Exploring Human Potential

“This Is No Ordinary Time”, says Jesuit Magazine “America.”

Posted on | November 6, 2020 | 2 Comments

Mike Magee

“In ordinary times, the debate about presidential candidates can be a healthy and spirited exchange about how Catholics should approach their civic duties. But this is no ordinary time.” America

The Jesuit magazine, America, on September 20, 2020, broke its historic neutral tradition and supported Joe Biden for the Presidency. Their rationale was as much pro-America as pro-Catholic.

By this evening, all major networks will acknowledge, and most Americans will accept that President Donald Trump has lost his bid for a second term as President of the United States. This is the right decision for America, and more specifically for American Catholics.

In explaining their action, here (in part) is what the editors of America had to say:

“For our forebears, the U.S. Constitution was a vital bulwark against the kinds of political and economic oppression that prompted millions of them to flee their homelands. The liberty and protection that the Constitution guarantees are still a primary motivation for the majority of the nation’s immigrants…

“The Constitution itself is inspired by a theological worldview. Our founders believed that they were creating a form of government for a fallen world. Their true genius lay in how they accounted for the human predilection toward sin and division by creating a strict separation of powers that, paradoxically, would serve to unify the country and guard it against would-be tyrants and demagogues…

“In time, a system of extra-legal conventions took hold to further the founders’ vision, including respect for the rule of law, a vibrant, free press and civilian control of the military. Yet as important as those safeguards were and remain, the constitutional order is ultimately dependent on the character and judgment of our elected officials…

“The administration of Donald J. Trump has undermined the constitutional order to a degree unprecedented in modern American history, which prompts the editors of this review to register this unprecedented warning. The principal concern here is not with Mr. Trump’s positions on various public policies, some of which are right and some of which are wrong, but with the president’s disregard for the system of laws and customs that establish the necessary conditions for debate, decision-making and public accountability in this republic…

“Mr. Trump has subverted the rule of law …This pattern of presidential behavior is unique in American history.

“….In the election of 2020, however, Catholics face the unfortunate reality that the ostensibly pro-life presidential candidate also represents a proven threat to the constitutional order. That threat is real. As President Gerald R. Ford said upon assuming office during a moment of constitutional peril, ‘Our great republic is a government of laws and not of men.’ That means that the rule of law, the work of a vital free press, constitutional use of the military and a basic, operative respect for the separation of powers are not optional. For without those safeguards, this country will devolve into prolonged factional conflict—the outcome our founders feared most—which would mark the beginning of the end of a republican form of government.”

By tomorrow, our incoming President and Vice-President and their team will begin the hard work of preparing to address two confounding disasters – one health, the other economic. The challenges are monumental, but manageable. In addition to these, we must repair the damage to our government, rebuild trust, and rediscover our finer selves. “Liberty and protection that the Constitution guarantees are still a primary motivation“, says America Magazine. No truer words were ever spoken.


2 Responses to ““This Is No Ordinary Time”, says Jesuit Magazine “America.””

  1. Lawrence Williams
    November 9th, 2020 @ 4:30 am

    The editors of America magazine are correct. They accurately outline the vital elements of the structure and soul of our nation. These have guided us for more than 200 years and enabled us to survive many serious existential challenges. But there is a stark difference today. A significant portion of the American population continue to support the lawless, demonic activities of the Trump administration because they just DON’T CARE about the things the rest of us call basic human decency, obeying the law, and serving the needs of our citizens, especially the most vulnerable, children, the poor and the elderly. Without a rebirth of these concerns in the hearts of the Trump cult, including the Republican politicians who have served as silent enablers, it may not be possible to bring the nation back together.

  2. Mike Magee
    November 9th, 2020 @ 8:53 am

    Thanks, Larry. I’ve always said that the two key issues that determine a future course are the challenges in the environment and the quality of the leader in charge. Of the two, who’s leading is more important. A positive leader like Biden (who chooses vision over fear as his major tool) serves both as a role model and a shaper of environmental conditions. If I am right,many who supported the Republican side will revert to rational behavior. But, we shall see. Best, Mike

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