One of the side effects of my current situation (working about 60 hours a week, more or less) is that I tend to catch crises when they're a day or so in, not at the precise moment of crest. But that also gives me the chance to catch up on things with a little reflection. Often, as you may have noted, I get tips from Thers, who, working only one job, has a comparatively flexible schedule.
And so I note, via WhiskeyFire, that:
Professional Outraged Catholic and homophobic misogynist bigot Bill Donahue is Professionally Outraged at [Amanda Marcotte and Melissa McEwan] for making "anti-Catholic" comments.
(Michelle Malkin is also frothing at the mouth, but she always is, isn't she?)
Thers noted that your Professionally Outraged religious folks want to have it both ways: they want to claim "majority culture" status ("Everyone thinks like me, they just don't say so!") while simultaneously wrapping themselves in the tattered cloak of victimhood ("You're not allowed to be mean to me!"). Okay, but it's important to note that these are--or should be--mutually exclusive cultural positions. If you've got the numbers, why worry about the discontents in the balcony?
For me, Catholicism is a tribal identity: more ethnic and cultural than religious, per se. My separation came surprisingly late: with the ascension of Benedict in 2005. It was a repudiation of everything I find valuable in religion, an assertion that ignorance, control, and paranoia were taking the day. My father, a deeply spiritual man who goes to Mass daily and who I respect tremendously, had no better words of comfort than "He's old; he won't live long." If I wanted to follow gay-baiting Nazis, I'd sign on with Ted Haggard: at least he knows how to party.
Donohue's Catholicism is the stuff that drove me away. If he and his ilk were content to assert their control only over the people who chose to participate, it would be one thing, even though I would still despise them for the policies that made my mother, locked in the house with too many children, depressed and old by the time she was 40. But she chose Catholicism, in a certain way, and late in life even went to work for a rogue Lefty branch of the Church.
Donohue's right to outrage ends the second he goes on national television to whine. He does so in order to influence public policy, policy which does not ask whether someone is an observant Catholic before telling them they can't have birth control or an abortion. If he was so sure of the justice of his position, why would he need it enforced by law? As long as Donohue wants to influence policy, as long as he presents himself as the face of the Catholic Church, he's going to get shit thrown at him, and some of it's going to hit his beloved Church. He is doing them damage.
I love many, many Catholics. I love the Catholic Workers and Pax Christi. When I worked in a Catholic school, the nuns were by far the coolest and funniest women there, much less tightly wound than the Donohughian lay people, obsessing about abortion and sex. But the selection of Benedict indicated to me that these last were now in charge, and I cannot be part of them, not even for the delightful people in the other categories.
So fuck off, Bill Donohue. Fuck off from a lifelong Catholic feminist with twelve years of Catholic schooling under her belt. Be as shocked as you like by the language; I care not. You're a scumbag and a Pharisee. You are destroying the Church--my Church, my family--and I hope you rot in hell for it.