone, when it comes to pulling the lever to vote for Donald Trump, I must in good conscience – – decline, decline, decline.
The past four years indicate clearly that those who voted against Trump had excellent reasons for doing so.
Peter was the most vile and sinful of all the apostles! But look how God changed and used Him to be the first Pope, leader of the Catholic Church!
God does work in mysterious ways!
‘You’re getting peter mixed up with St. Paul. Peter was a fisherman and lived a good life. St. Paul was the one who was against christians until god intervened and changed his evil ways.
But they should vote for Bieden, Pelosi, the Kennedys or other good Catholics?
As Catholics we are required to perform Acts of Mercy and one of the Spiritual Works of Mercy is to ‘Instruct the Ignorant’ and that is exactly what Robert P. George and George Weigel did!
It is laughable that these two great Catholic minds are accused of not doing their homework-really? Do you think Saint John Paul II knew his biographer was the type not to do his homework?
The author should be apologizing to these two men for performing an Act of Mercy for all of us in earnest.
Beautiful, Bravo! You speak for many faithful Catholics. I am one.
I’m Catholic, voted for Trump in the primary and will vote for him in the November election. No problem here.
Wy ,they don’t annalize Hillery the same way?Trump is treathed unjustly,wy? God don’t always choose the best sometime, when He want something done.For so much opposition, he must do something right.There is a click that don’t want him to be our next president,and we know wy!
After much suffering and persecution my family fled a communist country and now this country is facing a similar crisis. My main concern is freedom of speech and the practice of my faith, which I feel are in danger. Donald Trump loves this country and is willing to rescue America but he lacks a GPS. Our next president needs to be a person that leads by example and Trumps shows great arrogance that can drive this nation into chaos. He is a flip flop candidate and and the stakes are to high.
Thank you for saying what so many of us do not have the education to say as clearly – thank you again.
I do not wish Mr. Trump to become President, but neither do I wish to insult him.
He was created by God just as all of us are and should be treated with respect.
May God have mercy on our Country and our Souls!
Mary, My Mother, My Confidence, my Jesus Mercy!
A FRIEND WRITES – I lived in Southern California from 1991 – 2012 and the impact of illegal immigration is difficult to comprehend to those who only read about it. One of the most pressing things is the devastation of several industries by illegals, namely landscaping and restaurant work. A longt5ime friend in the Bay Area is a Ph.D. level microbiologist and Masters Degree level botanist who did professional landscaping for years, first as a hobby and then professionally. He is out-of-business now because the ‘Mexican Mafia’ stole or damaged his equipment, destroyed his work (that he did for customers) and harassed him at worksites until the customers stopped calling. I was training manager for an LA-based auto accessories manufacturer and I saw the ‘Mexican Mafia’ first-hand in that it was literally impossible for any non-Hispanic to get a job in our factory. The managers, the supervisors and the union all colluded to keep non-Hispanic English-speakers out. Our HR executive was threatened physically if she tried to enforce citizenship requirements. On a less direct point of view, where are our children supposed to get their first jobs, such as fast food worker, when a glance in the back of any SoCal Taco Bell will show a group of 45 year old Hispanic men working there. Hospitals are overcrowded with illegals using the Emergency Room for primary car – for which they never pay – the schools are overflowing with the children of illegals and the traffic is negatively impacted by (at least) 3 million illegals on the road every day.
And then there’s the crime…
AND I SAY – SERIOUSLY, IT’S TIME FOR TRUMP TO BE PRESIDENT OF THE USA!
Idiotic. First and foremost what is important to Catholocs: Truth
Trump is a demagogue. That is not an insult but a fact. He appeals only to emotion and negation. He espouses no core principles. He draws from no objective morals. He stands FOR nothing. He is inciting a mob, something our Founders abhorred. He is a demagogue, and those so caught up in emotion and anger that they cannot see it, we must do all we can to open their eyes to this threat.
Thank you, Ms. Campbell. “Tit-for-tat” is not the Catholic way. When Messrs. George and Weigel wake up from their Rip-Van-Winkle naps, they will find that America IS oafish and vulgar – a proud of it. We’re also gutsy pioneers who have only so much patience for the “fix”.
It’s “shocking” that our rebellious nature is on display, vulnerable to the disdain of our ever-so-cultured cousins abroad. God bless the oafs!
Agreed Rosemary, so many questions as to ‘why’ these two respected Catholic apologists would have such a rabid, and vile response to one particular candidate is disturbing. I saw NOTHING in either the 2007-08 campaign nor in the 2011-12 campaign repudiating Obama, the pro abortion king of the hill, at least by name, by either Catholic Bishops or high profile Catholic personalities. Very disturbing and suspect to say the least.
Well said, author. No candidate among them is perfect, and Trump has his imperfections, for sure. But people who are rabidly anti-Trump usually are reacting to a cartoonish misstatement or overstatement of whatever he’s done or said (which is often enough to criticize on its own). And more to the point, you’ve hit the nail on the head about how pronouncements from religious hierarchy that essentially denigrate an entire class of citizen — and parishioner — are wholly inappropriate and wrong. It’s one thing to say Trump is too unmodulated, that his policies are wrong, whatever point those in church leadership want to say. But to talk about him as if anybody who saw him as a better alternative than the other imperfect candidates is a complete idiot is to do a real injustice to believers who are genuinely trying to pick whoever they think is the best from among an imperfect lot.
EXCELLENT ARGUMENT . THANKS YOU WERE RIGHTON TARGET. ANN
Excellent article! I am glad you apologized on behalf of Catholics, so as to restore our good name and to right the wrong of the Catholic professors and social workers who attacked Donald Trump’s good name. Your analysis was right on target. As a business-woman, I noticed that the credentials of all the signers were either academics or social workers, who tend to hate business people. Of course, that is foolish because without efficient businesses, there would not be a sufficient surplus of resources to finance luxuries like higher education and the “helping professions.” That letter was an emotional attack without substance or evidence for their claims. It was actually they, who were acting like demagogues.
No, she did not apologize for me, a cradle Catholic. I find what she wrote appalling. I serve in our Church. I pray at the abortion clinics, I help feed the poor by going to food banks, I help to clothe thr nake by giving my old but good clothes to the shelters. No, she does not apoloize for me. What Trump says, does and lives his life is not our faith. Even Jesus condemned the Pharisees.
I agree. And where were they when Obama was running? And where do stand with Clinton and Sanders?
Are you for real? What a very extraordinary amount of verbiage defending an oafish, unqualified, unfit L, and shockingly ignorant demagogue.
I assume you do not mind being accused of a risible lack of discernment. Because –j’accuse!
Begone, though feckless and evil servant.
– Elaine…that’s just the point of this article…duh
Thank you for your beautiful response. I have been astounded and shocked at the response to Donald Trump. Whether I agree with his verbiage or not has not been the point of reference for me; it has been the understanding by his critics that he and only he is responsible for the ugliness that permeates politics. Mr. Trump has voiced openly his political sentiments. Agree with him or not. What I find refreshing is that one can have reasonable understanding of who he is and what he stands for. I have found this not the case with other politicians who present a certain face to the public and are every bit as cutting as Trump behind the scenes. It reminds me that Jesus knows our hearts. Does it make one a “better candidate” if he speaks eloquently and harbors deceit ? Donald Trump speaks embracing his humanity for right or wrong. Others hide behind the falsity of image. What appears to be often is not.
Your prideful and haughty response truly saddens my heart. Ms. Campbell has done us all a service…a call to reasonably consider God’s perspective rather than our human emotional reactions. As for discernment…is it possible that God is hearing and answering our prayers to save this nation? A cursory review of the Scriptures shows that He doesn’t always use the considered “appropriate” candidate to accomplish His ends. Questions for discernment: Which candidates are taking money from known “problem sources”? Which candidates are being questioned for “cheating” or voter fraud?
Which candidates words match their actions? …etc., etc….
Which candidate is being vehemently attacked by entities who are known to be responsible for our problems? Whose side are we fighting for?
Well said, thank you! As a Catholic, I was shocked, angry and disappointed about that disparaging letter about Trump and all the people signing it plus Fr. Longnecker is an abomination to the Catholic faith with all the horrible articles he has written about Mr. Trump. Slander is just the first thing that comes to mind, a very evil thing to do to a person. I, too was thinking, why do I want to be a Catholic when this is the sin crap they write.
Elaine, are you really a Christian? Why would you speak to the author like this? Have we devolved to the point that one cannot disagree with another about political candidates without being hit with insults? Your argument in not a rational argument, but an insult against someone who is concerned about the virtue of charity, or the lack thereof. What a shameful thing to call him an evil servant. Take care, lest the good Lord hold you accountable for further eroding civil discourse.
Marjorie-Thank you for your courage and kindness in writing what many other Catholics think. I tend to lean more toward supporting Mr. Cruz, but think that the letter from Messrs. George and Weigel was uncharitable. The hysterical reaction of our ruling class and intelligentsia, including among them many Catholics, toward Mr. Trump says a lot about the current state of our country, but unfortunately not anything good.
“Accusing a public figure (and, by extension, his supporters) of being oafish, vulgar, ignorant…”
Marjorie, you have misused language here. Weigel and George’s statement is not a accusation, it is simply a statement of fact.
Ms. Campbell, I am appalled by your support of this totally unqualified person. He is a bully, he is vulgar, he is a serial adulterer, he is thrice married and his current wife is of the age to be his grandchild. Plus, he does not have the remotest strain of temperament to be President. He was a Democrat most of his life, he has supported Planned Parenthood and if he is pro life then he has come to that position in the last 15 minutes. I don’t see how any Christian, much less Catholic Christian, could support him. You have the right to your opinion but to apologize on behalf of the Catholic Church is absurd. I think I will cast my ballot with Mr. Weigel and Mr. George, both respected Catholic scholars.
What were Weigel, George and others thinking? strongly criticizing a political candidate purporting to speak for the little guy who:
makes his shirts in China
ridicules the weak and those with disabilities
mocks a prisoner of war as a loser for being captured
tells supporters that he’d “like to punch a protester in the face”
runs a scam university
alludes to his genitals in a televised debate
discusses his adultery yet insists he has nothing to apologize for
Clearly Weigel and George are confused about the major tenets of Catholicism.
Trump represents the breaking up of the corruption at the RNC. Hillary when “indicted” will likely use scorched earth on her way down. We are at a crucial moment of exposure by whatever means and that will be good for us as a nation. The third spoke in the wheel of corruption is the media. It seems as if the filth there will see the light of day. Newt said true, the RNC is worried cause Trump did not take the initiation into the secret society, he can’t be controlled. Looks like the Lord has sent one of their own to undo the chains that bind us. I hope.
Thank you for this apology. It refines the way Catholics are lifted to be acting and not in a low matter.
God bless you!
I read your post and wished I’d wrtetin it
Thank you. I believe standing with Trump is America’s last hurrah. I also believe he will not be president. Hillary Clinton, a prochoice candidate will win. America has seen its last hope to turn things around. Get used to a third world socialist nation.
Thank you for this article, which is very well put! My take on Trump is that a true conversion is ongoing with him, and that he is willing to be counterculture at this point, for love of country. The way he expresses himself is far less important than, the fact that he has the courage to say, what no one else has! He speaks for many of us, and we are not too classy or elite to vote for Trump.
I WILL VOTE TRUMP…. WHO ELSE IS THER TO VOTE FOR ???? Jesus Loves All ! HE HAS GREAT MERCY AND UNDERSTANDING THAT WE DO WANT OUR COUNTRY BACK……. THE CAUSE OF ALL THIS CRAZYNESS IN THE WORLD TO DAY IS WORLD SIN !!!
Are you serious?
Accusing him of vulagarity, oafishness, ignorance, and demagoguery is not slanderous if its true. All one needs to do is look at clips of Trumps speeches for evidence.
If satire then its almost just as bad as Trump becuase so many peoplw will think its serious. (Simply look at your comments.)
And I apologize to you for I don’t know what but I’m sure you’d think of something.
I’m waiting for George and Weigel’s open letter as to why Catholics in good conscience cannot vote for Clinton or Sanders or Democrats in general since they are the party of hard core abortion on demand and fanatic planned parenthood (planned barrenhood) supporters. Democrats have been the “leaders” in moving this nation into crushing debt. (Yes, I know in recent years many Republicans have gone along with that unsustainable path.) Democrats have done grave damage, as well, to support the lie of homosexual so-called “marriage”. Furthermore, Democrat pushing for allowance of non-stop illegal immigration goes contrary to the papal encyclical by Saint Pope John XXIII which states that nations do have a right to sovereign borders. Finally, let’s not forget Clinton is an Alynskite and Sanders an unapologetic socialist despite the historical proof that socialism is a failed system. There is plenty more that could be stated against either a Clinton or Sanders presidency. If George and Weigel and others are going to issue a negative letter on Trump, they surely need to issue a public letter, as well, as to why Catholics cannot in good conscience vote for Clinton or Sanders.
Thank You Ms. Campbell,
I was very dismayed reading that letter to Catholics from men I had respected. I for one am sick of the elitists in the Catholic church and the Government telling me that my opinion is uneducated because I do not fall in line with them.
Peggy Noonan hit the nail on the head in an article about a week ago. I feel along with many others that we are not as a people being protected!That is not based on emotion but fact! While all these Elites in their Chanceries sit in their ivory towers along with the politicians, we are being murdered, our sons and daughters are vulnerable to whatever comes across the border and we are slowly seeing that poverty is a paycheck away, while they pontificate how we should live and impose heavy burdens on us (sound familiar?).
Trump has tuned into that. The only one who has. Am I “uneducated and boorish” if I see jobs going overseas to fill the pockets of billion dollar companies, while I see myself struggle paycheck to paycheck????? How many Bishops and Cardinals who support open borders for refugees have some that they are housing in their little castles? How many politicians are putting some of them up in their homes or letting them live in their neighborhoods? Talk to the parents who have lost loved ones because illegals drive without a license and kill someone or crooks and murderers wreaking havoc with drugs and gangs in the towns they enter? I am waiting to see some high ranking church official house some of these peaceful jihadist Muslims coming over.
Sure there are many good refugees (Muslims included) that suffer because they get lost in the crowd, but it is obvious we have NO PROPER SCREENING PROCESS and as a result they get lumped in with the evil ones wanting to do harm. That is what TRUMP was saying, we need a proper screening process. That is NOT RACIST, but prudent. What about the citizens in this country? We who are taxpaying and law abiding citizens have become lower than second class citizens. Do we not have the right and duty to protect our children and country from foreign invasion? We do not exist except to pay taxes and add to the Cardinals appeal every year.
I have voted Pro Life all my life. I have watched as the Republican party dangled their carrot in front of me at election time and promise to fight for Life. When they get in they do nothing!!!
Trump is extremely worrisome on that issue but frankly who can believe any of them anymore?
If this “oafish, vulgar” man can at least stop part of planned parenthood by defunding the abortion part I will take it! He may not, that is the risk but quite frankly all of the candidates are a risk, except for Cruz who will NOT BEAT HILLARY.
So I say to Mr. Weigel and George, we the “unprotected” are not ill informed and uneducated, get out of your ivory towers and academia that you reside in and wake up to the real world we live and struggle in every day!
I have decided to take Elaine’s advice to heart as evil and mean spirited as it is, and just be gone. I publicly renounce anything and everything Catholic. Donald Trump has nothing to do with my decision. Instead it is the Trump like responses to article that have allowed me to see what Catholicism really is and that it has not changed much over the centuries.
I would caution and pray you to rethink your public denouncement of the faith. This who issue is not about Trump, but the flushing out of: we get what we deserve. We’re at the end game of a social crisis whose play book is about to expire. Now is the time to unite this discourse in prayer, and not dialogue. One’s free will is one’s destiny, how will you continue to use it? There in lies the answer…if you truly understood how Satan works then you would understand how this conflict is being constructed. Back to the denouncement of the faith, please don’t let yourself be used. During the remainder of this Lenten season, prayer not dialogue!
I just hope whoeevr writes these keeps writing more!
Please do not apologize on behalf of this Catholic.
It is a form of class snobbery to assume that the working class, blue collar voters are not capable of gentlemanly behavior, and are expected to indulge vulgar behavior. Throughout history, the King and the Peasant have shared a nobility of spirit that united them against the crass middle class. The aristocrat and the working man should have a mutual disdain for the gilt and glitz vulgarity of nouveau riche Trump.
Those who are supporting Trump are looking for a political Messiah (who doesn’t exist) to solve America’s problems.
They are spiritual in nature and rooted in who we have become as a people. Only a sincere examination of ourselves
and recognition of the self-centered narcissists we’ve become can begin the process of healing the wounds currently
tearing the nation apart and driving us into separate, ideologically driven, angry camps.
Anyone who cares enough to examine the trends within our history knows we have been sinking deeper and deeper
into the sewer of moral decline, fiscal irresponsibility and geo-political disasters.
I’m convinced America can not be great again until she becomes good again, then, perhaps, she can become
The coming campaign leading into November promises to be ugly, divisive and, in the end, futile.
Pray for your country!
Forgot to add – Trump’s demonstrated character flaws cause me to shutter at the thought of
him becoming our “Commander in Chief”!
Thank you, Marjorie. Being scolded and derided by
our “betters” is insulting, to say the least. Those in
the pews of whatever level of education have clearly
been poorly represented by those in positions of
influence, dare I say it, even by the leadership in our own
church. Our putatively unenlightened culture and
country also has a right to exist and thrive, in and out of
I see before me so many Liberal Catholics, Democratic Abortion – Supporting Catholics, and the Cafeteria Catholics that Plaque the Church in these troubling times. I see before me, Fools that choose poorly. We have One Last Chance to Save These United States, and many So Called Catholics, Wish to Elect a Reality Game Show Host that Has Supported So Much That Is Evil In the World ! …. Abortion, Infidelity, Stealing peoples property, Dealings with Organized Criminals, Financially Supporting Politicians who Directly oppose the Catholic Church and Outwardly Attack the Church and It’s Teachings. The Choices We Make With This Election … And With Selecting Donald Trump As The Republican Candidate, Will Condemn or Exonerate each and every one of us for the Damage to America, and the Constitution of these United States, which surely will come. We are a Corrupt People, like so many who have come before us … why do you think our end won’t be as tragic as theirs ? But I leave you with this … Do Not Blame Others, You Are Responsible For Your Poor Choices ! … and if all goes well, I will give you credit.
If Donald Trump is such a horrible person, where are all the people he’s abused with his “oafishness” or his bullying or his racism or misogyny? You think with all the OPO research if there are people he’s actually abused they wouldn’t be all over the media? So far all they got is Trump University, which a billionaire who runs a worldwide business empire is most definitely not directly involved with. The Anti-Trump fanatics think his big mouth equals his character. It doesn’t, except that he is a fighter and doesn’t back down. If he’s such an idiot, why has he played rings around the media, conservative and liberal, and the blessed Republican “establishment”? If he’s such an idiot, how to his enemies explain his success? They think it’s easy to build towers and golf resorts and casinos around the world? I’ll tell you who is acting despicably in all this, and it ain’t Donald Trump. It is the anti-Trump fanatics like George and Weigel, who seem to think they know everything about a person they’ve never met. I’ve lost a lot of respect for many of them.
I await the discussion on whether calling Mexicans “rapists”, other candidates “low-energy”, “liars” “dumb”, “puppets”, “weak”, “not a leader”, “lightweight”, “poor”, “a joke”, “never shows up”, “a choker”, encouraging supporters to beat up protesters, saying “you need to treat [women] like s—“, and a litany of other statements that have come up in the news recently may not respect the dignity of others in accordance with Canon 1717, sec. 2. I will not impugn the privacy of those who may or may not have said these things publicly by adjudicating whether the use of the terms “vulgar” or “unfit” are unfair to the accused and risk scandal by throwing around in public.
Where are Weigel’s and George’s apologies? It’s surprising to me that you would expect your apology to be effective when it is they who are the offenders to Trump – and more so to his supporters?
The discussion about social workers vs business people may more apt descriptions if they were termed democratic socialist vs died-in-the-wool, top 1%, elitist republican.
Both the writers of the original offensive article were democrats I believe. And the fact that the ‘elitist’ card that they are playing flies in the face of the 45-year old ‘hands-off’ policy of the Church (vis a vis these academics in a Catholic medium) telling the Catholic public who to vote and not vote for — ALL with no apparent concern about potential loss of tax exemption status!!!
I am a faithful Catholic. 40 years ago I changed political affiliation – and have voted accordingly – in order to support the issue of respecting human in all of it’s natural stages (trusting in God to taking care of all the supernatural stages.).
So many times people of my respect life beliefs, in accordance with Humanae Vitae and Evangelium Vitae, have been offered the excuse of ‘potentially losing tax exemption status’ by diocesan respect life coordinators, pastors and other clergy to reject simple things like distributing a voters’ guide. Until I read George’s and Weigel’s insulting article – not to mention the back-handed method that it was released as a quasi-Church directive to the Catholic voting citizenry, I accepted the proffered excuse of ‘potentially losing tax exemption status’. Suddenly it appears as having been demeaning liberal-based put-offs — so much more politically motivated than our desire to protect the pre-born, the elderly, the ill and the physically challenged.
So please inform me when these two liberal elitist gentlemen “who have advised presidents” are offering their own apologies.
Dear Trump supporters —
I am very curious about something. What is there in Mr. Trump’s life history — his personal and business choices, and his public statements uttered before he decided to run for President — that make you believe that he sincerely espouses any principles congenial to Catholic values?
Most Republicans do not take Mrs. Clinton at her word when she makes public statements, but rather examine her actions and objective evidence to see if they are congruent with her words. Why is it that many supporters of Mr. Trump take him at his word?
And ladies, how do you respond to the anti-Trump video montage featuring women reading comments Mr. Trump made about women? Why do you believe a man who has pronounced these opinions about your gender is the right person to represent you in the White House and represent our country to the world?
I am another Catholic who begs to be excused from the apology. I have a great respect for Catholics of an earlier, less easily aggrieved age who did not hesitate to use strong language when called for. I suspect G.K. Chesterton would have been in line for this chiding. Or someone who called certain people of his day liars, hypocrites, and whited sepulchers.
As a Catholic I was grateful to read this apology by Marjorie Campbell for the grossly uncharitable remarks made by Messrs George and Weigel about Donald Trump, who is a truly great American who has waded into the cesspool of American politics in an effort to save American from going down the plughole which, it seems, is the inevitable fate for most if not all worldly empires.
Your country would be bankrupt several trillion times over if it was not propped up by a usurious banking system run by the truly evil people of the world.
I am amazed that there are Catholic people who won’t vote for Donald Trump simply because he is not a Catholic.
What happened to the one and only Catholic President of the United States of America? If he had not vowed not to be dictated to by the Pope he never would have become President. I don’t blame him for that…that is the only way a Catholic can become President…he has to promise not to follow the dictates of the Pope…in retrospect that was a very smart vow for JFK to have taken…what Traditional Catholic has not been concerned about the Post Vatican II Pope?
Donald Trump will make America Great Again! He will, of course, have the help of Almighty God in this quest plus the willing assistance of millions of hard-working Americans, many of them Catholic, who have been praying that God will send them a Saviour…not a religious Saviour…but an Economic Saviour. He will enable them to enjoy a valuable breathing space before He sends the Chastisement which has been predicted as coming soon.
Thank you for your question.
1) We are voting in a POTUS, not a electing a bishop or priest. That said, there is much to be desired in our current hierarchy within the Church As Catholics, we should be focusing on demanding the highest standards of upholding Catholic principles there first. For without a thinking Catholic base, a base that is thoroughly on board with the whole of Catholic Faith and Morals – not the select manipulation of values that gets Catholics to vote for avowed baby killers – we’re sunk.
2) As a “lady” and more specifically as a woman, I am nauseated with being led around by the perfume. That is, supposedly demanding equal treatment and they crying, “How dare he!” when someone acts crass. Sorry, but Trump is crass all the way around, treating women equally. If women want to play in the supposed man’s world, then it is more than time to give over the expectation of everyone having sensitivity training to meet our highly manipulated sensibilities.
That said, when times are tough, a woman will opt for the counterpart who can get the job done – supply for the family, protect the children, and keep the enemy at bay – not Mr. Manners who has been cultivated to the point of incapacity. Funny, how the demand for civilized manners goes out the window when survival is at stake. And, Mary, despite what you may believe, the core of this country is at a danger point. Think Maslow’s hierarchy of needs – there will be no culture of art and refined sensibility without food, water, and shelter.
So while you beg to be excused from the apology, what you are begging for is special treatment to be able to use the undignified tactics that you say you abhor in another. That’s blatant hypocrisy. That is being a whited sepulcher, Mary. That’s using one’s Faith as a shield from having to think, work, act, and choose in accordance with rational thought.
Might as well be a civilized Roman slitting your wrists in an effort to die amid your servants at the villa instead of facing down the barbarian horde that means to rob future generations blind of what others fought and died to give YOU.
Get off the fainting couch, madam. Be a woman! Think! And that includes not fantasizing about the seemingly better days of Chesterton. Lordie, but he’d likely be the first to shake you from your stupor. Not necessarily to vote for Trump, but to cut the useful idiocy that only aids and abets those who, sorry, are heatedly attempting and have been for years to bring down the United States.
Guess you can ask the same questions about President Obama when he ran for President and yet the clergy and many Catholics had no problem voting for him the first time. In fact, Obama scrubbed his personal history clean and made it legally impossible for anyone to find out anything about him. Then the second time he ran, even knowing his agenda, the clergy and many Catholics voted for him again. Now you want to question Catholic voters who support Trump about their decision.
save your apology. this catholic finds trump abhorrent on every level. it is shocking to me you would even consider this a topic worthy to write about when so many others in this political landscape have been skewered by the media. where is your apology to them? i will make it a point to avoid reading any more of your articles in the future because your work is clearly not worth the time.
What is “shocking” is the pathetic affectation.
As for reading other’s “work”, it seems from your comments that you’re just concerned with being told what to think and feel according to sheep-think instead of applying Catholic principles to those you don’t like. What a shame and a wasted opportunity for personal growth.
Thanks Mrs, Murphy for your article .That duo do not represent me either. They are pontificating in our name. To much arrogance in those fellow Catholics….
George Weigel would be amused to learn that I have begun praying rosaries for Trump.
I appreciate the many thoughtful comments. Thank you.
In reply to Mary’s question regarding Trump’s troublesome language about women, I was initially stunned by the number of women voting for him. How could this be? I offer my conclusions here, http://www.newfeminism.co/2016/03/trump-the-guy/
Bravo, Marjorie. I’ll join as another Catholic in signing your letter.
The letter by these people was tacky, petty, small. It diminished themselves, and diminished “the name” of Catholics. Shame on them.
George Weigel does not speak for Catholics.
George Weigel speaks for George Weigel.
In the past I used to read him derisively referred to as “Pope Weigel” and dismissed it. Here, with his insistence that his political opinions represent the “Catholic opinion,” I better understand the moniker.
No matter. It is probably a certainty which will be borne out in election returns that a far larger number of Catholics strongly support Mr. Trump than do not; eschewing petty epithets that are the lot of all successful people, no matter that they come from the “educated.”
Thank you for this timely and thoroughly Catholic response to a humiliating reality.
The “Catholic” elite have, much like the GOP, been bought out for decades. What is sold as Catholicism is really a veneer of perceived sophistication, academic sophistication that is increasingly promoted at institutes of “Higher Learning” who rely on the support of a marginalized flock told to keep quiet and keep up the payments.
This outraged letter denouncing the so called oaf is no better than a failed Mitt Romney pretending that throwing away one’s vote – and effectively handing the White House to Hillary – is somehow principled and ripe with dignity.
Sorry, but regular mom and dad who know their catechism and are tired of getting shafted by Catholic “professors” who want to indoctrinate their children away from the Faith and “Republican” politicians who want to cultivate their constituency to be undercover oligarchs who are fully on board with Democratic talking points to pillage our country are tired of footing the bill.
Thank you, Marjorie!
And to the man with the inflated picture, I’d suggest you stop reading satire and crack open a First Communion Baltimore Catechism. Would do you a world of good.
Who cares what George and Weigel say. I am a devout Catholic and I am supporting Donald J. Trump. Period.
I think these liberals like George and Weigel should consider voting for The Donald. They are upset because The Donald does not play by their rules. The Silent Majority are up in arms……and thank God they are. We have a country at stake….and we are going to take it back. Whether you like it or not.
Since reading Weigel’s article I have been contemplating his message. I was refreshed to read this apology. I want to know this….if we should not vote for Trump…then who should we vote for????? Let’s assume the race is between Hillary and Donald. As a devote Roman Catholic, you expect me to vote for Hollary???? A woman who views late term abortions as ‘women’s choice’ ???? A women whose integrity is being investigated by Federal Authorities? The list goes on and on. I will take my chances with Donald. Furthermore, I get a kick out of the way the Media loves to exaggerate everything that Trump speaks. If you listen closely, he DOES speak for the common man (and women!) just not in the disceitful fashion that the other candidates speak.
THIS is just disgusting–they had every right to call out Trump and be honest about the threat he poses to America. Trump’s behavior and beliefs are horrendous, why would they not speak out in truth, about such a dangerous man? Disgusting article. NO apology NEEDED
They may have every “right” to call out Trump – but based on actual positions, not just mud slinging with big people words that sound elite and sophisticated.
Enough of the pretend outrage. Let’s be Catholic. Let’s be honest.
Thanks for the apology letter! It was absolutely necessary.
Let me start by saying, Trump is my last choice of all the Republican candidates for president but I wouldnt vote for a Democrat come hell or high water. I also strongly agree with the apology given in this article. I feel the original letter by Mr. George and Weigle wasnt based on prayer and relfection but reflexes. I have been praying much about this election cycle because it has caused me no end of anxiety. Now I have found some peace in the thought that sometimes God doesnt give us what we want but what we need. Our country needs change. I dont think anyone would argue that. Change seldom comes without suffering and hard work. Think about losing weight. Trump may be a catalyst for that change, dislike it as we may. Unfortunately, that may mean some/many years of suffering through changes that need to happen but seldom occur quickly. I am not saying the changes would be brought about by Trump but that peoples reactions to his leadership may cause a shift in mindset that wakens a proverbial sleeping giant and moves people to action. All things can work for good through God. Pharoah was an arrogant tyrant but without him the Isrealites would never have gone free. BUT they still suffered 40 years in the desert after they went free. We may need purtfication and if that is Gods will I am at peace with that. That doesnt mean I support Trump but I will over a Dem. I pray daily for God to give us the leader we need not the one we deserve but I also pray that God’s will, not mine, be done even if that means suffering for us all. If that is what God thinks we need….so be it and be at peace.
Excellent piece. I read this recently, or read partially, then put it down not believing what I was reading. From Dr. George’s comments, I could not believe this was him. I was saddened and surprised. Makes one wonder what got to him. It seems to be happening more often lately. Thank you for this work. Sad time, but well needed.
I think George and Weigel have forgotten David did some pretty terrible things and still God forgave him(though not without consequences)
George Weigel is a Neocon warmonger. He is Catholic in name only. He supported Obama’ unjust and intrinsically evil proxy “Arab Spring” which led to the violent, illegal overthrow of Gaddafi and the attempted overthrow of Egypt and Syria. Weigel also supported Obama’s violent proxy coup against the legitmate ruler of Ukraine and Weigel refuses to disavow the neo-Nazi Junta that is currently occupying Kiev in contravention of international law. Weigel is also a parrot of Obama’s State Department talking point on Vladimir Putin and Russia. No wonder that Weigel is acting like a Dictator and wishes to neutralize the will of those of us who support the American-Firster Donald Trump. Weigel is not only an anti-American elitist, but he is also a scandal to practicing Catholics in America.
So grateful for this published apology. So grateful also to read many comments that speak to my like-minded thoughts and concerns–Ro; Kirsten Jarrell; Nancie; Al; Ann Malley; CJ and more.
Remember when all Catholics voted for JFK? Now there was a faithful husband! His wife and children were faithful Catholics, too. I’m sure he and his brother, Bobby, the Attorney General, never used bad words. And we know how faithful Bobby was to Ethel. JFK didn’t get us into any nasty wars where people were killed, except maybe Vietnam. But that was long ago. Let’s all grow up. Today on St. Patrick’s Day , St. Patrick’s Day! homosexuals walked in the parade. Where was Cardinal Dolan? We need a President not a saint.
I am generally a fan of George Weigel, but I have to admit I was taken aback with his blatant criticism of Trump. It seems to me he was much harsher in his criticisms against Trump than he was with Obama a few years back.
For the record I am a Catholic. I am a father of six, work hard so my wife doesn’t need to, and live a quiet life. My job at corporate America is very demanding and I yearn for simpler times. I press on. Yes, I take my family to Mass every week, sometimes more than just Sunday. I did not vote for Obama because I knew he wouldn’t be good for our country. I did vote for Trump in the primary (as did many others which led to the Trump victory in my state). I would like to see Trump win the presidency. He isn’t a Reagan, but then again, who is? And compared to the caliber (or lack thereof) of the other candidates, trump is a breath of fresh air. I really want to tell Mr. Weigel and Professor George to take their rhetoric and stick it where the light don’t shine!
Were where you when Obama was running? and I didn’t ear anything say about Hillery yet!Just to inform you ,that Hillary sign a big cheque to PP.All those who threat even his life,are they better than him. For whom are we to vote ?Hillary the so pure and honest.
God Bless you for your article. You are 100% right. I only wish I would have written it!
“manifestly unfit to be president of the United States” and because of “his vulgarity, oafishness, shocking ignorance.” — Sounds like pretty much every other politician to me.
Then again, “Can anything good come from Nazareth ?”
I voted for Trump in the Texas primary because the polished, educated, elite ruling class — especially Republicans and Catholics — have so profoundly failed in their duties — to respect life, to respect American citizens and borders, and to respect White Trash Catholics like me. PS — I am college educated and have a master’s degree (my BA is from the University of Dallas — the Catholic school in Irving where I believe at least one of Mr. Weigel’s children attended). I don’t currently subscribe to the journal First Things, but have in the past…
Hind site is 20-20…real wisdom is a gift from the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit resist intellectual pride. We all need to ask God to help us to distinguish good from evil.
the fruit of silence is prayer….said Mother Theresa
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And now 2 years later we see what the Catholic church has become in their zeal to end abortion. They have become hateful toward migrants seeking a better life. They have become disrespectful to indigenous people. They have become threatening to people of color all the while taking pride in a leader who has treated human beings with such disdain. Disrespects the highest office in our land, disrespects the sanctity of marriage, is dishonest, lacks integrity and disobeys the laws of our nation. No wonder the Catholic church is failing and filled with corruption. We see now the bedfellows they keep.
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Great commentary. I have been shocked and disappointed by Robert George. As for Weigel, he’s been a warmonger neo-con for years. I wouldn’t trust one word out of his mouth. If Trump were still president we’d be energy independent and the invasion of the Ukraine would likely not have happened. Obama deserves a lot of the blame for involving the U.S. in a coup to overthrow a DEMOCRATICALLY ELECTED president in 2014. We are reaping the consequences of Democrat policies.