A reader writes with relief and perplexity at Biden
Just looking for some advice, I’m deeply relieved that Trump is gone and I felt grossed out by him almost every day, but I’m in a weird spot because I don’t like Biden Harris either, I’m already grossed out by them 1 day in, most notably surrounding Title 9 executive order around Trans, I have 2 daughters who are athletes and I shouldn’t have to feel like a bigot because they don’t want to play tennis or run against boys, I felt like Biden’s timing on this was all wrong, I feel like the perfect example of someone wanting to give him a chance, and then I get poked in the eye day one,
Am I just politically homeless, maybe that’s ok, there’s thankfully not an election anytime soon,
Sorry to spoil your relief around Trump, which I share
There’s nothing wrong with feeling politically homeless. Here we have no continuing city, but we seek one to come. (Hebrews 13:14).
One of the many silly things said about me by the MAGA cult where accusation is always confession is that I care more about “loyalty to the Democrats” than I do about the Faith. This coming from a theopolitical cultus that elevated devotion to a dimestore antichrist to a litmus test for Catholic faith and routinely excommunicated me from the Church more times than I can count for failure to believe and profess Donald Trump as the Only Begotten President of God.
In fact, I regard political parties as nothing other than tools for implementing Catholic Social Teaching and firmly believe in dropping them the instant their utility is expended. The idea of loyalty to a party is foreign to me. You might as well feel loyal to a wrench when it is time to use a screwdriver. Use what tool you need when you need it and then use another tool when you need that.
So we don’t have to agree with Biden about everything, nor feel loyalty to the Democratic party. He is wrong about some things and right about others. Trump was wrong about virtually everything, as is his evil party of nihilist predators.
That said, Biden is getting an awful lot right so far and the Dems are orders of magnitude closer to pursuit of the common good than the MAGA Freak Show GOP.
With respect to the LGBTQ matter, for many Christians, literally any form of kindness or respect to LGBTQ folk is intensely threatening because many Christians neither believe that the most basic fact about them is their bearing of the Imago Dei, nor that Jesus died and rose for them. For these Christians, (and not a few of them are Catholic) the fundamental and only fact is that they are sinners rejected by God and enemies to be excluded. In short, such Christians begin not with Catholic faith in the Imago Dei, but with the Calvinist notion of total depravity and the conviction that the most fundamental truth about them is sin.
My approach to such things as LGBTQ issues is to start with the fact that LGBTQ folk, like all human beings, are made in the image and likeness of God and to ask, “Does a given policy affirm the basic dignity of human beings or does it constitute an injustice to somebody else?” I’m not super-interested in sports and so such questions as the one you raise have not been uppermost in my mind. I can certainly see the case to be made that this an injustice to women athletes who are not, on average, as physically strong as biological males. I have no idea what the science says about this though, so I’m basically speaking out of ignorance. You may have a real point. I don’t know.
But, on the whole, the affirmation of human dignity seems to me to be a more fundamental good than this particular issue. My hope is that people of goodwill can iron out the bugs with respect to such things as sporting competitions and come to some sort of satisfactory arrangement, perhaps via some system of handicapping if the science shows that there really is an injustice occurring.
Anyway, my basic point is that there is not a reason in the world anybody owes mindless fealty to a political party. At the same time, my main impression is that there is an awful lot to be grateful for in the dawning days of the Biden Administration and it would be churlish and graceless of me not to thank God for it.
Blessings on you and yours as your keep striving to navigate these complex times!