Links for 04/21/15

by Michael Sean Winters

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From RNS, a look at how the abortion issue is playing out in the early stages of campaign 2016 - and it ain't pretty - and how the debate could become more consequential.

At the Atlantic, Ross Douthat wonders if Pope Francis will heal the Church or break it. More on this later in the week from me.

Over at Commonweal, Cathy Kaveny looks at the some of the issues raised by RFRA legislation, especially what constitutes a substantial burden on a person's conscience, which relates to our Catholic theological idea of cooperation with evil. This is an important essay that everyone should read. The money quote:

Americans need to acknowledge that many attenuated forms of connection to the wrongful acts of others should not rise to the level of a substantial burden for purposes of RFRA analysis.  

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