What We Support
By Penny Wiegert, Editor
July 9, 2020
The Observer recently focused some of its news space to the unrest in the U.S. centered on the death of George Floyd, a Black man, at the hands of white police officers. This incident brought the issue of racism to the front of our newspapers, television screens, online news feeds and even our private conversations. 
The purpose of our coverage in the June 26 and July 3 issues was to look at racism from a Catholic perspective. What some of our local priests teach about this, what Black Catholics say about promoting equal justice for Black lives, and how we can reflect on racism within ourselves. These are some of the things our staff sought to address. Some of our readers felt otherwise. So as the editor, I want to clarify just exactly what we do and do not support.
Taking up the subject of racism in the pages of this Catholic newspaper is not an endorsement or support of the violence or looting that surrounded the death of George Floyd. We cannot and do not support violence. If life matters, then there should not be violence against it regardless of color or race. Violence taints the core message of justice for all.
Taking up the subject of racism is also not an endorsement or support of any political party, agenda or movement. Specifically, our coverage does or will not imply support for the Black Lives Matter Global Network, which attaches itself to support of lifestyles contrary to the teachings of the Catholic Church. Catholics can say they believe Black lives matter (lower case) without endorsing an organization that offends the beliefs or teaching of the  Church. As a matter of fact, it would be appropriate if all people treated one another according to what our Catechism of the Catholic Church teaches: “Every human life, from the moment of conception until death, is sacred because the human person has been willed for its own sake in the image and likeness of the living and holy God.” (CCC 2319)
Taking up the subject of racism is also not to imply that this newspaper supports the destruction of property by some protestors who burned businesses in several cities and destroyed a statue of St. Junipero Serra in California. Again, the sins of violence, hatred, and destruction of the rights and property of others does nothing to erase the sin of racism nor does it advance any cause, noble or not.
When you read The Observer Catholic newspaper you are reading a Catholic paper that supports, promotes and seeks to share the teaching, mission and message of the Catholic faith through its news and views. 
Our coverage is never intended to be interpreted otherwise. 
Thank you for your continued readership and your fidelity to the Catholic faith.
— Penny Wiegert, editor
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