Jakubczyk on Common Sense

Applying faith and reason to ideas, issues and events in today's world

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John J. Jakubczyk has been active in the Pro-Life Movement since 1975.  He served as President of Arizona Right to Life, Arizona's largest, oldest and strongest pro-life organization.  He was on the board of AzRTL for many years and now acts as the Arizona delegate to the National Right to Life Committee.  As the founder and president of Southwest Life & Law Center, he continues to use his legal skills to assist in advising, counseling and defending women, children, pro-life activists, organizations, as well as victims of abortion. A national speaker, motivator and adviser since the 1980s, he is very familiar with the history of the movement at the national level.   A founder and past president of Ville de Marie Academy, he served as a trustee for 15 years.  He has been an attorney in private practice for 35 years, is active in his church, married, the father of 11 children, and a proud grandfather.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

William F. Buckley, Jr. - May He Rest in Peace

(1925 – 2008)

With the passing of a cultural icon such as William F. Buckley, Jr., there will be the appropriate tributes and acknowledgment of his contribution, not just to the American political scene, but also to the American culture at large. But it is especially appropriate to address is very strong pro-life stand, not just because he was a practicing Catholic (as we see many Catholics in politics today who publicly dissent from the Church’s teaching on the subject), but because he addressed the issue as a universal moral concern for human rights. As he wrote almost four years ago to the day on February 25, 2004 in National Review Online in his criticism of John Kerry’s position on abortion,

“It is true that the Catholic Church as an institution is the most visible opponent of routinized abortion. But its opposition to the practice is not based on Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. It is based on the proposition that human beings are human beings even if they have not yet been born. Those who are helpless are, it is all but universally held in America, to be protected. The one-day-old child is protected with the full force of the law. The proposition that he is without rights when he is minus one day old is nothing more than a social convention conflating various concerns. One is for the mental health of the mother, one for the perceived satisfaction of the mother, another for the national birthrate, and still another for the unspoken hope that we'll have fewer black and Hispanic births.” (emphasis added)

Buckley was staunchly pro-life and castigated against the politicians and judges who believed that they could deny the right to life to the unborn. His brother can for the U.S. Senate and introduced the Buckley Human Life Amendment. He encouraged people to make a difference, but asked that they do so with logic and common sense.

I had the distinct pleasure of meeting WFB when I was a college student at the University of San Diego in 1974. As a part of the Speakers Bureau, we had arranged for a debate that was held in the Camino Hall theatre between Buckley and the major of San Francisco, Joseph Alioto. Needless to say, Mr. Buckley embarrassed the major and entertained the packed house of college students. He was witty and at the same time could use words to slice and dice and opponent. It was not my first meeting of an important political figure, but having watched him on his show Firing Line, I must recall be very impressed over all with his normalcy.

As I was learning how to discuss the issues of abortion, I remember his approach was always to address the reason of the argument and to avoid the emotional rants that often inflict themselves in a debate. I would use for example the notion that there really was not a debate about the humanity of the child because the science had conclusively proved the point. The only thing up for debate was whether one should be able to kill innocent children because they lived in the womb and had not been born. This approach did not sit well with my law professors or fellow law students who did not share my enthusiasm for using science to prove my point. But WFB gave young pro-life lawyers bent on making a difference encouragement by his columns and his life. For that I am appreciative. I also think that his interviews with Malcolm Muggeridge provided us with a salient example of defending Christianity and specifically Catholicism during a time (and it has not ceased) when the Church and her defenders were under attack. For a young man discerning that which was true and not in a college and later legal environment, such conversations were very helpful.

So it is that every life can add to the betterment of the world and her people. We need only realize the gifts which God has given us and then decide to share them with those around us.