The (baffling) view from Rome

L’Osservatore Romano’s sympathetic front-page editorial by Giuseppe Fiorentino about Barack Obama’s first 100 days is baffling (full text available here). On every contested issue related to the natural moral law, Obama is advancing dangerous policies. Yet this editorial blithely says that even “on ethical issues…Obama doesn’t seem to have confirmed the radical changes he had aired.”
Yes, he has.

Within weeks of entering office, he reversed the Mexico City Policy as promised, thereby freeing up the tax dollars of Americans for the promotion of abortion overseas; he lifted George W. Bush’s ban on federal tax dollars for embryo-destructive research; he took the first steps toward abolishing the Bush’s “conscience clause” that protects the rights of pro-life nurses and doctors at hospitals that receive federal funds; he has appointed supporters of gay marriage and euthanasia to a host of important posts; and he has enlisted dissenting Catholics such as Kathleen Sebelius to serve as his agents of moral destruction.

“The new guidelines regarding embryonic stem-cell research don’t, in fact, line up with the changes foreseen months ago,” says Fiorentino. “They don’t permit the creation of new embryos for purposes of research or therapy, for cloning or reproductive ends, and federal funds may be used solely for experimentation with surplus embryos.”
Yes, they do. The guidelines forbid reproductive cloning but permit the cloning of embryos for research. And the research can go beyond “surplus embryos.”
It is more than a little disturbing that an editorial as ignorant as this one could appear in the Pope’s newspaper. At the very moment orthodox Catholics in America are reeling from Notre Dame’s honoring of Obama, they wake up to find this editorial softpedaling his record. Et tu, L’Osservatore Romano?

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