Our social doctrine does not offer instant answers or easy outcomes. It gives us something far more important, far more animating: a way to conduct our public discourse so that a measure of wisdom is achieved through common work toward noble ends.

This goes beyond a call for civility. The problems we are facing are bigger than the tone we take.

Our social doctrine teaches us that democracy requires solidarity, a sense of civic friendship. We see our neighbors as partners in this common enterprise—even when we disagree, especially when we disagree.

That friendship is the foundation for a mature civic patriotism, where we live our freedom for the common good, not just our personal gain.

It is a patriotism grounded in respect for the inherent dignity and inalienable value of every person. We believe every person has a role and a voice in the community of concern and protection. No one is written off.

It’s Wisconsin’s Hyper-hypocrite, House Speaker Paul Ryan, while speaking at the National Catholic Prayer Breakfast this morning. Yeah, that Paul Ryan!

 

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