Dr. Miguel Faria responds to Mr. N.M. Cullinan's letter in the Macon Telegraph

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Article Type: 
Letter to the Editor
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Saturday, September 5, 2015

On Dismantling Christianity and the musings of Dr. Bill Cummings — False assumptions or deliberate misinterpretations?

When discussing politics and religion, one can expect serious disagreements, especially when they are discussed together and when the writer expresses provocative arguments that go against the grain.[1] Nevertheless, Mr. Neil M. Cullinan’s letter contains so many errors, false assumptions, and deliberate distortions that I feel compelled to correct and clarify several points.[2]Knight Templar

First, let’s clear up some pesky historical facts: All of the Middle East was once Christian, including Constantinople (Istanbul), which was the second capital of Christendom. Compared to the Mohammedan fire and sword conquests of the 7th and 8th centuries, the conquest of the Ottomans of the Byzantine Empire in the 14th and15th centuries, and the decimation of the Hindus by the Moguls in India from the 12th through the 18th centuries, resulting in the deaths of hundreds of millions of people — the Crusades were a walk in the park, and in the end the Mamlukes exterminated the Christians (Crusaders or not) and erased the Latin kingdoms from the earth.[3,4]

Second, it is commendable that Cullinan comes in defense of his friend. But I did not denigrate Dr. Cummings. The attempted denigration of both Father Allan Mc Donald and myself was on the part of Mr. Cullinan himself. What I did was to carry Cummings' arguments to their possible logical conclusions, which have disturbed many readers, but nevertheless stimulated discussion. Cummings himself replied by asking me a question on the matter. Cummings is a great thinker who stimulates discussion even if we disagree. Another false assumption is that referring to Voltaire and positing Cummings’ state of mind constituted “name calling”; if anything, Dr. Cummings probably smiles at the thought. He and I have corresponded. And yes, he comes from a lovely family. It is the issues I was refuting, not his personal life. At over 1,000 words, Cullinan’s column is the diatribe, not mine (projection). Like Father Allan J. McDonald, I’m American Journal of Bioethicsconfused as to whether Cummings is speaking as a member of the Catholic Church to which he frequently refers or not. He would be clearing a lot of misunderstanding by stating whether what he is relating is consistent with Church teachings and whether he remains in the fold.

Third, Mr. Cullinan completely missed the boat on the octogenarian comment. In fact I corresponded with Cummings on this very specific issue, and he laughed, calling the radical bioethicists crackpots! Had Cullinan read properly the three articles on the topic (all still posted in the Telegraph), he would have assigned the proper meaning to my statement.[1,5,6] He either did not read or misunderstood them, and assumed wrongly. And in this vein, he makes another mistaken assumption: I’m not a Catholic. I was brought up a Presbyterian, well instructed in Calvinism and predestination but I don’t usually discuss theology. Yet, as any knowledgeable person would, or should, know the Catholic Church and Judeo-Christian teachings are at the center of Western civilization, and alarmingly, are in decline in the Western world. Mr. Cullinan is correct in one thing: I’m disturbed at the prospect for the future.

References

1. Faria MA. Dismantling Christianity and Western civilization — and replacing them with what? Macon Telegraph, August 26, 2015. Available from: http://www.haciendapub.com/articles/dismantling-christianity-and-western-civilization-—-and-replacing-them-what 

2. Cullinan NM. Your Say: Comprehending Attacks on Cummings’ recent column. Macon Telegraph September 4, 2015. Available from: http://www.macon.com/opinion/readers-opinion/article33866856.html

3. Faria MA. A relevant and brief history of Islam. Realclearhistory.com, February 18, 2015. Available from: http://www.realclearhistory.com/2015/02/18/a_relevant_and_brief_history_of_islam_5220.html.

4. Faria MA. On the Spanish Inquisition and the Crusades. HaciendaPublishing.com, September 12, 2011. Available from: http://www.haciendapublishing.com/randomnotes/spanish-inquisition-and-crusades

5. Faria MA. Bioethics — Should they encourage the killing of unwanted newborn infants? HaciendaPublishing.com, July 12, 2015. Available from: http://www.haciendapublishing.com/articles/bioethics-%E2%80%94-should-they-encourage-killing-unwanted-newborn-infants

6. Faria MA. Bioethics — Part 2: Is it compassion, personal autonomy, or ulterior utilitarian motives at heart? HaciendaPublishing.com, August 24, 2015. Available from: http://www.haciendapub.com/articles/bioethics-%E2%80%94-part-2-it-compassion-personal-autonomy-or-ulterior-utilitarian-motives-heart

Additional Reading

7. Blaylock RL. Collectivism, secular humanism, scientific positivism (scientism) and centralized state power — Part 2: Centralization of power. Hacienda Publishing.com, August 14, 2015.  Available from: http://haciendapub.com/articles/collectivism-secular-humanism-scientific-positivism-scientism-and-centralized-state-power-0 

8. Blaylock RL. Collectivism, secular humanism, scientific positivism (scientism) and centralized state power — Part 1: A most dangerous admixture. Hacienda Publishing.com, August 14, 2015.  Available from: http://haciendapub.com/articles/collectivism-secular-humanism-scientific-positivism-scientism-and-centralized-state-power-%E2%80%94

Miguel A. Faria, M.D.

Associate Editor-in-Chief and a World Affairs Editor of Surgical Neurology International (SNI; http://surgicalneurologyint.com ); He served at the behest of President George W. Bush as member of the Injury Research Grant Review Committee of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC; 2002-05); Author, Vandals at the Gates of Medicine (1995. His website is http://www.haciendapub.com or http://www.drmiguelfaria.com

Copyright ©2015 Miguel A. Faria, Jr. M.D.

More thoughts on Bioethics and Secular Humanism

In response to Dr. Lowell Clark’s letter to the editor in the Macon Telegraph of September 3, 2015, “Regarding Faria’s latest submission — Dismantling Christianity and Western civilization and replacing them with what?” — in which he defends bioethics and secular humanism, let me say that I sympathize with much of what he says and understand the various dichotomies of views that he intimates he operates under, including his religious and bioethical views. We all have to make choices, but sometimes choices are made for us. It is like everything else: physicians are in the trenches of health delivery while the AMA leadership issues politically-correct pronouncements frequently contrary to the views of practicing physicians, going along to get along — consequently, contrary to its claim, the AMA now represents only 15% of practicing physicians. It appears the same is happening with the bioethics movement. I wonder if Dr. Lowell has complained about the radical views of leading bioethicists as I discussed and referenced in my previous articles?

I wrote the Brain Death criteria for Coliseum Medical Centers back in the 1980s and I have written extensively on the subject of bioethics ever since. The fact is that traditional medical ethics derived from the Hippocratic Oath have been hijacked by the utilitarian-based bioethics movement led by such luminaries as I have mentioned: Drs. Daniel Callahan, Peter Singer, John Hardwig, Ezekiel Emanuel, etc. If readers have not looked up my previous references, I suggest they Google them for themselves!

Miguel A. Faria, M.D.

Associate Editor-in-Chief and a World Affairs Editor of Surgical Neurology International (SNI; http://surgicalneurologyint.com ); He served at the behest of President George W. Bush as member of the Injury Research Grant Review Committee of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC; 2002-05); Author, Vandals at the Gates of Medicine (1995. His website is http://www.haciendapub.com or http://www.drmiguelfaria.com

This article may be cited as: Dr Miguel Faria responds to Mr. N.M. Cullinan's letter in the Macon Telegraph. HaciendaPublishing.com September 15, 2015.  Available from: http://haciendapub.com/articles/dr-miguel-faria-responds-mr-nm-cullinans-letter-macon-telegraph 

 Copyright ©2015 Miguel A. Faria, Jr., M.D. 

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Comments on this post

Outdoors Fall season!

Dear haciendapub friends,

With the Fall Season, hunting time, and beautiful and pleasant weather, we are spending much time outdoors and less time writing, editing, and posting articles, but we are still here. True we are a bit behind and will stay that way probably until midwinter. Nevertheless, there are plenty of articles to read on just about any subject — from political philosophy, history, biography to medical history and science. Keep on browsing, researching, reading, and opining with your comments. We are still around and although a bit slow, we're still reading, moderating (a bit of a delay here), and posting comments, getting a baseline at least 1000 hits per day (most people read but do not post comment. Dr. M & H Faria

Father Allan J. McDonald replies in the Telegraph!

September 4, 2015

Dear Editor Macon Telegraph,

My less than 250 word letter to the editor, all that is allowed by the Telegraph, has engendered a full length, several hundred words op ed by Neil M. Cullinan printed by the Telegraph. If the Telegraph wishes for me to write a full length editorial that it will then publish, I'll be happy to do so.

What I find interesting in Cullinan's clearly anti-Catholic diatribe and his denigration of both Dr. Miguel Faria and me is that he is doing the exact same thing he accuses us of doing to poor Dr. Cummings but his denigration of us is on steroids replete with self-righteous anger. His anti-Catholic diatribe is simply pathetic.

I might remind Cullilnan that the worst atrocities committed against humanity occurred in just the last century and revolved around godless, secularist ideologies, that of Nazism and Communism.

I might also remind Cullinan that each of us has our own gifts and talents and while I might be nothing like Msgr. John Cuddy as we are all uniquely created in the image and likeness of God, I am very much like him with the indelible mark of Holy Orders on our souls and thus we are priestly brothers. I am sorry that he felt necessary to pit brother priests of the same family against each another and unjustly so. Msgr. Cuddy would not be pleased! I know Msgr. Cuddy as a brother priest, you do not.

Fr. Allan J. McDonald
Pastor, St. Joseph Catholic Church
Macon, GA

This letter was edited and published in the Macon Telegraph, September 9, 2015 with a comment by the editors: "Our guidelines for submissions are printed daily at the top of the Viewpoints page.— Editors."

The online comments in the Telegraph (by 10:00 Am) were brief but instructive:

Mike Ganas: Editors, it's pretty hypocritical to print an editorial reply to a letter writer informing him that the rules are printed at the top of the page every day when YOU don't follow them yourself.

Emory Lane: Amen.

------

Dr. Miguel Faria: Mr. Cullinan's letter attacking Father Allan J. McDonald and me was over 1000 words; the limit is 500, and I'm reminded of that often. Moreover, Dr. Bill Cummings is given space for his anti-Catholic reminiscences every Sunday. I'm fortunate if I can have an article published every two or three weeks, and my letters replying to Mr. Cullinan and Dr. Clark were rejected with the comment: "You had your say and they had theirs."