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May 7, 1993     The Message
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May 7, 1993

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The Message Monthly -- for Catholics of Southwestern Indiana .-- Perspective-- How do you spell Cathcuc Church? I have discovered that my "spell checker" is not Catholic. It's not of Hoosier origin, either. My "spell checker" is a won- derful item of computer software. All a person has to do is to type some words on a computer screen, then have the computer check the spelling of each and every word. It is the spell checker soft- ware that makes it possible for the computer to look up the words and check their spelling. It compares the words I have cho- sen with the words in a comput- erized dictionary. One of the nicest things is that it never says, "You are. wrong!" Instead, it politely indicates that a certain word "is not in the dictionary." There are several reasons why a word would be identified by the computer. One rea- son, of course, is that it is not spelled correctly. One of my favorite mistakes is "ilnclude" -- a perfectly good word with an extra letter acciden- tally included. The computer will also pick out the names of places it has never heard of. That s how I can say with certainty that my spell checker is not of Hoosier origin. It had never heard of "Evans- ville" or "Vincennes" or "Jasper." (It had heard of "Washington," but I can't say with certainty By PAUL R. LEINGANG EDITOR that it knew about our Washing- ton.) The names of unfamiliar peo- ple are also missing from the com- puterized dictionary. My com- puter was thoroughly ignorant of such historic names as Kundek, Weinzapfel, Brut6 and Grimmels- man. Nor had it heard of current names ranging from Ackerman and Allega all the way to Zgunda and Ziliak. (It had not heard of Leingang, either.) My computer was also igno- rant of many "Church" words. The Paschal Mystery may be a central belief of our faith, but it was nowhere in my computer. "Eucharist" was missing, too, and it suggested that "Mass" should be spelled "mass." There is a redeeming feature -- excuse the pun -- for my spell checker. When it indicates that a word is not in the dictionary, it gives the computer user several choices. One choice is to ignore the word. I use that option when a name comes up one time and I don't expect to see it again. Another option is to change it to the word the computer software suggests, or to one of sev- eral alternates. That's a good choice for my fa- vorite, "ilnclude." The most fascinating choice of all is to add the unfamiliar word to a personal may not have heard of Vincennes or Leingang when it first arrived on my it has heard about them now, and it Washington Letter everything it has heard! ' To get to the point of this column, rny puter has become familiar with sou diana and with the Diocese of recognizes all of the cities and towns munities that I have ever written began using it. My computer also now recog words'and the people who use them. My erized personal dictionary has a pretty of words and names and places all somehow related to being Catholic western Indiana. My name is in there. Perhaps It reminds me of the Church. ters the Church, one by one -- , dating back to the early history of with new names. There are occasional and pain when a person is ignored. Each time a new name is add collection of names is affected. And look at all of the words -- and only look at all of the words -- you begir idea of the beauty and complexity in southwestern Indiana. We are the Church. Abortion and 00l,00ctions: Words might be the decisive By NANCY FRAZIER O'BRIEN Catholic News Service language and new strategies will emerge as bath sides renew the battle for the hearts .and minds of American voters." The report, called "The 1992 Elections and the Poli- tics of Abortion: Lessons from the Past, Implications for the Future," was based on polls of likely voters in the week before the election and on 45 interviews with party and campaign staffers and pro- and anti-abortion activists in the month following the election. Those interviewed on both sides seemed to agree that the abortion fight will be won by the group that can persuade most Americans to their view of what the debate is about. None of those interviewed was identified in the report. Pro-lifers say the debate is about "reasonable restric- tions" on abortion that the vast majority of Americans back, such as parental or spousal notification, in- formed consent and a 24-hour waiting period before an abortion. For those who sup- port legal abortion, it's a question of "choice." "If the right-to-life move- ment chooses to focus its ef- forts on a few restrictions rather than on banning abor- tion altogether, at least in their public pronouncements, that will make them appear more reasonable, which is problematic," said one Cali- fornia Republican who sup- ports legal abortion. "Making it (abortion) ille- gal, that is our long-term goal, but ri.ght now we need to just zero m on the restrictions," said a pro-lifer. The national poll, with a margin of error of plus or minus 3.5 percentage points, found that 13 percent of vot- ers mentioned abortion as an important issue to them in the presidential race. Abor- tion was the fourth most fre- quently mentioned issue, be- hind the economy (58 percent), health care (23 per- cent) and the deficit (15 percent). Pro-life voters who fre- quently attend religious ser- vices -- one out of six voters in the national sample were the most likely group to cite abortion as an important factor in their vote. More important than the numbers they represent in the polls is the organizational support that activists on each side of the abortion issue can generate for a candidate, the study said. "Your most effective voter groups are those who are have existing networks or or- ganizations," said a campaign worker for George Bush, who was strongly supported by pro-lifers in his bid for re- election. "Right-to-life was an already active political orga- nization. To that extent they were very effective for us." David O'Steen, executi/e director of the National Right to Life Committee, agrees about the value of the pro-life network in election campaigns. "The greatest asset the pro- abortionists have is the monolithic secular media, and their second biggest asset is financial," he said in an in- terview with Catholic News Service. "But the pro-life movement has a stronger vol- unteer and people base, and will continue to have that." O'Steen said he believes that mare people "will con- tinue to volunteer their blood, sweat and tears to save babies than will work for the right to kill them." Dodson and Casey pre- dicted that both those who want to restrict abortion and those who oppose any restric- tions will expand their "cul- tural agenda" to include a va- riety of other issues. Among those issues could be homosexual rights, includ- ing gays in the military; tu- ition tax credits or vouchers for nonpublic schools; sex ed- ucation and contraceptive ac- cess in schools; and other re- productive health issues such as the French abortion pill, RU-486, the inclusion of abortion in a care reform plan creased access to care. ,: - "The c] sides is to be more than their o areas: 1) framing on this new best possible light; bilizing cal action," the In the years dential electionS, added, "the both sides face other side will while they or useful to can are their allies of resources, volvement or ate interest)." :- WASHINGTON (CNSJ The abortion battle of the hz- ture may shape up as a war of words between "choice" and "reasonable restrictions" on abortion, according to a re- cent report on the impact of abortion on the 1992 elections. The study, conducted by Debra L. Dodson, senior re- search associate at the Center for the American Woman and Politics at Rutgers University in New Jersey, and co-written by Kathleen J. Casey, a doc- toral candidate in political science at Rutgers, looked at abortion's effect on the presi- dential election, the two Cali- fornia races for U.S. Senate and one race for the Califor- nia Assembly. "Abortion will continue to play a role in national poli- tics, but the 1992 elections transformed the cultural agenda," said Dodson. "New The MESSAGE 4200 N. Kentucky Ave. Evansville, IN 47720-0169 Weekly newspaper of the Diocese of Evansville Published weeidy except last week in December by the Catholtc Press of EValV ............................................ Pa ................................. amy Housm  ........................... PS .................................... P w ........ : .................... My ann Hm Ackress all communications to P.O. Box 4169, Evansville, IN 47724-0169 Subscnption rate: $12.00 per year Single Copy Price: $.50 Entered as 2nd class matter at the post office in Evansville, IN 47701. Publca. ton number 843800. Postmaster: Return POD forms 3579 to Office of Publicatn Copy tge3  Pss of Ev'ansv ]1 II I "1 ii ii ii Bishop's sch The following activities and events are schedule of Bishop Gerald A. Gettelfinger V