1. An Abortion Crossroads, By The Wall Street Journal, December 1, 2021, Pg. A16, Editorial The Justices could agree with the Fifth Circuit and declare that Mississippi’s law is unconstitutional. But that is highly unlikely given the new majority and its originalist views of constitutional interpretation. …  Casey’s core ruling is that states cannot impose regulation that is an “undue burden” on a woman’s ability to obtain an abortion. The Court could rule that Mississippi’s ban is not such a burden, and thus it does not have to reconsider Casey or Roe. This would be justified as a matter of law in this case. Given the Court’s reluctance to overturn longstanding precedents, this may be where a majority or plurality comes out. Some Justices might feel this is a safe harbor to show that the new Court with its Trump appointees isn’t out willy-nilly to overturn precedent. We disagree with those on the right who say this would betray the conservative legal movement. Such a ruling would be akin to the incremental progress the Roberts Court has made on other legal precedents, notably on free speech and religious liberty. For example, the Court ruled cautiously in Harris v. Quinn (2014) on the unconstitutionality of coerced union fees before finally overturning its Abood precedent in Janus v. Afscme (2018). But such a ruling would not free the Court or the country from its abortion thicket. The cases will keep coming, and sooner or later the Justices will have to overturn Roe and Casey or assert that they stand on solid legal ground. This is the best practical argument for making a clean break now and return the policy choices on abortion to the political branches. Like Plessy, some precedents are so misguided and have such damaging consequences that they warrant overturning no matter their longevity. https://www.wsj.com/articles/an-abortion-crossroads-at-the-supreme-court-dobbs-jackson-mississippi-john-roberts-11638311038___________________________________________________________ 2. John Roberts and the Abortion Precedents, By Edward Whelan, The Wall Street Journal, December 1, 2021, Pg. A17, Opinion The Supreme Court hears its most important abortion case in a generation on Wednesday. Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization concerns a Mississippi law that bans most abortions after 15 weeks of gestation. That’s more permissive than the laws of nearly every country in Europe. But because it applies before viability, it conflicts with Roe v. Wade (1973) and Planned Parenthood v. Casey (1992).  Bereft of meritorious legal arguments, some supporters of Roe have tried to intimidate the justices by threatening to pack the court. Yielding to that threat would politicize the court beyond measure and invite endless bullying. And court-packing is deeply unpopular. The flagrant wrongness of Roe and Casey and the deep discomfort that many Democratic voters have with their party’s radical agenda on abortion make the overturning of Roe an improbable occasion for a blatant attack on the court to succeed. By winning this battle, Chief Justice Roberts would secure his legacy as a champion of the court’s independence from politics. Mr. Whelan is a distinguished senior fellow at the Ethics and Public Policy Center and a co-editor of “The Essential Scalia: On the Constitution, the Courts, and the Rule of Law.” https://www.wsj.com/articles/two-generations-of-roe-is-enough-abortion-law-overturn-11638286403?___________________________________________________________ 3. An Incendiary Plan for Notre Dame, By Michael J. Lewis, The Wall Street Journal, December 1, 2021, Pg. A13, Opinion If the donors to the rebuilding of Notre Dame in Paris had known what is now in store for its interior, would they have been so generous? And generous they have been. The fire of April 15, 2019, that destroyed the mighty roof and central spire has inspired what must be the world’s greatest act of collective cultural philanthropy. Over $940 million has already been collected from donors, some 340,000 in all, from all over the world. What animated them was the promise that the cathedral would be re-created, exactly as it was, which was by no means a sure thing. Days after the fire Édouard Philippe, then French prime minister, declared that the cathedral would be rebuilt in a way “that bears the mark of our time.” Architects took him at his word: One proposal would have replaced the burned-out roof with an airy greenhouse, another with a municipal swimming pool. But if Photoshopped gags are the mark of our time, they had a positive effect. An outraged public demanded that the destroyed portions of the cathedral be rebuilt just as they were. So it was decreed, and early this year the process of selecting oak trees for the roof began. Satisfied that the work was in good hands, the public let down its guard. Now we learn from the Telegraph newspaper (and two European online journals) that the cathedral interior is to be updated—and in the most radical fashion. The discord is staggering: The part that we cannot see, the roof truss hidden above the stone vaults, is to be reconstructed with absolute historical fidelity, while the part that we can very much see, the intact interior, is to be transformed into something akin to a contemporary art installation or theme park. https://www.wsj.com/articles/notre-dame-cathedral-rebuilding-father-gilles-drouin-catechumenical-path-reconciled-creation-11638302758?___________________________________________________________ 4. EU draft pulled after Vatican complains Christmas ‘canceled’, By Nicole Winfield, Associated Press, November 30, 2021, 3:41 PM The European Commission on Tuesday retracted internal communication guidelines that had proposed substituting the “Christmas period” with “holiday period” after an outcry by conservatives and the Vatican, which termed the document an attempt to “cancel” Europe’s Christian roots. The European Commissioner for Equality, Helena Dalli, said the draft document had been intended to highlight European diversity and showcase the “inclusive nature of the European Commission.” But in a statement, she said it didn’t meet Commission standards and failed to achieve its stated purpose.  Even the Vatican secretary of state, Cardinal Pietro Parolin, intervened with an unusually sharp critique in a video Tuesday on the Vatican News portal. Parolin lauded efforts to eradicate discrimination in the bloc but said initiatives can’t involve the “cancellation of our roots, the Christian dimension of our Europe, especially with regard to Christian festivals. “Of course, we know that Europe owes its existence and its identity to many influences, but we certainly cannot forget that one of the main influences, if not the main one, was Christianity itself,” he said. https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/eu-draft-pulled-after-vatican-complains-christmas-canceled/2021/11/30/e4d8c358-521d-11ec-83d2-d9dab0e23b7e_story.html___________________________________________________________ 5. Kyrgyzstan is expected to ban Jehovah’s Witnesses publications for ‘extremism’, By Kathryn Post, Religion News Service, November 30, 2021, 5:53 PM Kyrgyzstan is expected to ban 13 Jehovah’s Witnesses publications on Thursday (Dec. 2) for extremism, marking the first time the country has taken an official stance against the religious group since the former Soviet republic granted the church national registration in 1998. Jarrod Lopes, spokesperson for Jehovah’s Witnesses, said the move echoes the tactics employed against the group in Russia, Kyrgyzstan’s historic ally. According to Lopes, the Russian government, which has put several dozen Jehovah’s Witnesses on trial for proselytizing, often takes a first step of declaring any religious group’s literature as extremist before declaring group members extremist themselves. https://www.washingtonpost.com/religion/kyrgyzstan-is-expected-to-ban-jehovahs-witnesses-publications-for-extremism/2021/11/30/63184862-5230-11ec-83d2-d9dab0e23b7e_story.html___________________________________________________________ 6. Chile legislature defeats bill that would have permitted elective abortion, By Giselle Vargas, Catholic News Agency, November 30, 2021, 4:23 PM The lower house of Chile’s legislature defeated Tuesday a bill that would have legalized elective abortion up to 14 weeks of pregnancy. The bill was defeated in the Chamber of Deputies Nov. 30 by a vote of 65-62, with one abstention. Since September 2017, abortion in Chile has been legal up to 12 weeks of pregnancy on the grounds of rape, and there is no upper limit for fetal non-viability or risk to the life of the mother. https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/249740/chile-legislature-defeats-bill-that-would-have-permitted-elective-abortion___________________________________________________________ 7. Mike Pence calls on Supreme Court to overturn Roe v Wade, By Katie Yoder, Catholic News Agency, November 30, 2021, 5:06 PM Former vice president Mike Pence is calling on the U.S. Supreme Court to overturn Roe v. Wade, the 1973 ruling that legalized abortion nationwide. “I came here today to speak about right and wrong, to say life is a human right, and urge the Supreme Court of the United States to choose life,” he said at the National Press Club in Washington, D.C. on Tuesday. Pence delivered his remarks in anticipation of the oral arguments in the Supreme Court case Dobbs v. Jackson Women’s Health Organization on Dec. 1. The case involves a Mississippi law restricting most abortions after 15 weeks, and challenges two landmark decisions: Roe v. Wade and Planned Parenthood v. Casey, which upheld Roe in 1992. “As we stand here today, we may well be on the verge of an era when the Supreme Court sends Roe v. Wade to the ash heap of history where it belongs,” Pence said. https://www.catholicnewsagency.com/news/249741/mike-pence-calls-on-supreme-court-to-overturn-roe-v-wade___________________________________________________________

TCA Media Monitoring provides a snapshot from national newspapers and major Catholic press outlets of coverage regarding significant Catholic Church news and current issues with which the Catholic Church is traditionally or prominently engaged. The opinions and views expressed in the articles do not necessarily reflect the views of The Catholic Association.
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