Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Mark Shea in National Catholic Register: "Richard Rich Lives"

Mark Shea writes about the Edwards bloggettes and Catholics in Alliance for the Democrat Party ... errr ... Common Good in the March 25-31 issue of the National Catholic Register:
... I can only conclude [Edwards] thought the rest of us are idiots when he accepted Marcotte’s and McEwan’s preposterous claims that, in spewing anti-Catholic and anti-Christian invective worthy of Julius Streicher, they “meant no offense.”

Edwards obviously saw no problem with this final insult to the intelligence of Christians. And he believed that his base in the Democratic Party would see nothing wrong with it either. Indeed, a case could be made that he feared his base in the Democratic Party would punish him if he dropped these bigots for their grotesque insults.

I came to this conclusion when, shortly after the frou-frou began, I was contacted by an organization called “Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good” as it swung into action to do damage control in the blogosphere with a “Nothing to see here. Let’s move along!” note that read in part:

“Catholics in Alliance for the Common Good condemns these and all religiously intolerant remarks. We accept Sen. Edwards’ assurances that he too was offended by comments made by recently-hired staffers and that religious intolerance has no place in his campaign. Catholics comprise more than one quarter of the U.S. public, and neither John Edwards nor any other candidate can afford to take this constituency for granted.

“We hope this unfortunate incident will initiate a deeper conversation on the part of all presidential candidates regarding the broad range of issues and values of primary importance to the Catholic community, including the Iraq War, a concern for the poor, human life and dignity, the availability of health care and a commitment to the common good.”

I replied that if Edwards is serious, he would have fired these kids. If not, then I would no more vote for him than I would for somebody who hired Klansmen or anti-Semitic skinheads and only reluctantly slapped their wrists after they had been exposed.

At this point, the “Catholic Alliance for the Common Good” wrote back and scolded me:

“We respect your views on this and stand by our position that forgiving people — whether these bloggers, Ted Haggard, or Mel Gibson — is within the spirit of Christianity. We condemned in no uncertain terms the anti-Catholic statements of the bloggers, and our statement was directed specifically at Sen. Edwards’ admission that these remarks were personally offensive.”

I replied that forgiveness does not mean freedom from consequences, particularly when the “repentance” consists of flat-out lies. Haggard stepped down. Gibson went into treatment. The Edwards bigots kept their jobs. I already extend forgiveness to these bloggers for their insults to the Church, the Holy Spirit, the Blessed Virgin and the Holy Father. But I don’t believe for a second they have taken any serious step to receive that forgiveness, because they only compounded their naked insults with naked lies about meaning no offense.

It is an insult to Catholic intelligence, therefore, for something called the “Catholic Alliance for the Common Good” to indulge in we’re-more-forgiving-than-thou language simply to hurry us past blasphemy against the Holy Spirit.

True, these bigots resigned shortly thereafter (blaming their critics in a Nixonian way for their departure and taking absolutely no responsibility for their actions). But that was no thanks to either Edwards or the “Catholic Alliance for the Common Good.” This tells you all you need to know, both about Edwards and about this latest, phony, wholly owned subsidiary of the Democratic Party to join the political landscape next to “Catholics for a Free Choice.”

Catholic Alliance for the Common Good: It profits a man nothing to gain the whole world and lose his own soul. But for Edwards?
(emphasis added)

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