Uncowed Nuns Get on the Bus to Advocate Against GOP Budget
Sisters are doing it for themselves.
The Vatican may be waging a holy war on nuns for caring too much about poor people and not enough about stopping gay marriage and abortion, but one undaunted group of American nuns are fighting back, taking a bus tour around the country to fight back and spotlight the vital programs that are threatened by the GOP's Ryan Plan, which is rife with budget cuts.
Writes the New York Times' Laurie Goodstein,
The bus tour is a response to a blistering critique of American nuns released in April by the Vatican’s doctrinal office, which included the accusation that the nuns are outspoken on issues of social justice, but silent on other issues the church considers crucial: abortion and gay marriage.
The sisters plan to use the tour also to protest cuts in programs for the poor and working families in the federal budget that was passed by the House of Representatives and proposed by Representative Paul D. Ryan, a Wisconsin Republican who cited his Catholic faith to justify the cuts.
Not only that, but the tour is timed to coincide and counter the US Conference of Catholic Cishops, an ultraconservative perennial thorn in feminist sides and a major force in anti-choice legislation.
The dates overlap with the “Fortnight for Freedom,” events announced by Catholic bishops to rally opposition to what they see as the Obama administration’s violations of religious freedom. The bishops object in particular to a mandate in the health care overhaul to require religiously affiliated hospitals and universities to offer their employees coverage for birth control in their insurance plans.And the nuns are also cleverly calling attention to the Bishop's oft-overloooked position on budget cuts: they oppose those, too, and the nuns will publicize the Bishop's letters to that effect.
Well-played, sisters. Well-played.
Here's a video from the AP on the bus tour: