FRONT ROYAL, Virginia, July 11, 2011 ( – When it comes to “personally pro-life” politicians who support pro-abortion legislation, the Vatican’s prefect emeritus of the Congregation of Divine Worship and the Discipline of the Sacraments minces no words.


“Some … say, I am personally not in favor of abortion, but I will not impose my views on others,” said Cardinal Francis Arinze. “It is like saying, I am personally not in favor of killing you. … But since some people want to shoot all of you in the Senate and the House of Representatives, I won’t impose my views on them, it is pro-choice!

“You are not serious! This is Divine law, it’s not a tennis club regulation.”

Arinze delivered the comments Saturday during a talk at a conference entitled “Dignitatis Humanae: Catholic Teaching on Bioethics” hosted by Christendom College in Virginia.

The Cardinal, an Igbo Nigerian by birth who was a personal advisor to Pope John Paul II, also offered some food for thought to pro-abortion population control enthusiasts.

“Some people say, ‘Ah, you see the population of the world is too much, so abortion is a means of birth control.’ Why don’t you allow yourself to be shot and reduce the population of the world?” he asked.

He indicated that blaming a supposed food shortage for world hunger, rather than political conditions, is misguided. “Modern science has the means to cultivate even the Sahara desert, if that is the political wind,” he said.

Arinze focused much of his talk on the importance of the story of creation in upholding human dignity and good stewardship of the earth: “The meaning of human activity in the world is linked to the discovery and respect of the laws of nature that God has inscribed in the created universe, so that men and women may live in it and care for it according to God’s will.”

Similarly, unless man is recognized as fitted into nature as its summit, he said, a host of evils are sure to follow as the meaning of human life – and the meaning of taking it – is forgotten.

“Is it not highly illogical for some people to talk of some whales, and the chimpanzees, and trees as ‘endangered species’ which must be preserved – and if you torture a dog in some countries you will be brought to court for your cruelty to animals – while the killing of unborn babies is labeled ‘pro-choice’ instead of what it is: murder?” asked the Cardinal. “Call a spade a spade.”

While ignoring the law of creation may appear to give us freedom, he said, the reverse is actually true.

“Sinners are prisoners. They are prisoners of their undomesticated instincts and their uncontrolled desires,” said Arinze.