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We should support U.S. troops serving in Iraq Print
Letters to the editor
Thursday, Feb. 05, 2009 -- 1:00 AM

To the editor:

Fr. Jim Murphy’s letter to the editor in the December 25, 2008, issue of the Catholic Herald, advocating that Catholics reject support and participation in the U.S. military, is a blow to all Catholics that have family serving our country.

I was disappointed that the Catholic Herald would print his letter and was saddened to see only positive letters in response to it. Even though Father Murphy makes some salient points regarding Catholic teaching, it is a stretch to say that conscientious Catholics wishing to serve their country should avoid the military due to the way it is being led.

I ask that Father Murphy and those that agree with him consider a few things. Wouldn’t you rather see good men and women join our armed forces to increase its moral fiber rather than abandon our military to those who do not share Catholic beliefs? If any participation or support of the U.S. military encourages evil that arises from it, shouldn’t anyone who works in the University of Wisconsin system or supports any aspect of its operations (including athletics) walk away due to the UW’s support of evil, via late term abortions and controversial research on embryos? A “logical” person might argue that we need good people working in the UW system to affect change. Others may say that support of the UW athletic program is no big deal for conscientious Catholics (even if it indirectly helps fund other evil aspects of UW operations).

It may currently be fashionable to cast aspersions on our military, but I refuse to drop my support of my wife’s nephew in Iraq and those standing at his side today. He and his fellow soldiers will continue to have my support, prayers, and thanks for all the sacrifices they make to protect our country, regardless of how well our nation’s leaders choose to use their service.

However, I will reconsider any support of the UW system and discourage people of good conscience to work in such an environment where they formally train their “soldiers” to crush the skulls of innocents in the womb. (Father Murphy, where in military training do we have classes that teach how to kill the unarmed and innocent?)

Over the years, innumerable families have sent their sons and daughters into the U.S. military as typical boys and girls that through the grace of God came home safe as good men and women willing to take responsibility for their lives. Sadly it is rare that we as a country send our children to college to have them return home with a greater sense of honor and duty.

God bless our soldiers. May your service honor God and the United States of America.

Using Father Murphy’s logic I will repeat his final sentence but offer a few minor revisions in italics. “Catholics could have a major impact on morality in Wisconsin if they rejected support and participation in the University of Wisconsin at this time.”

Bryce Bellinder, Prairie du Sac