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Jerry Shenk


Beware of 'False Goods'

by Jerry Shenk
 

In one of his final public appearances before about 50,000 people gathered in St. Peter's Square, Pope Benedict XVI spoke of Christ's temptation in the wilderness, saying, "The tempter is subtle: he does not push us directly toward evil, but to a false good."

That's true of much in modern life. Ideologues misapply inoffensive words to disguise bad conduct or policies in ways which allow them to feel virtuous without acting virtuously and morally superior with no moral foundation.

Some marginalize both conscience and logic by limiting their perceptions of "virtue" to how they think and vote, passing off personal responsibilities to an abstract, faceless, inefficient, uncontrolled, often-corrupt government while demonizing others who don't share their "enlightened" points of view.

Some false-good phraseology is harmlessly laughable: To deflect public disapproval, the administration redefined terror attacks as "man-caused disasters," or acts of "workplace violence," and the "War on Terror" became "overseas contingency operations."

But not all "false goods" are equally silly.

Even though illegal aliens broke American laws to come or stay here, advocates attempt to justify general amnesty by using "false goods" to blur the distinction between "legal" and "illegal."

Senator Harry Reid called illegals "undocumented Americans." The New York Times cites "would-be Americans." Others prefer "undocumented job-seekers."
But, the euphemistic language of abortion contains the worst examples.

Abortion is the willful act of killing a developing child in the womb. That fact cannot be obscured by false "goods" like "privacy," "a mass of cells," "lumps of protoplasm," "terminating pregnancy," "women's health, "reproductive health" or "choice."

Specifically, a "right" to abortion assumes that someone has the right to decide if an innocent other will die.

Merely stating simple facts about abortion and amnesty invites the wrath of those who prefer less scrupulous, false-good descriptions.

Some of the president's supporters have called his critics "racists" simply to shut down legitimate debate and gain political advantage. No "false goods" there. Viciously toxic, even when completely unwarranted, charges of racism allow no defense.

But, many of the same people who maliciously call others racists also favor amnesty for illegal immigrants and abortion "rights," both of which have harmed America's black communities.

48 million (disproportionately black) Americans receive food stamps, and black communities are suffering historic levels of unemployment. More minority citizens will lose jobs if amnesty floods the unskilled labor market. Amnesty would sacrifice the economic interests of legal minority Americans so self-interested politicians can enlarge their voting base.

Since the Roe v. Wade decision, more than fourteen million black babies -- about one-third of America's black population -- have been aborted. Today, blacks number about thirteen percent of the population, but thirty-seven percent of all abortions. There are places in America where the black babies aborted outnumber those born.

If, on no empirical grounds, the president's critics can be called "racists," why, then, based on real evidence, shouldn't the same accusation be leveled, only legitimately, at advocates and defenders of amnesty and abortion?

http://www.ldnews.com/story/opinion/columnists/2016/11/23/beware-false-goods/94342050/


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