I cling to my Catholic faith with a dogged perseverance that, frankly, I'm beginning to question. Do I remain Catholic because it's easier than the alternative? Because I'm just apathetic enough that permanently abandoning the religion seems too much work? I'd like to think not.
Catholics know what's at stake, and they're making up their own minds despite the influence the bishops claim, or the relative importance the hierarchy's influence and divisive campaigns garner in the media.
The bishops may reject the choices made by voters and their elected representatives and lament that Catholics use birth control and form families in violation of their commands, but this does not mean their religious freedoms are being violated.
If Timothy Dolan is to be believed, he's ready to sacrifice the poor -- many of whom are elderly, juvenile, disabled and infirm -- in Christ's name, for the greater good of wining the war against contraception.
The bishops would of course never tell their parishioners to vote Republican, but they left little to the imagination. Priests would preach at mass about the necessity of voting only
for pro-life candidates.
If the Bishops insist there's no firewall great enough to protect them from our contraceptive activities, then they also must admit there's no firewall great enough to protect us from their religious activities.