richardwood is an author at Religion News Service.
Catholic Voters and the Papal Visit
The current New York Times series on Pope Benedict XVI provides excellent insight into the dynamics behind the pope’s visit. The April 13 article portrays the complexity of this Pope’s views on social issues; today’s article (April 14) considers the struggles of lay Catholics as their parishes face closures. But for those interested in religion […]
The Obama Charisma
Two new items give fascinating insight into the depth of support that Barack Obama inspires. Robert Bellah in Commonweal writes of the way Obama has reignited “the theological virtue of hope” in America’s possibilities. Frank Rich in the New York Times offers a more secular rendering of how Obama’s authentic patriotism drives his popularity. Far […]
Catholic Sound and Furor
An important exchange about Catholic engagement in public life occurred this week in the pages of the Washington Post. On Sunday, Joe Feuerherd reacted to the U.S. Catholic bishops’ recent statement on citizen’s civic responsibility, a related webpage, and recent statements by some individual bishops. He suggested that the thrust of those statements meant that […]
Whither the Catholic Swing Vote?
Jim Dwyer in the New York Times last week noted: Catholics, who make up about a quarter of the registered voters in the country, have backed the winner of the national popular vote for at least the last nine presidential elections, going back to 1972….No other large group has switched sides so often, or been […]
Michael Moore’s Moral Prohibition
The day after the Super Bowl, Michael Moore told Larry King that because of his Catholic principles he is “morally prohibited” from voting for Hilary Clinton for president as a result of her “war votes.” The statement raises a host of questions. One can admire Moore’s activism and adherence to principles, but doubt whether this […]