Texas bishop: Abortion shouldn’t be the only issue that matters to Catholic voters

Election

(Courtesy of Catholic Diocese of El Paso)

EL PASO, Texas (KXAN) — An El Paso bishop has a message for Catholic voters ahead of the 2020 Presidential Election: voters can’t let opposition to abortion allow them to “turn a blind eye” to other issues.

Bishop Mark Seitz says that over time, many Catholics have allowed anti-abortion stances to harm the credibility of their faith. He writes in a piece in The Jesuit Review:

“For far too long, in pursuit of “single-issue” strategies to end abortion, many Christians have scandalously turned a blind eye to real breakdowns in solidarity and dehumanizing policies, including crackdowns on worker rights and voting rights, the slashing of social support for the poor and sick, racism and the exploitation of immigrants and the environment.”

Bishop Mark Seitz

Ahead of the Election, Seitz warns that Catholic opposition to the Democratic Party’s abortion rights support has also allowed many to be complicit in policies of political and religious leaders on the right.

The Bishop praises Pres. Donald Trump for his stances on abortion, but quickly underlines that Trump has “tainted the pro-life cause” by creating a cult of wealth, greed and celebrity.”

Seitz writes:

“He [Trump] has undermined the foundational importance of religious liberty with actions like travel bans targeting Muslims… destructive politics of fear and xenophobia, his administration has encouraged the worst expressions of nativism.”

While Seitz writes that he doesn’t agree with the Biden-Harris stance on abortion, including the Hyde Amendment, he says he’s “encouraged” by the Biden campaign’s promises to address climate change, create paths to citizenship for the undocumented and never allowing separation of families at the border.

Seitz explains that opposing abortion must also extend to opposing mistreatment of all people.

“We must sincerely weigh all of the complex issues facing our nation and prayerfully reflect on the sacredness and equal dignity of all human life as well our duty to steward God’s creation.”

“Our concern and advocacy for life must embrace all of the marginalized and excluded, or it will ring hollow,” writes Seitz.

He concludes by saying, “Let us express this solidarity and our commitment to a more just world with our vote this November.”

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