I think it would be difficult to overstate the severity of the blow to our civilization, the harms this decision will cause and the crises people of faith will face in the coming years. At the same time, strong, sweeping and broad statements might help us blow off some steam, but they're easily ridiculed and dismissed. As such, I was planning to hold my tongue until I found a particularly well-written piece on Fr. Dwight Longnecker's blog that does a good job of summing up why I'm troubled:
The mass media ignore the pro-life position or they mock it and undermine people like me as angry fundamentalists clinging to religion and guns. The mass media are lined up with the powers of the state to promote the agenda of the Culture of Death in a way that will over ride all democratic processes to impose the Culture of Death on all citizens. With increased surveillance and increased domestic police powers, and fueled with this rage, I’m scared. It will not take much at all to tip over into a secular totalitarian state with an aggressive Culture of Death agenda.
If you've logged into Facebook or Twitter today, you've probably seen a number of folks talking about the persecution that is "coming" or calls to prepare for martyrdom. Like syphilis, which evolved to a less deadly disease to avoid killing off its hosts, modern tyrants seem to have realized that swift brutality is nowhere near as effective as "softer" forms of coercion.
Yesterday's tyrant might use the sword, the guillotine or the firing squad to kill you for living out your faith. Today's tyrant wields taxes, fines and regulations that simply make it impossible for you to live.
I don't fear martyrdom, which--God willing--is quickly followed by eternity in paradise. But I do fear these supposedly milder forms of persecution because of what they'd do to my family.
If I were a small business owner, compliance with the HHS mandate might mean the difference between feeding my family and not feeding my family. The same is true for bakers, photographers and others who face jail and massive fines for not participating in same sex "wedding" or civil union ceremonies. Entire industries worth of employees and employers could be subject to financial ruin by not supporting the promiscuity and abortion at all costs agenda.
Furthermore, it's not a big stretch to envision a United States where instruction in Catholic theology becomes a hate crime. The thought of having my children taken away because I refuse to subject them to homosexual agitprop and mandatory Gardasil injections is, for me, much scarier than a guillotine. Undoubtedly, this paragraph would be mocked as hysterical among many, but we will see if that's still the case in five years.
Blessed Miguel Pro, pray for us.