Friday, April 27, 2007

Anti-Catholic "bigotry"? Puh-leaze

Though the last post may draw little comment, maybe this one will. A Philadelphia Inquirer cartoon has drawn blood from those who claim a great anti-Catholic conspiracy (for an example, click here). Few have failed to note that the five-vote majority that upheld partial-birth abortion ban was made up of the court's five Catholics. And, surprise, some are suggesting that it was Catholic morality rather than legal logic that won the day.

That's hardly anti-Catholic bigotry, anymore than pointing out the influence evangelicals have in the current administration is anti-evangelical bigotry. There may be truth in both critiques. I don't doubt that at least some of those five were looking for a legal argument that might allow them uphold the ban. I don't see anything wrong with that, so long as the legal reasoning itself was sound. (That I'll leave to the jurists to decide, but for all the victory banner-waving among pro-lifers, this decision will not prevent a single abortion. Not one.)

But cut the whining! If we want Catholicism in the public square, that means Catholic people and ideas have to take their lumps like everyone else in the media. Roman Catholicism is by far the largest denominational group in the U.S. at about 70 million, nearly as many as the 75 or so million evangelicals of various denominations. Catholics and evangelicals voting together is a force to be reckoned with. We're hardly an oppressed minority. And there are people who have legitimate fears about what that kind of political power might mean for actual minorities. Gays and lesbians, for example, continue to feel the sharp side of Catholic politicians' tongues (Sen. Brownback, anyone?). And Catholic schools and other institutions continue to clamor for public dollars. And that's not to mention the majority of people, like it or not, who think that women should have access to abortion, especially early in pregnancy.



At 5:02 PM, Blogger Gay Curmudgeon said...

An excellent cartoon that captures much of my feelings about the recent changes in the Supreme Court.

Many of us are looking around at the new reality of the highest court in the land with the same sense of bewilderment, resignation and despair that I see on the faces of the hatless Supreme Court Justices.

I was raised as a Catholic with an evangelical mother. At this point in my life I am increasingly of the opinion that Catholicism and indeed the idea of organized religion itself are fatally flawed. Seeing the conflict that the Catholic faith creates and the injustices that it mandates while ignoring it’s clear imperative to help the poor, is it any wonder that I’m flirting with atheism?


At 7:44 PM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ah yes, atheism, which under the guises of national socialism and Marxism-Leninism murdered upwards of 100 million people during the mid 20th century. Definitely superior to Catholicism and Evangelicalism. Yup, no wonder at all. I can see the attraction.


At 8:44 PM, Blogger Kristin said...


This had absolutely nothing to do with the Catholic justices imparting Catholism into thier decision, they were merely imparting common sense and preserving democracy. The "partial-birth" abortion ban was a bi-partison measure. Over 80% of the AMERICAN PUBLIC support the law that the LEGISLATURE passed. And btw, Justice Kennedy, still supports Roe, so how is he imposing his faith on the tenets of the law? Using this logic, and according to Rosie, no Catholic need apply for judicial positions. If that is not religous discrimination I don't know what is.



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