The topic was to be "immigration," and that was right up the Cardinal's alley.
In this corner, onelacatholic, the Cardinal gets a middling grade. That is because he said some good things but he also presented some strange notions about economics and our USA.
First off, the Cardinal called our government a democracy, when in reality our Founding Fathers fought, bled and died for, and set up, not a democracy but a republic.
Second, Cardinal Mahony claimed our Nation was built on "humanitarian principles...fairness, opportunity, and compassion." Sorry, but the correct answer is the Declaration's God-given rights to "Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness." Fairness, opportunity and compassion might be some results of our founding principles, but they are not the principles themselves.
Third, His Eminence stressed the contributions that illegal aliens make to the U.S. economy but downplayed the taxpayer-funded, mega-costly benefits they take from our welfare, education, medical and insurance systems. Now, ole Q here is not necessarily begrudging anyone anything, just pointing out that the Cardinal pretty much gave only one side of the equation.
Fourth, the Cardinal did not point out that the Popes have said both that nations have a right and duty to guard their borders and that immigrants must obey host nations' laws.
Fifth, Cardinal Mahony did not place any limits at all on how many millions of illegals the USA must absorb and on how many billions in hard-earned dollars U.S. taxpayers must fork over to support them. Apparently he believes we must let in, and pay for, all of humanity.
Sixth, the Cardinal treated illegals as if they all work, when in fact many do not.
Now, His Eminence did make some good points. He marshalled Old and New Testament verses and general Catholic principles about treatment of aliens. He noted inconsistencies in our laws. The great Catholic law professor emeritus Charles Rice made some similar points about just treatment of immigrants in a recent article in The Wanderer.
But overall, the Cardinal's remarks were uneven. Mainly, he spoke of justice for illegals but not of justice for U.S. wage-earners and taxpaying families, many of whom are just getting by and who are seeing their wages and purchasing power drop and even seeing their jobs disappear.
Our Catholic hierarchy should seek justice and fairness for Catholic taxpayers, and all taxpayers, especially in the sense of not treating them as mere sources of billions of tax dollars, as sheep to be sheared until kingdom come.