Tuesday, March 31, 2009

HotAir and Hate: Anti-Catholic Bigotry from the Right

A number of blogs are commenting about the burgeoning problem of anti-Catholicism in the comboxes at conservative news blog HotAir:

From Don McClarey at The American Catholic:
Hot Air Has A Problem

From Sydney Carton at Aggressive Conservative:
Hot Air Bigotry - second thread for the day!
More Hot Air Bigotry
Hot Air's Religion Problem: What I want...
More Hot Air Anti-Catholic Bigotry...
Hot Air has a Religion Problem...

From Cranky Conservative:
A bunch of Hot Air

Why would such bigotry be tolerated in the comboxes at that site? It could be that the problem starts at the top.

Previous Pro Ecclesia posts on this subject:
Tancredo Trashes Pope [UPDATED]

Yesterday from the Left, Today Bishops Attacked from the Right

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At 3/31/2009 11:31 AM, Blogger Paul, just this guy, you know? said...

Jay, the post of Michelle Malkin's you link to appears to me to be principled and passionate opposition to a political position held by many Catholic bishops and leaders. The criticism of Catholics I see in that piece look like political issues, not religious.

I don't see where Malkin's remarks cross the line. Can you help me out here?

At 3/31/2009 11:34 AM, Blogger Zach said...

I agree with Paul. In fact, some of those same critiques have come out of my mouth.

At 3/31/2009 11:49 AM, Blogger DP said...

Try the first paragraph:

"Open borders benefit Catholic churches looking to fill their pews and collection baskets. The Vatican and American bishops, led by radical L.A. Cardinal Roger Mahony, have long promoted immigration anarchy and lawlessness."

Really, Ms. Malkin? It's one thing to criticize the statements of the Vatican and the bishops, which are too often long on sentiment and short on realism.

But this is chum in the waters, accusing the Catholic hierarchy of actively subverting American security, all in the name of stuffing the pews with illegals anteing into the collection basket.

The commenters know it, too--take a look at the poison her depth charge churned up.

It's not quite "The American River Ganges," but it's getting there.


At 3/31/2009 11:59 AM, Blogger Jay Anderson said...

"Open borders benefit Catholic churches looking to fill their pews and collection baskets"

Crosses the line. Questions the motives of those in the Church as purely pecuniary. One of the oldest attacks on the Church dating from the Reformation or even before. Besides, as if the immigrants in question weren't Catholic before they got here.

"The Vatican and American bishops ... have long promoted immigration anarchy and lawlesness"

Crosses the line. No explanation necessary.

"If the Vatican had its way, we’d be paying for every last organ transplant for every last illegal alien patient in the world."

Crosses the line. Ascribes motives to the Vatican that she has no way of knowing are correct.

She then goes on to cite to Tancredo's rant against the Church, which includes such gems as this:

“However, it is not in [the Pope's] job description to engage in American politics.”

Crosses the line. Sounds like something Frances Kissling might say with regard to abortion.

And this:

“I suspect the Pope’s immigration comments may have less to do with spreading the gospel than they do about recruiting new members of the church. This isn’t preaching it is ‘faith-based’ marketing.”

Crosses the line. Again ascribing pecuniary motives to the Holy Father.

If you guys agree with that nonsense, I'm not sure what to say in response.

At 3/31/2009 12:58 PM, Blogger Zach said...

Yes, I agree that ascribing untoward motives to the Church is uncalled for, and I didn't read the Tancredo piece. So, in that sense, I agree with you, Jay.

In general, however, I agree with Malkin that many of our bishops sound downright goofy and incoherent when commenting on this issue (as they do on global warming). One gets the distinct impression that they believe it's permissible for a nation to have immigration laws on the books in theory--so long as those laws are never enforced.

At 3/31/2009 1:48 PM, Blogger Tito Edwards said...

I have a personal problem quoting anything from Tom Tancredo myself. He more than sufficiently exhibited anti-Catholic rhetoric before and during the Republican primaries.

That to me is a bad move by Michelle Malkin in taking any quotes from Tom Tancredo period.

At 3/31/2009 3:56 PM, Blogger Michael R. Denton said...


I think the problem the bishops have had translating is that when people think "immigration laws" today they think laws that shut down the border. For the United States, just immigration laws according to what I've read from the Church would be laws that facilitate the process of people coming into the country (unless a country cannot handle immigrants, which is not the case in the United States). Thus when the bishops talk about the right of a nation to have laws enforcing immigration yet that also should allow the immigrant into the country, people get confused.

At 3/31/2009 5:01 PM, Blogger Paul, just this guy, you know? said...

Jay, thanks for your response, I understand your point of view better.

I'm willing to have Congress revise the immigration laws, but I really don't see the point, given that we don't pay much attention to the laws we have.

I think the bishops confuse things when they encourage illegal immigrants to continue to violate U.S. laws. My read of both scripture and Catholic teaching is that both call us to obey the law.

Add to this the fact that illegal immigrants are easily exploited by employers, and are disproportionately likely to commit violent crimes. Their price in the labor market forces down the wages of legal residents, as well, which affects low-income workers more than higher-paid professionals.

I don't think it's unreasonable to say that our nation should be able to control its own borders. Certainly every bishop's residence has a lock on the front door, they control who comes into their homes. The U.S. should be able to control who enters the country, and the bishops should not undermine that, but my perception is that too many of them desire to.

At 3/31/2009 5:11 PM, Blogger Lee Strong said...

Could part of the problem be that Catholicism transcends political labels. It espouses some things that the world views as liberal and some that the world describes as conservative. So doctrinaire folks and the left and right can have problems wiht the Church.

At 3/31/2009 7:45 PM, Blogger Tito Edwards said...


Yes, Catholicism does transcend labels.

When a newspaper calls the Cardinal Newman Society a conservative Catholic organization, it is a misnomer.

We are simply Catholics. The only thing we distinguish amongst ourselves are dissident Catholics like Nancy Pelosi, Joe Biden, and Ted Kennedy and Catholics.

That's my opinion, but I know that Catholics from both sides of the aisle would agree with me on this one.

At 3/31/2009 9:48 PM, Blogger zubismom said...

As a rule, I do not read blog comments. Thanks for informing me of the Anti-Catholic antics in the Hot Air com boxes. I intend to write Michelle an email asking for a little responsible action from H A concerning the hateful posts. We (Catholics)may be the last acceptable recipients of the haters of the world. But, I refuse to accept this quietly.
I know you wrote that you are about "done" blogging, but I hope you stay around. I would be totally ignorant of this with our your input.
God Bless

At 4/01/2009 12:59 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

MM's column missed the point. There was an opportunity to improve security by giving amnesty to those held captive by the power of drug lords. This would of improved the situation on border.
She is right that the motives of the pro-immigration groups aren't always selfless - but she was wrong to fall into the trap set by those opposing our unique form of government.
What would MM do if her family was starving and threatened and enslaved?
I think I know.
She and Tancredo carried their crusade far enough to swing everything toward the state we are in now.
As far as I'm concerned, she has a classic case of the "plank in the eye".

At 4/01/2009 12:17 PM, Blogger craig said...

HotAir and hate go hand in hand.
The fact that some spilled over onto the Catholics that oppose her militant anti-immigrant stance should not be surprising.

At 4/01/2009 1:20 PM, Blogger James H said...

What do people expect. On the immigration issue people have allied themselves with some very anti Catholic characters.

It was far worse two years ago where honest disagreement had people going inot the worst anti Catholic statesments when ever Catholics advocated for immigration reform or explained the Bishops true postion.

But there seemed to be an attitude that to halt immigration reform that some might have suffer freindly fire

At 4/02/2009 4:53 AM, Anonymous Donald R. McClarey said...

"HotAir and hate go hand in hand."

Actually Craig why I pointed out is because I expect more of conservative sites. Leftist sites, no doubt where you spend a lot of your time, by definition despise Catholics and their Church. Of course you are such an Obama-bot that you ignore that little fact of internet life.

Here we have a charming and very typical thread about Pope Benedict and his statement about condoms from Democratic Underground:


The home of most anti-Catholicism of the vilest type is firmly with your ideological soulmates in this country.

At 4/02/2009 4:55 AM, Anonymous Donald R. McClarey said...

"Actually Craig why I pointed out is because I expect more of conservative sites." should have been "Actually Craig why I pointed this out is because I expect more of conservative sites.


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