Friday, June 17, 2005

Wrapping it Up

It should have become obvious to anyone who drops by regularly that this site ( languishes in a condition fast approaching the moribund. This is due to the fact that I'm tired of the worldly wars, and of contentious Christians (which would include me, wouldn't it?); of the unabated degeneration of our once (at least moderately) Christian society in whose future I see little room for Christianity; of a supposedly Christian president who is himself a slave to the political correctness of our times (look at the borders, look at airport security, affirmative action, women in war); of a country which gives the moral mediocrities we call judges such power as to confer upon others the right to commit murder, such power as to void legislation that would protect, for example, a baby from having its skull crushed by a forceps after all but its head has been delivered from its mother's womb; of a country in which no one goes to jail for this sort of thing; and of a world in which signs of hope for those who follow Him to whom 'all power in heaven and earth' has been given are - I almost used the cliché "few and far between", but in fact I can't remember the last time I saw one - virtually absent from the field of view.

I would like to be wrong, of course. So I come home from the Maryland tournament to see on TV the Pinellas County medical examiner delivering the results of Terri Schiavo's autopsy. And delivering it rather forcefully, I might add, to the degree that, as he bellowed his assurance that Terri had suffered no physical abuse, it seemed he was an advocate for Michael Schiavo. We learned other things as well: that she was working with about half a brain; that she was blind (a possibly recent occurrence, as the girl in those old videos clearly was not); that her heart was as healthy as a horse's; that she could not in all likelihood have been taught to swallow; and that she died not of starvation, but dehydration. (Well, don't you feel all better now that a man of science has drawn yet another distinction without a difference?)

The doctor's manner indicated he thought all this would surprise us, or put our minds at ease, when in fact none of it is either surprising or relevant. There was only one relevant question in the whole affair: was the withholding of a woman's tube-delivered food and water an act of murder? Don't worry; I won't go through it again, but simply offer the reminder that those of us who answered in the affirmative are in the distinct minority, and that the power of life and death remains in the hands of judges, some of whom would, in a sane society, have their offices stripped from them and their carcasses thrown in jail. In a sane society, state legislators - such as those in Florida - who even try to draft legislation relegating an entire class of disabled people to the status of inmates awaiting execution, who would turn the wards of our hospitals and hospices into death rows motivated by mercy and compassion rather than retribution, would themselves suffer some similar ignominy, such as impeachment, if they were not first tarred and feathered and run out of town on a rail. But, most truthfully, in a sane society they could never have been elected.

Eventually I turned off the TV and picked up a magazine which had arrived during my absence (National Review, I think) to find that a bill has passed the U.S. House of Representatives granting approval to the destruction of those 'leftover' in vitro embryos for the purpose of harvesting their stem cells, the same Krauthammer position I had attacked in a recent post. The bill passed because 50 morally deracinated Republicans lent it their support (what a marvelously Big Tent that party is, so tolerant, so inclusive), and they would not have done so did they not sense a good measure of public support. If it passed the House, it will almost certainly pass the Senate. I wonder if there are enough votes to override a presidential veto. I wonder what will happen if a Democrat is elected president.

In that same issue, NR paid a fond and sad farewell to Dennis Miller, the comedian whose CNBC show was cancelled. He was, we are told, "bright, informed, gifted, bold." And courageous, hanging out as he does in Hollywood. They left out "funny." They must have accidentally forgot. I found him especially hysterical when he wasn't supporting gay marriage and abortion rights.

Perhaps all these things are merely excuses masking the overriding feeling that I've pretty much said what I had to say, a feeling that began to take over toward the end of Holy Week 2005. I was done in by the death of a great Pope and the murmur of approval accompanying the worldwide witness to the murder of an innocent woman. Maybe some great fruit will be born of it far down the road, but, in the meantime, I've said what I had to say.

This site is paid up through July 27th or thereabouts, after which time it should disappear from the web. My apologies to Jeff Miller, who worked so hard setting it up. If it means anything, I learned a lot from him, about computer code, for example, but especially about one man's generosity. My apologies also to those who have linked here. I am in the process of transferring the archives to a free site so that any of you interested in doing some re-reading will be able to do so. If you don't want to link to it I won't be offended. Many of your comments have been preserved, a few lodged in the comment boxes, but most simply appended to the post itself. If I do any posting, it will most likely take the form of mediocre poetry, sentimental reminiscence, and possibly even some chapters of that novel I'd hoped to spend the summer revising but haven't been able to get to. I might even try some prayer. Those of you who think me too impious for that endeavor...are probably right. Give me enough time and I'll prove you wrong. There is always the possibility that something will annoy me into a more traditional post, but not much of one. Maybe I'll see you there now and then.


skyprincess said...

You are my favorite Catholic blogger and I'm really sorry to see you go. I hope you will change your mind and at least come back from time to time with some of your one in the Catholic blogosphere writes like you.

In connection with your signoff, I thought of the following:

I think that the Church is the only thing that is going to make the terrible world we are coming to endurable; the only thing that makes the Church endurable is that it is somehow the body of Christ and that on this we are fed. It seems to be a fact that you suffer as much from the Church as for it but if you believe in the divinity of Christ, you have to cherish the world at the same time that you struggle to endure it. -Flannery O'Conner

Okay, guilt trip over :)

William Luse said...

She's probably right; she usually is - a lady of uncommonly good sense, and sense of proportion.

Since I'm your favorite blogger, you may be similarly gifted. Thanks, by the way.

Jason said...

Sorry to see you go.

Kevin Jones said...

Thanks for writing for so long. You'll be missed.

Elena said...

I'm not willing to let you go without some attempt at gentle persuasion to have you stay first!

The thing about St. Blog's is that it is a community in that we look in on each other and care about each other, even though we have never met in person. I remember checking on the Florida bloggers last year when the hurricanes went through. I find myself watching and listening for Bernadette's name on purpose when the LPGA stuff was on t.v. last week - and I don't even like golf!

We cried when Gerard passed on, and celebrate new babies, and pray for prayer requests and ask for prayers. It's just a special part now of the daily routine. And when my aggregator shows a new posting on Apologia, I can't wait to get here and read it!!

Closing your blog isn't like moving out of the neighborhood, it's like moving out, bulldozing the house and not leaving a forwarding address! It just leaves such a gap.

I guess I'm not being as compelling as I would like with reasons why you should keep the blog going, other than selfish ones - like I'd miss you.

Michael Sherman said...

So, you take your ball and go home? You wave the white flag of surrender? That doesn't sound like the Mr. Luse I've been reading for many months.

You are a man who is particulaly gifted to forcefully and eloquently espouse truth. You are light in a dark world and the body of Christ needs all of that it can get.

I certainly understand the need for a season of rest. But, I hope it is temporary. Yours is a special and particular gift. And, frankly it is not yours to do what you want to with it.

OK, the shock is over, so I'll get off my soapbox. Thank you for your insight and intellect. Thank you for your voice and your example.

If this is more than temporary you will be missed.

With love in Christ,

Michael - a Southern Baptist you loves your Catholic sensibilities.

William Luse said...

Nice try, Elena - sweetheart. Your last reason was your best. Bernadette, by the way, was on TV today - featured rookie of the week on the Golf Channel. If you get it, they might replay the tournament tonight. Twas toward the latter half of the broadcast I think.
And I did leave a forwarding address, that site for the archives. So this isn't exactly a demolition job. And there may be one more post. I just got an email from Paul Cella that may obligate me to something.

Michael: I've always known I had some Protestant readers, just never been able to figure out how many. And some are incredibly loyal, which number would include you, and I thank you for it. Having been one myself, I have a soft spot for them, for they have one more step to take on their journey home.

Anonymous said...

We'll miss you -- but I understand how you feel.

Franklin Jennings said...

I never new how much I'd miss you until you disappeared. One of the few professors I respect. Ok, one of two, and I never agree with the other one. The only one I admire.

I hope my email, coming as it did right before your silence, had naught to do with your decision.

Or, conversely, I hope it did!!!

Pray for me, please. I'll return the favor.

William Luse said...

Thanks, Franklin. Sometimes I pray, so I'll keep you in them.

Alicia said...

I am mourning your leaving us. I wish that it weren't so. I am not articulate enough to present you with another reason to stay that the others haven't. I will remind you though of how you kept encouraging Jeff Culbreath to keep blogging on, and I will suggest that you re-read what you said to him - and see if it applies to you.
please remember that you always have an offer of a place to stay or stop by in New England, should you decide to head this way. There is a golf course literally around the corner from my house (Beaver Meadows, Concord NH) and it is open to the public.

William Luse said...

Whatever I said to Culbreath was sincere, but probably self-serving. I wanted him there for my benefit. But he must do what is to his own.

And stop with the "mourning" stuff. I'm not dying or disappearing. Just moving the archives to another place, where the posting will be less frequent and usually of a different nature. And I'll still be visiting you now and then.

Robert said...

William, let me chime in as another non-catholic who has deeply appreciated your blog and articles and will miss it.
Robert - "continuing" Anglican with a catholic and orthodox heart who can't choose between Rome and Constantinople...

William Luse said...

Robert, Christopher of the Ratzinger Fan Club links to this post by a priest who was confronted with precisely that choice. Maybe it will be of some help.

smockmomma said...

well, i think this pretty much sucks.

Jane Wangersky said...

Sorry -- that was me posting as the email with no name. This time I'll preview. Best wishes.

Christopher said...


Your writing is one of the highlights of my blog-reading -- if you feel the need for a respite from (regular) blogging I trust your judgement.

Thanks for making the effort to archive your posts at a free and accessible location -- one of the reasons I've always stuck with blogger myself -- so those who may not be familiar with Apologia can benefit from your writing.

I look forward to your occasional visits. God bless and please, don't be a stranger to "St. Blog's Parish." =)

William Luse said...

Hey Micki, get to the point.

Yes, Jane, I much prefer knowing who you are.

Thanks, Christopher. At least somebody trusts my judgement.

Jim Curley said...

Just wandered over and read this. Your commentary will be missed. God bless you.

Mama T said...

I'm with Micki on this one. Only double.

I'm so sorry about this.

And more than a little mad.

How's that for honesty?

Now I'll hit send before I do the politically correct thing and hit cancel.

Blessings to you, Mr. Luse, and may God hold you in the palm of His hand.

TSO said...

I've always found discouragement to be d*mn discouraging, but for me the most memorable line of Mother Teresa's poem goes:

"What you spend years building,
someone could destroy overnight;

Build anyway."

Full prayer here.

JS Kern said...

I know exactly how you feel. Weary and worn out. So, by all means, rest, recreate...then recover!

You will be missed terribly, so please rant on the free site as often as you can. We, the Good Folks, need your insight and gift of language. If it helps, reread Orwell's "Why I Write".

And, a final "r", rember: AMDG.

William Luse said...

Thanks, J.S. Uhh, what's AMDG?

TSO said...

It stands for "Ad Majorem Dei Gloriam" - All for the Greater Glory of God

Posted by TSO email at July 8, 2005 10:59 AM

Lynn said...

We will miss your articles and comments, and I hope you'll return to blogging. I'm glad I met you.

William Luse said...

I'll be putting things up here now and then, Lynn, so check in. Glad to have met you too.

Lynn said...

I'll do that!