Friends of San Antonio Family Association misrepresented
Re: “SAFA ‘proud’ that Brehm backs her spouse,” Brian Chasnoff column, July 31:
I was dismayed to read Mr. Chasnoff’s column regarding a phone interview he conducted with chairman Mike Knuffke about Friends of San Antonio Family Association’s position on Cynthia Brehm, chair of the Bexar County Republican Party.
Mr. Knuffke gave that interview while traveling from Castroville to San Antonio. I happened to be in the automobile while he fielded questions from Mr. Chasnoff and thereby heard every answer Mr. Knuffke gave. Importantly, Mr. Knuffke had the wherewithal to record the interview, due to apparent experience with Mr. Chasnoff. So there is no denying what I heard and what was confirmed on the recording.
In brief, Mr. Chasnoff’s column accuses Friends of SAFA of placing a higher regard on the indissolubility of marriage than it does on the protection of children from harmful situations, including sexual predators. As such, he concludes that Friends of SAFA retracted its support of Mrs. Brehm only because of political pressure and not because of concern for the children involved.
This is not the position of Friends of SAFA, and this is not what Mr. Chasnoff was told by Mr. Knuffke. Friends of SAFA supports the entire family unit, which begins with the marriage and ends with children. They go hand in hand to form the sacred family unit.
To be clear, Friends of SAFA initially supported Mrs. Brehm because she had privately addressed a painful incident that occurred within her family and had maintained her marriage in the process. She apparently had forgiven her husband (as Jesus commands we do) and was privately working through the situation to hold her family together (a likely trying and difficult task). Friends of SAFA finds it laudable that she continues to go to great lengths to forgive, reconcile and maintain the family unit as commanded by God.
Friends of SAFA has now withdrawn its political support of Ms. Brehm because additional information has surfaced regarding her husband that she may have known about but remained silent to the detriment of others. This, then, is the issue. Although she is not responsible for her husband’s actions, did she know about them? Could she have prevented additional crimes? As Mr. Knuffke told Mr. Chasnoff, “maybe Cynthia knew more about this situation than she led us to believe … the effectiveness of her being in office has now changed.”
Though Friends of SAFA maintains that no one is accountable for the sins of another person — even a spouse — one’s spouse can affect political effectiveness. Regarding her determination to stay with her husband, Mr. Knuffke commented, “the indissolubility of marriage is paramount … and we applaud Cynthia for doing that.”
Mr. Chasnoff’s ending may be telling as to his motivation for misrepresenting Friends of SAFA. He concludes by saying that Friends of SAFA is opposed to the Planned Parenthood facility in San Antonio (what does that have to do with the issue at hand other than that it may reveal a personal issue Mr. Chasnoff has with Friends of SAFA?) and with a final jab says, “but the children are expendable” to SAFA.
The reconciliation of these two statements is impossible. Friends of SAFA is opposed to abortion because it does support the innocent life of children from inception to natural death. If marriage is nothing else, it is the sacred institution in which to procreate and raise children for the glory of God. Secure, moral children are the product of marriage and happy homes. If unfortunate and deeply wounding incidents occur in the home, the family must still work diligently to overcome the problem, stay together, and forgive one another because the family is “the building block of society.”
Through forgiveness man truly carries out the love of Christ. One of the final comments I heard Mr. Knuffke make was, “Our biggest concern is the protection of the daughter.”
How could Mr. Chasnoff write anything to the contrary?
Karol Gill is a volunteer with the Friends of San Antonio Family Association.