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Seattle Catholic
A Journal of Catholic News and Views
10 May 2004

The Cost of Compromise

by Jonathan Tuttle

Preborn Child

TURNING and turning in the widening gyre
The falcon cannot hear the falconer;
Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world,
The blood-dimmed tide is loosed, and everywhere
The ceremony of innocence is drowned;
The best lack all conviction, while the worst
Are full of passionate intensity.

                                                   William Butler Yeats,
                                                   The Second Coming

I feel tired way beyond my years. Well, maybe not way beyond, but beyond. What perhaps tires me more than anything is compromise. Compromise has become a way of life for modern American Catholics, and we do it so often that we hardly even recognize we're doing it any more.

Maybe that's why we all feel so tired these days, because compromise isn't just tiring—it's exhausting. The first casualty of compromise is conviction, and this lack of conviction just serves to remind us that we were too tired to fight in the first place. As far as the Church militant is concerned, sometimes the lack of will to fight is much more grueling than actually waging war.

This becomes more evident by just putting our own lives under a microscope.

We might go to the March for Life and tell people we are pro-life—some people. Some people we don't tell (our neighbor, our boss, the FedEx guy). We then congratulate ourselves on being so darn pro-life.

The morning after the march, we run out to the store. We go to Walgreens because it's cheap and it's convenient. We shop at the pharmacy that sells abortifacient drugs and Norplant patches.

We buy baby shampoo from Johnson & Johnson because they have a "no tears" formula for baby shampoo. The "no tears" slogan has become more ironic with every passing day, since this same company produces what has quaintly become known as "the pill." "The pill" should be the product that carries the "no tears" slogan. For every baby that dies from a mother inflicting this chemical abortion on her child, "no tears" are ever shed.

Except the tears from heaven, and we're not counting those.

Yes, Johnson & Johnson is a fine company. They are with you every step of the way: womb to grave, and for countless small babies, nowhere in between.

We walk down the grocery aisle and grab a six-pack of beer from Budweiser. Budweiser is a radically pro-homosexual company, sponsoring just about anything and everything having to do with the sodomite lifestyle. We could purchase Guinness, but that will run us two more dollars, and money's tight these days.

While we're there, we see a cute little Mickey Mouse hat for our baby girl, so we buy it for her. The hat was made by child slave labor in a communist country by a company that donates to Planned Parenthood, sponsors Gay Day at its theme parks, and produces virulently anti-Catholic films. But it was such a cute hat.

We get to the counter, where Cosmopolitan is sold, on which the headlines go into graphic sexual detail. We lament the fact that this magazine is sold where kids can see it. It may or may not cross our minds that there is a supermarket in town that doesn't allow this magazine in their stores. But that was another mile away, and probably meant five more minutes in line.

After using our American Express card, which donates money to Planned Parenthood, we grab our purchases and go. We drive away in our car, which is made by a company that also markets hard-core pornography, and stop at a gas station, which sells Penthouse behind the counter. There is a gas station a mile away that does not sell pornography, but then again, it is a mile away.

We come home and get on the internet. We dial up using a company that profits from "adult chat" lines, and look at our investment account at Morgan Stanley, which donates money to Planned Parenthood.

It has been a good day. Our mutual funds went up.

Of course, we push aside the fact that our mutual funds contain companies that produce and market hard-core pornography, perform chemical and surgical abortion, insure abortion healthcare coverage, and promote the homosexual agenda.

It has been a good day. Our mutual funds went up.

Maybe we're just living in an age in which we have to make compromises. How many of us make compromises so damn easily.

"This phone company might sponsor adult chat, but..."

"This healthcare provider might pay for abortions, but..."

"This company might advertise in Penthouse, but..."

There's a question maybe all of us should ask ourselves: "When is it going to be enough?" When will we pronounce these words instead:

"This company sponsors adult chat lines. Therefore, I will get a different telephone carrier."

"This healthcare provider pays for abortions. Therefore, I will find a new insurance company."

"This company advertises in Penthouse. Therefore, I will not buy products from this company any longer."

There is always the temptation to say that compromise must be made—that all companies are immoral. After all, if all companies are bad, that means that we have no responsibility to avoid any of them. But is this true? Jim Kelly, CFO of Paladin Financial Group, whose investment company helps Catholic investors avoid immoral companies, makes a startling claim. Kelly states: "Many Catholics think all companies are in some way tainted, but this simply isn't the case. Most companies, from an ethical perspective, are ethically clean. Based on our research, more than 90% of all companies pass our screening process." Paladin screens out companies involved in abortion and pornography to help their Catholic clients invest in stocks and bonds.

As economic agents in a modern economy, the responsibility of the Catholic seems to be quite obvious: make a sincere effort to find the good companies, and avoid evil ones. Only after making such an effort can we reasonably claim that we did not compromise our principles.

With over 800,000 demented men, sadistic women, and brainwashed children marching down our nation's capitol in a Luciferian death march on April 25th, there is no doubt that we are living in age in which the "worst are full of passionate intensity."

The question is whether "the best lack all conviction."

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