Much is made of the apparent fading influence of religion in the public square. I think I’ve read about it on dotCommonweal, RNS, and maybe one or two conservative sites. I think one reason a lot of religious conservatives might consider involves overkill. Like the way I think stem cells passed in Missouri two mid-term elections ago.
Given that it’s unlikely the issue treaded water, I’m inclined to think repeated presentations at liturgy may well have been harmful to the cause. Ultimately, it reveals a lack of trust. No trust in the formative power of liturgy over didactics. No trust in the Catholic voters to make an informed choice. No trust in the notion of doing less so God can do more.
I could be wrong about my sense of my parish, and what diocesan people were asking us to do back in 2006. Petitions, videos, bulletin pieces on top of a media blitz elsewhere. Maybe support for so-called gay marriage is swelling not because people like SSA people any more than they did a few years ago. (But they might.) Maybe they just dislike religious conservatives a whole lot more. And politicians. And PACs. And maybe people who aren’t going to be forced into marrying someone of their own sex, or people who don’t even have sex, and they wonder why we can’t deal with important issues that affect everybody, like war, the economy, and the 1%.
Sometimes, we have to face up to the reality that we can be our own worst enemies. When a virtue (like prudence) gets trumped by truth. Or not even the truth–only our own loud-mouthed version of it.