Cardinal George…..What Would Jesus Do?

Respectfully submitted by Lawrence Rafferty (rafflaw)-Guest Blogger

Earlier in the month, Cardinal Francis George of the Archdiocese of Chicago angered gay rights activists by making an unfortunate comparison between the gay rights movement and the Ku Klux Klan.  “Cardinal Francis George, the Archbishop of Chicago, this week told a Chicago news station that he agreed with a local Roman Catholic church’s objections to the city’s recently-adjusted Gay Pride Parade route passing by its doors and warned that the parade could “morph into the Ku Klux Klan.”  George made the comment Sunday on Fox Chicago when asked about Our Lady of Mount Carmel’s complaints that the parade passing by its Belmont Avenue location would force the church to cancel its morning mass. The church recently launched a petition urging the city to force parade organizers to adjust their plans.  “I go with the pastor,” George told Fox. “He’s telling us that he won’t be able to have services on Sunday if that’s the case. You don’t want the gay liberation movement to morph into something like the Ku Klux Klan, demonstrating in the streets against Catholicism.”‘ Huffington Post

If you were like me when you read Cardinal George’s words, you may have guessed that he was misquoted or taken out of context.  Unfortunately for the Cardinal, he was given a chance to retrace his words, but instead of doing the Christian thing, he repeated his comments which I consider a slur.  “When the Fox host pointed out that George’s comparison was “a little strong,” the cardinal stood by his statement.  “It is, but you take a look at the rhetoric,” he continued. “The rhetoric of the Ku Klux Klan, the rhetoric of some of the gay liberation people. Who is the enemy? Who is the enemy? The Catholic Church.”  The cardinal’s comments came a matter of days before the Gay Pride Parade organizers announced Wednesday that the pride start time, originally pushed back to 10 a.m. in an effort to curb public drinking, overcrowding and other safety hazards, would revert back to noon in order to stay clear of the church’s Sunday mass, according to the Windy City Times.”  Huffington Post

I know everyone is human and can make mistakes, but Cardinal George has not admitted that his comparison was a mistake.  “George — who initially backed off his incendiary comparison — is doubling down on his remarks in a written statement:

“The Chicago Gay Pride Parade has been organized and attended for many years without interfering with the worship of God in a Catholic church,” George wrote. “When the 2012 Parade organizers announced a time and route change this year, it was apparent that the Parade would interfere with divine worship in a Catholic parish on the new route. When the pastor’s request for reconsideration of the plans was ignored, the organizers invited an obvious comparison to other groups who have historically attempted to stifle the religious freedom of the Catholic Church. One such organization is the Ku Klux Klan which, well into the 1940′s, paraded through American cities not only to interfere with Catholic worship but also to demonstrate that Catholics stand outside of the American consensus. It is not a precedent anyone should want to emulate.  “It is terribly wrong and sinful that gays and lesbians have been harassed and subjected to psychological and even physical harm. These tragedies can be addressed, however, without disturbing the organized and orderly public worship of God in a country that claims to be free. I am grateful that all parties concerned resolved this problem by moving the Parade’s start time so as not to conflict with the celebration of Mass that Sunday.”  Think Progress

I included the full statement from the Think Progress article in order to provide the full context of the Cardinal’s statement.  I have a few questions after reading these disturbing comments from the head of the Catholic Archdiocese.  Why would the local parish have to cancel its Sunday mass?  Aren’t other events held on Sunday at the same time as the Gay Pride parade’s original start time?  Why couldn’t the Mass proceed as usual?  In one breath Cardinal George complains that having a parade would disturb the “public worship of God in a country that claims to be free”.  I guess in the Cardinal’s world, only Catholics have the right to gather on a Sunday morning at 10:00 am.

I think the good Cardinal needs to take a refresher course in recent American History.  The Ku Kluk Klan did indeed attempt to harass and abuse Catholics and Jews and Blacks, but the last time I checked, nowhere in the LGBT movement is it suggested that gays should block Catholics in their attempts to gather and worship on Sundays!  All Cardinal George had to say was that he was grateful that an arrangement had been made to return the parade time to Noon.   Cardinal George to his credit did comment that the LGBT community has been harassed and abused and called that harassment sinful.  Has Cardinal George forgotten when he and his priests refused to offer Communion to LGBT members?

“After Chicago Cardinal Francis E. George denied the Eucharist to protesters wearing rainbow sashes on Pentecost Sunday, he and several gay activists said the problem wasn’t that the protesters were identifying themselves as homosexual but that they were using the Eucharist for a political statement.  “When you come with a statement about yourself, that’s not the way to receive it,” said Cardinal George in an interview on the “Catholic Community of Faith” radio show May 28, two days before about a dozen members or supporters of the gay activist Rainbow Sash Movement were refused Communion at Chicago’s Holy Name Cathedral.”  Catholic News

I guess it is a political statement to Cardinal George to wear the rainbow sashes to church.  It would seem to me that it would be reasonable to claim that Cardinal George has a problem co-existing with the LGBT community and this latest episode is just icing on the cake. What do you think?

My final question to Cardinal George is, What Would Jesus Do?

39 thoughts on “Cardinal George…..What Would Jesus Do?”

  1. Lk, I used to be acquainted with a woman who worked with a couple of gay guys at her office. They were going to attend a gay pride convention in Florida and invited her to come along. Although she is about as straight as they come, she was both interested and curious, so she took them up on their offer.

    She said that first of all, she had never been surrounded by so many men and felt so safe. She also said that she had always wondered where all the best looking men were. She found them. Said she had never seen so much eye candy in one place in her life.

  2. pete: “a klan parade where everyone is wearing assless chaps

    yeah”
    ****
    🙂 I love your wit.

    IMO assless chaps on a good-looking man is the best part of the various gay pride parades. 🙂

    Perhaps I have said too much.

  3. Barney: “The problem with “alternative lifestyles” such as homosexuality pushing agendas such as no discrimination, can’t turn around and discriminate against those who prefer children. Once you deviate from the norm and embrace one “alternative lifestyle”, you inevitably have to acknowledge all of them. Otherwise, you are discriminating and become hypocritical.”

    Bonnie, listen to Deborah and do some research, she’s correct.

    Don’t pay any mind to Barney, he’s an idiot.

  4. There is a misunderstanding of both logic and the law when one tries to posit that if you “allow” (for lack of a better term) one set of behaviors, you have to open the door for all similar or related behaviors. Poppycock!

    A simple example is that while adult porn is legal under the First Amendment, possession or distribution of child porn will get you a trip to the crowbar hotel. Gay sex does not automatically mean sex with kids, animals, polygamy or any other wild fantasy that Rick [Please don’t Google my name] Santorum or professional religionists claim.

  5. Thank you professor Turley. I think it is wonderful that academics such as yourself are willing to critic the Cardinal’s recent actions. From my perspective his words were uncalled for and at the very least he should apologize for them. But his pride will most likely stop him from doing so.

    I was happy that the Friday, Chicago Tribune took a strong editorial position in opposing his words.

    Happy New Year to all

    Joe Murray
    Executive Director
    Rainbow Sash Movement

  6. Deborah said: [“Bonnie
    1, December 31, 2011 at 4:52 pm
    I get confused. The Catholic Church doesn’t like gays and lesbians; but, it’s okay for the priests to sexually abuse little boys, which seems a bit homosexual to me?”

    Pedophilia and homosexuality are two different things. A pedophile rapes children. Gay sex involves consenting adults. Of all the shameful behavior by the church in its pedophilia scandal, the effort to blame gay priests was particularly egregious. Pedophile priests were equal opportunity abusers, raping girls as well as boys. There was nothing gay about their behavior.]

    Deborah – both are considered “alternative lifestyles”. The only difference is the homosexual agenda has been successful in “normalizing” homosexuality. Groups like NAMBLA (which the militant homosexual movement does not like to acknowledge) are interested in normalizing their sexual disorientation, in the same manner GLAD etc.. has “normalized” homosexuality.

    The problem with “alternative lifestyles” such as homosexuality pushing agendas such as no discrimination, can’t turn around and discriminate against those who prefer children. Once you deviate from the norm and embrace one “alternative lifestyle”, you inevitably have to acknowledge all of them. Otherwise, you are discriminating and become hypocritical. The MHA movement has painted itself into a corner, and it will be interesting how they try to get out of it. Of course groups like NAMBLA may one day be able to “normalize” their lifestyle as well though. The way things are going, it wouldn’t surprise me.

    Additionally, those “Catholic priests” who were caught abusing children, statistically were almost always homosexual. Another huge irony. Bonnie was actually correct in her point.

  7. Pietro said “I will cut a deal with you Cardinal. You get the child molesting priests out of the state of Illinois and I will not bring the Klan by any tme soon.”

    Pietro – Perhaps you might have overlooked a statistic but those who were molesting children were almost always homosexual. Kinda ironic, isn’t it.

  8. “Bonnie
    1, December 31, 2011 at 4:52 pm
    I get confused. The Catholic Church doesn’t like gays and lesbians; but, it’s okay for the priests to sexually abuse little boys, which seems a bit homosexual to me?”

    Pedophilia and homosexuality are two different things. A pedophile rapes children. Gay sex involves consenting adults. Of all the shameful behavior by the church in its pedophilia scandal, the effort to blame gay priests was particularly egregious. Pedophile priests were equal opportunity abusers, raping girls as well as boys. There was nothing gay about their behavior.

  9. angryman, one of my favorite answers on multiple-choice quizzes is, “All of the above.”

    1. I know; right? I hate ambiguity. Just tell it like it is and take the beat-down if it comes. I guess this would then qualify as Cowardly Ambiguity. or perhaps Ambiguous Cowardice. So hard to nail it down even in the absurd.

  10. I must say first that i understand the problem with the comparrison to the KKK. Outrageous.

    I must say; after reading the statement that I didn’t find him to be so much personally opposed to the Gay community. I don’t know his history so………….

    To me he appeared to be a person who is very bad at making judgements. He seemed to find nothing wrong with the comment even after he was nailed down about it.

    I got the impression that he was a person who uses a shotgun to kill a flea.

    I would suggest the possibility that he was over-reacting to the lack of response from the parade organizers. Which is not to blame them as they were under no obligation to either respond or change their plans.

    As the head of the Catholic Arch Diosese he would be required to uphold chuch law whether he was in agreement with it or not; I would think.

    Of course he could also be a raging bigot using the church to hide behind.

    But I’m just saying…………………….

  11. I wonder what it is like to have absolutely no shame. Seriously. It must be liberating in ways I can only dream of. To be part of the management of an organization that protects and defends rapists, child abusers, sadists and yet make public pronouncements about the morality of loving human beings marching in support of their right to openly celebrate their love takes some incredible lack of shame.

    These people must know there is no hell.

  12. I get confused. The Catholic Church doesn’t like gays and lesbians; but, it’s okay for the priests to sexually abuse little boys, which seems a bit homosexual to me? In my book, child molestation is one of the worst sins and when it is done by a church official, it becomes a heinous crime. Now, in Chicago, the Catholic Church is harassing the LGBT community? I’m glad I am not Catholic.

  13. I will cut a deal with you Cardinal. You get the child molesting priests out of the state of Illinois and I will not bring the Klan by any tme soon. And if a male priest molests a male child then that makes him a gay child abuser and if he is dressed in the habit or frock or whatever you call it then he is in drag.
    And since you cover it up, cuntenance it, provide for it, and rally round the cross then you are a gay, child porking…..

  14. Sheldon Kopp wrote, “There are no great men.”

    He also wrote, “If you have a hero, look again; you have diminished yourself in some way.”

    Dr. Kopp was saying, in his own inimitable way, that if you appoint a human being to tell you what to think or believe, you have made that person your guru and have given up your own ability to think, reason and make moral decisions.

    The Cardinal is a human being, and as the late Albert Ellis observed, “All human beings are fucked up in one way or the other.” I am OK with that as long as it does not affect anyone else. When it affects others, Oliver Wendell Holmes’ admonition about fists and noses comes into play.

    Holmes also wrote, “Beware how you take away hope from another human being.” That is something anyone who tries to diminish another person’s freedom should ponder closely. Actions have consequences; maybe not now, but someday. Karma is a concept with some real world applications.

  15. Martin,
    I am not suggesting that we need a new law to correct this action by the Cardinal. It may be a legal issue from the standpoint of discrimination, but that is not what I am attempting to discuss. Cardinal George can do whatever he wants in his church.
    Alexander,
    Comparing the LGBT community to the KKK does not jive with your comment about the Church being for love. That is why I asked what would Jesus do?
    OS,
    You could be right about the moral blindness.

  16. raff, the best predictor of future behavior is to look at past behavior.

    My guess is the Cardinal would say that Jesus would do and say exactly what he did and said. (see: “pareidolia”). A combination of grandiosity and moral blindness, methinks. And this guy calls himself a spiritual leader?

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