Issues 1, 2 and 3 pass [More]
Catholic Conference of Ohio Positions on Ballot Issues
The Catholic Bishops of Ohio offer the following recommendations regarding the three statewide November ballot issues:
Issue 1: Ohio bonus pay to recent war veterans: NOT OPPOSED
Issue 2: Statewide Livestock Care Standards Board: SUPPORT
Issue 3: Casino Gambling: OPPOSE
Voting InformationElection Day is Tuesday, November 3, 2009
Information on Voting, Ohio Secretary of State
Bulletin Inserts regarding Statewide Issues
The Catholic Conference of Ohio grants permission and strongly encourages duplication and distribution of the following:
“To love someone is to desire that person's good and to take effective steps to secure it. Besides the good of the individual, there is a good that is linked to living in society: the common good.”
“[The common good] is the good of “all of us”, made up of individuals, families and intermediate groups who together constitute society. It is a good that is sought not for its own sake, but for the people who belong to the social community and who can only really and effectively pursue their good within it. To desire the common good and strive towards it is a requirement of justice and charity.”
“The more we strive to secure a common good corresponding to the real needs of our neighbors, the more effectively we love them.”
CARITAS IN VERITATE: ON INTEGRAL HUMAN DEVELOPMENT IN CHARITY AND TRUTH, POPE BENEDICT XVI, PARAGRAPH 7, JUNE 29, 2009
The Catholic Conference of Ohio encourages voters to carefully consider the three statewide Issues that are on the November 3, 2009 ballot.
Each of us has a responsibility to carefully and prudently discern public policies to determine whether they are morally sound, well conceived, and practical. People of good will may differ regarding specific responses to compelling social problems, but we cannot differ on our moral obligation to help build a more just and peaceful world through promoting the common good.
General Ballot Reflection Questions
To Authorize the State to Issue Bonds to Compensate Veterans of the Persian Gulf, Afghanistan, and Iraq Conflicts
Catholic Bishops of Ohio are Not Opposed to passage of Issue 1
Issue 1 authorizes the state to issue up to two hundred million dollars of bonds to provide compensation to veterans of the Persian Gulf, Afghanistan, and Iraq conflicts, and for the administration of this compensation fund.
The state would provide stipends of $100 a month up to a total of $1,000 for Ohio veterans who served in the Persian Gulf, Afghanistan, and Iraq Conflicts. The state would provide stipends of $50 a month up to a total of $500 for Ohio veterans who served elsewhere during the conflicts.
Family members of qualified, deceased Ohio veterans could apply for a $5,000 death benefit. Certain survivors will receive the same compensation that the person who served in the armed forces would have received, if that person dies or is designated as missing in action or held in enemy captivity.
Pro Arguments Issue 1 (Official Proponent Arguments, Secretary of State)
Con Arguments Issue 1 (Official Opponent Arguments, Secretary of State)
Reflections from Catholic Social Teaching Related to Issue 1
Catholic Social Teachings call us to appreciate and honor the sacrifices and contributions made by those who serve in the military. In the Catechism of the Catholic Church, those who are sworn to serve their country in the armed forces are called servants of the security and freedom of nations. “If they carry out their duty honorably, they truly contribute to the common good of the nation and the maintenance of peace.” (2310).
The Compendium of the Social Doctrine of the Church states that those who defend the security and freedom of a country, in the spirit of legitimate defense, “make an authentic contribution to peace.” (502).
Focus Question For Voter Reflection Related to Issue 1
Is Issue 1 affordable, and will passage sufficiently honor and help servicemen, servicewomen and their families?
Catholic Conference of Ohio Position on Issue 1
A voter’s position on Issue 1 involves a prudential judgment where persons of good will may differ as to the specifics of this proposal.
The bishops truly appreciate the sacrifices made by the men and women who serve our country in defending freedom and peace. Bonus pay can be a worthwhile way to express gratitude and appreciation. We are especially proud of the many Catholic war veterans who have honorably served in the military.
The Catholic Bishops of Ohio are not opposed to passage of Issue 1.
To Create the Ohio Livestock Care Standards Board
Catholic Bishops of Ohio Support Passage of Issue 2
Issue 2 would require the state to create the Livestock Care Standards Board to prescribe standards for animal care and well-being. The standards are intended to maintain food safety, encourage locally grown and raised food, and protect Ohio farms and families.
The Board would establish standards after they considered agricultural best-management practices, biosecurity, disease prevention, animal morbidity/mortality data, food safety practices, and the protection of local, affordable food supplies.
The bipartisan Board would be comprised of thirteen members with expertise in farming, animal care, and food safety issues. It would be chaired by the director of the state department that regulates agriculture.
Pro Arguments Issue 2 (Official Proponent Arguments, Secretary of State)
Con Arguments Issue 2 (Official Opponent Arguments, Secretary of State)
Reflections from Catholic Social Teaching Related to Issue 2
In the Ohio Catholic bishops’ statement, Life on the Land (1998), the bishops encourage each of us to listen to the needs and concerns of our state’s farmers so that food security, environmental stewardship, just treatment of all in the agricultural system and the broadest participation of all Ohioans in the agricultural sector can be achieved.
In the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ statement, For I Was Hungry and You Gave Me Food (2003), the bishops call for the careful regulation and monitoring of confined animal feeding so that environmental risks are minimized and animals are treated as creatures of God.
The Catechism of the Catholic Church reminds us that "God entrusted animals to the stewardship of those whom he created in his own image. Hence it is legitimate to use animals for food and clothing." (2417). It also reminds us that "it is contrary to human dignity to cause animals to suffer or die needlessly." (2418)
Focus Question For Voter Reflection Related to Issue 2
Will the creation of a Livestock Standards Board within Ohio’s constitution sufficiently ensure the humane treatment of livestock, food safety, environmental stewardship, and support for farm families?
Catholic Conference of Ohio Position on Issue 2
A voter’s position on Issue 2 involves a prudential judgment where persons of good will may differ as to the specifics of this proposal.
While there is ongoing debate regarding livestock care standards, there are many farm families in Ohio who responsibly and humanely provide food through confined livestock operations.
Regardless of one’s position on Issue 2, it is vital for Ohio to have an appropriately regulated and enforced set of animal care and safe food standards, while still assuring affordable and accessible food for all.
The Catholic Bishops of Ohio support passage of Issue 2.
To Allow for One Casino Each in Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, and Toledo
Catholic Bishops of Ohio are Opposed to Issue 3
Issue 3 will amend Ohio’s Constitution to authorize only one casino facility within each of the cities of Cincinnati, Cleveland, Columbus, and Toledo. It will levy a fixed tax of 33% of gross casino revenue received.
The casino tax will be distributed as follows:
Each initial licensed casino operator must pay a single $50,000,000 fee to be used for state job training purposes and make a minimum initial investment of $250,000,000 in its facility.
The casinos may operate 24 hours a day, seven days a week. The casino facilities will be subject to all state and local laws and provisions related to health and building codes. However, no local zoning, land use laws, or similar provisions shall prohibit the development or operation of the casinos at the designated sites.
Issue 3 will create the Ohio casino control commission that will license and regulate casino operators, management companies, key employees, gaming-related vendors, and all gaming authorized by this constitutional provision.
Pro Arguments Issue 3 (Official Proponent Arguments, Secretary of State)
Con Arguments Issue 3 (Official Opponent Arguments, Secretary of State)
Reflections from Catholic Social Teaching Related to Issue 3
Games and schemes of chance are not in themselves contrary to justice. The Church recognizes, however, that a variety of social ills can become associated with any form of gambling. According to the Catechism of the Catholic Church, forms of gambling “become morally unacceptable when they deprive someone of what is necessary to provide for his needs and those of others. The passion for gambling risks becoming an enslavement.” (2413)
Previous Catholic Conference of Ohio statements on gambling made a distinction between charitable bingo and casino gambling. While there are a variety of social ills that can also be associated with charitable bingo, the gambling stakes are much lower and 100% of the proceeds are used for charitable purposes. The Catholic Bishops of Ohio would prefer, and in fact have encouraged, church institutions to raise needed funds through alternative forms of fundraising, where feasible.
Focus Question For Voter Reflection Related to Issue 3
Is Issue 3 well conceived and in the long-term best interest of the people of Ohio?
Catholic Conference of Ohio Position on Issue 3
A voter’s position on Issue 3 involves a prudential judgment where persons of good will may differ as to the specifics of this proposal.
The Catholic Conference of Ohio has opposed all previous statewide casino and slot machine initiatives. The Catholic Bishops in Ohio continue to believe casino gambling, as proposed in Issue 3, is not in the best moral, social and economic interests of the citizens of our state. More persons and families will be seduced into financial hardship, rather than helped. More societal problems will be aggravated, rather than improved.
Furthermore, Issue 3 appears to us to be poorly written and overindulgent toward the gambling interests of private business. Since Issue 3 is a constitutional amendment, voters have no recourse for fixing such concerns except to pass another constitutional amendment. This flawed casino proposal should not be enacted into our Ohio Constitution.
The Catholic Bishops of Ohio are opposed to Issue 3.
Yard/Church Signs Against Issue 3
Need More Information
Contact Jim Tobin , 614-224-7147
Catholic Conference of Ohio
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