Tuesday, July 19, 2005

Comparing Catholics; Reading World Magazine

I am going to contrast two famous Catholics. The first is one who I learned about in my 11th Grade Religion class; the second I read as a gift from my former youth pastor (the burgeoningpragmaticquixotism guy) and have grown to love. An interesting contrast here. The first quotation comes from Cardinal Spellman--known for being a pro-Vietnam figure in the Vietnam era.

"My country, right or wrong."

The next, as readers who know me well enough may have guessed, is from G.K. Chesterton.

"My country, right or wrong," is a thing that no patriot would think of saying except in a desperate case. It is like saying, "My mother, drunk or sober."

I owe the first quotation to
www.thesocialedge.com and the second quotation to www.quotationspage.com. The difference between the two views is quite interesting. Given that today Chesterton's views are, of course, conservative by today's standards (he passed away in the 1930's) it may surprise some of the more liberal people to hear that he was actually part of that great political movement which was in his day known as Liberalism--democracy. I would not be surprised to find a group of modern-day Liberals whom I could easily get to lump Chesterton and Spellman both into that dreaded "Ultra-Conservative" category. I am sure it would be good fun to do so, and the joke would be on them in the end. I should really look at more of Chesterton's political views--even by today's standards it seems he might fit into the Democratic party, at least with its ideals.

Of course analyzing the views of great Christian writers also makes us want to analyze and think what sort of current societal issues should be important to use as Christians. My aunt (not k-po, but aunt pooh who is the seventh comment on the quiz post) got me a year's subscription to World magazine as a graduation gift. I think I'm going to appreciate it. The back issues she gave me to get acquainted with it are pretty well-done, and even where I think I'm going to disagree with the tilt, I believe I will be able to get good news from it (hey! Pun!). It's an Evangelical tilt, which works out in practice to being both a theological and political conservatism, although the magazine's political slant is not exclusively conservative, often swaying to moderate and occasionally liberal positions. The theological slant I'm going to have one or two minor issues with, probably in part because there's been an interesting (and, as of now, not totally defined) Catholic influence on my system of belief.

Anyway I am very much looking forward to reading World inside and out, enjoying every bit of it (well, most every bit), laughing at the cartoons (which are actually quite funny) and critiquing the stuff I find myself in disagreement with. One thing I have particularly enjoyed is that the message of the magazine is compassionate, not judgmental. I also very much enjoy the cartoon that features Pope Benedict in a Popemobile with two drivers (I think I shall even post it up here, God willing, this week. It's that good.) If anyone thinks I'm picking on World like crazy, it's not just World that I see bias in. Time has the problem of being a tad left-wing, and The Oregonian is so screwed up I don't know what its bias is save that it's to the left. I haven't mentioned this, but there's one Oregonian article that was so cardstacked in terms of its facts that it was on the fringe of being an editorial--all it needed was a bit of commentary.

I am now getting to that place where I need to be winding down and going to bed. Goodnight, all.

1 comment:

L-Po said...

D-Lo, as we discussed, Chesterton's quip is quite clever, yet the analogy (in my opinion) quickly breaks down. Well, even the most brilliant minds have their duller moments. Not mine, of course, but you know, other brilliant minds, like Chesterton's. You have so bravely carried the burdened of a brilliant mother. I'm so proud of you. ;-)