Two Things Conservative Catholics Should Stop Doing

Has the title of this blog post got your attention? Good. Many of this blog’s regular readers and com-boxers could be classified as conservative Catholic, myself included (though I do my best to elude fixed categories). So I hope you will take this to heart, and maybe even take the debate outside the confines of this blog if you feel so moved.

I like Bill Donohue. I sympathize with him and his organization, The Catholic League. I share many of their sentiments, including outrage and disgust, whenever the media decides to take another whack at Christianity. So I certainly don’t critique Donohue or the CL from the left. Nor is my critique limited to Donohue and CL, but could extend to any number of Catholic and Protestant organizations as well.

With that said, here are two things that I wish they would all stop doing, and they are closely related.

1. Stop demanding that people “apologize” for their anti-Christian remarks. 

As a young man trying to be a faithful Catholic, I am simply not the least bit interested in apologies from Bill Maher or Jon Stewart, the current target of Donohue’s organization. There are several reasons for this.

First, forced public apologies are the modus operandi of the hysterical and politically-correct left. The left demands forced apologies for every off-color comment made about race, gender, or sexual preference because its views on these topics, rooted as they are in egalitarianism and other constructed ideologies, can never triumph in a free and fair marketplace of ideas. People have to be forced to accept the leftist narrative about these topics as legitimate because most of that narrative is contrary not only to science and sound scholarship, but to everyday wisdom and common sense as experienced by the vast majority of people.

Catholicism does not need an Al Sharpton or a Sandra Fluke, because the truths of our faith, whether they pertain to philosophy or politics or every day morality, are just that: truths. They stand on their own, and do not need the forced legitimization that fascist and communist regimes violating every natural and divine law need.

Secondly, I have never been interested in insincere apologies from anyone in my personal life, so why would I want from from Jon Stewart? He’s not sorry for what he said or did on his program, and I gain nothing from seeing him pretend to care about the fact that he offended a God that he doesn’t believe in. I don’t want people like Stewart to watch their words. I want them to say exactly what they think. Let the goats separate themselves from the sheep. If Jon Stewart were to apologize on his own, without any threats, then it would mean something.

Third, I think the whole culture of the forced public apology that we see on both the right and the left leads to all kinds of absurd illusions about the stability of the American body politic. If this country is going to have another civil war, all the forced public apologies in the world won’t stop it. If it isn’t going to have one, then acting as if the public peace depends upon another forced public apology may make it a self-fulfilling prophecy.

2. Stop whining about “double-standards” like a bunch of radical feminists. 

When the New York Times ran a full page ad viciously attacking the Church in a manner that any rational person would label an incitement to hatred and perhaps even violence, there were many conservative commentators who could only focus on one thing: getting in a similar shot at Islam. It became the obsession of the week for some people, with one public figure, Pamela Geller, even drafting an anti-Islam ad for the Times.

Bill Donohue complained in a similar manner when the television show South Park mocked the Church. All he could focus on was taunting the creators of the show to take a shot at Islam (which they actually would have done, had Comedy Central not censored their work out of fear). And so I’ve seen, over and over again, the first response to any attack on Christianity being “why aren’t you attacking Islam too?”

This is irrational behavior. Setting aside how I might feel about Islam as a religion, I must ask: what did America’s Muslims do to deserve this kind of treatment? Why wasn’t there a voice that said that it is wrong to incite hatred against anyone? Seeing Islam and Muslims themselves mocked and humiliated the way the Church has been isn’t something that is going to make me feel better. I don’t think it is going to make anyone feel better.

It has nothing to do with fear of terrorism either, but rather with the axiom we all learned in kindergarten (which is itself derived from Christianity): two wrongs don’t make a right. Not only that, but how absurd is it to – as I have sometimes seen – both demand an apology for remarks made against one’s own religion and insist that “fairness” requires that another religion be ridiculed?

There’s just a whiny quality to these demands as well. The obsession with the double-standard really infected our culture through feminism. Books and books have been written that solely concern themselves with the double-standards that society holds for men and women. Do double-standards exist? Yes. Can they sometimes be unfair? Yes. Can they be eliminated? No! Sometimes life is unfair.

Moreover, if you are a Christian, you ought to expect it to be unfair. It is time to get used to the fact that we live in a pagan society, not a Christian one. We see certain evidences of a past in which Christianity was the dominant cultural paradigm, and it may tempt us into thinking that we have more political and social weight than we really have.

This is the reality: “If the world hate you, know ye, that it hath hated me before you… If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you” — Jn. 15:18, 20

Compared to what Catholics have suffered in different times and places around the world, we have it pretty easy. This is not to say that we shouldn’t be concerned, even outraged, when Christ is disrespected in public. But the two major response types I’ve covered here range from immature to immoral. How about instead of boycotting Jon Stewart, or demanding he apologize, or insisting that he take some shots at Islam, we pray for his conversion to the Catholic faith? Not only is that what God wants of us, not only is it what is objectively best for Jon Stewart, it will bring upon us the kind of hatred that makes us more worthy of Christ, the hatred of the world for His sake. What would 1 million prayers for the conversion of Jon Stewart result in? I’d like to find out.

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  1. I do not agree with every word of this, but your basic points are dead on. Thank you for saying this on this blog, of all places.

  2. The most common sense I have read in a long time. Jon Stewart is violating our freedom of religion, our civil rights to be secure in the exercise of our Faith from God. Until the freedom of religion has been successfully removed by two thirds of the states ratifying the change from our founding principles, Jon Stewart must publicly respect our freedom and our Faith. To not do so disturbs my peace.
    The Freedom from Religion group must show cause that it has legal standing in a court of law after they have gotten two thirds of the states to ratify a change in our founding principles removing the free exercise of religion. Our founding principles acknowledge “our Creator’s” endowed, unalienable rights, “the laws of nature and nature’s God”, “Divine Providence”, “Sacred Honor” in The Declaration of Independence and “the blessings of Liberty” in a person’s free exercise of “religion.“ Nowhere, do I read a “freedom from religion” that may be constitutionally imposed upon the nation without having this change ratified by two thirds of the states.

  3. I am so happy said something about fake apologies– because that’s what they are.

    But I don’t think pointing out inconsistencies is unhelpful. Some people do paint themselves as courageous, yet they won’t criticize Islam for fearing of being terrorized. It’s not about insisting that people mock ALL religions, it’s pointing out that taking potshots at Christianity is intellectually lazy and cowardly. And it’s not about feminism either. If you’re going to preach certain values to the rest of society, then you’d better abide by them, otherwise you’re showing what your *real* values are.

  4. Not only should we not demand fake apologies, we should not give them either. This is a trap conservatives in general fall into. Does anyone think Rush was sincere when he apologized to Sandra Fluke? I can think worse and more accurate labels to put on a woman who wants others to pay for her promiscuity or that of other women. Especially an institution that regards contraception as intrinsically evil.

    I think the Catholic League needs a media other than Bill Donahue. God bless him he means well. But comes off as a crank and a whiner. To the anti-Catholic media he is the gift that keeps on giving. He helps reinforce the misconception that being a traditional Catholic is be an angry, humorless prude.

  5. Greg Mockeridge: Dr. Donohue gets the job done by publicizing and informing what needs to be done, especially the boycots that have brought great results. Prayers work. Speak softly and carry a big stick. William Donohue is our “big stick”. Dr. Donohue levels the playing field. In our culture, being an angry, humorless prude is all we got.

  6. I agree with point #1.

    I don’t agree fully with point #2, because I haven’t interpreted the comparisons with Islam in the same way that you have. When I hear someone make the point, “hey, you wouldn’t see the NY Times run an ad like that that criticized Islam, would you?,” I usually interpret that to mean that we would rightly expect them not to criticize Islam in that way, so they shouldn’t criticize the Catholic Church in that way either.

    In other words, my understanding is that such commenters (generally) are not saying, “hey, let’s make hateful remarks about all religions equally!” Instead I think they are saying, “hey, let’s stop making hateful remarks about the Catholic Church, just as we rightly refrain from making hateful remarks about other religious groups.”

  7. I can’t believe this. Jon Stewart just showed absolute pornography for a laugh– ridiculing women and the nativity all at once– Pornography. The victim is the woman! ..the incognito woman– no head shown because she might as well have a sack over her head right– just the body– open to the mocking world. And the response to the issue is whether or not Donohue’s protest is done in the best possible way.
    Gosh– what about what Stewart did?
    Stewart was mocking Fox news and Christianity, too bad– he was mocking the dignity of women and men– our bodies- the Image of God! but our concern is not about the woman used or the porn– just whether or not this is an insult to Christianity because of desecrating the Nativity scene! This woman is desecrated!
    and whatl we talk about is how Donohue handles it? Donohue speaks up in the face of the cool guy…. and all we can do is say Donohue comes across as crabby?
    let’s stand up against the porn in this terrible act and what the casual acceptance of porn does to women– and after we do that, I think sending a nice private suggestion to Donohue could be helpful– if we want to be helpful and not just talk about his efforts and how we would do it better…that is, if we did do it.

    In the meantime the news programs are talking about how body parts of dead Afghans have been insulted… What about the respect for the body parts of a living breathing ensouled person. Not news.

  8. Paul H,

    You should research the NY Times anti-Catholic ad and Pamela Geller’s response to it. She drafted an equally hateful anti-Muslim ad that many wanted to see in the Times. The whole idea was to try to catch them in a double-standard.

  9. Anzlyne,

    I don’t know how many times I have to say that I share Donohue’s (and your) outrage and disgust.

    What I disagree with are the tactics of calling for apologies and insisting that other religions get mocked as the Church gets mocked.

    As for doing things as opposed to talking about them, well, this is a blog. And I did suggest we do something. Pray for Jon Stewart.

  10. When people say “they wouldn’t say that about Islam, would they?”, they mean that, “They wouldn’t say that about Islam because someone of that religion might take violent action against them and most of the left wing Christian haters are cowardly punks who are afraid to actually have to face real repercussions for their words”. It can also be said that, “They wouldn’t say that about Islam because in their eyes, only Christianity, and most specifically Catholicism, is wrong and evil.”

    At least, that is what I mean when I said that. I don’t say it anymore because it really goes without saying these days. Oh, a left wing idiot insulted my religion and all that I hold sacred? Yawn…

  11. I was a fallen away Catholic and have recently returned to my faith. I was absorbed into the current pagan culture like many others. I know exactly why I have returned. Through the intercession of prayers from countless faithful. I do not doubt for one moment the power of prayer. I intend to pray for Mr Stewart and others that are lost and keep the words that Christ said deep in my heart. “Father forgive them..for they know not what they do.”

  12. I agree in general with your post. Personally, I am not a fan of Mr. Donohue even if we see things OUTSIDE the Church in a similar light.

  13. I agree with your first point about stopping forcing people to make fake apologies. The second point I disagree with. Pamela Geller only produced the same exact ad for Islam to see whether or not the New York Times would publish the ad. They didn’t. She pointed out the hypocrisy of the liberal NY Times. They are so willing to offend Catholicism and Traditional Christianity but are unwilling to offend Muslims because they are afraid that offending them may spur uprisings by Muslims. The New York Times exemplified their hate for the Catholic Church whereas Pamela wasn’t testing them for purposes of hate but rather to make a valid point. Therein lies the difference between the NY Times and Pamela Geller.

  14. Are you equating Bill Bill Donohue with Al Sharpton? Good grief. That blows your whole analogy. Sharpton has no logical moral basis for his demands while Donohue does. Sharpton’s outrage is feigned, phoney and manipulative; Donohue’s is authentic and grounded in reality. Did you skip logic class in Catholic school?

  15. Does Jon Stweart believe in God? I don’t know, but to say he doesn’t without being sure is not right. Are we sure he doesn’t? I disagree with his awful blasphemy.

  16. Although I am not a fervent Catholic, blowing hot and cold at times, I say the best defense is a good offense, which the Anti-Defamation League shows can be effective in blunting anti-Semitism. The ADL rolls out the top guns whenever Jews are attacked, individually or collectively.

    I’m with Donohue and others who go for the jugular rather than turning the other cheek. As for praying for the heathens, I don’t think that will workers. Millions of prayers were sent up for saving the soul of virulent atheist Christopher Hitchens and he was unrepentent to the bitter end.

  17. Jon Stewart must publicly respect our freedom

    Well, if you are saying he has a Constitutional duty to do so, no, he does not. The Government has a Constitutional duty to respect our freedom, but last I checked, Jon Stewart was not the government (thank God!).

    He certainly has a moral duty to do so. And perhaps, since TV transmittals are regulated by the FCC, he may have some quasi-legal duty to so (depending on FCC regs), but strictly speaking, not a Constitutional one.

  18. the title of the post is about things conservatives should stop doing….conservatives should stop taking down their own men, doing the work of the opposition, acting as a circular firing squad…when donahue makes a foray into the culture war– he is on our team– our team members and their methods are not perfect–but let’s not lose sight of the End

  19. “You have heard that it was said, ‘Love your neighbor and hate your enemy.’ But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. He causes his sun to rise on the evil and the good, and sends rain on the righteous and the unrighteous. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? Do not even pagans do that? Be perfect, therefore, as your heavenly Father is perfect.”

    Matthew 5:43-48

  20. “You should research the NY Times anti-Catholic ad and Pamela Geller’s response to it. She drafted an equally hateful anti-Muslim ad that many wanted to see in the Times. The whole idea was to try to catch them in a double-standard.”

    I am aware of that. Still, I interpreted that as a publicity stunt to make the point that the NYT would not run the anti-Muslim ad, therefore they should not have run the anti-Catholic ad either. And in general, when I hear comments of this type, I usually interpret them in the way that I mentioned, as “stop bashing Catholics” rather than “since you’re bashing Catholics, please bash Muslims too.” I respect that you may see it differently, and I’m not saying that my interpretation is necessarily correct in every case.

  21. I don’t think that anyone is calling for the mockery of Islam. They’re just trying to embarrass the mockers of Christianity. It serves a purpose, exposing the hypocrisy. But there’s a difference between exposing hypocrisy and winning the argument.

    It’s tough. Yesterday I just had another internet exchange with someone who doesn’t believe there’s a left-wing bias in the mainstream media. You have to keep pounding away relentlessly in order to persuade people. So I’m glad that Donohue does most of what he does. But I don’t pay attention to him, because he’s so predictable. And I don’t know if he is really convincing anyone.

    It reminds me of that old rule of English jurisprudence, that one should defend one’s client to the extent that he’s in the right. Very different from the American approach. In a similar way, I’d like to see the culture warriors only react to affronts as much as each one merits, rather than getting pig-biting mad at everything.

    Of course (and I realize that this is a digression), the Jon Stewarts of the world live off the attention, and increase their offensiveness steadily in order to guarantee that they solicit outrage. So if you do moderate your outrage, they’ll ratchet things up even more. I don’t know if there’s a way out of the cycle. Maybe the best thing is if guys like Donohue exist, but we don’t let them run the show. Otherwise you end up in the Sarah Palin predicament where you don’t have anything to talk about other than the lack of respect you get.

  22. Fantastic points! I have the same reaction you do when I hear those responses. This is exactly what Christ promised for us; we should be rejoicing to be thought worthy of being persecuted for the sake of Jesus’ name (cf. Acts 5:41).

  23. Finally some common sense here. As best as I can tell Mr. Donohue is a committee of one and his vicious and biting demeanor usually turn me off and I wish that someone would stop him from using the word “Catholic” in the name of his league.
    Race, religion and press bating tactics are not helpful and merely reduce “Catholics” to the level of ur detractors. Too many times we seem to be living up to the negative stereotypes instaed of elevating the conversation and doing so in the true spirit of the Gospel and our Tradition.

  24. If the media or a particular personage is being hypocritical, I am inclined to inform for the purpose of fraternal correction. A good work of mercy, no?

  25. Very good, but I would only add that a response could be in order, but it would be of the form “Can you not be a gentleman and have a reasoned and civilized discussion? Do you really want to live in a society where everyone shouts epithets past each other instead of communicating?”.

    After 9/11, Muslims in general became the target of every cheap shot. I can find no end of attacks from the cafeteria Catholics of the right. It’s ok to assassinate American citizens if they are Muslims, ok to torture them, kill a lot of muslim women and children with drone missile strikes, deny habeas corpus or lawyers, surveillance without warrants, imprison them for speech (called “material support of terrorism”). I pray there is no anti-abortion violence since RIGHT NOW the sitting president can declare any pro-lifer or supporter a terrorist and treat them like we are treating anyone swept up while going after Al Queda (including the innocents). Perhaps the Vatican will be put on the “axis of evil” list. The HHS mandate would look like a very minor violation then.

    You cannot do any good by doing evil, even if it is the same evil you have suffered, or even deflecting one evil to others. Evil multiplies enough when merely ignored.

  26. I completely agree with point one, and basically agree with point two though I understand the objections of some of the commenters. As they say, pointing out the double standard isn’t meant to goad the media into attacks on Islam, but is meant to indicate that the media would never attack Islam in the way that feels free to do with Christianity and Judaism. That said, it’s a bit tiring to see that argument trotted out every single time.

    There is also something be said about going on the offensive. The late Andrew Breitbart was an admirer of Saul Alinsky – no, not his radical politics, but his methods. Even though Donohue goes overboard at times, we do need someone to shine a spotlight on the anti-Catholic stupidity that exists. So while I might personally roll my eyes at faux outrage, it’s not without certain benefits.

  27. It is most dangerous for one individual to have an office that gives the impression that he speaks in the name of our holy mother church regardless of his intentions.

    Civil defense groups like ‘Tradition,Family,Property’ or ‘AmericaNeedsFatima’ are aptly named after their particular movements and do not seek to represent our church as a whole. Even if one feels the needed to have the term catholic in your organization’s name, one can follow the example of ‘Catholics called to witness’ or even ‘The Catholic American’ who are clearly labelled so as to not misrepresent THE church.

    One must think that creating an organization that was purposefully named to assume a position of misrepresentation is most precariously inviting the sinful ways of pride into the fold, which in turn can lead into scandal. The Protestant league was a most influential political force in the annals of history and should hardly serve as an inspiration into the naming of a moral organization.

    My fellow youth, who naively eat up Jon Stewart and the likes are also prone into assuming that ‘The Catholic Leage’ is a Church Body. What if one were to hear ‘The Baptist Leage’ or ‘The Mormon League’ and not now much about their faiths?

    I must say that the name of that particular organization is playing with fire.

    CCC:2464 “The eighth commandment forbids misrepresenting the truth in our relations with others.”

  28. Ikilope says:
    Friday, April 20, 2012 A.D. at 10:39am
    Finally some common sense here. As best as I can tell Mr. Donohue is a committee of one and his vicious and biting demeanor usually turn me off and I wish that someone would stop him from using the word “Catholic” in the name of his league.
    As luck would have it, Mr. Donohue just sent out an email addressing this item (quote follows):

    “O’Donnell says the Catholic League “has absolutely no official affiliation” with the Church, and that it is run by a “fraudulent operator.” Really? While we are independent, maybe O’Donnell can explain why the Catholic League is listed in the Official Catholic Directory and has the support of many bishops. To show how clueless the man is, he then interviewed Sister Jeannine Gramick and an official from Dignity. Last year, Donald Cardinal Wuerl, representing the bishops, said that Gramick’s New Ways Ministry group was not authorized “to identify itself as a Catholic organization.” Similarly, Dignity has long been rejected as a Catholic entity. And we’re the fraud? O’Donnell is out of his league.”

    I really enjoy reading CL press releases.

  29. Before I read this I guessed that one of two would be simply “stop gossiping”… but article is well written. Good job 🙂

  30. c matt: If Jon Stewart is a citizen, then Jon Stewart has a constitutional obligation to behave as such, by keeping all our constitutional freedoms intact and active.

  31. Jesus took a whip made of cords and drove the money changers out of the temple. St. Joan of Arc made a couple of individuals unhappy too. Let us hope and pray that it becomes unnecessary, but let us be ready all the same. Who needs to have insult and indecency in our cluture influencing the very lives and souls of our constitutional posterity.

  32. I wrote to Father Virgil Blum, the founder of the Catholic League, Yes, I am that old. The League was founded to parallel The Anti Defamation League. I am in total agreement. Our culture is sinking into the pit of Sodom and Gomorrah and those going into the pit are trying to take us ALL with them. The very fact that an insincere apology must be wrung out of Stewart, puts all on notice, that Stewart and all are not going to get away with the soul murder of our innocents, the desecration of our holy reminders, and the tramling upon our sensibilites until we can no longer afford to have virtues among us. Viva Christo Rey

  33. I think that the people who accuse writers of mocking Islam are missing the point. Nobody who takes Christianity seriously wants to see Islam mocked. Wasn’t the ad submitted to the NY Times actually satirical and meant to provoke the NY Times to admit that it was wrong to mock the religious faith of a significant minority of citizens, and move everybody else to conclude that it is wrong to mock Catholicism, Eastern Orthodoxy, and evangelical Christianity too?

  34. There are a few things I find distasteful in this– “whining like feminists” “there is a whiny quality”* and the general idea that we should get used to unfair treatment. The post recommends that instead of boycotting such anti Catholic behavior and such enterprises, we should pray for the conversion of our enemies. Well yes. It would be better to do both…to fight back with prayers And with action. Fight back… we are in an actual battle.

    * ”whiny” is often applied to children and to women — and tends to deny people in an “under” position the right to speak their grievance

  35. Well, this piece had the intended effect, I must say. I’m glad to see that there is a vigorous debate going on. Replies all around!

    Glad to hear it! And welcome back to the Faith 🙂

    Geller’s purposes aren’t really the issue here. The piece she drafted was OBJECTIVELY hateful. I believe, as well, that she is Jewish – which means she may have a different axe to grind with Muslims altogether.

    Am I equating Donohue and Sharpton? They’re not exact equivalents but their methods do strike me as similar. It doesn’t matter what they are “grounded in” as far as their methods are concerned. And I don’t like those methods.

    Didn’t take logic class in Catholic school. I took it at university, and I did pass. I think you should thank me, moreover, for giving you something to gripe about.


    If Stewart believes in our God, THE God, then his behavior would be beyond irrational. Fear of the Lord is the beginning of all wisdom (hopefully not the END of all wisdom, though). I always assumed he was another lapsed secular Jew.

    Joe Green:

    What horrid comments.

    “I’m with Donohue and others who go for the jugular rather than turning the other cheek”

    Yes, forget about that pansy Jesus Christ. Let’s emulate Scarface and Tony Soprano. I’m not advocating that nothing be done, but there is actually a great deal of wisdom in turning the other cheek. It isn’t about pacifism; it is about allowing your enemy to lose the moral highground and expose himself as the aggressor. Donohue ends up accomplishing the opposite.

    We will never be the secularists at their own game. They want this world and its glories and delights and will do anything to have them. We have limits imposed upon us, and for good reason. We don’t have to win this world. What good would it do us to win the world, and lose our souls? Don’t answer me – answer He who first asked that question.
    “As for praying for the heathens, I don’t think that will work”

    Right. God just can’t get the job done. Better rely on our own efforts. Because that always just turns out wonderfully.


    “conservatives should stop taking down their own men, doing the work of the opposition, acting as a circular firing squad… when donahue makes a foray into the culture war– he is on our team”

    I am always, always, always going to be critical of the people on “our side” and “our team.” If that bothers you, just skip my future posts. Without self-criticism, we will be destroyed through hubris. Self-criticism makes us stronger. And it’s just a mark of immaturity when one can’t see it.

    Paul H,

    Like I said above, I think Geller has her own axe to grind with Muslims and was actually taking advantage of the assault on the Church to push her own radical anti-Islamic agenda.


    I just don’t understand how people can say that they don’t think anyone is calling for the mockery of Islam, as you did. It is clearly what is being called for. Whether or not the people calling for it actually expect it to be done is besides the point. Suppose it actually were done? Suppose the media wasn’t actually afraid of Islamic retaliation? What then?

    TaraJ & Ikilope:

    I appreciate your comments. But I do want to be clear that I share Donohue’s outrage and disgust. I just disagree with his methodology.

    Paul Z:

    We cannot take advice on how to operate from the likes of Saul Alinsky. Again, its that whole win the world and lose your soul thing. That’s what happens when you become Machiavelli/Lenin/Gramsci/Alinsky (Alinsky was simply rehashing what he’d found in these sources). And I’d repeat my question to Pinky to you: what if the media took the challenge?

    Buckeye Pastor:

    Same question to you as well.

    Anzlyne (again):

    I say distasteful things. Another thing you ought to get used to. I am an offensive person. But it isn’t a sin to offend people. It is often a sin of ommission to go out of your way not to.

    I can’t deny anyone the right to do anything with my words. But I call ’em like I see ’em.

  36. Bonchamps, the church could use a Tony Soprano or two and attack dogs like Donohue. I would never imply Jesus was a “pansy” — your word — but “turning the other cheek” is often used as an excuse by Christians to never oppose evil. You forget how mad he got in the temple at the money changers. Read Ecclesiastes. There is a time for everything.

    You ought to view/listen to some of the old Bishop Sheen broadcasts where he vehemently assailed Communism and other evils and all those who represent it. You don’t win fights by retreating. Robert E. Lee found that out when he tried to move his Army of Virginia south only to be surrounded by Grant and company.

    Further back in history, the Church did not tuck tail when the hordes of heathen Muslims poured north and threatened to overtake Europe. The Crusaders prevailed or otherwise you’d be facing Mecca by now.

    Fight the good fight, Bonchamps. Illegitimi non carborundum

  37. Yes, Joe, there is a time for everything, and wisdom consists of knowing what to do at what time.

    A public insult is not cause for a Crusade. If you don’t turn the other cheek for an insult, then what would you ever turn it for?

    The Crusades were launched at the behest of the Greek emperor, after centuries of Islamic aggression and the recent destruction of hundreds of Christian churches. They were an appropriate and proportionate response to a grave threat. No one defends the Crusades more fervently than I do.

    I mean, do you even try to think things out, or are you always stuck in this either/or mental prison? I believe in denouncing evil. I believe in the use of force when it is justifiable. You can’t compare some late-night comedian’s sick humor to the existential threats posed by Islam and communism.

    You have zeal enough to fight, but you lack the wisdom to know when to draw your sword and when to put it up.

  38. There’s a reason, too, why the Marquis de Bonchamps is my inspiration. He resisted the murderous atheistic regime of the French Republic without compromising his Christian dignity. He refused to allow his soldiers to commit atrocities in war, and insisted on mercy for captured and defeated enemies. But this didn’t diminish his military leadership in the slightest. So you CAN effectively resist evil without becoming evil.

  39. This post reminded me of Michael Brendan Dougherty’s recent rant against the Catholic League:


    It was primarily in response to the Catholic League’s constructive and charitable comments on twitter after Hilary Rosen’s recent mis-step:

    Lesbian Dem Hilary Rosen tells Ann Romney she never worked a day in her life. Unlike Rosen, who had to adopt kids, Ann raised 5 of her own.

    Stay classy, “Catholic” League!

  40. Bonchamps, despite your ad hominem attack, I will reply without an equal measure malice or insult. Yes, I think critically and am not locked into a “mental prison,” as you assert, but rather believe in exercising my brain rather than repeating historical, or should I say, hysterical bromides that fail to refute my points.

    It is a good thing that strong-spined Christians who resist evil by speaking out are in the vast majority rather than passive-aggressives such as yourself who would be trampled by the pagans. Read Acts sometime and see how Peter, Paul and the other brave apostles stood up to the tyrants rather than cave. When does one draw one’s sword? When one is about to be cut to ribbons.

  41. Joe,

    Like 99% of people who use the term, you’ve completely missed the mark on what “ad hominem” means. I didn’t use ad hominem, and I didn’t “attack” you either. Talk about hysterical.

    I think your assessment of the situation is way off and completely lacking in wisdom. If you disagree, fine. It’s nothing for two members of Christ’s Church to hate one another over. You’re taking this all way too personally.

    I’m really, truly sorry that you don’t see how it is possible to have a strong spine and retain your moral dignity as well. It makes me sad, not angry. That’s all.

  42. Also, deriding someone as “passive-aggressive” who would willingly be “trampled by pagans” isn’t exactly a lack of malice. And it’s completely false and absurd, too. There are other ways to resist and to fight. Your inability to comprehend them doesn’t mean they don’t exist. It’s just really dishonest and uncharitable for you to continuously paint me as some sort of weak-willed pacifist because I don’t see the wisdom or prudence of a particular method. That’s why I think you are in a mental prison. Or is it really just malice?

  43. Bonchamps, let’s agree to bury the hatchet — but not in each other. If nothing else, you’ve provoked comments, pro and con, and led a spirited debate. I bear you no malice, my brother.

  44. 45 comments!
    I’m surprised Mr. Donohue has not commented by this time. Or, has he been banned here?

  45. While Dr. Donohue is called the Bulldog, I have followed him since he took office at Catholic League. Dr. Donohue has always and forever been a gentleman. A first asking for rectification of the problem, then seeking reconcilitation, accepting apologies and the like. When met with stonewalling, Dr.Donohue goes into the street with a bullhorn. “Can you hear me, now?” with bullhorn, barfbag, and boycott. Dr. Donhue can turn his other ceek, but as President of Catholic League, Dr. Donohue may not turn our other cheek.

  46. wow I disagreed with you, in an agreeable way, and you have just invited me not to participate in discussion of your posts anymore.

    I am not sure who or what you are referring to here:
    “Self-criticism makes us stronger. And it’s just a mark of immaturity when one can’t see it. “
    I do not say that there should be no constructive criticism– I did say it would be helpful to offer it directly to the person criticized.

    then you suggested I should get used to the fact that you say distasteful things and that you are an offensive person. I think you are not, as a person, offensive. I simply pointed out my own reaction (and why) to calling people whiny.

  47. ” you have just invited me not to participate in discussion of your posts anymore.”

    I did no such thing. This is melodramatic. Moreover, there was little “agreeable” about your initial objections. You accused me of taking down our own side, forming a circular firing squad, you all but suggested I was some sort of traitor to the faith.

    You think you can say things like that and expect me to find you “agreeable”?

    As for offering criticism to the person criticized, a) I made it clear that my criticism was NOT exclusively about Donohue, b) named other people in the same article specifically and c) Donohue is a public figure who opens himself up to public criticism.

    I must say I am disheartened and even a little ashamed of those commenters who can ONLY see some sort of treachery in my post.

    What a bunch of crybabies.

  48. “Greg Mockeridge: Dr. Donohue gets the job done by publicizing and informing what needs to be done, especially the boycots that have brought great results. Prayers work. Speak softly and carry a big stick. William Donohue is our “big stick”. Dr. Donohue levels the playing field. In our culture, being an angry, humorless prude is all we got.”

    Mary, i do not deny that Dr. Donahue has done great work as head of the Catholic League. For instance, their work against some of the calumnious attacks against Pope Pius XII, the most unsung hero of the WWII period as well as setting the record straight on complex Motara affair during the pontificate of Blessed Pope Pius IX can be attributed to his dogged and splendid leadership. But as a media face, he often comes off as a bore who is way too easily rattled. His opponents are often all too successful in getting the reaction from him they want. When the enemies of the Church say things with the purpose of getting us upset, we would do well not to give them the satisfaction of getting in a twist.

    As far as boycotts are concerned, I have never thought them to be all that practical.

  49. “The League was founded to parallel The Anti Defamation League.”

    I see… well surely the Jewish folks who started their initiative were wise enough to place in their name a fitting description of their raison de etre. It is by good reason they didn’t name it “The Jewish League”.

    Perhaps, the sitting president of the “Catholic League” can embrace a more fitting name, such as; “The Catholic Defenders League” or something to that extent? He would get more support that way no?

  50. You’re wrong. What Jon Stewart did used to be called blasphemy. He simply hides it under the cloak of ‘comedy.’ By insisting that ‘conservative’ Catholics shut up about this,you’re applying the standards of this culture of death to the Church. Basta!

  51. Ultimately, Catholic conservatives must desist from beheading and blowing to smithereens people they don’t like.

  52. T. Shaw remarks, “Ultimately, Catholic conservatives must desist from beheading and blowing to smithereens people they don’t like.”

    Exactly. Fighting fire with gasoline is generally a poor strategy.

  53. John Henry, Thank you for bringing up Bill Donohoe’s latest outrageous attack on adoptive mothers (and ad hominem attack on lesbians) on Twitter. He is a bulldog that most non-Catholics mistakenly link to the hierarchy of the Catholic Church, which just adds more fuel to the fire of anti-Catholicism in the mainstream media. If there were ever a need for an apology, it is in the case of this Twitter post. While I agree with the idea that, in most cases, public apologies are rarely anything but attention seeking stunts, Donohoe owes all adoptive parents an apology for this callous remark.

  54. Does anybody with a job, or a DVR, or eyes watch Jonathan Liebowitz anymore? Doesn’t his show have like 65% of the viewing audience of “Swamp People” on the History Channel? The only time I hear anybody talk about the Daily Show anymore is when he does something really gross and someone else in the media whom people still watch mentions him; you’re giving him the attention he wants! He’s like a baby. Come on; for someone supposed to be so counter-cultural and edgy (I don’t care what these Christo-fascist people think!), isn’t it strange that he’s afraid to use his real name?

  55. I couldn’t disagree with you more. Insisting on an apology is really a way of insisting that they take ownership of thoughtless words. “Whining” about double standards is crucial to making clear how illogical and politically partisan, the press in particular and liberals in general, are. Calling it whining is a silly description meant to cast a negative perception on it without seriously evaluating it. I suppose the Bishops are whining about the HHS mandate.

  56. Right.

    Because a late-night comedian’s joke is on the exact same level as a federal assault on religious liberty.

    Yes. You’ve convinced me with your kind, charitable tone that you are right and I am wrong.

    Seriously though.

    Whining about double-standards is what the left does for reasons I described. Dealing with them in a dignified manner is what a Christian ought to do. If you want to roll around in the sh – er, mud, with our enemies, fine. Don’t look to me for a towel to wipe yourself off when you’re done.

  57. Bonchamps: Most people are unaware about HHS madate and what it means to our religious freedom, most unfortunately, probably because these people are tuned into Jon Stewart. It is groveling in the mud. St. Paul said: “Soldiers be satisfied with your pay.” Sometimes going down with the enemy is the only way to take the enemy down. Not that you are wrong, but some people are different.

  58. Whilst I appreciate the Catholic League’s defense of the church, the problem that I have with Bill Donahue is that he seems to choose targets that are of high-profile and will make the biggest noise (Jay Leno, Jon Stewart, Viacom, the Empire State Building) while turning his back on other, less valuable, occurrences of anti-Catholic bias. I have been complaining to him about the website fark(dot)com for over 5 years for its aggregate re-publication of new stories about the Catholic Church with mocking headlines, and allowing anti-Catholic commentary to made on these stories, Never once has the League taken actions. Yet every time I have pointed out anti-Muslin or anti-Jewish commentary at that website, to defense groups of those faiths, they have sprung into action and the comments have been taken down. It seems as if Bill Donahue only does whatever will promote him rather than promote the Catholic Church.

  59. Mathilde:
    “John Henry, Thank you for bringing up Bill Donohoe’s latest outrageous attack on adoptive mothers (and ad hominem attack on lesbians) on Twitter.” Did not Hilary Rosen, a lesbian, career woman attack Ann Romney first for being a stay at home mom?
    The Christian symbol of the Nativity Scene used by Jon Stewart between the legs of a naked woman belongs to Christians to reverence. Piracy. Stewart ought to be prosecuted for intellectual property theft.
    Bonchamps: My first thought was: Why does not Bonchamps go to work with Dr. Donohue at the Catholic League to change matters?
    Greg Mockeridge: The bar one block away from our Catholic grade school began naked pole dancing. Our pastor called a boycott. It worked.

  60. Well from one point I can see that Mr. Donahue is trying to stand up for the faith since it is now not “Kosher” or may I say Politically Correct to say anything against Muslims or Gays or Women and He is just trying to say “well if we are not suppose to attack these entities then we should also be respectful of Catholics and Christians”!
    On the other hand when we look at the life of Christ, we do not see him standing up against those who attacked him nor for any of the disciples….in fact he warned them that they would be hated and stoned and loose their lives! Jesus DID however correct his own disciple when he cut off the ear of the roman guard, and Jesus also came against the Jewish Leaders and those selling products for the temple worship.
    Maybe we should look at what Christ DID get angry at and then also how quiet he was when he was being attacked and offended.

  61. Mary De Voe: So, because Hilary Rosen attacks Ann Romney, it is the proper CHRISTIAN response to: a) Call her out for being a lesbian; b) Criticize her for being an adoptive mother? That is extremely illogical and absolutely un-Christlike. Why don’t you go have a little chat with your pastor and get your head set back on straight? He seems like the only one in your little “CHRISTO REY” world of yours that seems to be thinking with a clear head.

  62. Ms. Rosen succeeded in getting too many to emote over her slanders and to be distracted from the immense failures and corruption of the obama regime.

    Mathilda, thanks for popping by!

    Dr. D first needs to be charitable.

    a) That would be “proper” if it were done with charity. See: Ms. Rosen likely won’t be going to Heaven if she/he continues her/his sinful lifestyle and persists in serving evil, liberal (but I repeat myself again) causes. FYI: The Spiritual Works of Mercy include: Admonish the sinner. Instruct the ignorant.

    b) See a). Likely her/his adoptive children also will have slim chance at salvation.

    And, thanks for the “Christo (sic) Rey” reference. The bolshevists murdered tens of thousands (including over 3,000 religious: bishops, priests, brothers, nuns) of Christians in the Spanish Civil War and in Mexican, not to mention the USSR and German National SOCIALISTS. Many martyrs cried out, “Viva Cristo Rey!” as their liberal murderers killed them for being Christians much like Mr. and Mrs. Romney.

  63. O.k. let’s just roll over and let any of these groups do whatever they want to us. Now you can make the turn the other cheek arugment, but Catholics need to Buck up and defend their faith. Asking for an Apology or “whiney” behavior shows that the secularist are doing something offensive and people need to know that the stuff they are doing is garabage. If no one does anything then nothing will be done and they will just roll right over us. I am sorry but your commentary sounds a bit “whiney” complicit.

  64. Yes. That’s exactly what I said. Roll over. Let them do whatever they want. You’ve bravely ousted a traitor to the Faith. Feel good about yourself? Enough to go away? Like, forever? And not come back?

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