A potpourri of quotations on contemporary topics, large and small. . .
Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, archbishop of Washington, D.C., on alleviating the shortage of Catholic priests by allowing them to marry: "You know, optional celibacy is not a cure-all. There are many of our Protestant denominations that are having trouble filling their slots and would have an even greater trouble even if they weren't able to ordain women. So that has been a temporary surcease for their problems."
Republican Senator John McCain of Arizona on a possible White House run in 2008: "You know what (the late former Arizona Congressman) Mo Udall would say: 'Presidential ambition is a disease that can only be cured by embalming fluid.'"
Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia - on whether "evolving notions of decency" regarding issues such as abortion and the death penalty should be legislated through statutes or judicial rulings: "If you think aficionados of a 'living' Constitution want to bring you flexibility, think again. You think the death penalty is a good idea? Persuade your fellow citizens to adopt it. You want a right to abortion? Persuade your fellow citizens and enact it. That's flexibility. Why in the world would you have it interpreted by nine lawyers?"
ABC News president David Westin, on declines in newspaper readership and viewership of network news: "Both newspapers and evening newscasts still remain dominant news providers for many millions of Americans. . . . The issue isn't that the size of the news pie is shrinking . . . (but that) it is being sliced into smaller and smaller pieces. And the primary reason is simple: convenience."
Westin (above) further: "If we want to serve as the news outlets for the millions of people who historically have turned to us each day, then we will need to go beyond mastering the new ways of reaching our audiences. We need to demonstrate to the American people, relentlessly, a quality of journalism so great that everyone recognizes it and no one can deny it. That way, when people look at all the myriad alternatives for their news, they will choose us - no longer because they lack any viable alternative but increasingly because, despite the alternatives, they value what we have to report."
Ross Mackenzie lives with his wife and Labrador retriever in the woods west of Richmond, Virginia. They have two grown sons, both Naval officers.
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