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Thursday, March 11, 2010

Time for a Catholic Tea Party movement!

Finally, finally, someone has come forward! It's time to take on the bishops' conference for its insincerity on immigration reform, health care for all, and its obsession with sex to the detriment of all other concerns.

There's only problem. The calls for change are coming from the right!
Catholic Advocate, a group recently founded by Deal Hudson, who led the 2000 and 2004 Bush campaign outreach to Catholics before being ousted over a sexual misconduct scandal, is pushing a Catholic tea party to counter the USCCB, which Catholic Advocate claims is too liberal. Hudson (who has been described as the "Catholic Karl Rove") brought his idea to last month's Conservative Political Action Conference, where his Catholic tea party break-out session even attracted a brief appearance by tea party favorite Marco Rubio, who is running against Florida governor Charlie Crist in the Republican Senate primary.
There are, of course, plenty of sane Catholics out there. Indeed, they represent at least half of the Catholic laity and, given present demographic trends, that percentage can only increase over time. Here's one:
Bryan Cones at U.S. Catholic, reacting to Hudson's attack on the bishops and tea party clarion call, sardonically observed: 
Can we just be honest here? Deal Hudson is a Republican. He thinks everyone should be a Republican, and he thinks if you're a Catholic, you should be a Republican because the only issues you should ever cast a vote on are abortion and gay marriage (as if the GOP is really pure in practice on either of those issues). Abortion and gay marriage are, after all, why Jesus came to earth.
The tragedy for American Catholicism is that the craziest 10% of the American Catholics contribute 90% of the money. Yet 55-60% of American Catholics, and probably 80% of non-white Catholics, are free of the extremism and obsession with sexuality that characterizes the post-John Paul II church. This silent majority, never realizing its power, and because it was never all that passionate or knowledgeable about religion in the first places, never revolted. As a result the sanity of the American Church was slowly, irretrievably lost.

Meanwhile, the American media, including, sadly, even the best known "moderate" Catholic bloggers, doesn't examine the Church with the savvy that Italian newspapers do. The result is that the silent majority is also an ignorant majority, which permits the extremist faction to change Church policy and get away with the Big Lie: "this is how it's always been."

A tragedy all round, but extremist religious in every tradition have long used the Big Traditionalist Lie to their advantage.

Ignorance, legalism, and the mountain of ill-begotten cash with which they bribe American and Roman hierarchs, are Republican Catholics' greatest weapons. Sadly,  there is no true tea party on its way to challenge them.

1 comment :

John C. Hathaway said...

Yes, the craziest 10% of Catholics--the liberal pro-abortion, pro-contraception Democrats, donate most of the money, and that's why they control the parishes and insist on week after week of travesties like overuse of extraordinary ministers and Haugen-Haas claptrap.

The rest of us who actually pray and go to mass and fill the pews and believe in the Catholic Church and try not to turn age-old dogma into political fads have to put up with this garbage.

And I'd like to know your justification for this statement:
" given present demographic trends, that percentage can only increase over time."
What? The demographic trends that most of what you consider "normal" Catholics are on the fast road to Hell with their divorces and artificial birth control? The fact that the vast majority of Catholics who attend mass are conservative? The fact that the only Catholics having kids are homeschooling, tradition-loving conservative, and we're having kids by the vanful, much to the chagrin of the Americanists?