Yesterday was our first day at the World Meeting of Families here in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. We had a brief trip up on Monday and set up portions of the combined CESJ/CCC/EEI/CAFFAF booth on Monday afternoon. We were pleased to see that we are right next to “Priests for Life,” a group with name recognition that we thought might bring a few people over to where we are to see what “Economic Justice for the Family” might be.
The event is only a short walk from the hotel, right in the middle of the historic district. We’re near the house of Betsy Ross, we passed the grave of Benjamin Franklin, the Federal Reserve, and the U.S. Mint. Oddly, people seem to be in the habit of throwing small change onto Franklin’s grave, possibly in the belief that a penny tossed away is a penny earned. . . .
Although the event is very large, everyone seems cheerful (sometimes determinedly so), and we had more people stopping by and having some conversations than we really anticipated, especially the first day. Most people took a copy of our article from Homiletic and Pastoral Review, “Pope Francis and the Just Third Way.”
We’ve met a number of people who could turn out to be significant, both in what we can do for them, and that they can do for us. Primarily, of course, is to introduce people to the potential of the Just Third Way to get the world out of the hole it’s in, thanks in large measure to the prevalence of Keynesian economics.
First was an old friend from college, Mr. Terry Poplava, who is now Executive Director of Marketing and Sales for Our Sunday Visitor, Inc., in Huntington, Indiana. Our Sunday Visitor has a very nice display, and are doing interviews throughout the event. We traded materials with Terry.
Right after that we briefly met with Father Frank Pavone of Priests for Life. He said he was aware of the Just Third Way as a potential pro-life economic agenda, and wanted to discuss it with us when he gets the chance. As an important speaker at the event, Father Pavone is, as you might expect, very busy.
We then had an extended conversation — possibly an hour and a half or more — with Father Denis Wilde, Associate Director of Priests for Life. Father Wilde is aware of the significance of the notorious Dred Scott decision of 1857, but did not know about the Slaughterhouse Cases of 1873, cited as a precedent in Roe v. Wade a century later — as constitutional scholar William Crosskey noted in his monumental Politics and the Constitution in the History of the United States (1953), the Fourteenth Amendment was adopted in part to overturn Scott v. Sandford, and the Supreme Court used the opinion in the Slaughterhouse Cases to nullify the Fourteenth Amendment . . . giving the Supreme Court the power to reinterpret the entire Constitution by imputing different meanings to the words of the document.
As we noted, a number of people took materials, and we expect even more to do so today.