July 29, 2011

What was in the news on July 28, 1961? A rare justification for waging a pre-emptive war, and a condemnation of birth control as the ‘solution of misers’

By Brandon A. Evans

50 Year LogoThis week, we continue to examine what was going on in the Church and the world 50 years ago as seen through the pages of The Criterion, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary.

Here are some of the items found in the July 28, 1961, issue of The Criterion:

  • Can we defend ourselves?
    • “WASHINGTON—A Catholic priest said here that, in certain circumstances, the United States would be justified in striking the first blow in war. Father Robert P. Mohan, S.S., said the U.S. would be justified in ‘pre-emptive’ military actions, aimed at countering an ‘immediate threat’ of aggression by an enemy. But he stressed that he was distinguishing this sort of action from a ‘preventative war,’ which he defined as ‘unjustified aggressive action designed to remove a remote threat.’ Father Mohan stated: ‘I have not the slightest hesitation in saying that I think such pre-emptive action might, in a concrete situation, be justified, and consider it utter folly for our government to keep insisting that under no circumstance will we strike the first blow.’ ”
  • Interracial unit head is arrested
  • Public invited to view new Carmel wing Sunday
  • Protestant minister gives our teaching Sisters a hand
  • Is it un-American to advocate Democracy?
  • Church, State and School—1961
  • Voice from Spain: Church not responsible for Spanish ‘politics’
  • Anti-Catholic history of Nazi
  • anti-semitism
  • Raps those who oppose integration
  • Labor Secretary hails encyclical
  • Catholic political split ‘major problem’ in Chile
  • Back worthwhile films, Legion official urges
  • Lutheran film wins top award
  • Plan 10-hour film on Holy Scripture
  • U.S. Jewish group lauds encyclical
  • 8 Cuban priests resume duties in Camaguey province
  • Around the Archdiocese: Several parishes slate picnics and festivals
  • Lourdes Bishop proclaims cure as miraculous
  • Birth control is labeled ‘solution of tired minds’
    • “VATICAN CITY—Artificial birth control to cope with the so-called problem of over-population is ‘a solution of tired minds,’ the Vatican Radio declared in a broadcast interpreting the section of Pope John XXIII’s encyclical, Mater et Magistra, dealing with this matter. … Birth control, it said, is also ‘the solution of the faithless, of those who do not believe in the inexhaustible resources of nature and the inventive and creative capacity of man, of those who do not believe in progress.’ Furthermore, the station added, it is ‘a solution of misers, of egoists, of those who do not wish to divide their bread with others, and who prefer to invest their money in the production of the instruments of ruin and of death. It is a solution of base minds, who prefer death, and toil to jam up the precious streams of life.’ ”
  • St. Vincent’s welcomes its new administrator

(Read all of these stories from our July 28, 1961, issue by logging on to our special archives.)

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