Newspaper Archive of
Arkansas Catholic
Little Rock, Arkansas
July 29, 1990     Arkansas Catholic
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July 29, 1990

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A woman active in a pro-life group recently called to complain that her group had invited "the press" to a luncheon announcing that the group was changing its offices. Apparently, nobody showed up. (I could not recall receiving an invitation.) "You know, Deb," she said in a just- between-us-Catholics tone of voice, "when you say you're pro-life, a lot of doors get slammed in your face." Whoa, I said. Back up. I've often said I'm pro-life in general and anti-abor- tion in particular, and I've never had a "door slammed" in my face by the press or anyone else. I saw a missing of the mark. Did she know that "luncheons" are the bane of a reporter's existence? No, she said, she didn't know that. Had her group checked before planning? No. Reporters work on deadlines. Lunch- eons are time consuming. Also, they imply an attempt to buy a reporter's sympathy along with the food. Reporters don't want lunch. They want information. Oh, she said. But her story - chang- ing offices - was b/g news. Not wanting to step on her already bruised toes, I assured her that unless it's in the White House, changing your office isn't big news. %Vell, we thought it was," she said. Because of that, she had assumed the press was slamming doors in her face because she is pro-life. This kind of thinking isn't helping our anti-abortion efforts within the general pro-life movement (which also includes concerns for people who lose their lives to terrorists, dictators and lethal injections, to name a few). Regardless of the current round of press bashing, some of which is de- served, those of us who are anti-abor- tion/pro-life activists would do well to look at our own shortcomings before we blame others for our mistakes. DKH ARKANSAS CATHOLIC is pubished 48 times a year, for $12 per ye~. by the C~holic Dioce~ ot Little Ro~ Arkansas hollc, Inc., 2500 N. Tybr St., Lkllo Rock, AR 72207 (501) 684-0340 [FAX (501) 664-9075]. PUBLISHER: I~st Rev. Amlrew J. McDomid, Bishop I~HAGIIka EDITOR: Rev. Albert& SchnekSw EDITOR : ~ Ai)~:RTItIING I II.I~KETING DIRECTOR : Ran IL Hall PROIIaICTION MAHAGER: Rev. Jim Schrttz CIRCULATION MANAGER : Agnee Knittig Third class postage paid at Little Rock, AR. POSTMASTER : Send change ~ address to: ARIOI~NSAS CATHOUC, PO BOX 7417. LITTLE ROCK, AR 72217. Busi- hours ate 8:30 to 4, Monday - Friday. Closed on weekends, Holy Days, and NalionaJ Holiday1. Offices are locked in Morris Han, St. John's Cenler, 2500 N. Tyler, L~|e Rock, AR, 72207. III IIIII mnm IIII llml IIIII ~II mm= I~I III ~ IIIII Ill To subscribe, send coupon wlth z I check for $12 to the above address. I ! I I Name ., I I | Address ! PAGE Z ARKANSAS CATHOLIC JULY 29, ti A recently got a call from one of our son's high school classmates. It was time to plan the ten-year reunion and he needed Tim's address. I said I'd have to go to the phone in my office (where the address book was). He inquired if Tim had moved recently. "Yeah, sort of," I mumbled. (About two years ago.) I have committed to memory his phone numbers at home and work, even his beeper number complete with area code, but not his address, because I don't write to him. We call, we fax. The same holds true with our two daughters. Think about it: if one of your good friends moves away, aren't you more likely to know his or her phone number than address? We're be- coming a society of callers and faxers - but wait - it's not that simplel On many an occasion, when I have family news to impart, I end up talking to three answer- ing machines. Okay, I have an answering machine, too, but all three of the kids had theirs frrst. It was sort of a defensive move. Sometimes I find a message on my answering machine from a computer: "Ms. Waters, have you received the information I could only conclude that my machine and the com- puter were developing a rl]BWlj:'@rlH Mary Waters lence. My machine normally allows about three minutes for each message, often leaving the more verbal caller in mid-delivery, but one day I found a five minute mes- sage from a com- puter. I could only conclude that my machine and the computer were de- veloping a mean- ingful relationship. Some folks, the ones who don't have answering machines, I suspect, are re- luctant to talk to my machine. They listen to the message, then spend 10 to 15 sec- onds dealing with their ambivalence before hanging up; enough to cause my answering machine to blink its little light. I prefer the confa'med answering machine haters who hang up when they hear the telltale click which preceeds the first word of my mes- sage. At least they don't make the little light sages, thereby disproving the theory the big kick for bearers of obscene ~ sages is hearing the recipient's reacti0~ No one likes to reach out and to~ someone only to be put on hold. Wh~tI particularly offensive is to be in mid-cO versation with someone who has "call ing," and hear the dreaded sound d signals another call. It is especially it# esting to me that even those who have little device, which has replaced the 4 as a modern day instrument of tort~ profess hatred for it. I have even kn~ some who have it to deny that they .dt especially if they are in a discussion dl] folks who are not likely to be calling the I am proud to say that I will never own scumbag contraption, even if all three the kids acquire it. I see a real opportunity here for s01 enterprising consultant. Training couldt provided on: * How to keep your dignity intact talking to an answering machine. * How to interpret answering maclai~ messages. * lO0 practical things to do while "~ hold." * 50 tasteful put-downs for people W put you on hold for more than s seconds to take call waiting. What the he let's make that 50 not-so-tasteful put-d0 meaningf_ ul relationship. we sent on Memorial Gardens Haven of Rest? At the beep, please reply 'yes' or 'no'." A beep, followed by silence. "Thank you, Ms. Waters, I will now ask you to answer several more questions." Each question followed by a beep, followed by more si- Dolores Curran blink, for anyone who HAS call waiting. Then there are the pranksters; to myRalph Waldo Emerson will most lil~ request to "Please leave your number," one be right: the end of the world will be friend left her social security number. I as- we will all die of civilization, leaving 01 sumed she was calling from out of town, answering machines, computers and but I discovered the number was one digit toys to have their way with one anottg short when I attempted to dial. I've also (Mar) Waters is a public relations co~ found some pretty weird, even obscene, mes- ant who h'ves in Link Rock.) ___..~ Legally killing an already- only, but mu? also apply to their, l stituents, i.e. If I believe it's wrongl born person should incite us me, then I also believe it's wrong'~ with the same fervor as r ast November, a Catholic named Lucy Killea ran for the state senate in San Diego. A Democrat in a strong Republi- ;: can district, she had little chance of winning until Bishop Leo T. Maher an- nounced that he was excommuni- cating her be- cause she was publicly pro- choice on abortion. The bishop's action backfired and, according to political analysts, Killea won an election she had little hope of winning, Much has been written on the case and I don't plan to add to the political rhetoric. Nor am I writing about abortion here. For the record, as I've stated many times in prink I op- pose abortion. I am writing about capital punish- ment. Last fall, the American bishops announced that a Catholic cannot run on a pro-choice ticket at the risk of ex- communication. They stated that there can be no contradiction between per- sonal and public stands on abortion. legally killing an unborn. What it comes down to, they said, is you." But they said nothing in the co0i of that statement about the sancti~ life at the other end. If a Ca~c that if one believes in the sanctity of life, it cannot be applied to themselves candidate supports capital punishr will she or he be ex-communicated arm ~ s~a~s See "Outran," next