When this blog was first established, there were some people not associated with it who commented that they thought the title of the blog was unfortunate. Wouldn't "Catholics against Torture" or some similar name be better?
I didn't think so, for two reasons. First, I think that Catholics are morally obligated to oppose torture. Granted, the arguments are usually about what exactly constitutes torture, and whether so-called "enhanced interrogation" techniques qualify as torture, and how close to that line called "torture" we can get before we've violated the moral law, etc.--but there have been some Catholics who have responded to survey questions etc. claiming to be in favor of torture, not of any of the supposed gray areas.
So "Catholics against Torture" would be a name rather like "Catholics against Abortion" or "Catholics against Adultery;" there's a sort of, if you'll forgive the colloquialism, "Well, duh..." factor to those kinds of names.
But the second reason I didn't want to go with a name like "Catholics against Torture" was that I realized that the torture issue has a tendency to wax and wane in the public eye, so to speak; I fully expect it to be spoken about quite a bit in the lead-up to the November elections, for instance, but just now it does not seem to be a burning topic of conversation.
And, let's face it: torture is not the only issue on which clarity in light of Church teaching is a good thing to try to achieve.
Take, for instance, the present furor surrounding the new Arizona immigration law. On the one hand, some Catholics (like this one) applaud the law. On the other, several Catholic bishops are denouncing the law. How should a Catholic approach the issue of immigration? How do we read CCC 2241, and how do we apply it in practical reality?
I'm going to be writing about this in the near future, and my co-blogger, Robert King, will also be tackling some issues like this one, issues which impact matters of life and human dignity and on which we, as Catholics, seek moral clarity, with reference to the teaching and guidance of the Church. I have amended the blog's statement of purpose to reflect that we will be discussing issues other than torture, though the blog's main reason to exist is still to provide a place for Catholics to discuss the torture issue whenever that issue becomes prominent.