November 15, 2006

Must we keep calling Nancy Pelosi a grandmother?

There's no male politician we keep calling a grandfather! It's ridiculous. It's offending me. But, looking into the matter, I see it seems to be Pelosi herself who is encouraging this sexist labeling.

101 comments:

knoxgirl said...

Yeah, it gets barf-inducing after a while.

George said...

Sounds like a smart move on her part.

Grandma knows best.

Now open your mouth
Hold your nose
Here's the medicine
Now down it goes.

The Tiger said...

Well, if it's any comfort, the current PM of Canada seems to bring up lots and lots of times that he's a father.

Rather annoying, but what can you do? People try to look 'normal' any which way they can...

Balfegor said...

But, looking into the matter, I see it seems to be Pelosi herself who is encouraging this sexist labeling.

It's probably both to humanize her (i.e. she may be liberal and female, but she's not Hillary Clinton -- small children actually love her!) and to counteract some of the stigma of being a liberal from San Francisco -- San Francisco does not exactly have a reputation as a . . . family-oriented place.

Ann Althouse said...

As a woman, I intensely object to this form of humanization. Women are human, whether they have children or not.

al said...

Only mean people pick on Grandma.

Simon said...

I think it's basically spin advanced to counter the argument that her "San Francisco" values are "anti-family." After all, how can a mother of five, be "anti-family"? How can a grandmother be anti-family? It's specious, but clever.

John said...

She's not the first to pull this. Texas independent (and losing) gubernatorial candidate Carole Keeton Strayhorn sued for the right to listed as "Grandma" on the ballot. (She dropped it.)

Unfortunately when she got on camera she came across as more the doddering-forgetful Grandma type (although she's no dummy, just bad when unscripted).

But... yes... barf-inducing.

Goesh said...

-better Granny than hag, eh?

Meade said...

Why Grandmommy is a Democrat

Joseph Hovsep said...

I agree with Simon. Its deliberate spin to counter the deliberate spin the GOP has used to "frame" Pelosi as the "San Francisco liberal" and all the nonmainstream values that are associated with such a creature, It might be annoying to play the grandmother card but I think some counter to the GOP spin is necessary and I think this is effective. I, for one, a liberal Pelosi supporter, was surprised to find out she had five kids because on some level I probably absorbed the caricature of her.

Anonymous said...

I don't think its a question of humanizing her. Rather, since the right has painted her as a crazy, fanatical, pointy headed left wing liberal homosexual pornographer ever since she joined the Democratic leadership six years ago, this is an attempt to make her more agreeable to people in the heartland. As a 66 year-old grandmother, she has more in common with other 66 year-old grandmothers than she does with the hippies with whom the Republican slime machine so badly wants to associate her. That's the story.

Isn't feminism about recognizing what you have in common with other women?

Internet Ronin said...

I think Balfegor is right - it began a few years ago as a p.r. ploy to "soften" her image as a hard-edged "San Francisco Democrat" and has taken on a life of its own.

As Ann says, although useful for Pelosi personally, it can be construed as being rather sexist. Offhand, I can't think of another woman in congress regularly referred to this way, and I'm sure there are other grandmothers, so this seems to be largely due to her personal choice or self-identification and the mass media going along with it. (As in "Who are you?" "I'm Nancy Pelosi, a grandmother, a Democrat, a ...")

John Murtha likes to be called a veteran, for example, so reference is always made to that aspect of his life although it was a very long time ago.

Mortimer Brezny said...

As a woman, I intensely object to this form of humanization.

Humanization is dehumanizing to women?

AJ Lynch said...

She that doth protest too much...has your son told you something you haven't shared with us?

Tim said...

"Rather, since the right has painted her as a crazy, fanatical, pointy headed left wing liberal homosexual pornographer ever since she joined the Democratic leadership six years ago, this is an attempt to make her more agreeable to people in the heartland. As a 66 year-old grandmother, she has more in common with other 66 year-old grandmothers than she does with the hippies with whom the Republican slime machine so badly wants to associate her. That's the story."

Except, of course, she does represent the "crazy, fanatical, pointy headed left wing liberal homosexual pornographer(s)" that make contributions to her and re-elect her over and over again rather than "other 66 year-old grandmothers" of whom there is virtually no trace of in her district or contributions list. You might think this a misrepresentation by the "Republican slime machine," but it is far closer to the truth than your characterization that she somehow embodies the values and virtues of the average American 66 year old grandmother.

She never has, and she never will. Any 66 year old grandmothers thinking Pelosi will represent them will be sorely disappointed. However, the "crazy, fanatical, pointy headed left wing liberal homosexual pornographer(s)" will be quite happy.

Mark the Pundit said...

Well, it is obviously a move to disassociate herself from her constituents, but at the same time it could very well backfire.

I mean, when it comes to the security of the country, do you really want to leave it in the hands of grandma? heh.

Simon said...

Terry said...
"As a 66 year-old grandmother, she has more in common with other 66 year-old grandmothers than she does with the hippies with whom the Republican slime machine so badly wants to associate her."

On a technicality, aren't the people of a generation to have been hippies (which I would take to be those who were aged 15-25 between 1965 and 1972) now in or approaching their sixties?


Mark the Pundit said...
"I mean, when it comes to the security of the country, do you really want to leave it in the hands of grandma? heh.

Sure. Why not? Why any more or less so than a grandfather? My objection to Pelosi isn't that she's a woman, a sexagenarian, or a grandmother, it's that (IMO) she is, so to speak, a batshit crazy Frisco liberal who has no respect for the history, traditions, or, least of all, the Constitution of this country, other than when it suits her agenda. But the attacks on her because of her age or gender -- and there have been some -- need to stop.


Internet Ronin said...
"although useful for Pelosi personally, it can be construed as being rather sexist."

Don't be silly. Liberals can't be sexist, only conservatives. Gosh, don't you know anything? Next you'll tell us that liberals can be racists or something! ;)

Anonymous said...

Must we keep calling Nancy Pelosi a grandmother?

Certainly other things have been suggested. "Grandma" is perhaps one of the most polite.

hdhouse said...

Oh I get it. If she chooses this it isn't her right to choose because by implication if offends good old ann if she exercises her choice...get it ann? HER choice.

Do you decry her being called a San Francisco Liberal (that's GOP code for gay-rights you know)? no? thought not. and that is an incredibly offensive slur...not that being gay is bad at all ... but the implication is straight out that because she has gay constituants and perhaps looks out for their interests (see "job description/congress") she is tarred to those who think that gays have no rights and are something subhuman.

when you go for "evenhanded" ann, let us know.

El Presidente said...

Does Heather have four Grandma's?

Pogo said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Pogo said...

I'm just wondering if grandma should still be driving.

I hope she's not one of those grandma-types that steps on the gas instead of the brake and crashes through the store window.

Maybe if we hide the keys.

Zeb Quinn said...

As a woman, I intensely object to this form of humanization.

I think you need to lighten up Ann. It isn't sexist to note that she's a grandmother. And yes, I can see them making reference to a man being a grandfather. To be perfectly frank, and I mean no offense, but suggesting that it is sexist says something more about you than anything else. I'd be thinking perhaps of something along the lines of internal issues you are personally contending with, except I also detect a penchant on your part to generally cry sexism with a bit of a hair trigger. Either way, not at all an appealing thing.

And I don't think that the MSM would've made any kind of deal out of it if she herself hadn't chosen to highlight it (as you yourself noted). As a politico she knows she has to work with what she's got.

Hamsun56 said...

"There's no male politician we keep calling a grandfather!"

I think there is a more positive association with Grandmother than Grandfather. Grandfather connotes old fashioned, out of date or even senile. Grandmother has a ring of maternal wisdom to it.

For me, what is important here is that this is how Pelosi has chosen to present herself to the public. As others have mentioned, it is a smart move to counter Republicans who would try to label her as being out of touch with family values. It can also come in handy when disciplining the childish egos of the politicians she will have to keep in line.

It's also a basic human right for Pelosi define herself as she likes, even if that runs afoul of feminists.

Joe Baby said...

Going to need to see some actual grandkids before I believe her.

Heck, she also calls herself Catholic.

Internet Ronin said...

Well, Joe, that's your right, but you'd be wrong to disbelieve either.

Fortunately for the rest of us, you are not in charge of deciding who is or is not a grandmother or who is or is not a Catholic.

Anonymous said...

There's no male politician we keep calling grandfather?

How about this? "Vote for Ronald Reagan! He looks just like EVERYBODY'S GRANDFATHER!"

angela said...

Maybe men should start calling themselves grandfathers more often.

Meade said...

"the ultimate security mom" @ 2:25

WV: ninubbc

Elizabeth said...

Webb made sure we all know he's a dad, a dad with a son fighting in Iraq. I see campaign after campaign filled with the wives and children of smiling male candidates. Bobby Jindal just delivered his second child at home, when his wife went into labor unexpectedly. That got plenty of press here, and afterwards, every commercial and print ad had his family in it. I'm not bothered by her calling herself a grandmother, and setting herself up as an elder.

I would like to see the press stop labeling photos of her with a description of what she's wearing and who designed it, though.

Simon said...

Joe Baby said...
"Heck, she also calls herself Catholic.

That's absurd. She's pro choice. The Catholic Church condemns abortion (and has always condemned it); surely, a Christian who rejects the binding teachings of the Church is, by definition, a protestant?

Simon said...

"Not that there's anything wrong with that," of course.

TMink said...

I am missing the sexist angle, as a woman, grandmother is her only option. Is it agist? Honestly, it was all flying over my head. I worry about her fixed stare more.

Trey

Freeman Hunt said...

How about this? "Vote for Ronald Reagan! He looks just like EVERYBODY'S GRANDFATHER!"

Off topic aside: When I was about three, Ronald Reagan really did look a lot like my grandfather to me, and I sort of had the two of them mixed up in my mind as the same person.

Aren't the majority of women above a certain age grandmothers? If so, why is this important? Why does Pelosi want us to call her "grandmother" in a political setting?

The Exalted said...

As a woman, I intensely object to this form of humanization. Women are human, whether they have children or not.

do you intensely object to the fairly offensive and repetitive botox comments that get thrown around here in reference to the speaker? do you intensely object to the characterization of the speaker as some terrorist loving counter culture promoting freakshow by the GOP?

The Exalted said...

simon,

the church also rejects contraceptives. do you consider the 90% of american catholics that disagree with this position "non-catholics"?

Anonymous said...

Meade,

Two reflections on the video:

1) Pelosi really does dress nicely. Good for her.

2) What is with all the hand-chopping? She looks like she's ready to secure the US personally.

Tim said...

"the church also rejects contraceptives. do you consider the 90% of american catholics that disagree with this position "non-catholics"?"

While I cannot speak for Simon, the Church is not a democracy, and as such, regardless of the percentage of American Catholics disagreeing with the Church's teachings on birth control, they certainly wouldn't be considered as practicing Catholics, as they are out of communion with the Church. Nor does the Church allow self-identity as "Catholic," - either one follows the Church or one does not. As noted above, those who reject Church teachings are properly identified as "protestants."

Additionally, the Church is much more vocal about abortion than contraception, for what should be obvious reasons. Elected pro-choice Catholics are playing a dangerous game with their faith - but voters don't seem to mind at all - regardless, Pelosi's claim to Catholicism in light of her pro-choice position is tenuous, at best.

MadisonMan said...

Aren't the majority of women above a certain age grandmothers? If so, why is this important? Why does Pelosi want us to call her "grandmother" in a political setting?

I also objected to Frist being called Dr. Frist when he was being a politician. How is the fact that he's an MD have any relevance on border security? Or Social Security. Nonsense.

Just an opinion from Dr. MadisonMan, PhD.

knoxgirl said...

After all, how can a mother of five, be "anti-family"

I've read more than once that he also "supports" the unions, while blocking union workers from her own business ventures. So....

Joe Baby said...

I'm not denying that Pelosi was raised Catholic, attends mass on occasion, and even receives the Eucharist now and then.

But a Catholic who advocates abortion (especially one who votes or appropriates funds) is not in a state of grace, ergo should not be receiving the Eucharist without first receiving the sacrament of reconciliation.

It's considered a grave error. Intrinsically evil. That kind of stuff.

I don't decide "who is and who is not Catholic." Smarter folks that I have addressed these issues. And in reality, she is the one deciding.

I would cut her some slack in that she, in her grandmother stage, is responding as much of her generation has -- that she is Catholic because she was baptized. The younger generation tends to believe that you are Catholic if you follow the tenets.

By the way, each time she mentions she's Catholic it places a bit of a burden on Catholics. If Pelosi considers herself as such, it is only right that her fellow papists communicate that she is in grave error and complicit with evil.

knoxgirl said...

Incidentally, I've also read that "pelosi" means "hairy." I guess I wouldn't blame her for pushing the "Grandma" angle to counteract some of that stigma...

Internet Ronin said...

MM: I can't help but remember that while acting as a politician, Dr. Frist saved one of his colleague's lives using his medical knowledge ;-)

tim: Are you a spokesman for the Catholic Church, Ms. Pelosi's parish, her bishop or cardinal? I doubt it. So, while you are entitled to your opinion of her beliefs, unless and until the Catholic Church specifically states a position on Nancy Pelosi's Catholocism, then Nancy Pelosi is a Catholic whether you personally approve or not.

Pogo said...

The Catholic Church sends many mixed messages to parishioners. While tim and joebaby correctly represent the strict interpretation of Catholic doctrine as I have heard and read it, it's very rarely applied as such.

Catholics have long supported pro-abortion candidates when it met other needs. Some Catholics even advocated communism and violent political revolutions (liberation theology).

That is, it's a church with many rules more often honored in the breach.

Garage Mahal said...

The Pope, and Vatican is, and has been a staunch opponent of the Iraq War --
as it didn't meet the "just-war" doctrine.

Pelosi voted against the Iraq war, does this bring her more in line with Church teachings, than an Iraq war advocate?

Tim said...

"tim: Are you a spokesman for the Catholic Church, Ms. Pelosi's parish, her bishop or cardinal? I doubt it. So, while you are entitled to your opinion of her beliefs, unless and until the Catholic Church specifically states a position on Nancy Pelosi's Catholocism, then Nancy Pelosi is a Catholic whether you personally approve or not."

I.R., I'm none of those people; however, I do know, whether you like it or not, Pelosi and others like her don't get to claim themselves Catholic just on their say so.

The Church determines who is Catholic. Not inconsequently, there are some pretty bright lines, of which abortion is one, like it or not.

So yes, she can call herself Catholic; she can call herself a saint; she can call herself a patriot; she can call herself whatever damned thing she wants to call herself, but just doing so doesn't always make it so, no matter how much she might believe it true.

bearbee said...

Grandmother has a ring of maternal wisdom to it.

Grandma What REALLY BIG TEETH you have!

Most people are not taken in by self-characterizations so for what its worth who really cares what she calls herself......

Internet Ronin said...

Well, Tim, what I like or don't like is irrelevant. And until the Catholic Church itself officially says that Nancy Pelosi is NOT a Catholic, or NOT a good Catholic, or NOT entitled to communion, it seems to me that your personal interpretation is equally irrelevant.

But it is a free country, so feel free to parade around saying she's not a good Catholic, and don't forget to toss in a few botox claims while you are at it. Just don't expect the rest of us to sit silently while you pass along your public judgments of her private religious beliefs.

milwaukee39 said...

Male politicians rountinely emphasize that they are husbands and fathers. As if a man without a wife and children is somehow less suited for office. You know, the old stereotype that a man isn't really grown up until he's married and had kids. . . after all, men need to be tamed. I don't see how that's any less sexist than Pelosi using the fact that she's a grandmother to soften her image among some as being too far to the left of mainstream American politics.

Joe Baby said...

We can't know her private religious beliefs, but only that her public actions (and as a political figure, she holds a greater responsibility) are directly opposed to fundamental church teaching, which in this case, say the action is intrisically evil. Not that the action should be safe, legal, and rare.

And sorry, but the "I'm against abortion personally, but don't want to dictate my beliefs upon others" is truly cheap. Insert slavery or child prostition for abortion to see why.

And no amount of funding for HHS can excuse the killing of the children who would use those services. Sorry. This isn't Al Gore's carbon footprint where you can buy credits elsewhere.

The Vatican or the USCCB will never issue a statement saying that Nancy Pelosi is in grave error or that Joe Baby has lusted in his heart (no comment). They will simply explain the tenets and teaching of the church and only act in extreme circumstances.

But if someone holds out that they are Catholic yet commits grave error on critical issues, they should expect to be corrected (and doubly so if they have a public forum and advocate it).

(Apologies to Ann for thread-hijacking: my quick quip became an inquisitive query.)

MadisonMan said...

But a Catholic who advocates abortion

How is supporting the ability of a woman to have an abortion advocating it? The number of people I know -- here in Liberal Madison -- who are actively getting people to have abortions (You there, pregnant lady! Squat right there while I get the forceps!) is precisely zero.

Freder Frederson said...

But if someone holds out that they are Catholic yet commits grave error on critical issues, they should expect to be corrected (and doubly so if they have a public forum and advocate it).

So would you equally condemn all the "Catholics" (I put it in quotes since apparently you believe they are not) who use non-Vatican approved methods of birth control, yet still accept mass in less than a state of grace. Isn't that even more of a sin than being pro-choice.

Remember, we're not talking about getting an abortion here, just not believing that the Catholic Churches stance on abortion should be that of the U.S. government or imposed on an atheist living in Alaska.

Kirk Parker said...

All,

Ok, so she's a grandmother. The really important question is, does she wear the right kind of shoes?

And Pastor_Jeff,

To answer your question ("What is with all the hand-chopping?"): with Rumsfeld on the way out, somebody has to take over the imporant stuff, don't they?

Freeman Hunt said...

How is supporting the ability of a woman to have an abortion advocating it?

As the Church sees it, abortion is homicide. So framed in the Catholic perspective, your question might as well be "How is supporting the ability to commit homicide advocating homicide?"

Isn't that even more of a sin than being pro-choice.

No. By the reasoning of the Church, contraception deforms marriage and is sinful, but it is not homicide as long as the method used does not allow conception. Abortion, however, is considered to be the equivalent of homicide and thus a greater sin.

All of that said, Pelosi may be denied Communion by some bishops, but I don't think any would say that she is not Catholic. (Though some may call her a non-practicing Catholic.) "Catholic" is a large umbrella, and it covers a multitude of saints and sinners.

Tim said...

I.R.,

I've never written a word about Pelosi and botox (until just now), and don't intend to write about it at all. I am disinterested in the extreme as to Pelosi's appearance.

Regardless, the Church is clear, no matter what Pelosi calls or thinks herself to be. As a Catholic, I am just as qualified to point out error on abortion as I am when clergy sexually abuse parishioners, regardless of the Church's official reaction. There is no difference.

Ultimately she'll have to answer for herself, as we all will.

Freeman Hunt said...

Freder, nevermind. I just realized that you were asking whether or not receiving Communion outside of a state of grace is a greater sin than being pro-choice. On that, I don't know.

Salamandyr said...

I'm not Catholic, and personally, Speaker Presumptive Pelosi can call herself whatever she wants, but I think that the people who keep comparing abortion and use of birth control are stealing a base. Both are considered wrong by the Church; but I don't think they are considered to be in the same scale of wrong, ie: the Church doesn't think you should lie, and it doesn't think you should kill people. Nobody believes that the Church believes these two wrongs are equivalent.

MadisonMan said...

Freeman, I understand the Catholic point of view (One of many reasons I don't attend mass too regularly), but the question remains unanswered: How is advocating tantamount to doing? I don't think it is. Grandma Pelosi is not out there telling people to abort. That's advocating abortions. She's telling them it's their right to choose, if they must.

Much different, in my book.

hdhouse said...

boys and girls -

Pelosi wasn't elected to represent that Catholic Church. She was elected to represent her district. She seems to do that very well and wins big so there has to be (shock and awe) crossover voting by the GOP to do it.

When sworn into the Congress, reprendatives take an oath to serve under and protect the Constitution of the United States. They are not offered the luxury of a signing statement. Hence, Ms. Pelosi puts the oath of country above the teachings of the Catholic Church.

Until we run for office as Jewish, Lutheran, Methodist, Catholic, etc., and political parties are replaced by the Church, then this entire discussion is reduced to wailing about a personal interpretation of someone else's beliefs. Isn't there something in the Constitution about religious freedom and a general course of law that tries to keep this from becoming another Iraq or Iran? Just curious if you make that distinction.

There ya' go knoxgirl, cap letters just for you.

Freeman Hunt said...

the question remains unanswered: How is advocating tantamount to doing? I don't think it is. Grandma Pelosi is not out there telling people to abort. That's advocating abortions. She's telling them it's their right to choose, if they must.

To the Catholic Church, she's advocating the right to commit homicide. "I won't commit murder, but I'm not going to say that you cannot commit murder." According to the Church, that position, treating homicide as a personal choice, is evil.

I don't think it would be a big stretch to say that someone who wanted to scratch all of the homicide laws off the books was advocating homicide.

dklittl said...

To the Catholic Church, she's advocating the right to commit homicide. "I won't commit murder, but I'm not going to say that you cannot commit murder." According to the Church, that position, treating homicide as a personal choice, is evil.

I can't wait for Freeman and the rest of the partisan hacks to apply the same logic to Guiliani. But no he's a Republican so there is no need to mention him.

Freder Frederson said...

To the Catholic Church, she's advocating the right to commit homicide. "I won't commit murder, but I'm not going to say that you cannot commit murder." According to the Church, that position, treating homicide as a personal choice, is evil.

You've got your sins of ommission and commission all mixed up. Now the Catholic Church can rant and rave all it wants and say politicians that don't actively oppose abortion are not good Catholics but until the Pope declares that being pro-choice is grounds for ex-communication, then quit 'yer bitchin. Until then, taking a stand that you are personally opposed to abortion but you don't think your personal religious beliefs should dictate secular government policy in a pluralistic society is certainly as defensible as being a Catholic who is pro-Iraq war--which the Pope made clear was completely unjustifiable under longstanding Catholic just war doctrine (it wasn't even a close call).

And my hypothetical above wasn't a hypothetical at all. If Speaker-elect Pelosi is not a "Catholic" by Simon's standards, then any "Catholic" who uses artificial birth control, does not confess to its use, and sincerely promises to cease its use in the future, and still takes mass, has committed a grevious sin and is not a "Catholic" either. That's catechism 101.

So I imagine their are precious few Catholics left in this country.

Pogo said...

No pun intended, but Catholics in politics present a thorny issue. JFKennedy gave hdhouse's view as reassurance he would put country before church.

But abortion is no mere "meat on Fridays" rule. It's fairly basic to the faith. But it's not the type of organization to throw people out in a public way, generally speaking.

Harvey Penick used to observe people cheating at golf and say "I don't know what you're playing, but it's not golf."

So she identifies as a Catholic, but doesn't want to abide by the rulebook. What to call it?

Tim said...

"Pelosi wasn't elected to represent that Catholic Church. She was elected to represent her district. She seems to do that very well and wins big so there has to be (shock and awe) crossover voting by the GOP to do it.

Republican voter registration in the city and county of San Francisco, as of October 2006, was at 10.92%. Republican voter registration in California's 8th Congressional District (represented by Pelosi), as of October 2006, was at 10.16%. The Republican candidate, Mike DeNunzio (Rep) garnered 15,859 votes, or 10.7% of those cast. It's pretty simple to see that DeNunzio OUTPERFORMED the Republican voter registration in the district, albeit not by much.

Now, you'll very likely parse this any number of unimaginable ways, but the numbers indicate it is highly unlikely Pelosi got any appreciable Republican votes this election. As congressional districts go, those people would vote for Lenin, Stalin, Mao or Castro before voting for a Republican - and Republicans know it.

Garage Mahal said...

dklittl -

Do you think the Vatican is wrong, in it's stance against the Iraq War?

Derve said...

Freeman: I read your comments on the Borat post. You've got a lot to learn about Roman Catholic basics still. Believe me.

Joe Baby said...

Wish I could strike oil as easily as I struck disagreement.

Madisonman:

Formal cooperation in wrongdoing is when one performs, encourages, funds, makes (etc.) abortion available. (This concept is also seen in criminal law.) In short, it's basically making another's wrongdoing your own. This is considered gravely immoral.

Material cooperation is when our actions make the wrong more likely although we did not intend that result. This is generally immoral, although voting for the lesser of two evils would be acceptable if fewer abortions would take place as a result.

Pogo said...

Derve, here, as elsewhere, your command of the topic at hand is marvelously absent yet marked by unawarranted certitude, glorious and oblivious together.

Revenant said...

do you intensely object to the fairly offensive and repetitive botox comments that get thrown around here in reference to the speaker?

That's a very "interesting" characterization of remarks made by exactly two people in the comments of exactly one post here.

Nor is it clear why saying that Pelosi looks botoxed would offend anyone other than Pelosi.

Freeman Hunt said...

I can't wait for Freeman and the rest of the partisan hacks to apply the same logic to Guiliani. But no he's a Republican so there is no need to mention him.

I'm a partisan hack now? I didn't say that Pelosi wasn't Catholic. I said that she was Catholic, and I only addressed Catholic doctrine on the issue of pro-choice politicians.

It doesn't matter what party the person is in, the same logic applies. Also note, the Pope has also stated that it is not necessarily sinful to vote for a pro-choice candidate if other issues outweigh the abortion issue. That applies to all candidates, both Democratic and Republican.

And Derve, to be certain, I value your opinion in matters of religion and faith as much as I value your opinion in matters of politics.

Revenant said...

Republican voter registration in the city and county of San Francisco, as of October 2006, was at 10.92%.

Shh! You'll confuse all the people who've convinced themselves that the "Republican slime machine" made up the claim that San Francisco is extremely left-wing.

Shanna said...

Why does Pelosi want us to call her "grandmother" in a political setting?

I think this is the real question here. I do agree that she is trying to portray something and by calling herself a grandmother I would guess she’s going for the older, motherly image, but a grandmother is also sort of untouchable in a way that nobody else is. So she wants us to think she’ll take care of us and we shouldn’t really worry our wittle heads about how. Which is not the image I want female leaders projecting purposefully, so I kind of get where Ann is coming from here.

To me, it just makes me think of the obnoxious older lady at work (who is also a GRANDMOTHER) who wants to lord over me the fact that she has kids and grandkids and I don’t have any, because somehow that makes her opinions more important regardless of merit.

I also think that referring to herself as a “mother” of any sort does little to counteract the liberal stereotypes, since her party is considered by many to be the “mommy” party.

By the way, I’d be perfectly thrilled if all politicians stopped mentioned their families at all. Pastors too.

Henry said...

Read to page 2 of the article and you get to the real offense:

"The gavel of the speaker of the House is in the hands of special interests, and now it will be in the hands of America's children."

So whatever Pelosi does, remember, it's all for the children.

This is going to be a long two years.

Henry said...

Not that the last two weren't pretty long.

Derve said...

Freeman: Careful where you aim that thing...

The film contains pervasive coarse sexual and scatological humor, crass sight gags, masturbation, nudity, some irreverent remarks, and excessive rough and crude language, as well as some ethnic stereotypes. The USCCB Office for Film & Broadcasting classification is O -- morally offensive.
- - -
DiCerto is on the staff of the Office for Film & Broadcasting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops. More reviews are available online at www.usccb.org/movies.

Freeman Hunt said...

Derve, I'd already read that. And...

Freeman Hunt said...

Was there more to that or did you just want to let everyone know how the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops reviewed Borat? I'm at a loss as to why you would address that comment to me.

Derve said...

Not just reviewed. Reviewed and rated. Did you catch that rating?

Turns out you're a cafeteria Catholic dishing up the advice here -- a newfound Catholic telling others how to interpret the doctrine, and where they stand according to your interpretation.

Freeman Hunt said...

Turns out you're a cafeteria Catholic

Really? That's news to me being that I'm not Catholic. (Though I may yet convert.)

I also don't remember dishing out advice to anyone. I commented on Catholic doctrine concerning politicians. What advice did you see in that?

Further, I don't think someone who doesn't know that there is a difference between teachings that are directly binding and those that fall under prudential judgement should be lecturing other people about Catholicism.

Pogo said...

Oh, Derve's comfortable lecturing on all sorts of stuff beyond his grasp.

Internet Ronin said...

Quite amazing the number of non-Catholics prepared to make public pronouncements about the moral rectitude of a self-professed practicing Catholic.

I am convinced that the Catholic Church can manage its flock (if not its priests) quite well on its own without your interfer.. I mean, assistance.

Such a pity that so many scholars of true Catholic teachings and contemporary practice are not members, but, alas, this is not the first time, nor will it be the last. Are you all equally well-versed in Lutheranism and the three branches in the United States? How are you at principles of Mormonism?

Is Billy Graham a good Baptist, even though his children were baptised at birth? How about that Jimmy Carter? What about the Methodists in Congress - are they following the teachings of their church? Can a Reformed Jew be a good Jew, or is that reserved only for Orthodox Jews like Joe Lieberman? So many questions, so many religious experts. Where to start?

Freeman Hunt said...

I mistakenly thought you had told us you were undergoing catechism classes in preparation of converting and raising your son Catholic.

My husband and I are in RCIA to determine whether or not we want to become Catholic.

That's why I suspected you are always lecturing on Catholicism here -- joy at sharing all your newfound knowledge.

This is not newfound knowledge from catechism. (In fact, catechism seems to teach very little doctrine.) I'm a lifelong theology buff, and a theology student through the University of London.

Leave the Catholic judging, the interpreting, and the commenting up to the professionals on this topic.

No problem.

"A Catholic would be guilty of formal cooperation in evil, and so unworthy to present himself for holy Communion, if he were to deliberately vote for a candidate precisely because of the candidate's permissive stand on abortion and/or euthanasia," Cardinal Ratzinger wrote.

"When a Catholic does not share a candidate's stand in favor of abortion and/or euthanasia, but votes for that candidate for other reasons, it is considered remote material cooperation, which can be permitted in the presence of proportionate reasons," he said. ...

On the question of Communion for Catholic politicians, Cardinal Ratzinger outlined a process of pastoral guidance and correction for politicians who consistently promote legal abortion and euthanasia. That process could extend to a warning against taking Communion, and in the case of "obstinate persistence" by the politician, the minister "must refuse to distribute" Communion, he said.


As for the "judging" specifically, I suppose you found it very judgemental for me to write that Pelosi can, indeed, be Catholic despite being pro-choice.

The Exalted said...

can we talk about how deeply offended ann is by pelosi endorsing the "grandmother" nametag?

heavens to betsy!

@revenant -- i've seen it mentioned many times here. is there a way to search the site?

Revenant said...

revenant -- i've seen it mentioned many times here. is there a way to search the site?

Yeah -- Google. But since your memory on the subject's so clear, why do you need to search? Just link to one of the articles you remember it being in, besides the one from November 5th that I mentioned above.

Derve said...

See Freeman -- and this is something you might consider before signing on the dotted line -- your chosen links, your interpretations, your initiative in educating others on the doctrine is not really your role in that religion.

It's a hierarchical-based system based on authority, not much room for your own personal interpretations/ unofficial translations for others. You were sticking out like a sore thumb because practicing Catholics tend not to do that.

Pogo said...

Re: "It's a hierarchical-based system based on authority, not much room for your own personal interpretations/ unofficial translations for others. "

Man, Derve, for a minute I thought you were talking about Democrats. Heh.

Freeman Hunt said...

Derve, we were discussing Catholic doctrine regarding pro-choice politicians. Stating and posting links to relevant Church teaching should be expected. Your retreat into "You can't do that!!! It's not your role!" is totally lame.

Derve said...

You can do whatever you like, Freeman. Free will. Thank you again for clarifying, and apologies for diverting the thread.

Joe Baby said...

I was going to joke that I would go nuts if Pelosi ever called herself a Catholic grandmother.

Then had a sneaking suspicion that I should do a web search. Found it.

"I am an Italian-American Catholic grandmother," she said, "very traditional in terms of values."

BTW, she's not just pro-choice, but gets a score of 100 from NARAL and PP, and a score of 0 from National Right to Life.

Extremist! ;-)

Hey, she's pro-family. She's got one!

But if you want to go ahead and kill yours, she's down with that.

The Dread Pirate No-Beard said...

I'll take Pelosi seriously once she lets her employees at the Napa Valley Auberge Du Soleil Resort and Piatti vote on becoming union shops. Until then, she's just another hypocrite in a fancy (pants) suit.

The Dread Pirate No-Beard

Anonymous said...

Bishop Olmstead of Phoenix recently published a slim book entitled "Catholics in the Public Square." The entirety of the text is here. It uses a q-and-a format to cover all these topics. Here's one relevant section:
• Can Catholics honestly disagree in matters of politics, social or cultural issues?

In 2002, the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith issued a document entitled Doctrinal Note on Some Questions Regarding Participation of Catholics in Political Life , that addresses the existence of political matters in which Catholics may disagree. There are, indeed, many issues upon which Catholics may legitimately differ such as the best methods to achieve welfare reform or to address illegal immigration.

Conversely, however, there are other issues that are intrinsically evil and can never legitimately be supported. For example, Catholics may never legitimately promote or vote for any law that attacks innocent human life.


Here's another:
• How would you define a “candidate who is a faithful Catholic?”

There are a large number of candidates or politicians in our country that label themselves as Catholic. Regrettably, however, some of these are an embarrassment to the Church and a scandal to others by virtue of their support of issues that are intrinsically evil.

A candidate who is authentically Catholic is one who always defends the dignity of every human person and who puts the welfare of the common good over various partisan or self interests. His personal and public life is shaped by faith in Christ and His teachings. Such a candidate can be from any political party, but will never support matters that are intrinsically evil such as abortion, euthanasia, or “same-sex marriage.”


It's a quick read, even in its entirety. Now no one has any excuse for making stuff up about what Catholics should and should not, can and cannot, do with respect to politics.

Freder: anyone is welcome to attend Mass, Catholic or not. The issue is with taking Communion, which you're not supposed to do unless you're in a state of grace. Haranguing people about "taking mass" while asserting something's "catechism 101" just shows the depth (or lack thereof) of your knowledge. Birth control has not been identified as an "intrinisic evil" as abortion has, and -- although this is a hotly debated topic -- it is not an infallible doctrine, either. I'm sure you're quite convincing to someone who is unfamiliar with the details, and I'm equally sure you're convinced of what you said, yourself. But you're wrong.

Back to the subject at hand, Pelosi referring to herself as a grandmother makes me want to barf, too. I heard a snippet of her interview when she was announcing it for the first time and she said it was her greatest achievement. There is some logic in that, however twisted, but I thought: How pathetic -- her child has a baby, and somehow it's her achievement.

I hope she'll knock it off when she's confirmed as Speaker. It's just really annoying and irrelevant outside of a campaign environment.

Derve said...

So Freeman the non-Catholic is joined by Joan the perilously ill divorcee, in educating/lecturing to the masses on Catholic allegiances in voting.

Beautiful!

Pogo said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Freder Frederson said...

Birth control has not been identified as an "intrinisic evil" as abortion has, and -- although this is a hotly debated topic -- it is not an infallible doctrine, either. I'm sure you're quite convincing to someone who is unfamiliar with the details, and I'm equally sure you're convinced of what you said, yourself. But you're wrong.

I was judging people by Simon's harsh standards. Besides, no one here has contended that Pelosi has either performed abortions or had an abortion herself, just that she supports abortion rights for others. So it is not a question of comparing "abortion" to birth control, it is a question of to what degree your personal religious views should mold your political views (which is not an intrinsic evil) and whether Catholics who use artificial birth control, which the Church has longstanding prohibitions against, are hypocrites or any worse than those who are pro-choice.

And did I miss something about basic Catholic doctrine? Aren't you supposed to go to confession before accepting mass? Isn't using artificial birth control considered a sin because it necessarily reduces sex to a lustful act? Isn't continuing to knowingly sin without any intention of attempting to cease sinning the worst kind of sin?

Internet Ronin said...

dread pirate no-beard: Really? I hadn't heard about that! Does Pelosi own a mjority interest in the company? That is far more relevant to her political position than this discussion of Pelsoi's Catholicism. (Reminds me of ACORN terminating the union organizers that were working for them.)

Freeman Hunt said...

Derve, leaving aside your reading comprehension impairment, are you capable of having a discussion without getting into people's personal lives?

Freder, according to Ratzinger, the problem is "formal cooperation":

He [Ratzinger] said that in judging their own worthiness to receive Communion Catholics should recognize that abortion and euthanasia are grave sins, and that it is never permitted to cooperate in them in a formal way. ...

In the case of abortion or euthanasia, Cardinal Ratzinger said a Catholic politician manifests "formal cooperation" in those grave sins by "consistently campaigning and voting for permissive abortion and euthanasia laws."

Joe Baby said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Anonymous said...

Derve: So Freeman the non-Catholic is joined by Joan the perilously ill divorcee, in educating/lecturing to the masses on Catholic allegiances in voting.

Thanks for your concern, but I am not perilously ill and never have been. I've had a few rough spots but nothing even remotely life-threatening.

I am divorced. My first marriage was outside of the Church and, lacking proper form, was never a sacramental marriage. If you are trying to imply that I'm a hypocrite and can't possibly be a good Catholic because of my divorce, you're just once again revealing your ignorance of my case but more importantly, the requirements for sacramental marriage.

As a Catholic participating in these discussions it is my responsibility to defend my faith.

And let's take Freder's questions one by one:
And did I miss something about basic Catholic doctrine?
From what I can tell in this discussion, you've missed just about everything.

Aren't you supposed to go to confession before accepting mass?
No, no, no. ANYONE can attend mass. Of any religion. At any time. The issue is accepting Communion. Mass is the service at which we confess our sins, listen to readings from the Bible, hear a sermon, and profess our faith. During the Eucharistic Prayer, said by the priest and only the priest, the bread and wine through transubstantiation become the body and blood of Christ. At Communion, members of the Church in good standing may receive the body and blood. At my church and many churches, non-members and children who have not yet had their First Communion may also approach the altar and receive a blessing. You can be in the most grievous state of sin and still receive that blessing. You just ought not take Communion in that state.

Isn't using artificial birth control considered a sin because it necessarily reduces sex to a lustful act?
This is an area of debate within the Church, which recognizes that sex has two functions: procreative and unitive. The unitive function (sex brings a married couple closer) is as important as the procreative function. You don't see the Church arguing that people should never have sex again after they've had their kids. The Church also recognizes that parents have a responsibility to space out the timing of their pregnancies and to limit the size of their family based on what they can manage. That's why NFP is allowed.

The big debate on birth control is why is NFP allowed, which uses timing and is highly intrusive, when other (non-abortifacient) methods are not?

Individual Catholics are called to study this issue and form their own consciences on it. Since the ban on artifical b.c. is not infallible doctrine, it is possible for Catholics, with properly formed consciences, to use birth control and still be in good standing with the Church.

Isn't continuing to knowingly sin without any intention of attempting to cease sinning the worst kind of sin?

It depends on the sin.

Freeman Hunt said...

Are you?
I value your opinion in matters of religion and faith as much as I value your opinion in matters of politics. Thanks for clarifying.


Yes, and that relates to your personal life exactly how?

I'll take your last several comments to be an extended version of "I've got nothin'." We're done.

hdhouse said...

well frankly ann would make a great nun. ann frankly....bad pun.