Mark Shea on "Media Distractions"
Writing at Inside Catholic on the media's "Get Benedict" campaign, Mark Shea hits one out of the park:
As the Mysterious Get Benedict Society campaign to destroy Pope Benedict XVI continues shooting itself in the foot with various false starts, half-baked stories, and tales told by mainstream media idiots, the thing that continues to impress me is the sheer self-contradictory irony of the thing. It's really quite crushing.
We are instructed (just as a pedophile priest might have told one of his victims) that our proper response to the media as Catholics ought to be gratitude for the massive eruption of unapologetic lies that have been told about Benedict over the past month because, you know, we depend on them as the mediators of truth and light, and we would live in darkness but for their ministrations. So yeah, even though they may have committed a few peccadilloes in the performance of their sacred duty, still it would be foul ingratitude for any Catholic to offer them anything but abject thanks for the debt we owe them in saving us. Indeed, we are to take it for granted that, with the sole exception of the fact that the MSM has pretty much gotten everything dead wrong in the whole "Benedict, the Nazi pope, protected perverts and endangered The Children" narrative it has ginned up for the past month, it mostly got everything right. On the other hand, those who question that narrative are "deflecting blame" and not taking that "searching and fearless inventory" of Benedict's wretched moral failings that the MSM are just about to discover after several false starts, lying headlines, and craptastic pieces of lousy reportage.
That much we talked about previously in this space.
But, nothing daunted by their ignorance and transparent malice, the MSM marches on in its war on Benedict, determined to get the Nazi pope, even if they have to completely throw aside all their journalistic ethics to do it.
Much of this is due to pride and vanity as much as to malice against Benedict and the Catholic Faith. When a journalista has documentably screwed up not just once but multiple times in his hysterical vendetta, he presses on, hoping that he can find some sort of dirt to prove that he is the brave crusading journalist and not a hack with a grudge who is afraid of looking stupid. So we keep getting a succession of dramatic "Ah-HA!" flourishes from the press, with the assurance that this time, for sure, they've nabbed the Nazi with the goods.
Bottom line: The laicization was not a punishment being imposed on the disgusting padre. It was a request made by the disgusting padre, who didn't want to be a priest anymore. It came to Cardinal Ratzinger's desk, not as, "Here's a pervert who needs a canonical trial and a good hard boot in the butt," but as, "Here's one of a jillion other priests who are bailing on their vows."
Moreover, the CDF didn't refuse his request. It granted it in 1987. What it did was . . . subject it to bureaucratic due process, beginning with a standard form letter. Why? Because gobs of priests were requesting laicization in the 1970s and 1980s in order to marry their girlfriends, and John Paul said, in the early 1980s, "Put the brakes on all those laicization requests." So the CDF fed it into the hopper like all those other requests and, as with all those other requests, basically said, "Hey! Not so fast with the laicization. Think about the good of the universal Church." The "good of the universal Church" was not code meaning, "Cover up the pervert or it will make us all look bad," but rather jargon meaning, "Priests can't just blow off their vows because they want to get married. We're not giving out laicizations like Pez dispensers here."
So Benedict is guilty . . . of following due process in making a final symbolic gesture that tells a priest that he may no longer legally function as a priest. Burn him!
Or, alternatively, the Righteous might consider learning what they are talking about. Press who wander about chattering about "defrocking" are in something of the same league as the experts who tell us that the pope wears green to Mass to indicate his support of environmentalism. They are, in fact, ignorami posing as "Vatican Insiders" ...
[Read the whole thing]