Violence is a real issue, but...
The focus on violence in our community - from road rage, street violence, domestic violence, internet bullying and vilification of groups such as asylum seekers is potentially a helpful one. Or it would be if it actually tackled the substantive issues head on rather than striving above all for political correctness.
- how can one talk about violence in Australia, focusing particularly on the 'powerless, marginalized and excluded' without mentioning the thousands of unborn children murdered through abortion?
- instead of congratulating society for finding alternatives to corporal punishment, perhaps it should be asking whether sparing the rod has actually contributed to the lack of self-discipline that gives rise to violence such as road rage?
- instead of advocating pacificism in all circumstances (as the document seems to, twisting the interpretation of Scripture and highlighting the efforts of pacifists such as Dorothy Day), perhaps it should be pointing to a broader range of possible responses. In particular, it is one thing to forgive one's attackers - but does that really mean murderers shouldn't serve jail time or some other suitable punishment as the discussion of the attack on Irish tourist Georoid Walsh on page two of the document seems to suggest?
- instead of swallowing whole the secularist notion that anything you say that makes me 'feel bad' - even if it is truth - should be avoided as 'verbal aggression' or bullying, we should insist that true peace can only be found through truth.
But it will continue to have a bad name and fail to engender real support and action on the part of believing Catholics until what is put up under its name actually teaches Catholic values, rather than simply appealing to secularist ones.