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Independent voices from the The Washington Times Communities
Topic - Jon O'Brien
Americans — Catholics and non-Catholic — expressed surprise and mostly satisfaction as the news broke that Argentine Cardinal Jorge Mario Bergoglio had been selected the next pope of the global church, the first pontiff from the New World.
Marking the 40th anniversary this week of the Roe v. Wade Supreme Court ruling, The Washington Times asked leading advocates on both sides of the issue to discuss the ruling, the present state of the abortion debate and where American attitudes on abortion are heading in the coming years.
The nation's largest organization of women's health professionals said Tuesday that it now supports allowing over-the-counter sales of all oral contraceptives.
When President Obama was elected in 2008 with a 100 percent approval rating from NARAL Pro-Choice America, he brought in supercharged hopes that he would make historic advances for abortion rights — especially with support from a Democrat-led Congress.
Some pro-abortion advocates seem positively outraged that Catholic colleges would defend their constitutional liberty to teach and uphold Catholic values. In that, they reveal that God, reason and the rule of law are of little importance to their narrow agenda.
Alarmed by what they see as deeper government intrusion into issues such as reproductive health care and gay marriage, the nation's Catholic bishops have created a committee to identify and resist threats to religious freedom.
"We hope he takes steps to ensure that his more open view of how the church should deal with people trickles down to his brother bishops around the world," and also at the United Nations, where "the Vatican continues to take extreme positions against contraception, abortion and sexual and reproductive rights," Mr. O'Brien said.
Jon O'Brien, president of Catholics for Choice, said Francis' words "resonate with so many Catholics because it reflects our personal experiences — Catholics are gay and lesbian; Catholics use birth control and Catholics have abortions."