Friday, April 13, 2012

The Catholics are attacking

Or at least some of their bishops are. According to the New York Times piece,
The nation’s Roman Catholic bishops issued a proclamation on Thursday calling for every priest, parish and layperson to participate in a “great national campaign” to defend religious liberty, which they said is “under attack, both at home and abroad.”
Oh, please.

What the bishops seem to be upset about are recent governmental pushbacks against Catholic institutions' strict adherence to Vatican policy prohibiting support for abortions and birth control.

Hey, bishops, I have a solution for you: if you don't like government policy, stop taking its money.

The vast majority of us aren't thrilled with your church's stance on managing human reproduction. Specifically, we think your heads are up your supposedly celibate asses when it comes to birth control. A lot of us are also unhappy that you give moral cover to extremist Protestants in the anti-abortion camp: you prate of the preciousness of life while they shoot doctors trying to give poor and underprivileged women the choice you fail to see is necessary in the real world. We're trying not to judge you by the company you keep, but when the company is that despicable, it's hard not to think your moral compasses are way, way the hell off course.

Your implicit assertion that Catholic morality is the only kind worth defending is arrogant, to say the least. The doctrine of papal infallibility doesn't carry a lot of weight outside conservative Catholic circles, and the sooner you come to terms with that fact, the happier we all will be. What's that business about rendering unto Caesar?

If you want Catholic strictures to be more widely respected, try not shoving them down everyone else's throat. Protesting governmental actions that seek explicitly to fulfill the promise of religious freedom by ensuring that no religion's principles are elevated to a place of privilege in the nation's laws just antagonizes the rest of us.

Do I really have to point out the disturbingly close parallel between your ill-advised campaign demanding greater freedom to exercise your faith's doctrines in the public sphere, and the sustained movements elsewhere in the world to make Sharia law the law of the land? Are you really that clueless, or do you think we are?

The bishops doth protest too much.

(The title of this post refers to a ditty by Pop-o-Pies from 1981. You can hear the song on YouTube.)

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