By Henry B.
In this day and age, the term Theocracy is a grossly misused word. Before we delve into the pro's and con's of Theocracy, let's actually define it. Theocracy: A form of government in which a God or a deity is recognized as the supreme civil ruler, the God's or Deity's laws being interpreted by the ecclesiastical authorities. (Definition taken from Dictionary.com)
Now, there are two ways we can take the first part of this definition. The first way is we can recognize that all authority is ultimately derived from God. The second way is that God has commandments for every aspect of our life, down to taxes and roads.
Now the first is clearly correct from a Catholic point of view. All civil authority does depend on God for it's existence (John 19:11), and while that authority can often be abused, it does still stem from God. However, as Catholics we must reject the second view as thoroughly as we embrace the first. As Paragraph 62 of the Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Catholic Church reads:
"The Church does not assume responsibility for every aspect of life in society, but speaks with the competence that is hers, which is that of proclaiming Christ the Redeemer: “Christ did not bequeath to the Church a mission in the political, economic or social order; the purpose he assigned to her was a religious one. But this religious mission can be the source of commitment, direction and vigour to establish and consolidate the community of men according to the law of God”. This means that the Church does not intervene in technical questions with her social doctrine, nor does she propose or establish systems or models of social organization. This is not part of the mission entrusted to her by Christ. The Church's competence comes from the Gospel: from the message that sets man free, the message proclaimed and borne witness to by the Son of God made man." (Emphasis added)
For the first part of the definition, our way as Catholics is clear. We must recognize the divine origins of Government, without giving to government that infallibility which is God's and Peter's alone. We must also, as Catholics, find a balance between assuring the Government fosters natural law and the common good, and between telling the Government the most efficient means of doing this.
We now move to the second of the definition, on the laws being interpreted by ecclesiastical authorities. This, to me, is the most essential aspect of a theocracy, and it is one which we must reject. The role of Government and the role of the Church overlap in many places, but are, nonetheless, quite distinct. To my mind, to have members of the Clergy as officials in the government will utterly corrupt the clergy while only beginning to drain the corruption within the Government. This fear of mine is hardly a hypothetical, when names like Richelieu, Talleyrand, Cesare Borgia, and Alexander VI come to mind. The fact of the matter is, we need priests who are humble and charitable, good shepherds willing to lay down their lives for their sheep. If you seek such men among politicians, you will have quite a hard search ahead of you.
By Henry B.
Over at the Matt Walsh blog, Mr. Walsh has an excellent piece on why a business should be allowed to do business with whomever they please. He largely approaches the issue from the perspective of Political philosophy, explaining why freedom entails a freedom of association. I don't think, however, he quite gets into the nuts and bolts of how discrimination works, so I'll give you a quick overview of it.
When a business owner chooses, for example, not to sell to blacks, what happens? Well, the storekeeper and the black man were going to make an exchange beneficial to them both, and solely because of skin color the owner chose not to. So now the business has foregone an opportunity for profit. This policy of segregation adds up over time. If two businesses are fiercely competing, then the willingness to sell to blacks is going to prove an enormous advantage. Over time, those businesses which engage in segregation will simply be weeded out by the market.
Precisely the same thing occurs with employment. If an employer hires a less qualified white, or pays a higher wage to one, then they will have a constant drag on their assets, and if they do not change, they will die.
The same thing applies in almost every walk of life. If sports managers refuse to play blacks, then talented blacks will go to other teams. If voters refuse to vote for qualified black candidates, then they will be punished by having a a less qualified person rule them. In very few fields will discrimination not be punished quite harshly by a free market.
In essence, the free market takes discrimination and puts a price tag few are willing to pay on it. Greed beats racism in the long run.
Since this is the case, why should we give the government the dangerous precedent of interfering in such an explicit way? Almost every ideology has been persecuted at some point in time, and almost every occasion was by the government. Everyone has cause to fear them. Why, then, should we give them such power when it is clearly unnecessary?
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