The natural gifts we have of “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” come from God. These natural rights have been defended and nurtured by freedom loving people who have gone before us. We must do the same for our children. We need to help them understand the difference between wrongful discrimination which attacks “certain unalienable rights” like life, and justified discrimination, for example, not everyone is able to win the gold medal because we are not equal in every way. Females and males are equal in dignity, but different and complimentary. Our country has been established on natural law principles embodied in the Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal; that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable rights; that among these are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness.” Now, not everyone can become a doctor just because they want to be “happy”. Thus, organizations and sometimes the government need to justly discriminate against those who are unable or unwilling to study sufficiently to be a doctor. Unjust discrimination is not letting an able and educated person become a doctor because of their race or creed. “Life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” is God’s order. Without our government and “We the people” protecting the first gift of “life”, the other gifts of “liberty” (especially religious liberty that points to God’s gift of life) and the “the pursuit of happiness” (which is based on knowing the truth of reality), are weakened. Yet, some want to destroy God’s gift of human “life” and weaken God’s sacred order of how life is received, by the union of a man and woman. These confused people defend the false right to abortion and the false right to homosexual marriage. We need to pray for them and respectfully help them to see the error of their thinking. These errors are moving us away from God’s design of a truly human society ordered to God’s glory. Clearly abortion is unjust discrimination because it does not protect unborn babies. Defending children, who have a right to a mom and a dad, by not permitting same sex couples to adopt children is just discrimination. Why? Because marriage is naturally ordered to the gift of children who have a God-given right to a mother and a father.
This is part and parcel of the “Laws of Nature and Nature’s God” which is found in the first paragraph of the Declaration of Independence. God’s natural law precedes religion, and supports the supernatural law of God’s grace in the sacraments. God’s saving grace builds on nature; thus, it is essential to trust God’s natural law. The way we can help protect “life, liberty and the pursuit of happiness” is to live a life of true reasoning and deepening conversion. We thus follow Jesus Christ more closely within his Catholic Church and pray for true reasoning and deeper conversion, even to the point of making sacrifices to win over errant people to God and his natural order. Happy 4th of July to all patriots on pilgrimage to the Father’s Heavenly Home. Peace, Fr. McCabe