The U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) — the official group that represents the Catholic Church in America — is in the middle of a two-day annual meeting and has decided to declare war on gay marriage, at the expense of all else. Despite a recent poll titled, “Catholics in America,” that found American Catholics see opposition to same-sex marriage equality as low on their list of what the Church should be focusing on, the USCCB has spent a good portion of the day on its anti-gay agenda, which included the introduction of a new anti-gay website, “Marriage: Unique For A Reason.”
The new site says, “it is hoped that Marriage: Unique for a Reason can be of assistance to all people of good will who seek to understand the truth and beauty of marriage.” We agree. Marriage is unique, and beautiful, and should therefore not be declined to same-sex couples.
Marriage: Unique For A Reason also asks,
“What is marriage? Are a man and a woman really essential to marriage? What about the child … and the role of mothers and fathers? Is it discriminatory to defend marriage as the union of one man and one woman? What impact does the redefinition of marriage have on religious liberty?”
Of course, you can imagine the answers.
It should be noted that there is a difference between civil marriage equality, for which we are fighting, and religious marriage, which every marriage equality bill and law respects and protects. Yet, Archbishop Dolan and his USCCB ignore that basic distinction and consistently equate and conflate the two.
The National Catholic Reporter, which sponsors the above-mentioned poll, Catholics in America, and performs it every six years, found that opposition to same-sex marriage is important to only 35% of American Catholics, yet a great portion of today’s USCCB meeting was focused on just that. 67% of American Catholic believe helping the poor to be second in importance, yet little if any time today was devoted to that topic or task.
In fact, in his opening remarks, Archbishop Timothy Dolan, president of the USCCB, railed against those who dare to challenge the Church or his leadership.
Zack Ford at Think Progress last month noted, “Given that the Catholic League regularly blames homosexuality for the child abuse committed by Church leaders, it makes sense that Catholics are similarly distrusting of them on LGBT and other social issues. These results suggest that the Catholic Church’s political clout comes not from the authority of its vast membership, but perhaps merely from the large sums of money it wields in their campaigns.”
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