Cardinal Dolan Calls For Anti-LGBT Sermons In Shadow Of Violent Anti-Gay Hate Crime Wave
Cardinal Timothy Dolan has issued a directive to all Catholic dioceses to focus their sermons on “traditional marriage” and opposing the “redefinition of marriage” to include LGBT people, now through June. Dolan, who is the President of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB), and thus the top representative of the Roman Catholic Church in America, is also the Archbishop of New York, but has said not one word about the skyrocketing anti-LGBT violent hate crimes in his own back yard.
As of Friday night, New York City has been home to nine anti-LGBT violent hate crimes this month, and 27 this year — almost double the rate of last year, which saw a double-digit increase over the previous year.
But instead of denouncing anti-gay violence, instead of even acknowledging it, instead of calling for tolerance and love, Cardinal Dolan issued a directive to preach anti-LGBT hate in Church, and created a “USCCB Nationwide Bulletin Insert,” below, to share with all Catholics across the country.
The NYPD and many of New York’s state and local politicians have denounced these crimes of ignorance and hate. Many attended the vigil for Mark Carson, the 32-year old gay man fatally gunned down just nine days ago, and many attended last Monday’s protest rally. Mayor Michael Bloomberg finally acknowledged Carson’s murder and the anti-LGBT violence in a press conference held with Police Commissioner Ray Kelly this week.
Even the President of NOM, the National Organization For Marriage, and the head of the anti-gay hate group, Family Research Council, have denounced the violence.
But the nation’s number one Catholic cannot find the time to even acknowledge it, much less denounce it.
When the heads of anti-gay organizations are denouncing anti-LGBT violence, and the head of the Catholic Church in the U.S. cannot, what does that say about his focus — and his attitude toward the LGBT community?
Not only has Cardinal Dolan not acknowledged the anti-LGBT hate — which even Pastor Rick WarrenÂ admits and the vast majority of Americans agree that church teachings hold responsibilityÂ for — but he has contributed to it.
In a blog post falsely claiming Â â€œAll Are Welcome!,â€Â Timothy Cardinal Dolan belittled LGBT people, demanded we wash our “dirty hands” before he could accept us into his Church — and then literally barred LGBT and allied Catholics from entering NYC’s St. Patrick’s Cathedral, Cardinal Dolan’s home, unless they literally washed the dirt from their hands.
Despite the clear change in direction Pope Francis has called for, Cardinal Dolan chooses to look the other way, ignoring those in his own parish who need his support.
“Since Mark Carson’s brutal murder last week, Cardinal Timothy Dolan has failed to issue even a minor statement regarding Mark’s death or the string of attacks that have taken place over the past few months,” writes Joseph Amodeo, the LGBT activist who organized the “Dirty Hands” event. “The absence of the Cardinal’s voice is of concern, because of the fact that these acts of violence stand in stark contradiction to Catholic social teaching and more directly the Catechism of the Catholic Church. Not to mention, all of these attacks took place within a short distance from the Cardinal’s residence in Manhattan.”
“This silence is a testament to the passive homophobia that defines Catholic Church teaching and comments from the institution’s hierarchy regarding lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people. This silence must be shattered: Cardinal Timothy Dolan must condemn these acts of hate,” Amodeo urges, adding:
The silence must stop. The Archdiocese of New York and Cardinal Timothy Dolan must issue clear condemnations of the violence that has taken place on New York’s streets directed at the gay community. For a moral leader who is so vocal about the dignity of the human person, his silence in the wake of these hate crimes is deafening.
If Cardinal Dolan truly wants to express the message that “all are welcome,” then he must break this dangerous silence, condemn these acts of hate, and stand in solidarity with gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender people in the face of prejudice. Passive homophobia can no longer be accepted as the status quo in our churches, because conditional statements of welcome and critiques of the innate nature of the human person provide a breeding ground for intolerance.
A pastoral response to these hate crimes from the Archbishop of New York is no longer an option to be discerned, but rather a necessary step to ensure that the dignity of life is upheld.
How many more LGBT people will suffer — or die — before Cardinal Dolan denounces the violence and anti-LGBT hate?
Bulletin Insert Marriage and the Supreme Court Spring 2013
Image via Twitter
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Cardinal Dolan: Same-Sex Couples Entitled To â€˜Friendshipâ€™ But Not â€˜Sexual Loveâ€™ (Video)
LGBT Activist Becomes Victim Of Anti-Gay Violent Attack In NYCâ€™s Hellâ€™s Kitchen
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Florida GOP Lawmaker Who Wrote ‘Don’t Say Gay’ Bill Facing Up to 35 Years After Pleading Guilty in COVID Fraud Case
Joe Harding, the now-former Florida Republican lawmaker who authored the extremist “Don’t Say Gay” bill could face up to 35 years in prison after pleading guilty Tuesday afternoon to federal felony fraud charges in a scheme to obtain $150,000 in COVID-19 relief funds, according to Florida Politics‘ publisher Peter Scorsch.
Harding, 35, was a construction project manager who started his own lawn care company. He quickly became a right-wing darling after his anti-LGBTQ legislation, officially the Parental Rights in Education Act, was embraced by Florida GOP Governor Ron DeSantis, who signed it into law.
Harding was charged in a December federal indictment with six counts of wire fraud, money laundering, and making false statements in his plot to obtain $150,000 in COVID funds.He resigned from the legislature the following day. He originally pled not guilty.
READ MORE: ‘Chilling’: Law Enforcement ‘Seriously’ Investigating Threats Ahead of Possible Trump Indictment Says Top WaPo Reporter
After Harding was charged and resigned, Nadine Smith, the executive director of Equality Florida, responded via social media, saying: “So much harm to students, parents and teachers because of his raw political ambitions. He slandered entire communities and trafficked in lie after lie that has emboldened violent bigotry. He will have his day in court but his legacy is already a despicable one.”
Harding is not the only family member accused of criminal acts.
“Harding’s indictment follows a September guilty plea from his brother-in-law, Patrick Walsh,” Florida Politics reported in December. “As reported by Fresh Take Florida, Walsh pleaded guilty to wire fraud and money laundering charges connected to his receipt of nearly $8 million in disaster relief loans.”
Unrepentant to the harm many feel he has done to children and the LGBTQ community, in a statement Tuesday Harding said: “During the past legislative session I have felt the support of millions of Americans while fighting for our shared concerns and for the rights of parents. I will never forget the support I received from every corner of this great country.”
READ MORE: 18 Attorneys General Blast Florida’s “Don’t Say Gay” Law as Unconstitutional
Harding will be sentenced in July.
Florida’s Voice also reported Harding’s guilty plea Tuesday.
RIGHT WING EXTREMISM
‘Chilling’: Law Enforcement ‘Seriously’ Investigating Threats Ahead of Possible Trump Indictment Says Top WaPo Reporter
Ahead of a possible indictment of Donald Trump, law enforcement agencies are investigating “chilling” threats, including against Manhattan District Attorney Alvin Bragg, according to top Washington Post investigative reporter Carol Leonnig.
Leonnig was careful to say she is not aware of any of the threats being deemed credible, but also noted that “all sorts of law enforcement agencies” seem to be taking much more interest than some agencies did in the weeks before the January 6, 2021 insurrection.
“I have received copies and screenshots and internal documents and emails flagging concerns about specific protests, investigations into specific online threats that have been made that are not yet determined to be ‘credible and likely to occur’ but have been chilling nonetheless in terms of the threats that have been made about killing certain people,” Leonning, a Pulitzer-Prize winning author, said Tuesday on MSNBC’s “Deadline” White House.”
“Claims of, you know, ‘Alvin Bragg needs to needs to die,’ and claims online that could just be, you know, bravado, but are being seriously investigated and checked into this time around, ones that were not checked into as clearly at all in the weeks before January 6, despite significant warnings to the FBI about what these threats meant.”
Mirroring Leonnig’s reporting, Rolling Stone, citing law enforcement reports, on Tuesday noted: “Violent extremists are advocating lethal attacks and proclaiming their willingness to die for the cause.”
READ MORE: ‘All-Out War’: Trump’s Attorney Tells Kimberly Guilfoyle Ex-President Will Be ‘Loud and Proud’ When Showing Up for Indictment
“U.S. Capitol Police, the D.C. Fusion Center, and the Federal Highway Administration have all circulated warnings about the uptick in online threats over the past 48 hours. The bulletins and threat assessments detail some of the online threats and discussions about the use of specific tactics and methods for carrying out attacks — including online discussions about lethal attacks if Trump is arrested.”
On Saturday in an explosive series of social media posts Donald Trump urged his supporters to “protest” and “take our nation back.”
That “announcement was met with an immediate increase in violent online rhetoric and expressed threats toward government and law enforcement targets perceived as participating in a political persecution of the former president, as well as calls for ‘Civil War’ more generally.”
The DC Fusion Center, which analyzes threats, in a report stated it “assesses that potential criminal justice actions taken toward a former US president — or actions perceived to be taken toward the former president — remain a ‘line in the sand’ for [Domestic Violent Extremist] communities and thus have the potential to manifest in violence toward government targets or political officials,” Rolling Stone added.
Missouri Supreme Court Refuses to Disbar Lawyer Who Sexually Assaulted Six Women: Report
An 86-year old defense attorney will be allowed to keep his law license after the Missouri Supreme Court in a 4-3 ruling refused to disbar him despite having sexually assaulted six of his clients, all women.
Attorney Dan K. Purdy will be “indefinitely suspended from practicing law but allowed to apply for reinstatement after a year,” The Kansas City Star reports.
“In September 2020, Purdy made sexual advances toward four clients in a Vernon County jail interview room, including touching and kissing, that were confirmed by video provided by the Vernon County Sheriff’s Office,” The Star reports. “Each woman was later interviewed by officers and told them Purdy’s advances were unwanted.”
In addition to jail interview roos, Purdy’s sexual advances took place in court and in his car. All were locations where his clients might have felt uncomfortable to complain.
READ MORE: Trump Calls for Congress to Investigate NY AG After Judge Refuses to Delay $250 Million Fraud Trial Against Ex-President
“Purdy’s clients either did not know or did not realize they could repudiate his sexual advances,” Justice George W. Draper III wrote in the majority opinion.
There are seven justices on the Missouri Supreme Court, four appointed by Republican governors, three by Democratic governors. Four are men, three are women.
The ruling was not along party lines.
“In my view, neither the race, gender, ethnicity, nor age of an attorney should be taken into consideration to determine appropriate discipline,” wrote Justice Zel M. Fischer in his dissent. “In my view, Mr. Purdy’s conduct, which was clearly and explicitly depicted in the video evidence, warrants disbarment.”
“As recognized by the principal opinion, not only did Mr. Purdy sexually assault six female clients, he ‘exhibited a continued pattern or practice of improper and disturbing conduct, which continued, even after the present case was filed against him,'” Fischer noted. [Bolding in original text.]
Image of Missouri Supreme Court via Wikimedia
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