Want evidence that not all Christians are bat shit crazy nutballs who want to establish a theocracy here in the United States? Well, then you need to check out what the Catholics for Choice have to say about Bill Donohue(PDF) and the Catholic League.
It is not pretty nor nice, but it’s most definitely a solid bullseye. Some of their key findings:
- The Catholic League tactics are i) manufacture controversy; ii) try to intimidate the
“enemy”; iii) bully the opposition; iv) complain early and often; v) attack popular
culture; and vi) silence the loyal opposition.
- In utilizing these tactics it actively embarrasses, intimidates, bullies and distorts
reality to suppress critics of the Catholic church, the Vatican, and the church’s many
- Catholic League president Bill Donohue is in a constant quest for the next
“controversy” to keep his particular brand of reactionary Catholicism in the media
- Once Donohue has found a “controversy” he uses wildly inflated rhetoric that is sure
to inflame—either in print or in one of his infamous cable TV news appearances—and
then stages a protest or takes out an ad in the New York Times to attract attention.
Then he waits for the seemingly ever-receptive press to show up.
- When it comes to peddling its special brand of inflammatory rhetoric, the media and
arts have been a special target of the Catholic League since the mid-1990s.
- The number of examples of anti-Catholicism claimed by the Catholic League grew
from 140 in 1995 to 320 in 2006, yet the only thing that seems to have actually
increased is the League’s definition of anti-Catholic activity.
- When the media cover the tempests he manages to whip up from time to time, few
ever stop to examine the basis for his objections—they just cover the dog fight.
- Donohue claims that the Catholic League has some 350,000 members and that
number is often used by the media when referencing the organization’s supposed
clout. These numbers, however, appear to be a highly inflated picture of the Catholic
League’s actual membership.
I especially like how they point out the media’s role in promoting Donohue and his band of screaming harpies. It doesn’t matter how asinine nor unfounded his attacks upon various people and groups are, the media will cover it without question.
I do disagree with one thing though and it’s their conclusion that it’s Donohue’s victims who need to “take a moment to examine the charges, rather than react blindly or rashly for fear of offending some nonexistent constituency that Donohue supposedly represents.”
This is victim blaming and it isn’t right. It’s like telling a rape victim to take a moment to consider if she was, in fact, asking for it when she’s surrounded by a bunch of hyenas screaming for her head on platter because she said she wasn’t asking for it just because she wore a dress.
The only people responsible for Donohue’s attacks are Donohue, his supporters and his enablers both in the pews and behind the news desks.