Author: Charles Camosy

Questions about Faith and Politics Finally Enter the (Vice) Presidential Race

If you aren’t reading Emma Green’s pieces at The Atlantic, let me recommend that you consider doing so. In today’s article, she covered the religion/politics/morality/abortion angle from the VP-debate last night, and notes (with only thinly-veiled frustration) that these types of questions are important to many voters and therefore: “they should be important to moderators too.” She also noted how revealing such questions almost always are–not least because of their capacity to tap into the deepest part of a candidate. Interestingly, Green noticed that in debate filled with loud and sometimes bullying cross-talk, the one time the two candidates...

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Newly Discovered Importance of “the Gut” Throws Even More Shade on Brain-Reductionist Moral Anthropologies

The position that “you are your brain” was already in serious trouble given what we have learned in the last two decades about consciousness and homeostasis. But each week, it seems, provides even more evidence against brain-reductionist moral anthropologies. And, well, many of us have had a “gut feeling” something like this was true all along [ahem]: My trillions of gut microbes, it seems, are in constant communication with my brain, and there’s mounting evidence that they may affect how I feel — not just physically but emotionally. And that effect may be very powerful indeed, because it turns...

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More Fallout from the Weakness of Theological Bioethics

I’ve written several pieces on the trouble in which theological bioethics finds itself. Its marginalization from mainstream academic, clinical, and public discussions has led to a host of disturbing developments. The most recent example was a consensus statement on conscience in health care signed by many of the leading international voices in bioethics. In a piece I did for Religion News Service, I note that the signatories have lost touch with the kind of critical stance toward the dominant culture necessary to understand why conscientious objection is so important to protect. This critical stance, of course, is precisely what...

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Convention Season Draws Media Attention to Alternative, Young Pro-Life Voices

In an election cycle with no good choices for pro-lifers, it can be tempting to despair. But just below the surface of ratings-driven coverage of the mostly-traditional Democratic and Republican conventions there are many different kinds of movements bubbling up. One such movement might be called “Alt-Life.” Pro-Lifers who don’t allign with the traditional small-government/religious-right coalition formed back in 1979. And media are starting to pay attention. Take a look at this list: NATIONAL CATHOLIC REPORTER: “Millennials Organize to Advance Consistent Life Ethic” LA TIMES: “How the Democratic Platform Betrays Millions of the Party Faithful” ROLL CALL: “Anti-Abortion Democrats Wonder...

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Should a Catholic Hospital be Obliged to do a Tubal Ligation?

No. And I make a brief argument in my piece in the LA Times yesterday in the context of the ACLU suing Mercy Hospital for refusing to do it. Here’s a snippet: Our liberty-centered culture has tried to make space for multiple value systems. Indeed, in his ground-breaking opinion legalizing same-sex marriage in all 50 states, Justice Anthony M. Kennedy began by insisting the Constitution protects the liberty of all persons “to define and express their identity.” This is especially true when it comes to a value-laden and professional practice like healthcare. Alarmingly, this understanding of medicine is coming...

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