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Others are willing enough to grant the truth of that, but fault me for not championing their preferred understanding of the historic roots of the present situation. Apparently I’m to be faulted for not lining up with their side (whichever it happens to be) in a long-running quarrel between two opposed groups of Catholic intellectuals arguing very different positions in regard to the American founding.
One group (David Schindler is an exemplary figure) sees something radically at odds with Catholicism in the philosophical-theological premises of the founders who, after all, were men of the Enlightenment with more than a dash of Deism flowing in their veins. An interviewer for a conservative blog expresses this by citing Leo XIII in support of the proposition that the founders’ liberalism is flat-out incompatible with natural law. But others (call them the John Courtney Murray-Michael Novak School) hold that the founders were operating, albeit unknowingly, within a profoundly Catholic tradition. In an oddly equivocal column on my book, George Weigel argues that Catholics should now busy themselves filling in the natural law foundations of the admirable democratic system they built.
No doubt about it, this is an interesting debate, but it’s not one I saw—or see—any particular reason to enter into in American Church. My thesis, as I’ve said, is much simpler: Uncritical Catholic assimilation into American secular culture as it is today is a grave threat to the faith and one we need to address with no further delay. Time enough to argue later about the founders and the American founding.
With some sadness, the organizers of No-Name Anime have decided to make 2013 be our last year. We are grateful for the Santa Clara library's seven years of support. We'd like to thank all our attendees and staff since our founding in 1993. Some of the regular attendees would like to form a new successor club for 2014. They welcome ideas for the name of the new organization and people interested in volunteering to help. Until they have their own online presence, meet them in person at the next NNA meeting or contact NNA and we'll forward your message.